December 11, 2018

WordPress 5.0 and the Gutenberg Editor: The Future of WordPress

Developer coding WordPress website in Philadelphia

With WordPress 5.0 and the new Gutenberg editor, WordPress has released one of its most important updates thus far, addressing its greatest weakness and creating a new tool that makes sites easier for clients to manage and update than ever before.

The State of WordPress
Push10 was fortunate enough to attend Word Camp 2018 which centered around WordPress 5.0 and one of the biggest changes to the world’s leading Content Management System. WordPress empowers clients to manage their websites and enables developers to craft custom experiences for clients and users alike. WordPress is the most popular CMS in the world and they have just launched their most important update in years, complete with an entirely new user interface for updating and creating site content: the Gutenberg editor.

Goodbye WYSIWYG, Hello Gutenberg
The standard WordPress editor to-date has been the What You See Is What You Get Editor, or as it is more commonly known – The WYSIWYG. Anyone who has used the WYSIWYG knows that while the simple interface can seem easy at first, creating standard layouts has always been challenging. Something as simple as aligning images side-by-side requires knowledge of HTML and/or a third party plugin.

After nearly two years of development, WordPress 5.0 now introduces the Gutenburg editor. Gutenburg replaces the standard WYSIWYG editor and overcomes one of  WordPress’ greatest challenges. By employing an easy-to-use interface, users can now create and edit beautiful layouts with options never before seen in WordPress.

Adding new images, galleries, videos, text overlays, and more is easier than ever before, thanks to WordPress 5.0. Developers can now create custom “blocks” for Gutenberg that are unique and customizable while site administrators can create modern custom page layouts. While WYSIWYG promised an accurate visual representation of content, it never truly delivered. Now, with the Gutenberg editor, what you see is now truly what you get.

Copy and Paste
Aside from being visually appealing and easily customizable, the Gutenberg editor now allows users the ability to copy and paste information from Google Docs, Quip, Office 365, even Microsoft Word. Information will retain its layout and even placed images will appear without negatively affecting the website’s page layout.

Word and WordPress, suffice it to say, can now work together.

– Mark Mullenweg

Mobile is the future and now. So is Gutenberg
The future of the web is mobile. Mobile users consist of almost 45% of all web traffic and that number continues to grow each and every year. Responsive websites are now commonplace and any website should make responsive design a top priority. WordPress acknowledges the vital importance of responsive design and with Gutenberg, all blocks and page layouts are completely responsive by default. Likewise, a Gutenberg editor update will be coming to the WordPress mobile app in February, 2019 so users can create, edit, and manage content blocks on the go.

No Gutenberg? No Problem
If your current website is working properly, you will be able to update your site to WordPress 5.0, yet opt out of the Gutenberg editor. Yes, the WYSIWYG editor certainly has its flaws and limitations but skilled web developers can create workarounds that allow users a certain degree of customization without the associated frustration. Simply update to WordPress 5.0 and install the classic WordPress Editor plugin. This allows you to take advantage of other WordPress 5.0 updates, while maintaining your current WYSIWYG content editor.

The Future of the Web
When you are the leading system for content management, you have the ability to set web standards for designers and developers alike. While met with criticism early in its development process, WordPress 5.0 and the Gutenberg editor succeed in its mission to provide easier content updates for users while becoming more powerful and customizable for developers. After two years of development in the public eye, the WordPress 5.0 launch was a massive success and we here at Push10 are very excited to see what it can do for our clients.

Want to learn more or see a demo?
Contact us and we’d be happy to show you all the latest WordPress 5.0 features.