Why WordPress Block Builders Suck

Greg | CEO & Developer
Written on: December 19, 2023
The CEO & Lead developer for Ark Web Design. Let me personally help take your business to entirely new levels across the Internet.

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Why WordPress block builders suck

Please explain to me why WordPress block builders suck? It should come as no surprise that WordPress is pushing for full site editing and the push of their “So Called” page builder replacement, Gutenberg that just drives me to want to pull my hair out.

For those of us who have either come from hand coding a website or moving on to some of the more popular page builder’s such as, Breakdance, Bricks, Elementor or many others, the push to utilize the ever cumbersome block builder is absolutely without a doubt mind numbing and tedious.

To be completely fair, I tried it along with some of the major players that provide block addon’s as part of their theme, but I just can’t produce the same level of quality of a website as that which can be achieved using a page builder.

So, Why WordPress Block Builders Suck?

It’s simple. Many of them lack the convenience of complete styling control, specifically, if you are approaching your design from a “Class Basis” first design for those who may want to introduce any kind of custom CSS into the project.

Now let’s dive in and really examine where things begin to fall apart.

Performance Concerns: Some users argue that block builders can lead to bloated and slower websites. This is because the generated code may include unnecessary HTML and CSS, impacting the site’s loading speed and overall performance. However, this can vary depending on the specific block builder and how it’s implemented.

Learning Curve: While block builders are designed to simplify the website creation process, some users find them confusing or counterintuitive. The learning curve can be steep for individuals who are not familiar with the specific block builder interface and its features.

For anyone who has been involved within the WordPress ecosystem for any length of time will tell you that they can jump in on almost any page builder and within a short amount of time have things figured out in how that particular system works and begin building away. Granted, not all page builders are created equal, however, it is in my opinion that for the most part, many of them have similar features and capabilities that make having to take over a project that may have one that you haven’t used a little easier in picking up on.

Lock-in Concerns: Some users express concern about being “locked in” to a specific block builder. If a user decides to switch to a different platform or builder in the future, the transition may not be seamless, and content might need to be reworked or reformatted.

Code Quality: Critics argue that the code generated by certain block builders may not be as clean or efficient as hand-coded alternatives. This can affect the website’s search engine optimization (SEO) and general maintainability.

Needless to say, my opinion on WordPress Block Builders is purely subjective, you can find as many articles supporting them as well as an equal amount of articles that wish to see them die a slow death.

So much energy has been placed into the developing block themes and block builders, whether that be the native Gutenberg editor, or many of the block add-on packages that are readily available from many theme developers.

Let’s be brutally honest, if you have ever been inside any of WordPress’ major competitors, you notice right away a sleek and easy-to-use interface that isn’t cluttered up with a bazillion options.

And let’s not leave out the ever wonderful media library, which is just a complete goat screw out of the box. I mean, after the better part of 20 years on the market, why is it that we cannot not natively create folders for organization of our media item’s.

Sure you can use several different plugins that will achieve this, however, if the end goal is to keep your WordPress site lean and mean, the fewer plugins, the better your performance is. That certainly is no hidden secret.

However, I digress. Let’s move back into examining additional item’s about WordPress Block Builders that drive me absolutely insane.

If you get onboard and decide to go all-in on any of the WordPress block builders, when you begin diving in, trying to find the settings that many of us turn to seem to be heavily buried and almost impossible to locate quickly.

I do want to stress this. It’s worth noting that these criticisms don’t apply universally to all block builders, and improvements are continuously made in the WordPress ecosystem. Additionally, user experience is subjective, and what works well for one person might not be suitable for another. Some users appreciate the convenience and efficiency of block builders, especially for quickly creating content without extensive coding knowledge.

I realize that not all tools are created equal and what may work for one person, certainly may be a train wreck for another. Yet again, having given it several months of testing and experimenting, I just cannot see my agency moving to any block builder system any time soon.

Happy building and development!

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