I should probably begin this review by explaining a bit about the Genesis Framework, of which Outreach is part. The framework offers a couple of key advantages: it is search engine optimised, and it is secure (the guys over at StudioPress do a much better job of outlining the benefits than me in their StudioPress 101 – it’s a recommended read!). Since last year I’ve moved all my sites over to the Genesis Framework – it’s that good. This very website runs on a customised version of the Modern Portfolio theme, which, along with Minimum and Metro, is one of my favourite Genesis themes.
So to use Outreach you have to be running the Genesis Framework – it won’t work without it, and neither will any other Genesis theme. You can buy Outreach + the framework for $79.95. The framework alone is worth $59.95. $79.95 might sound like a lot for a theme, but you’re not just buying a theme – you’re buying a rock-solid foundation (with unlimited support and updates) for potentially every future site you own. Even if you only plan on owning one site, why not give it the best possible chance of success?
There are around 40 Genesis themes in all, and I believe there is enough variety among them to make at least one of them suitable for virtually every kind of site. You also have to remember that they are endlessly customisable – there’s no limit to what you can do with them.
Let’s get on to Outreach. Outreach was designed specifically for churches or other religious organisations. Despite that, it’s being used on all sorts of other sites – a quick glance at the Genesis showcase confirms this.
What does Outreach have to offer?
- front page slider
- 4 page templates (archive, blog, column, landing)
- 4 colour schemes (blue, green, orange, red)
- 6 page layouts (content/sidebar, sidebar/content, content/sidebar/sidebar, sidebar/sidebar/content, sidebar/content/sidebar, full width content)
- custom widgets
One thing I like about Genesis themes is that they come with sample content so you can get your new theme looking like the demo and then work backwards replacing the demo content with your own.