17 Comments

  1. Steve

    Interesting … I saw the announcement from WPEngine but didn’t understand the implications until I read your article.

    I think this is good that WPEngine is leading the way developing the block editor. Despite the naysayers in your article last week, the block editor is the future.

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  2. Marcus Tibesar

    $30 per month for a page builder? Wow!

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    • Von

      That is really high. Genesis has always been known for a different model and I don’t know if I can subscribe to this. The expense is too much, plus the continual paying is too much

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    • Steven Gliebe

      That’s the price for their entry hosting plan which includes the StudioPress products. It will be available via StudioPress apart from WP Engine later in the year.

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      • Justin Tadlock

        To be clear, this is a separate add-on to their hosting service.

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        • Steven Gliebe

          Oops, perhaps I shouldn’t have skimmed. Thank you, Justin.

          The price does make sense for an agency on WP Engine. A lot of agencies pay per site with only a modest discount for things like Yoast SEO and ManageWP. A flat $30/month for unlimited sites would be a bargain.

          I don’t see how the average single site owner using Genesis would be interested in paying $360/year for it. A lower tier would make sense for that segment, methinks. I’m sure WP Engine knows what they’re doing.

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    • Justin Tadlock

      I imagine the price won’t be an issue for freelancers and agencies running potentially dozens of WordPress installs. The cost for 10 clients goes down to $3/client each month. Not a bad deal in that scenario.

      For Regular Joe with his one personal website, it’s probably a bit much. It’d be nice to see some different tiers to cater to different user bases.

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  3. Patrick Boehner

    I am hesitant but excited for these changes. Genesis has always had two customer bases, its developers, and the DIY child theme buyers. I think this holds promise for both. For the DIY buyers, in particular, it brings the true flexibility the child theme buyers have been looking for because of the block editor. Genesis has always attempted not to be too opinionated in how it built out the editing options in its child themes which have always been a limitation. A good one but one that was limiting.

    As a developer, I hope we will be able to use a tool like this and strip out all the premade templates and customize it for custom theme building and are restricted to the templates, sections, and blocks that are best suited for the experience I am trying to deliver.

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  4. Von

    $30 is expensive, too expensive.

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  5. Alex

    Does the price tag include fully managed support? I mean, it comes under the managed hosting, but are there going to be people allocated to help customers with their design-related issues?

    Then again, StudioPress was always an upper-end brand, to begin with.

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    • Justin Tadlock

      I cannot speak directly for WP Engine and StudioPress, but I imagine there is an existing support system in place for customers. That is pretty standard across the industry.

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  6. Michael Edwin

    I guess this perfectly relates to your previous article when Brian Gardner stated, “My biggest regret was not starting with (or switching to) a recurring business model, I think I left a lot of money on the table by not doing that…”

    Is this WP Engine’s attempt to rectify Brian’s regret?

    Unfortunately, Genesis Pro misses the mark in so many ways. Charging $360/year is laughably uncompetitive as they seem to be selling you, in part, what’s already included in their own free Atomic Blocks collection.

    Many of the free blocks collections on WordPress.org, such as CoBlocks and Ultimate Addons, have more than the 17 custom blocks offered in Genesis Pro.

    Also, comparing what Genesis Pro gives you at $360/year vs. what something like Themeum’s Qubely does at $99/year and, again, Genesis Pro falls terribly short.

    Quite frankly, this is a bad move. If Genesis Pro was included with the Pro Plus All-Theme Package, it would have made it much more attractive to new customers and encouraged current customers to stick with Genesis.

    My agency has long abandoned Genesis but still supports dozens of Genesis sites that will eventually be transitioned to other themes. Genesis X or Genesis Pro at $360/year isn’t going to change. However, including these plugins and other value-adds at no additional cost might have certainly made a difference and convinced me to stick with Genesis.

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    • Nathan Rice

      I definitely understand the pricing concern. A little more context might make you feel better, though, so let me try to fill in some blanks.

