WordStamped is a documented "follow along" project where I record what I know about using WordPress to build websites and blogs. After stumbling around with free WordPress themes for a time, I eventually focussed on building sites using the Genesis Framework.
For years, I was deeply embedded in Genesis and relied heavily on their excellent theme framework and any number of child WordPress themes. When Automattic announced Gutenberg, it became clear to me that WordPress themes would soon no longer be a thing and that Genesis would one day give up on their child themes.
I started looking around for an alternative way to build sites with WordPress while still embracing the new Gutenberg core spirit that now defines WordPress. I wanted to find a tool that didn't rely on themes, given that I was sure themes were dying, but nothing was forthcoming. Then I found the site builder called Oxygen.
I may have been right about the future of WordPress themes (as in they don't have one) because StudioPress appear to now be placing a significant portion of their engineering effort into Genesis Pro. Genesis Pro is a plugin for building whole sites using Gutenberg blocks. But then you can still buy Genesis themes - they haven't stopped selling them.
It's a time of flux - things are not yet settled. There are lots of choices available to you regarding WordPress. There's so much choice it could be confusing. If you are in two minds about what to use to get started with WordPress then here's a very short summary of the most popular options:
In this case you pick a theme that most appeals to you visually and functionally, and you add content. When I used WordPress themes, I used the Genesis Framework plus a Genesis Child Theme. But there are thousands of other WordPress themes you can use including loads of free ones.
A free theme is the answer if you plan to be a casual WordPress site owner and want the easiest solution but not necessarily the best one. It's like picking a visual look and feel for your site (a theme) off a shelf and simply filling in the blanks (your own text, videos and images), to achieve a website.
But there's a lot more to running a WordPress site than how it looks.
When you use a page builder, you start with a WordPress theme, then use the page builder to add content and optionally control the way the theme looks too.
There are many other solutions open to you, but those are the ones I believe to be the most popular. I am sticking with Oxygen for now although at some point I will explore Genesis Pro. However it is quite expensive, and if you have already spent a fortune on Genesis in the past it might feel like a bridge too far.
My plan is to concentrate on writing about the building of sites that are destined to be blogs, rather than traditional small business sites. Although much of what I write will be applicable to both types of site. This will be especially so if content writing (or blogging) is part of your plan to build traffic to a small business website.