Pippin Williamson Reviews WordPress Page Builders

Pippin Williamson is the Thomas Edison of WordPress. And this article, in which he reviews WordPress page builders, is a bit like Thomas Edison rolling up his sleeves and reviewing a bunch of $1 Christmas lights to see which ones are most burnout-resistant.

To help make sense of that analogy: page builders are a much-demanded extension to WordPress’s functionality (because WordPress’s post editor itself makes it difficult to create attractive, complexly formatted pages)—and are also typically among the worst-quality pieces of software that users are likely to install. As Brian Krogsgard, the Joseph Pulitzer of WordPress, puts it:

So much of the functionality I see in plugins, and especially page building plugins, drives me insane. [Pippin] highlights the primary downsides throughout the piece:

  • Lock-in via data loss when a plugin is deactivated
  • Lock-in by using shortcodes in content, making existing data near worthless
  • Lock-in by handling content creation in addition to layout
  • Non-WordPress-like interface design, often times for apparently little reason
  • Hijacking the_content() completely, breaking many other plugins
  • Layout management using shortcodes that causes errors in other shortcodes that may be used either in those, or wrap them
  • Convoluted interfaces, icons, and drag and drop experiences
  • Requiring multiple tools in addition to the page builder

Pippin ends up recommending Beaver Builder, Tailor, and Pootle Page Builder, but you should absolutely do yourself a favor and read the whole article.

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