On November 19th, WordPress will release version 5.0 including the biggest changes WordPress has made in recent years. Most notably, they are implementing the “Gutenberg” editor, which is a completely different way to create blog posts and pages.
In an effort to be more user-friendly and to compete with the streamlined site builders like Weebly and Wix, WordPress is hoping that Gutenberg will simplify the process. Let’s face it, the classic WordPress editor is getting a bit classic, shall we say? It doesn’t allow you to drag and drop, previewing content is awkward and multiple plugin features are getting a bit clunky.
This classic editor will be replaced on November 19th with Gutenberg becoming the default editor. If everything goes as planned, you will have much more control when composing a post with rearrangeable blocks of text and you’ll be able to preview as you go rather than toggling back and forth. However, things rarely go as planned, and we want you to be prepared for some blips that may occur as things get settled.
No one likes change and it will take time to get used to. But, if you can struggle through the growing pains, in the end it will make life so much easier! Where were you when Microsoft introduced the “ribbon” for Office? You were likely busy clicking on menus and submenus and were befuddled by the new format. Once you caught on, your productivity likely increased as the new format made a lot of sense. Consider Gutenberg to be like the “ribbon”. You might feel lost in the beginning, but before you know it, you will be composing like a pro!
Problems with Plugins
Most of the major plugins have been preparing for this update and should be ready to go. However, not every plugin is updated – and might not be. Many times a plugin is developed as a side project and as the upkeep becomes too onerous, it is abandoned and support is no longer available.
There are also plugins that will be updated, but might not be ready for November 19th. You should probably be prepared that some of your plugins may not work when you install Gutenberg. These things can take time, so you may need to be patient.
You’re probably curious about what these changes are and how it will make your life easier. Here are some of our favourite additions:
* Default building blocks will allow you to easily create your post with moveable “blocks” for elements such as heading, images, media, text columns, buttons, etc.
* Drag and drop capability
* “What you see is what you get” experience
* Building custom themes will be easier by using blocks
If you are not a HTML Master, Gutenberg will make your life easier. Formatting, rearranging and making changes will now be much simpler. Just remember, once you have Gutenberg, you can’t go back. So work through the growing pains and it will get better. In the end, you won’t even miss the clunky classic editor! If you have any specific concerns about the new WordPress release, feel free to reach out to our ZOO Media Group team. We can answer your questions and help you navigate through the transition.