While Gutenberg is great to create the static pages of your WordPress site (homepage, about page, contact, and so on), it is not the case when it comes to blog post creation. There are too many blocks that you never even need to create a blog post. If you still remember, Classic Editor only allowed you to add text and image and they are enough for blog post creation in most cases. If you needed to an add element that was not available in the Classic Editor (say a button), it could be supplied by a plugin without making your editor getting messed.
The fact is that Classic Editor still loved by many WordPress users, which can be proved by looking at the stats on WordPress.org whereby the Classic Editor plugin has over five million users.
Classic Editor itself is actually not really gone from WordPress. It still around on the WordPress core. You can get it back by disabling Gutenberg on your WordPress site. When Gutenberg is disabled, it will automatically be replaced by Classic Editor (at least until WordPress 6.0).
How to Make Blog Post Creation Fun Again with Gutenberg
Many WordPress bloggers prefer to use Classic Editor instead of Gutenberg as it is easier to use. Gutenberg offers a more modern way to create blog posts. That’s a fact. But again, it has too many elements, which are not necessary for creating blog posts. Another serius issue with Gutenberg when it comes to blog post creation is that each theme offers distinct experience. It is because theme developers control some Gutenberg features. Newspaper by tagDiv is one of WordPress themes that offer the best writing experience with Gutenberg.
If you have found a theme that offers a great writing experience with Gutenberg, you can disable the necessary elements (called blocks) to make your editor looks simpler. You can disable unneeded Gutenberg blocks from the Preferences menu, which you can access by clicking the three-line icon on the top-right corner inside the Gutenberg editor.
From the Preferences window, you can click the Blocks tab and simply uncheck the blocks you want to disable.
From the same window, you can also disable setting blocks on the Gutenberg settings panel that you don’t need. Simply open the Panels tab and uncheck the settings block you want to disable.
Necessary Gutenberg Blocks to Create Blog Posts
Creating blog posts is completely different from creating pages. When you create a page, you need to set the layout (e.g., fullwidth), set the background, add more stylized visual elements, and so on.
In blog posts creation, the emphasis is on the text-based content. Of course, you can also add visual elements like images, but they not as crucial as on pages. On a blog post, visual elements play a role only to strengthen the story to convey.
Here are the necessary Gutenberg blocks to create a blog post.
Paragraph is the most essential Gutenberg block to create blog posts. You need it to add the main text content on your blog post. The block itself is added automatically when you create a new blog post. Also, it is added automatically when you hit the enter key on your keyboard with the intention to move to another paragraph.
If you want to create a longform article (e.g., listicle) it’s crucial enough to add heading elements to make it clear what a certain part is telling about. Take a look at the following example:
You can read the full article of the screenshot above here. The article covers WordPress plugins alternatives to Elementor, which there are some. To make the article easier to understand and pleasurable to read, we divided each alternative item with a heading element.
The implementation of the heading elements is broader than listicle. The point is that you can use it to divide your blog posts into parts with a main goal to make your blog post more pleasurable to read and easier to understand. What’s more important is that adding heading elements is beneficial for SEO.
When writing a blog post, you might think that that some texts need to be formatted in a list style to convey the digest. For instance, you are writing the features offered by an app. On the conclusion section, you want to list the main features offered the associated app. In such as a case, you can use the List block.
The List block of Gutenberg support both numbered list and bulled list.
The Table block is quite useful for a certain type of blog post.
Say you are comparing two WordPress plugins (e.g., Elementor vs Divi). After a long coverage, you think it would be great to create a table to convey the digest so that your readers can find the comparison results more easily. The Table block is really useful for the purpose.
When adding a table on a blog post, you can set the number of columns and rows and set the basic stylings such as border style, border width, and border color. The screenshot above is the example use of the Table block of Gutenberg.
5. Image and Gallery
As said earlier, the use of images can strengthen the story you want to convey via a blog post. In WordPress itself, there are several types of images. From featured image (which is used as a post thumbnail) to images on the post body. For images on the post body, you can add whether an individual image or gallery. Gutenberg has two different blocks to add an individual and image gallery.
You can use the Image block to add an individual image. While for image gallery, you can use the Gallery block.
Say you are writing a review of a software. On the conclusion section of your review, you want to add a call-to-action button to make it easier for your readers to download the software. Gutenberg has a native block for such a need so that you don’t need to install a plugin — which eventually will make your Gutenberg populated with too many blocks. The native Buttons block of Gutenberg support styling settings such as border radius, size, and color (text and background).
If you often cite statements from public figures on your blog posts, then the Quote block should remain available on your Gutenberg blocks list. The block will display a quote in a different way than regular texts so that your readers easily understand that it’s a quote.
The format/style of a quote is varied depending on the theme you use, but you can set basic styling settings such the background color, text color, and text size.
You can use the HTML block for a wide range of purposes. From embedding a YouTube video, embedding a tweet, embedding an Instagram post, to embedding an online form. Gutenberg itself has a set of blocks aimed at embedding external content which you can find on the Embed block.
As you can see on the list above, there are too many social media items available. Some even look strange. Instead of using the blocks above, you can use the HTML block to embed external content. You can disable the blocks above to make your Gutenberg looks minimalist.
The Bottom Line
The essence of blogging is writing content. Meaning that you should add more text elements to your content. Of course, other elements are also crucial, especially in the visual era like today. You need to add images to videos to strengthen your story or anything you cover via your blog post. However, if your editor is populated by too many elements and options, it can be another source of distraction that led to less-focused work.
Gutenberg is great to create blog posts. However, with more and more blocks and setting options being added, we think you need to simplify your Gutenberg by disabling the unnecessary blocks. In most cases, the above blocks are enough to create blog posts with Gutenberg.
What if you need to create pages?
Instead of Gutenberg, you can use plugins like Elementor, Brizy, to Divi Builder to create pages on your WordPress. They offer a better experience than Gutenberg to create pages. Let Gutenberg be a blog post editor instead of a page builder and you will find your joy again to blog with WordPress.