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How to use the Content Archives feature in Genesis

Often times we receive support questions and emails on exactly HOW to go about setting up the formatting for a blog page or for an archive page (for example, your homepage or landing page if you decide not to set up the various widget areas). There’s a few quick and simple steps you can take to set up your archives to appear the way you are hoping. Some prefer to show full posts, others prefer to show only part of a post. Today we’ll talk about how to change the various settings to discover which option works best for you and your site.

First, you’ll want to navigate to the GENESIS tab in your WordPress dashboard. Once you’re there, you’ll click on THEME SETTINGS and scroll down the page until you find something that looks like this:

how to set up your content archives

Each of these various drop down menus offers you a different option. Let’s talk about each of those…

Display Post Content

This is where you can select whether you want to display an excerpt (which is 55 words by default) or if you want to display a little more than that. If you would like to showcase MORE than the first 55 words of your post, you’ll want to choose the DISPLAY POST CONTENT option. This allows you to choose exactly how much you want readers to see at one time. As you will notice in the screen shot above, choosing this option removes all formatting in your post preview. Punctuation marks, etc. will all be there like they should, but if you choose an content amount of 600 characters and and there is a break in the paragraphs in there, the paragraph break will not show up. Readers will simply see several lines of writing until they go on over to read the full article.

So what’s the difference between the post excerpt and display post content?

The post EXCERPT defaults automatically to 55 words and DOES NOT include a “read more” link. We are often asked how to set up the “read more” link, and we need to clarify that if you are looking to include the “read more” option on your homepage, blog page, etc. then you’ll want to use the display post content option to choose how many characters to include and automatically add your “read more” link. This applies to the Genesis Featured Widget setup as well.

Image Size

Each Genesis Theme comes set up with a few default image sizes, depending on size image needed to fit correctly in the widgetted areas of your design. For example, in the Adorn theme, you have sizing that looks like this:


At Restored 316 Designs, we label each image size so you know exactly where it goes to fit within the area you are selecting it for. No guessing which image goes where. You can choose whichever size image works best for your preferences. Once you select your image size preference and save your settings, you may see that you images don’t look exactly like you want them to. In this case, try downloading and running the Regenerate Thumbnails Plugin. That will automatically reset all of your images to the sizes that coordinate with the theme of your choice.

Image Alignment

This just allows you to choose whether you want your image to sit on the left or the right side of your content. For example, this is what the image aligned LEFT looks like on our Amplify theme


Post Navigation Technique

This simply lets you decide if readers will see a numeric list of pages on your site to go through or if they will see the simply previous page or next page option. It’s been my observation that displaying the actual page numbers is the most popular, as it allows readers to quickly go through pages of your site, without having to flip page by page.


Once you choose your settings, you’re all set to save! Keep in mind that this layout DOES impact your archive page, your blog page and your homepage layout if you don’t have the widgets set up on your landing page. With themes like Tasteful, you do have a custom archive option that you can set up differently from how your blog page is set up and instructions for that are included on our Support page!


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  1. In the Tasteful theme, is it possible to have 2 different types of archives? For some categories, I would like to use the category archives to show a thumbnail page and for other less photo-intense categories, I would like to have a photo and snippit of text. Is it possible to do that? I am new to Genesis and your themes and am trying to chose what would work best for my blog redesign. Thanks!

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