Please note this article is aimed at people who already have a website up and running and are interested in using a drag-and-drop page builder instead of WordPress’ default Classic editor to create web pages and blog posts.
I’ve been getting a lot of questions about “WordPress Page Builders” lately and I wanted to explain what they are.
When WordPress 5.0 was released recently, its new feature that got everybody’s attention was “Gutenberg,” a new editor for WordPress that is totally different from the previous “Classic Editor”.
But how is it different?
Gutenberg is the new “Block Editor” that provides drag and drop functionality to building a WordPress page. The page builder functions for WordPress had been available in the form of plugins or themes, but with Gutenberg, WordPress has made it the default editing experience.
How Does Drag and Drop WordPress Page Builders Work?
The original WordPress editor was pretty much text and code-based. Just typing text there was relatively a simple task, but when you wanted to have a different layout or fancy formatting, it often required some coding work. And you couldn’t see the final look of the page as you edited. To make things tougher for non-coders, things got more complicated as the smartphones became popular, making it so important for websites to be mobile-responsive.
Then, the modern drag and drop page builders came in to the scene, taking care of all these issues!
With a drag and drop page builder, you literally drag and drop sections and elements to visually build a web page. Creating columns that adjust to the screen size, placing images exactly where you want it to be, having different layouts for different pages, using pre-configured elements… All these things are now possible without having to deal with coding. A drag and drop page builder also lets you see the page layout as you build it.
Drag and drop pages builders might not be for those who just love coding themselves, but for the rest of us, they save a lot of time, and make it easy to design pages the way we want, allowing us to get really creative.
Beside Gutenberg, there are quite a few drag and drop page builder plugins available, each with unique features. Here are some popular ones that people seem to love.
Popular WordPress Page Builder Plugins
This is Elegant Themes’ premium plugin that can add the drag and drop page builder functions to WordPress sites. Originally offered as a part of Divi theme, this plugin lets you incorporate many cool features in your site. I use the Divi Builder here on this website in conjunction with the Divi “Extra” Theme
With Elementor, you will be seeing your edits right there on a live page. And it’s pretty fast! While being pretty user-friendly, it also lets you do deep customizations if you wish.
Beaver Builder has been around for quite a while, and for a good reason. Many of my friends like and use it. However, the beaver builder plugin is focused mainly on the web developer community, not on the non techie community. So there may be a bigger learning curve for some.
The New “Block Editor” Named: Gutenberg
As mentioned above, Gutenberg is now a part of WordPress as of WordPress 5.0 and higher. I am currently not yet using Gutenberg because I don’t think it’s ready for non techies. Read more about Gutenberg in my blog post here.
Do you use any of the above or other page builders? What do you like about it?
Hi! Thanks for this article! In regard to the 3 options listed above, am I correct in thinking that Elementor and Beaver Builder are free (or at least have free versions) while Divi is not?
I find Elementor more intuitive than Beaver Builder. But both have great reputations and they have a free version. The Divi Builder does not have a free version, but is a great page builder!
Thanks so much for this info. I love getting your blog posts in my inbox because as a non-techie it’s so hard to keep up with all of the new developments. I’m thankful that you break it down for me : )
A couple of questions:
1. Will you be teaching Gutenberg in your next Website Creation Workshop?
2. Do you consider Optimize Press as a page builder and if so how do you think it compares to the others that you mention?
Thanks so much for all that you are doing to help us non-techie biz owners.
1. Since you took my foundation class already, you would be a perfect candidate for my intermediate WordPress training. https://www.websitetransformationworkshop.com/
Please email my support team so they can give you a special link.
2. I stopped using OptimizePress once I found the Divi Theme! So I don’t follow their developments anymore, but they do have a great reputation.
Thanks Christina! Great to know the options and some history. I just started using Elementor with my Sydney theme and it looks like there are some great possibilities. Also noticed a lot of video tutorials on YouTube. I am curious about Gutenberg and if one is better than another.
Right now I would stick with Elementor. The new block editor from WordPress called “Gutenberg” I’ll be teaching in a few months
Thanks for the article, Christina. I’m an absolute fan of Thrive Architect. When it first came out as Thrive Content Builder it was a huge game changer and already incredible and it’s gone of getting beter and better. Plus the company is oozes integrity and authenticity and their trainings are excellent.
Nadiya, is Thrive Architect a plug in? I can’t find it.
yes it’s a premium plugin that you must purchase. That is why you don’t see it at WordPress.org