Only 6 months ago, one of my biggest concerns was the acceptance rate of the block editor. This COVID-19 thing got me worried about so many other things, that I almost forgot about the block editor. Last week though, we released our block editor training. This is a free course, specifically designed for people who want to use the new block editor to the fullest! In this blog post, I (of course) want to convince you all to promote our awesome training, but I also want to evaluate how the acceptance of the block editor is going!
Why were we worried?
At WordCamp US in 2019, I expressed my concerns about the number of people that were using the block editor. Amongst Yoast users, there were a lot of people that still preferred the classic editor. Let’s be clear: there’s nothing wrong with liking the classic editor. I do understand why some people prefer the classic editor. However, as our Yoast SEO plugin is heavily integrated with the editor, it means that we are in fact maintaining two plugins (one for the block editor and one for the classic editor). Some of our new features will only appear in the block editor (schema blocks for example). So, we want people to get on board with the block editor, because that’ll enable them to use our product to the fullest.
This may sound like a ‘that’s your problem’ kind of situation. And of course, we’re a company, we’re making money, we should adjust. And we will. But it is not just our problem. A lot of plugin developers and theme developers face the same problem.
In the State of the Word, Matt Mullenweg said that the best way to convert people to the block editor was to build awesome new blocks. I still think he’s absolutely right. However, that’s not the only thing we should do. People are skeptical about the block editor. That’s why in my blog post of November 7th of 2019 I proposed that we should help people with their transition to the block editor. Lots of ways to do that of course, and at Yoast, we decided to build a free course about it.
What started out as a little side project, actually became a full course and a lot of work. So we’ve been quite busy developing all the material: videos, texts and a lot of quizzes. But the end result is awesome: I am really proud of our block editor training! The block editor training is part of our Yoast SEO Academy Free subscription. You can sign up for the free training by creating a My Yoast account. You’ll also gain access to our free WordPress training and free SEO for beginner’s training as well. For the duration of this COVID-19 thing, our all-around SEO training will be free as well. We like to keep you all busy :-).
How are things going since November 2019?
So, I was worried in November 2019. Worried that the adaption of the block editor wasn’t going well. I had reasons to be worried too. We did a survey in the summer of 2019. In that survey, we asked whether or not people (our free and our premium users) were using the block editor or the classic editor. That survey indicated that about 65% of Yoast SEO users were using the classic editor. That’s almost a year ago. I am not that worried about the adaption of the block editor anymore. The majority of our premium users are now on Gutenberg (over 60%). We don’t know that about our free users (as these are not our customers and we did not do a survey yet). Things are looking good!
How about doing a course?
We still have a long way to go. There are still a lot of people who didn’t transition to the block editor yet. Lots of people are still skeptical or need help adjusting to a new editing experience. For those people, we have built our online block editor training.
Switching to the block editor should go smoothly. Our block editor training will help people to do just that. In this video, which is part of our training, we explain the steps you should take when transitioning to the block editor.
I would like to invite everyone that is skeptical or reluctant about the block editor to check out our free training. If it still isn’t for you, you’ve at least met some of my awesome colleagues 🙂
How about promoting a course?
To all of you who are block editor fanboys and girls: please help us promote our block editor training! Send people to our training that need some help adjusting to a new editing experience. Help us to promote the block editor. Because after all: Block editor for the Win!
Let’s keep working on it!
As I said, we’re not there yet. At Yoast, we’ll keep on promoting the block editor and we’ll keep on helping WordPress users to find their way to the block editor. And, we’ll keep on adding new features in the block editor. We have some big releases coming up – not all block editor related – so keep in touch!