Change is coming to WordPress and you don’t want to get caught flat-footed. We’re starting to hear a lot about WordPress 5.0 and Gutenberg and whether we like it or not, the process for adding new content to WordPress sites is about to undergo a major transformation.
The Pros of Gutenberg
If you’ve already made the switch to Elementor or another Visual Composer, then the new editor won’t seem foreign to you. For those who haven’t, you are used to using an interface that looks like Word or Google Docs. Gutenberg makes use of content blocks which are then arranged visually rather than using shortcodes or HTML.
For the non-programmer, this is good news. You will be able to insert columns, social media feeds, formatting, and even microdata WITHOUT having to know how to code. The result should be visually appealing pages and better SEO, which should mean better ranking and higher conversions.
You will even be able to save the blocks and use them as templates across the website. This can save time and make it easier to maintain a consistent look for your brand.
The Cons of Gutenberg
Even though Gutenberg has potential, there are a couple of hurdles that you will face as soon as the switch is made.
Hurdle #1 – You will need to relearn WordPress
Almost everyone knows how to use a Wordprocessing program, so the current WordPress interface is pretty easy to navigate. If you take a look at the new editor (you can play with Gutenberg here), you notice that while the basics seem pretty self-explanatory, the full functionality will take some time to learn.
Hurdle #2 – Not all themes and plugins work with Gutenberg
Eventually, if they want to stay in business, theme and plugin developers will need to update their products to be Gutenberg compatible. However, you may find that parts of your website don’t work correctly after the WordPress 5.0 update. You may need to find new plugin options or install the WordPress Classic plugin temporarily.
What is the WordPress Classic Plugin?
The word on the street is that eventually, everyone will need to switch to the new editor. It’s true that WordPress will offer a plugin that will allow you to use WordPress 5.0 without Gutenberg. However, it’s safe to assume that all future 3rd party plugins and theme updates will be Gutenberg compatible, meaning they may not work with the Classic Plugin. If you choose NOT to update your plugins so you can continue to use Classic, then over time you will run security risks and support will lapse.
So, the bottom line is that eventually, everyone WILL have to make a switch.
Gutenberg and Elementor
How will Gutenberg work with Elementor? That is a good question! Here is what it says on the Elementor website:
Our team has been keeping a close eye on the Gutenberg project. We are looking into different methods to integrate and extend Gutenberg in Elementor.
We are glad WordPress is also making progress with the Gutenberg project. This brings an important functionality to millions of users, and new challenges for theme and plugin developers.We believe that Elementor’s unique vision of design is just in its early stages, and there is a lot of room for innovation. We will find the best path to work alongside the new editor, and keep leading the field of WordPress design.
What Does All of This Mean for You?
The bottom line is that if you do not currently use a visual editor, then you will need to install one. Either you can use Gutenberg or you can switch your site over to another, like Elementor, that has more functionality. If you watched the Thrive video, you may have remarked on the fact that the WordPress visual editor does far less than other visual editors and still has a number of bugs and issues.
The Gutenberg Classic plugin will buy you some time, but you will have to install it and then make plans for the future.
If you need more information on how to move your site from the classic WordPress interface to a visual editor, like Elementor, or you want to test your current configuration with Gutenberg, contact Effect Web Agency. We will guide you through your options and help you make the switch so that you don’t have to worry about website issues.