      Genesis Pro, in its current state, might seem light on tools/features, and we understand that. You have to start somewhere, and this is where we chose to start. It’ll be too much $ to ask for from some people, and perfectly reasonable to others. We’re OK with that, for now.

      But as time goes on, and we continue to finish up the projects on our roadmap, we think the price becomes a lot more reasonable to a lot more people.

      It’s also worth noting that Genesis Pro is our “Pro-level subscription”, but we are fully invested in also providing TONS of value in our FREE tools as well.

      As David Vogelpohl mentioned, we’re currently working on a no-cost plugin that aims to solve many of the common problems surrounding building full sites in Gutenberg, including the site structure, content, styles, performance, SEO, etc.

      To reiterate, that will ALL be FREE … as in speech and as in beer. No cost, hosted on WordPress.org … FREE.

      And if something in our Genesis Pro package feels valuable to you (and we hope it will), then we’ll also be offering a the $360/yr Genesis Pro subscription that gets you access to all the extras, including professional support.

      Hopefully our commitment to making sure WordPress users in all economic conditions are taken care of is evident in our product strategy. We love this community … Genesis AND WordPress!

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      • Michael Edwin

        Nathan,

        While I appreciate your reply and with all due respect, it’s clear that charging $360/year is tone deaf, at best, especially in the face of a world-wide pandemic that has shutdown businesses around the world. We have yet to understand the full economic implications.

        Your pricing strategy has nothing to do with your love for the community. It’s about all the money StudioPress left on the table and a way to recapture it. Yes, it’s not for everyone, just the Genesis whales out there.

        Maybe that’s the real strategy: let’s create something for the whales!

        Like I said mentioned in my reply to Brian’s story, the big regret for StudioPress should be that you let Genesis slip into irrelevance.

        It’s funny how operations smaller than StudioPress and much less funded created themes that blow Genesis out of the water, such as Astra, Blocksy, GeneratePress, Kadence WP, OceanWP, Oxygen Builder, etc.

        Maybe I’m wrong. Ultimately, the marketplace will decide.

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        • Nathan Rice

          I get where you’re coming from, but I wouldn’t say it’s just for the whales … it’s for anyone who finds $360/yr in value for what the product offers. And, sure, that definitely won’t be an enormous group to right now. But as we add to the subscription, our intent is to make the value of the subscription worth the price for a larger and larger group of people.

          But I want to stress that we absolutely do not ever expect this to be some sort of universally appealing offering. It is called Genesis PRO for a reason. If you’re a professional web developer invested in WordPress, we want to help save you time when building sites for yourself and your clients.

          For people who aren’t necessarily professional web developers, or who don’t have the budget for our subscription, I want to reiterate that we are dedicating significant resources to building out FREE, no cost, totally gratis tools that do what our current flagship commercial product does, AND MORE! If someone never buys Genesis Pro, our Genesis products will still be available to them.

          I can tell you don’t like Genesis. I’m cool with that … to each his own. But we really are trying to position our product strategy so that we’re able to offer as much as we can for free. I mean, Genesis has always been a commercial product, and the StudioPress Pro Plus package is $500 currently, and still sells really well. The strategy of getting Genesis-quality tools in the hands of even more people for free seems like a good thing. ¯¯_(ツ)_/¯

          As you say, though, the market will decide.

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          • David Waumsley

            Is this something that will be added to the StudioPress Pro Plus package (eventually) or a separate cost?

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            • Liz Jamieson

              It is a separate cost David. I asked them the same questions a few days ago and they wrote this back to me.

              Hi Liz,

              Any existing Pro Plus purchases will remain completely unaffected by the launch of Genesis Pro. Existing Pro Plus customers will still continue to benefit from theme support should they need it and new StudioPress theme releases, just as before. But they will not get Genesis Pro for free. The key takeaway is that Pro Plus will simply be unavailable for purchase after June 10th, with Genesis Pro taking its place.

              Let me know if you have any other questions.

              Cheers,
              Robert

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