Which one is faster? Which one is better?
Let’s settle the debate once and for all.
Which one is faster?
- GeneratePress because it allows you to do more things without a pagebuilder or other [bloated] plugins.
- Sure, Astra may be more lightweight in terms of having less code. But when that comes at the expense of having less features/functions, you’ll likely end up installing more plugins to have those functions! (Astra is still a good theme, btw. No stress if you have it.)
Which one is better?
- I don’t know about you but Tom Usborne has done more than just GeneratePress. He’s built some really awesome plugins that are available free to the community.
- Check them out: GenerateBlocks, Social Icons, Simple CSS, Grid Columns, WP Show Posts.
- Incredible work. And please keep in mind that I’m a diehard Genesis guy and yet still won over by GeneratePress. Those 2 themes are similar but completely different in user demographic and community culture.
“But isn’t GeneratePress made by only one guy, while Astra is backed by a whole team?“
Honestly, I feel like I trust it even more for being made by one guy. Just for the record, GeneratePress has been around a lot longer. And (IMO) was modeled after another favorite theme of mine (Genesis). Astra barely showed up on the scene like 2-3 years ago whereas GeneratePress has been around since 5-6 years ago.
I love that GP’s creator, Tom Usborne, mostly focuses on his theme and not much else. His other projects/product also integrate very well with his theme and everything is either FREE or very reasonably-priced for the paid version. You’re supporting one man. And he supports you.
But what about Astra. Well, they make a theme…they also make a conversion plugin, an SEO plugin, pagebuilder add-ons, a portfolio thing. Hmmm…that isn’t quite the same as one man’s passion for a clean/lightweight WordPress theme. It sounds more like a business. With employees, and plans to grow their profits. And you know what the issue is with companies that chase the dollar? They cater to the mainstream.
And I’m sorry but I don’t want what the mainstream wants. I don’t want BS flashy effects and trendy gimmicky ugly design crap on my sites. I’m too mature, too experienced for that. I’m not better-than-thou. I just have a different taste from what the crowd likes.
I’m willing to bet that despite having more resources (money & personnel), Astra will lose focus on their Astra theme far sooner than Tom will on his GP theme. Astra will move on to the next shiny business plan whereas Tom will not. In fact, it’s already happened. I hear of bug complaints with Astra all the time and never with GP.
“But Astra is more popular and has more downloads.”
Popularity is a correlation of commonality, not quality. Why is it more popular? Who knows. Maybe because it’s better-marketed. Maybe because it caters better to the mainstream crowd that doesn’t know any better.
Or maybe…it actually is better! Ha, just kidding. It’s not and here’s why…
GeneratePress has a higher-skilled user-base/community than Astra
And I don’t mean to offend anyone, but there are definitely more experienced developers and sitebuilders in GP’s community than in Astra’s community. I’ve also heard some critiques about both themes from developers. GP’s critique by one developer friend of mine was that he disagreed with how one small part of it was coded (I’m sorry for not remembering the detail). Astra’s critique by another respected friend of mine was that he couldn’t stand working with it at all. Felt it wasn’t built logically, and not following typical WordPress logic.
“But Astra has tons of big name WordPress guys singing their praises…Chris Lema, WPCrafters.”
ARGHHHH!!!….don’t make me go there. A good chunk of them are famous WordPress teachers. Good at public-speaking, making Youtube videos, or blogging to help newbies. Some of them are agency owners that develop sites for clients.
But are any of them a senior developers building mission-critical plugins, or contributing daily to WordPress core code? I shall whisper silently into your ear…*NO!*
Hey, I don’t have any issues with a product built for newbies to make sites for clients. But it’s still good to know what a true code-from-scratch developer thinks of a theme, right?
And more so than that, who’s opinion do you value more?
- The person who’s main business is developing [highend] client sites all day long?
- Or the person who’s main business is teaching others how to make WordPress sites?