The past week, WordPress released WordPress 5.0, and along with it a brand new editor that will dramatically change WordPress. This will effect every existing and new website. Most existing websites will require some kind of retrofit so that they do not break when these changes go into effect.
What Is Gutenberg?
Gutenberg is a new editor, to replace the current “Classic Editor”. This new editor includes a myriad of features that have never been a part of WordPress’s out of box solution. Up to now, if you wanted to add columns, or overlay text on an image, add a background color, you needed external plugins or a global stylesheet to do so. Now you can do it right from the WordPress backend.
This is big news for WordPress! Now let’s break down what this means for all of you.
Gutenberg: the Pros
I’ve had the chance to test out the editor and I have to say that I really like it. It’s sleek and pretty; intuitive and easy to use. The ability to add rows, blocks and basic styling, while won’t take the place of a good custom stylesheet, will certainly help in content layout and can replace other, more clunky, fragile solutions. WordPress has been lacking a good editor for a long time and having one built in is a great change.
But unfortunately, not everyone is happy about the change. For one, the look is very different. The whole layout for editing a post or page has been rearranged. If you are accustomed to the Classic Editor, you’re gonna be lost for a few minutes while you figure out where they moved everything.
Secondly, the new editor adds some extra markup to a post or page that can alter how built in WordPress built in content elements will display. For example, galleries will most likely be effected. If you are using the builtin WordPress gallery, and convert to the Gutenberg “blocks,” you are likely to have some styling issues.
Thirdly, most website have had some sort of editor in place. Whether you are using Visual Composer, our Sidebar plugin or another lesser known plugin, there will need to be some sort of retrofit to make sure they all play nice together. Gutenberg is the new default and has taken the place of the Classic Editor.
What This Means for You.
All existing websites will need some kind of retrofit. I repeat, this effects all current WordPress websites. Some can convert to Gutenberg; some will need to be rolled back to the Classic Editor with Gutenberg disabled. This will protect your website from Gutenberg disabling featuring, destroying your styles or other fatal errors that would happen without the retrofit.
Here at Tandem Design, we believe in taking care of our clients and providing quality websites that last. Because of this we will be retrofitting for no extra charge all websites that fit the below criteria.
- Your site was completed in the last 12 months.
- You have the Managed Hosting Package with automatic software upgrades.
- You have a current and active SEO or marketing package with Tandem Design Lab.
If you fit the above criteria, shoot us an email so we can work with you to complete the retrofit. We will likely be doing retrofits in the next 2-3 weeks.
If you do not fit any of this criteria, you will need to engage our services to complete the retrofit. This can be done as part of your annual tune-up. At this time we will take full backups, upgrade all your software, and install the retrofit to disable Gutenberg and protect your website. If you do not do a retrofit, and you accidentally upgrade (or your host upgrades you automatically), it may be more difficult to fix the website.