An important update is coming to WordPress that will affect how you create blog posts and how they are published.
This new update, called WordPress 5.0 Gutenberg, is designed to make WordPress work faster and better in the browser.
The update is preparing to launch sometime in August 2018 with no firm launch date set. The current plan is for WordPress to update automatically to 5.0. For users with auto-update turned on, this could cause broken websites overnight. It is important to have current sites backed up and have the classic editor plugin installed so that users can revert back to the original editor.
For eCommerce sites, this update could bring complications to WordPress users. Woocommerce has created a plugin that will block the Gutenberg update. The hope is that other eCommerce platforms will do the same so that the Gutenberg update provides little disruption.
The challenge for eCommerce sites and features lies in their complexity. The update is designed to help content creators make posts more visually appealing. A post headline, paragraph, image and video are separated into blocks that can be moved around easily to give more flexibility in customizing posts and rearranging features without needing to constantly update and preview.
While this type of editing will be appealing to eCommerce users, it will change the way eCommerce sites can add and change products to their pages, which will be a learning experience for users.
So what should you know in preparation for the update? Here are a few things to consider as WordPress prepares to roll out 5.0 Gutenberg.
Test the WordPress 5.0 Plugin – The new 5.0 update can currently be downloaded as a plugin. Once you install the plugin, the classic editor is still available and you can test the new editor. A support forum has been set up by WordPress, allowing users to communicate errors and bugs and to see previously answered questions.
Download and Install the Classic Editor Plugin – Eventually, the classic editor will be replaced by the new editor in the Gutenberg update. If you want to keep the classic editor, you will need to install the classic editor plugin and enable it before the update occurs.
Create a Test Website – Creating a staged version of your website provides a safe place to test the new update without the risk of damaging your current WordPress website.
Stay Up to Date on Plugins – Be sure to keep your current plugins updated and know which ones are compatible with WordPress 5.0. Errors with plugins will alert you to the plugins that are causing issues.
Back Up Your Website – WordPress 5.0 is an important and large update, so it is crucial to keep the current version of your website backed up. There are several plugins that can be used to do this, such as BackUpWordpress. In addition to backing up your website, this is also a good time to do various health checks and ensure your coding is up to date and functioning properly.
Use a Theme That is Supported – There are several free themes in WordPress, but the update is likely going to require constant updates to these themes. It is advisable to look into a more professional theme that is prepared to support the update.
Download the Gutenberg Handbook – Take advantage of some of the support tools provided by WordPress. WordPress has assembled several support documents on the Gutenberg update and a detailed explanation of what it is.
For more information on the WordPress 5.0 Gutenberg update or for help preparing your eCommerce site for this update, contact the WordPress WooCommerce experts at 1Digital Agency. We stay in the know to keep you up to date. Reach out today!
- Kevin Durso
- July 31, 2018
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