This video tutorial lesson is being taught in Thesis 2.2 beta because it’s going to be soon out of beta and available to everybody.
Most folks who are members of BYOBWebsite are members because they are trying to build a small business website as opposed to say, a blog or a personal site. So I think it makes sense for us to ask at the beginning why would we use Thesis 2 for a small business website.
Thesis 2 is Fast and Efficient
The first reason for using Thesis 2 for a small business website is because it is very fast and efficient, that is it has a very efficient code base which means it requires less server resources. I have two essentially identical sites here. One built on Thesis 2.2 and one built on Thesis 1.8.5.
Comparison of 1.8.5 and 2.2 Sites Speed
They have the same content, they have the same images, the same plugins and everything else. This morning I did a site speed test to see how they compared. This is the 1.8.5 site and this is the 2.2 site and while they have the same grade that is 87 out of 100, the Thesis 2 site has a quicker load time. It took 2.7 seconds to load whereas the 1.8.5 site took 4.33 seconds to load.
And this is the case even though the 2.2 site is larger, that is it has more stuff going on. But the really significant statistic here is actually the wait time because with Thesis 1.8.5, the wait time was 44.84% of the time which is essentially the server load time. This is the amount of time it takes the server to process the request, 44.84% of 4.33 seconds which is 1.9 seconds whereas the Thesis 2.2 wait time is only 33.54% or .9 second. So it’s slightly less than a second of server processing time to process this.
It’s important to note that there’s no caching, there’s no special optimization happening on either of these sites. These sites are built simply following the Start Building Your Website Here class so these are built as if a beginner were building these sites with no special code and the server resources required for the Thesis 2.2 site is much smaller than that required by the Thesis 1.8.5 site. So that’s one reason, Thesis 2.2 is faster.
Thesis 2.2 has Excellent SEO Tools
The second reason is that it has excellent SEO tools allowing you to customize the SEO for every single page on your site. It doesn’t really matter what kind of page it is on the site you can customize the SEO.
HTML5 Semantic Markup
It has HTML5 semantic markup which makes it easier for search engines to identify the main content on your site, what the page is about, it identifies the side content and the significant content on the site.
It also uses schema for developing structured data. So it provides Google and other search engines with very specific data in the format that they wish to read it in telling them what the page is about.
It provides very easy automatic Google publisher and Google author integration. Lots of themes require some kind of a plugin for this integration but with Thesis 2 it just happens without you thinking about it.
Yoast SEO Plugin Integration
To the extent that you want to use a plugin like Yoast SEO, Thesis gets out of the way of that. You can install Yoast SEO and Yoast SEO will work just fine with it.
This is not the case for previous versions of Thesis so Thesis 2 and 2.1 and 1.8.5, they don’t change if Yoast is installed which can mean that neither Thesis nor the plugin does their job effectively but now Thesis 2.2 fully supports Yoast SEO if you like to use that plugin.
Massive Support Available
The third reason why it makes good sense to use Thesis 2.2 for a small business website is that it has massive support. Of course I’m here at BYOBWebsite and I hope I provide excellent support to my members but Thesis also has a ticket based system for support.
DIYThemes Ticket Based Email Support
I’ll just log in to my account here at DIYThemes. For support you have this ticket based support system, essentially email support, which is very sleek, handy, fast support and then it also has community support with this massive forum.
Community Forum Support
Thesis was really the first WordPress theme that developed this culture of community support around the forum and the forum still remains a key place of getting support for things that may not be directly related to the use of Thesis itself. So it’s a huge resource of support.
For intermediate and advanced users, Thesis is hyper customizable. Thesis has really been created out of a system of interchangeable web parts, sort of like building blocks that you can just drag and drop around and assemble together.
Benefits for Advanced and Intermediate Users
This is not really a beginner’s skill set, it’s an intermediate or an advanced skill set but nevertheless, Thesis 2 provides the tools for intermediate and advanced users to really do anything you want it to do with it. And 99% of the time you’ll never have to use any PHP.
Use Primarily HTML and CSS
The most code you’re really going to have to write is some simple HTML and some CSS. Again that’s an intermediate and advanced user but nevertheless it is so customizable that you can do absolutely anything with it that you want.
One of the reasons why that’s the case is because it gives you very granular control. You have control all the way down to what HTML5 element is being used for displaying a particular piece of content so you can do just about anything with Thesis.
Use of Custom Templates
Thesis also provides you the opportunity to easily use custom templates anywhere on your site. If you’re familiar with typical WordPress posts and custom post types and those kinds of things, you never have custom templates unless you hard code them yourself.
Archive pages and that sort of thing generally don’t have custom templates. The most you ever get is a couple of custom page templates and maybe a custom front page template. But Thesis allows you to easily create custom templates in the skin editor and then apply those to absolutely any aspect of WordPress, from categories and tags and custom taxonomies all the way to posts and custom post types. It’s an incredibly powerful tool.
Finally, everything about Thesis is easily responsive, that is all of DIY theme skins are responsive, all of my BYOB skins are responsive and I provide a whole bunch of additional tools in the form of boxes that allow you to add all kinds of responsive elements to your site.
I think for small businesses these days it is critical that your website be easily responsive and that you get to be able to setup your site the way you want to in a responsive way. Thesis makes that quite simple. So that’s why I think that Thesis is an outstanding choice for a small business website.