Kadence - How to switch from Genesis to Kadence

If you're currently using a Genesis theme and you'd like to switch to one of our new Kadence themes, the process is surprisingly easy! In this article, we'll guide you through the steps.

1. Make a backup of your website

Before making any major changes to your website (like installing a new theme!), it's always a good idea to make a backup of your website. Having a backup in place allows you to easily revert your website to a previous version, should you encounter any issues.

Many web hosts offer backup services, so check with your host to find out. Or you can install a plugin such as UpdraftPlus.

If you have an established website with a large following, you may want to set up a staging site instead. A staging site will allow you to work on setting up your new theme while keeping your current theme live. Many hosts offer staging!

2. Deactivate Genesis plugins

Go to Plugins > All Plugins and look for any plugins that start with "Genesis." This might include Genesis Featured Page Advanced, Genesis Simple Share, Genesis Connect for WooCommerce, etc. It's important that these Genesis plugins are deactivated prior to installing your Kadence theme.

Note: Genesis eNews Extended, the newsletter plugin used in all of our Genesis themes, is also what you'll use in your Kadence theme!  This is a great plugin that does not require a Genesis theme.  Learn more by clicking here. If you already have your newsletter widgets configured, you can leave the Genesis eNews Extended plugin active on your website.

Additionally, look for a plugin called "Custom Featured Posts Widget." This is a custom plugin packaged in a few of our Genesis themes. If you have this plugin installed, deactivate it.

3. Deactivate Classic Editor

If you have the Classic Editor plugin installed on your site, it will need to be deactivated prior to installing your Kadence theme. Kadence is designed for the block editor.

4. Update your website

Update your website to the latest version of WordPress. A plugin audit is also a great idea to ensure you don't have any duplicate, outdated, or unnecessary plugins installed.

5. Header and Footer scripts

Genesis has a Header/Footer Scripts area located in the Customizer at Appearance > Customize > Theme Settings > Header/Footer Scripts. Any scripts in the Header or Footer boxes will not transfer to your new Kadence theme.

Click here for instructions on where to place scripts in Kadence. You can follow these steps prior to installing your Kadence theme, and then copy/paste your scripts from the Genesis Header/Footer Scripts box into the plugin. This will keep your scripts intact while installing your new theme.

6. Transferring homepage content

Note: When switching themes, your existing content is perfectly safe. This includes posts, pages, images, comments, navigation menus, and plugins. The only areas that you'll "lose" are areas that are built with widget areas, such as the homepage and category index page. These widget areas are specific to your current theme and will not transfer automatically.

Your current Genesis theme homepage is built with widget areas. Since your new Kadence homepage will be built in the WordPress editor using blocks, your homepage widget content will not transfer automatically to your Kadence homepage. If you want to transfer your Genesis homepage into Kadence, there are a couple simple methods:

  1. Take screenshots of your current homepage, then reference those screenshots when customizing your Kadence homepage.
  2. Copy/paste the content of your current homepage widgets (somewhere safe like a Word doc), then paste the content into your Kadence homepage.

Other content on your website – e.g. posts and pages – will be completely safe during the theme switch. You do not need to save any content that is already inside the block editor.

7. Install your Kadence theme

Now you're ready to install your 17th Avenue Kadence child theme! Click here to get started.