Some people associate the name Gutenberg with just the inventor of the printing press, while the ones more familiar with web development know it as one of the most popular WordPress editors, and as of recently, the official WordPress editor. Gutenberg is definitely a somewhat divisive topic, with some people being completely against it and others welcoming it with open arms.
The creation of Gutenberg was done with the intention of making the web development process as simple and as easy as possible for everyone regardless of their technical abilities. It aims to do that by making drag-and-dropping of design elements, so-called blocks, the go-to technique for website building. With Gutenberg, there is no need for coding knowledge, remembering shortcodes, and all those other things that might not be so interesting to someone without a technical background. Everything you need to create a site is packed into blocks, which all represent different design elements like headings, images, galleries, and everything else, a structure of a website needs.
The only thing you need to do is organize those blocks to your desired preferences. While Gutenberg is great for those without the word “web developer” in their bio, the people who do poses advanced web developing skills can utilize Gutenberg with even more flexibility and power than the ones that don’t. It will allow them to customize their site even more by creating their own blocks, which they can use, however, and as many times as they want.
Many people recognized the genius in Gutenberg’s simplicity, including the people at WordPress, who made the decision that it should be the default editor. Unfortunately, many others didn’t despite the extensive list of features and ease of use that are trademarks of Gutenberg. I would say the biggest problem people have with Gutenberg isn’t even about the editor itself, but more about WordPress deciding to make the switch between editors. People saw of the classic editor as something was working perfectly fine and didn’t need to be replaced, because of that, they couldn’t understand the reason for the switch and were reluctant even to give Gutenberg an honest try.
The addition of Gutenberg to WordPress was a move towards the future of web development where it is something understandable and accessible for everyone, but since people generally fear any change, that fear stopped them from seeing the bigger picture. Gutenberg itself didn’t scare them, but the prospect of them having to sit down a learn the ins and outs of the new editor, and maybe a new skill here and there did. It didn’t matter that all the things they were doing before will now be simplified, just because it would take a bit of time to get themselves adjusted to the change first.
The arguments against Gutenberg
People were quick to leave harsh criticism on Gutenberg, not taking into consideration that it was still in the infancy stage when it was released, basically in a beta version. To be fair its integration into WordPress could have been a bit postponed in order for some of the bugs to be removed but nevertheless they were made out to be more serious than they actually were.
One of the main arguments against Gutenberg was its inability to be compatible with all pre-existing WordPress plugins. If we’re being really honest here, it’s the plugins that should be adapting, not the editor. Just like the apps on Android and iOS adapt to the latest software update, and not the other way around.
Another thing that highly contributed to the initial wave of bad reviews Gutenberg got was the fact that the first people to give it a try were the tech-savvy bunch who cared more about how easy it was going to be for them to switch back to code mode than about all the advancements the integration of Gutenberg brought, and with that, they totally overlooked Gutenberg’s true purpose.
With all the issues Gutenberg had and still might have, it is still far more advanced than the classic editor ever could be, and people are starting to realize that. As time passed people began to come to terms that Gutenberg will now be an essential part of the WordPress web development experience and are starting to understand why it was actually a good call to make it the default editor.
In the next paragraph, we will talk about some of the many great things Gutenberg has to offer so you and the occasional Gutenberg hater that stumbles upon this article can better understand why we have so much love for it.
The best things about Gutenberg
Before even mentioning Gutenberg’s features, just looking at its interface can give you the idea that it is a step ahead of its predecessor. The interface is much cleaner and less distracting than the one in the classic editor, making the developing process less confusing and more intuitive. But Gutenberg is more than just a pretty interface. No other editor will enable you to build a beautiful custom website with such ease and simplicity as Gutenberg does. The block building technique creates an overall more consistent and coherent look, and when we say, “there is a block for everything”, there really is a block for everything.
Paragraphs, galleries, widgets, lists, buttons, images, columns, you name it, Gutenberg has a block for it. At the beginning of this article, we briefly mentioned the possibility of even creating your custom blocks and saving them for future use. Those blocks can be made into basically anything, from post intros to sections with complex layouts, whatever is necessary or comes to your mind you are able to create it. All blocks in Gutenberg, the default and custom ones, have responsiveness as their key characteristic, so you won’t have to worry about how the design elements will behave on a different-sized screen.
Another way in which Gutenberg advances the web developing is by making the site in the development process look as close as possible to how it will look on the frontend to your audience, so no more fear that your design efforts will be in vain once the site goes live as it is the case with other page builders.
Performance-wise Gutenberg can only accelerate your site’s performance since it removes the need of integrating more page builder plugins that were previously the only way of getting the functionalities that now come as an essential part Gutenberg.
While Gutenberg closes the door for page builder plugins, it opens it for custom blocks plugins which give the web development process using Gutenberg even more diversity and flexibility. The default blocks that come with Gutenberg are on their own more than enough for you to create a site with all the necessary features, but for all of you who don’t want to bother with creating their custom block, need specific kinds of blocks for a certain purpose, or just want to take their site to the next level, there are a plethora of amazing block plugins for you to explore.
The best block plugins
Probably the most popular and noteworthy among the block plugins is Getwid. Getwid comes with 34+ Gutenberg blocks and 35+ block templates, for specific elements or entire sections. The blocks provided by Getwid can be used in sites as simple as creative projects to as serious as business and eCommerce sites, or any type of site for that matter. The blocks range from those for more generic purposes like creating rows and sections to those for building landing pages, portfolios, entire layouts basically.
The great thing about the Getwid blocks is that their fonts and styles adjust automatically to the WordPress theme of the site. If you do want to make the adjustments yourself you are free to adjust the layout, typography, colors, motion and many of their other aspects. The collection of Getwid blocks is ever-growing, with new on-demand blocks being added constantly. No matter what number of blocks or their complexity, Getwid blocks won’t cause your site to lag, because all of them were optimized to give the performance.
If you like the Getwid block plugin you might like the Getwid theme as well. It will be the perfect fit for your Getwid blocks, although if you go for a different theme, you don’t have to worry, Getwid blocks will work just as good.
Believe it or not, Getwid is completely free and one simple download away from extending your Gutenberg block collection.
Stackable – Gutenberg blocks
Stackable is a block plugin that will provide you with 20+ custom blocks, and also different effects and background options. Some of the more interesting blocks include the container block in which you can combine multiple blocks in one row, featured block for creating portfolios, and the team members block and video pop-up block which have pretty self-explanatory names. Each block can be customized and also enabled or disabled if necessary.
Advanced Gutenberg also comes with 20+ custom blocks which include blocks like the column manager block for multi-column content, map block for embedding google maps, counter block for displaying your sales numbers, and many more. It enables hiding or displaying of blocks based on user roles and allows you to define colors for Gutenberg icons and put custom CSS styles for paragraph blocks.
A block plugin with 18 custom blocks designed with specifically marketers and bloggers in mind. Blocks distinct for Ultimate blocks are the review block for product reviews, table of contents block, call to action block, click to tweet block, and other blocks that will be a great fit for your blog or online store. All the blocks can, of course, be enabled or disabled.
Kadence is a block plugin more geared towards adding layout blocks rather than content blocks. The most interesting of its blocks are the row layout block which allows the nesting of 1-6 columns inside of one block and the columns themselves being able to hold more blocks inside. Like the other plugins we mentioned thus far, its blocks are modular, meaning they can be enabled or disabled as you wish. Besides blocks, it also comes with custom backgrounds, margins, and paddings.
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