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WordPress and the Rise of Full Site Editing

    Last Updated on May 17, 2023

    What is WordPress and Why is it Used?

    WordPress is a CMS – a Content Management System. It is used to create small and large websites. Freelancers, local sports teams, churches, schools, and international companies use WordPress. Of all the websites online today that use a CMS, half use WordPress.

    You can find out more about WordPress right here: https://wordpress.org/

    WordPress allows you to create a free account to try it out before you either download it locally or install it on your hosting provider. You can do that here: https://wordpress.com/

    What is WordPress and Why is it Used?
    Is a WordPress Website Free?
    Is WordPress Good for Beginners?
    What is the Difference Between a Website and WordPress?
    What Does Full Site Editing Mean?

    WordPress is used for many reasons including:

    • + it is easy to use and easy to learn
    • + it offers a multilingual user interface
    • + it’s free to download and use
    • + it regularly updates to new versions offering new, cool stuff
    • + it’s open source – you can change the code for your own use
    • + there are thousands of free design themes
    • + there are thousands of free plugins to add functionality
    • + there is a free ecommerce feature available: WooCommerce
    • + WordPress can be very lightweight and assist your SEO

    WordPress was launched in 2004 as a blogging platform. You can read more about the history of WordPress right here: https://kinsta.com/learn/wordpress-history/

    “WordPress is used by 64.3% of all the websites whose content management system we know. This is 43.0% of all websites.” https://w3techs.com/technologies/details/cm-wordpress

    Is a WordPress Website Free?

    “Free” is not usually a word you think of when building a website, but it is not a dream. Open source CMS are free CMS. Of course, you may need a developer or two …

    You can spend a lot of time creating and managing a website – this is money.

    You can hire people to work on your website and support you – this is money too.

    WordPress however is a free, open source Website CMS. It always has been free – even when I first started using it in 2015. The CMS Drupal is also free, but over the years I have moved from using Drupal for websites all of the time to WordPress 99% of the time.

    “Open source” means that the source code of a software is open and freely accessible. This means that you can edit the program yourself and adapt it to your own needs. Programming knowledge is usually required for this. You may also redistribute the modified and improved program file. Open source applications are often free of charge.

    Is WordPress Good for Beginners?

    WordPress is great for beginners! It’s also great for professionals. There are so many courses on Udemy, books on Amazon, courses in your local community, and WordPress teachers and developers all over the world.

    You can also contact me and I would be happy to answer your questions or coach you at any level of WordPress you find yourself. Even kids, adults, and Seniors.

    I’ve really liked WordPress since I began using it. Even though I am no longer a beginner, WordPress offers so much that I am always learning. I guess that does make me a beginner!

    “Global creative agencies, local businesses, and even your neighbour’s personal blog are already using WordPress.” https://wordpress.org/showcase/

    What is the Difference Between a Website and WordPress?

    All WordPress sites are Websites, but not all Websites are WordPress.

    A website can be created and managed with a CMS – of which WordPress is one. It can also be a “static website” – with no CMS.

    A website consists of various bits of code. PHP, CSS, Javascript, and HTML mostly. There are also images, and perhaps some videos too. A website is connected to a server – that enables browsers to fetch it. Sometimes, as in the case of WordPress and other CMS, website content is stored in a database.

    A website can be very simple, and not be connected to a database nor use a CMS. Like a remaining page from my first website here: https://chocolatecheese.de/oldschool. This page is just HTML and Javascript.

    Once a website requires a lot of content, and many people working on it at the same time from different places, then a CMS is a better solution.

    An advantage of using a CMS is so you can manage your content and functionality. Another advantage is that a good CMS gives you chance to design the layout and style of your website.

    One of the advantages of WordPress is the Gutenberg Block Editor. This allows you to easily create moveable blocks of styled content.

    Taken one step further, the block editor can now be used to design the entire website. WordPress calls this Full Site Editing.

    What Does Full Site Editing Mean?

    WordPress is always changing. Staying up to date with what’s happening. In WordPress 6.0, and the 2022 theme, the concept of Full Site Editing came into being. On November 1, WordPress 6.1 launches with more FSE features.

    Why the changes? WordPress is always changing, just like all tech is changing. Change is good because it keeps us curious and learning.

    Back in 2019 WordPress moved from a classic editing function – much like using Microsoft Word to place content on your website – to the Gutenberg Editor. This change introduced “blocks” to the editor. It caused a lot of commotion.

    An alternative to the current WordPress which uses Gutenberg Blocks is Classic Press. Classic Press keeps the original WordPress intact. It’s exactly the same as WordPress was until 2019.

    Find out more about Classic Press right here: https://www.classicpress.net/

    Full Site Editing in a Nutshell

    Full Site Editing (FSE) is the umbrella term for a whole range of features in WordPress. Full Site Editing means that a WordPress website consists exclusively of blocks.

    Some of the features behind FSE are:

    • + Full Site Editor
    • + Page and post templates
    • + Block-based themes
    • + Global Styles
    • + Blocks for building themes and templates and the function to navigate back and forth between the different layers.
    • + A Navigation block
    • + A Query block

    WordPress users can edit ALL areas of their website directly in the editor (i.e. without needing any coding knowledge to do so).

    The great thing about this is that setting up and editing a WordPress website will take place uniformly in one place (namely the editor). Of course, it’s also important that all website areas are visible in the editor preview. This makes editing a website much more intuitive for users.

    Want to know more? WordPress offers a complete guide to Full Site Editing on their website right here: https://wordpress.com/support/full-site-editing/

    When will WordPress 6.1 be Released?

    The final release date is November 1, 2022. WordPress 6.1 Beta 2 is available for download and testing.

    WordPress 6.1 is still under development. Don’t install, run, or test this version on your production or any mission-critical websites. We recommended that you test WordPress 6.1 Beta 2 on a test server and a test website. 

    Option 1: Install, then activate the WordPress Beta Tester plugin. Once installed, you should select the “Bleeding edge” channel and “Beta/RC Only” stream from the plugin options found under “Tools/Beta Testing” in your Admin dashboard.

    Option 2: Directly download the WordPress 6.1 Beta zip file.

    Option 3: Use the following WP-CLI command: wp core update –version=6.1-beta2

    Please Contact Me!

    Would You Like to Know More About WordPress? Need Support? Like to Take a Class? In English, oder auf Deutsch.

    WordPress Training, Workshops, Coaching for Individuals or Businesses

    WordPress & Drupal Website Creation: Every Business Needs a Website!

    WordPress Kurse, Privat oder an der VHS Oldenburg. Auf Deutsch.

    With thanks for the image to Fikret Tozak: https://unsplash.com/@tozakfikret