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In early December 2018 WordPress 5.0 was released. With it came the new editor, Gutenberg. It forever replaced the tinyMCE (now called Classic Editor) that worked a lot like a word processor.
Gutenberg is a block editing system. It’s something you may have seen with CMS (Content Management Systems) like WIX, MailChimp, and others. Each element (such as a paragraph, heading and sub head, media, and other content types) is created by inserting a block into a page or post.
What you see is that there’s a finite number of blocks. By default, WordPress packs about 40 blocks into the Gutenberg editor. Many of these are repetitive or at least seem so. You’ll probably never use many of these Gutenblocks.
But Here’s The Problem
No doubt you’ll want to use blocks that don’t come with Gutenberg out of the box. Blocks that add Calls To Action, Testimonials, Pricing Tables, Accordions, and so many other content types which are not part of Gutenberg.
What are you going to do?
Enter Gutenberg Plugins
It’s very early in the evolution of third party Gutenblocks made by developers. Here are a few that show promise.
Some of these plugins are in their infancy and they’re sort of beta-ish. This means I suggest you try them out before using any of them on your live site.
Most – if not all of these plugins – are available at the WordPress Plugins Repo or from the developer’s plugin site.
Page Builder Gutenberg Blocks – CoBlocks
This plugin presently packs 16 blocks, some of which are very cool and useful. There’s a pricing table, accordion and a row block to name a few that got my attention. The latter provides options to set margin, padding and gutter dimensions which you can’t do with the standard column block.
The show stopper is the shape divider block. Rather than use an image or a horizontal rule to separate content chunks, the shape divider is SVG put to great use. Changing shape styles, size and color is easy. Fun too!
Ultimate AddOns For Gutenberg
This one maybe the newest kid on the block (pun intended) and it has great potential.
It currently packs 17 advanced blocks in the Gutenberg inserter. (That’s where the blocks are located.)
The one I like the best is the Advanced Columns block. Whereas the default columns block is very limited, this block gives far greater control over layout options such as the width of and space between columns, the ability to add background color, and a border around a column.
Get Ultimate AddOns For Gutenberg plugin.
A unique feature in this plugin is the ability to toggle on and off which blocks you want to see and use as shown in the above image.
This plugin has a few block types that I found pretty unique such as a Progress Bar, a Countdown block, and a Tab block.
Don’t get fooled by the name. It is not the same plugin as Ultimate AddOns For Gutenberg.
Here’s where to get Ultimate Blocks
Gutenberg Cloud Block
This is one of my favorites because it works as a platform by which many developers can add blocks to a common library that users can access.
Having said that, I’m a little disappointed to see there are still just a few blocks in this plugin.
The way this works is so WordPressy. Just install the Cloud Blocks and you’ll see it works just like adding themes and plugins to your site.
Atomic Blocks – Gutenberg Blocks Collection
This one’s actually been around for a very long time – if you consider one year a very long time. It boasts 10,000 active installs, up nicely from 4,000 installs just a few months ago.
Here are the blocks you get with the current versions of this plugin.
- Post Grid Block – Block Demo
- Container Block – Block Demo
- Testimonial Block – Block Demo
- Inline Notice Block – Block Demo
- Accordion Block – Block Demo
- Share Icons Block – Block Demo
- Call-To-Action Block – Block Demo
- Customizable Button Block – Block Demo
- Spacer & Divider Block – Block Demo
- Author Profile Block – Block Demo
- Drop Cap Block – Block Demo
You can be sure more are on the way.
Get “Atomic Blocks – Gutenberg Blocks Collection” in the WordPress plugins repository.
Stackable Gutenberg Blocks
This is similar to what Atomic Blocks does but it offers a different set of Gutenblocks.
Here are demos of the types of blocks currently available by the Stackable plugin:
- Container Block – View Block
- Blog Posts Block – View Block
- Feature Grid Block — View Block
- Accordion Block – View Block
- Image Box Block — View Block
- Feature Block — View Block
- Icon List Block — View Block
- Call to Action Block — View Block
- Card Block — View Block
- Header Block — View Block
- Count Up Block — View Block
- Video Popup Block — View Block
- Pricing Box Block — View Block
- Testimonial Block — View Block
- Team Members Block — View Block
- Notification Block — View Block
- Number Box Block — View Block
- Expand / Show More Block — View Block
- Button Block — View Block
- Ghost Button Block — View Block
- Blockquote Block — View Block
- Pullquote Block — View Block
- Divider Block
- Spacer Block
Get the Stackable plugin.
Want To Roll Your Own? Check Out The Block Lab
This one is the most compelling to me. It offers the most flexibility as it gives you the ability to create a block that you might not be able to get with any plugin.
You need to do a little code work, but it’s hardly heavy lifting. Have a look at this video and you’ll see how it works.
Get the Block Lab plugin.
Disable Gutenberg Blocks – Block Manager
WOW! After telling you about all those new plugins with their new blocks you’re going to end up with Gutenbloat!
Chances are you’ll be installing plugins that feature blocks you’ll never use nor want to see.
Suppose you install a plugin that has one great block and nine you’ll never use.
A great way to disable those blocks is with this plugin.
Starting managing your blocks with Disable Gutenberg Blocks – Block Manager
It’s A Whole New Ballgame
As the Gutenberg era begins there will be big winners and losers. The winners will be developers that see Gutenberg as a disrupter providing an opportunity to create plugins that will make Gutenberg a tool that customizes to users’ needs.
While this is a golden opportunity for plugin developers to create all sorts of Gutenblocks, not all of what they create will succeed. WordPress users, like you and me, will determine that.