The beauty of Free Software is that it allows a healthy economy to grow around it.
While WordPress saw the growing industry of premium themes 3 years back, now I can see a new trend of child theme market growing on top of premium WordPress themes with GPL license. A good example is the number of 3rd party child themes available for the Genesis WordPress theme framework designed by StudioPress.
Here is a list of child themes for the Genesis theme framework available outside StudioPress:
Official Genesis child themes
* official Genesis child themes which come with the Pro Plus pack.
* Official free Genesis child themes mostly having a blog layout.
* Genesis child themes in its Marketplace – Where StudioPress approved and supported leading designers sell Genesis based child themes.
And here is a handy tool to choose a Genesis theme.
Individual designers offering Genesis themes
Genesis child themes as part of a service package
This is quite similar to the trend above in that the companies choose the Genesis theme as their platform. Instead of just offering child themes, they have a packaged business model with other services.
Win With WordPress provides a hosted solution for inexpensive websites for political and non-profit organizations. Not only is Win With WordPress built on Genesis, all of the themes and client sites they develop will also be built on Genesis.
Genesis compatible premium WordPress Theme makers
This is quite an unexpected trend in the WordPress theming community. Most of the theme makers tend to develop their own code base or framework. But Allure Themes’ USP is to design female friendly themes. So, I guess they are focusing on the design alone and making it available on popular frameworks.
Child themes by official StudioPress designers
These are theme designers who have created one of the official Genesis child themes. They seem to have more child themes for sale on their own website or at theme markets.
Genesis child themes at WordPress theme markets
This has huge potential for growth. Most of the criticism on themes found at theme markets point that they have poor code base that is not maintained and upgraded well. Writing child themes for well maintained frameworks can give designers more freedom to focus on the design aspect.
Free Genesis child themes
One thing is sure. We can see more free child themes in future. This may be the same cycle of free WordPress themes designed few years back and will help transition many budding designers to PRO level. Of course, we may get few quality themes also from good developers 🙂
Please let me know if you can find more child themes for Genesis or any other popular WordPress theme framework. It will be interesting to have an analysis of the trends.