An Intro to Dynamik Website Builder

If you’ve been around my blog long, you know I’m a fan of the Genesis Extender Plugin. Since I’ve already talked about cool things you can do with Genesis Extender, I thought I’d give you a quick overview of what the Dynamik Website Builder Genesis can do.

Note: there are affiliate links in this post. You can read my full disclosure here.

What is the Dynamik Website Builder?

Think of Dynamik as a crazy-flexible child theme for the Genesis Framework. You install it, just like you would any other theme and you’ll see some new options appear in your Genesis menu to control settings, design, and custom code.

Dynamik Website Builder

Do you remember the “More Cowbell” skit from SNL (if not, do yourself a solid and go watch it)? Christopher Walken as The Bruce Dickinson walks into the studio and says:

Easy, guys.. I put my pants on just like the rest of you — one leg at a time. Except, once my pants are on, I make gold records.

So, you install the Dynamik child theme just like the rest. Except, once it’s installed, it makes gold websites. 🙂

Features Overview

Dynamik offers a full suite of code-free design options (i.e.(one-click setup for backgrounds, colors, fonts, etc), easy access to Google fonts, and more.

  • HTML5 & mobile responsive WordPress theme
  • Boatload of customization options that require NO CODE
  • “Live preview” let’s you see tweaks as you make them (before you commit to saving them)
  • Completely customizable home page configuration (control layout and widgets)

The theme also comes with a dozen “Dynamik Skins“, which are pre-configured Dynamik design options that you can upload and activate on your site. The skins can give you a big head start – if you see one you like, import it, and then you can use that as the base for any further tweaks.

Who is Dynamik Website Builder for?

Dynamik Website BuilderDynamik is a great choice for what I call the Shy DIY-er, the beginner to intermediate level WordPress developer.

You want to do things yourself, like change out fonts, colors, backgrounds, and re-arrange home page layouts, but you’re timid when it comes to messing with code or CSS. Dynamik gives you the power to do this through a friendly user interface. You can make a beautiful custom WordPress site without ever touching the code.

When you’re ready to build your confidence working directly with the CSS, or changing things around via hooks and filters, you can do that, too. All of the features of the Genesis Extender Plugin are baked right into the Dynamik theme.

Do I Need Dynamik AND Genesis Extender?

On the same website, no. If you’re using Dynamik on a site, you definitely don’t need Genesis Extender since that functionality already exists within the theme (think of Genesis Extender as a portable, mini-version of Dynamik that you can use on any Genesis Child Theme).

Genesis Extender Plugin

If you build a lot of sites with the Genesis Framework, it could make sense to have both. For instance, you’re familiar working with and love Dynamik on your site, but you get a project where you don’t need a new child theme. In that case, it’d be good to have Genesis Extender handy for your customizations.

Check out the Dynamik demo

If you’re thinking Dynamik is right for you, but want to learn more, the best way to do that is to view this Dynamik demo. It’s created by the gentleman who made the theme, Eric Hamm, and is a great visual overview of how Dynamik works.

On a side note, I’ve interviewed Eric Hamm on my podcast a couple of times. He’s a great guy – check out the episodes if you’d like to learn more.

54 thoughts on “An Intro to Dynamik Website Builder”

  1. Quick question about formatting sites utilizing Dynamik… can you have multiple layouts within the same site? Such as full width for home, split column for some inside pages, only right column for others, plus yet another full page version for inside, different layout for blog, etc.? Or is it somewhat limited in that regard? Thanks for all your replies here… appreciate it!

    1. Just so I accurately respond, can you clarify a bit? By default Genesis has built-in Layout Options, including those for In-Post/In-Page options. So in this case you can easily select a single right sidebar for one page, a full width content for a certain post, maybe a double left sidebar as a default Layout, etc.. But that’s built-in Genesis functionality.

      So I wasn’t sure if that’s what you were asking or something else. So let me know if I’m missing something here.

      Eric

      1. I’m probably not clear since I am not currently a Genesis user. I have dabbled with it, but that’s all. I do own the framework, however, and I was looking at Dynamik as a possible faster/easier solution when needed… I watched the video, and it seems to have it’s own set of layout options. So, not sure how they work together. As long as I have multiple options within the same site, without manual coding or manipulation, that works for me. I am an ithemes Builder user right now, so my mindset is how they do things, and how I have to create my layouts if using the default child theme. I prefer less coding and more opportunity for site planning and aesthetics.

        1. THIS SCREENCAST might help clear things up. Note, however, that for basic column/sidebar controls you only need to tweak that built-in Genesis Layout Options. The screencast I linked to goes way beyond that for all kinds of crazy combos.

          Eric

          1. Eric… I am finally getting started with Dynamik… and noticed in the download area, there are “skins” for Dynamik… are those a requirement to use Dynamik or simply an option if you like a particular skin? And, if you use the skin with Dynamik, can you still use the customization options located inside Dynamik/Genesis?

    1. Genesis Pro Pack is the bundle for all their child themes. But with them going to html5 they will upgrade some and all new ones will be html5.

    1. Hey Jon,

      That’s only true when you’re logged in as an admin and have the Front-end CSS Builder enabled. When the Front-end CSS Builder is disabled and/or you’re not logged in as an admin Dynamik properly enqueues its own fully minified stylesheet, combining both your default styles and Custom styles for greatest efficiency.

      The reason it pulls the styles into the page source when using the Front-end CSS Builder is because that’s what allows you to interact with those styles in real-time. But your visitors never encounter this.

      Eric

  2. Carrie,

    I have a friend who’s a Genesis Developer in England, Lee Hodson, and he was recently telling me about dynamik and how great it works with Genesis. I love your review of it also. It gives me a better sense of what it can do and how it can be used by advanced developers and designers as well, who like messing with the CSS and PHP when appropriate.

  3. Hi Carrie,

    I found your page a couple days ago (more like wee hour of the morning 🙂 and really like your quality and style. Not sure I actually qualify as a shy DIYer because I’ve only built websites using WYSIWYGs like Artisteer. Although, I have manipulated some html and css.

    Right now I’m trying to build a site with WordPress/Genesis/Prose; first time working in WordPress without my Artisteer theme (which Artisteer provides easier, more direct access to css customization for the novice IMO and no theme updates will trash customizations made directly to code).

    I get frustrated with WordPress and pre-styled themes because it’s difficult to customize it the way I want without just all-out learning code (which I’ve avoided for years and years cuz trying to focus more on building my foundation for launching a business).

    For instance, on my new website thecoachhoax.com, I’ve managed to get an “acceptable” header image in there, but had to make the file 9500×1500 to keep it from getting terribly blurry because I was unable to locate the #branding … #width etc to remove the 100% declaration, which from my understanding WordPress uses to crop and reduce image size, arghh!

    I’ve managed to get the site description lowered on the page using “margin” but can’t figure out how to style or drop text to the next line (it simply defaults to style and placement Genesis/Prose dictates). Tried php and can figure out how to style” the text, but no luck placing it where I want on the page, so it’s either default with their style located where I want, or php my style over top of my header image.

    Can Dynamik allow total control over these elements?

    Thanks,
    Angela

    I love Jesus and I love that you love Him. You’re awesome for making Him part of your business life!

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