Sooner or later the Gutenberg reusable block was going to have a coming out party. The party’s just getting started and isn’t going to end any time soon.
Reusable blocks are one of Gutenberg’s hidden treasures and most widely (at least I think so) misunderstood blocks. Too bad. It is one of Gutenberg’s most important features and a key to understanding where the future of Gutenberg lies.
Any block that comes with Gutenberg or is available through a Gutenberg plugin, can be saved and reused for a future page or post. Say you create something with any block (or blocks) which you’d like to use again for another page or post – you’re talking about a reusable block.
To the Gutenberg editor, a template is, in essence, a collection of reusable blocks.
Look at it this way. If you can create, store, and re-use more than one block at a time for your site, wouldn’t you? If only to save development time and effort, you would. Most web sites establish a layout that is used repeatedly throughout the site, and templates are the solution to accomplish those goals.
For this article, I am looking at templates which are free, theme agnostic, and fairly easy to use.
The Gutenberg Template
In my video I go through the process of creating a template which can be used as many times as needed. Later in the video, I show how to edit the template which does not affect content already created using the template. (This is true because each time you use a template you’ll need to convert the template to reusable blocks).
While I am only using native Gutenblocks (the blocks that come with Gutenberg), you can create templates using any block that is available with a Gutenberg plugin.
Learning how to do this takes a little doing before it is committed to muscle memory, but it will save you so much time. It is very much a part of Gutenberg’s future.
Running Time: 11:49
Ghost Kit Templates
A Gutenberg plugin with lots of useful blocks and templates is Ghost Kit.
As you will see, this template actually let’s you build parts of your page as desired. You can add these template sections for your pages as needed and in any order you want:
Running Time: 8:39
While there is a Pro (paid) version of this plugin, everything I show you in the video is part of the free version which you can download from WordPress Plugins.
Atomic Blocks – Gutenberg Blocks Collection
This works much like Ghost Kit but – as of this writing – is a little more developed. Not only can you use templates in any order to create sections of your page, this plugin packs templates which can be used to create an entire page.
Like Ghost Kit, you can build your page using these template sections:
Running Time: 8:35
As with both of these plugins, you can still add regular Gutenblocks before or after any template section.
Get Atomic Blocks from the WordPress plugin repo.
Now Here’s A Cool Idea
Once you build your page with a Ghost Kit or Atomic Blocks template, you can save that as a template that can be reused as explained in The Gutenberg Template above.
There certainly are more than two Gutenberg plugins that include templates and many more are on their way.
Here are two which work very similar to Ghost Kit and Atomic Blocks.