WordPress blocks have changed the way we create online content. As we’ve mentioned before, WordPress blocks essentially simplify formerly complex WordPress functions. In a short amount of time, they’ve become one of the best ways to manage a variety of formatting functions.
That said, they’re also a relatively new way to use WordPress. As such, there are still many WordPress users who don’t know how many WordPress blocks are available to them. While the truth of it is that there are few limits to what you can accomplish with WordPress blocks, we thought we’d simplify things a bit by focusing on the essentials.
Here are some of the WordPress blocks that everyone should be using in 2020.
Simply put, an Archives block allows you to create an instant archive of your content.
The archive will be displayed chronologically in your post based on your preferences. This is one of those great WordPress blocks for keeping users on your site longer by encouraging them to bounce between posts. Considering how important engagement is to SEO and site growth, you should absolutely find ways to increase visiting time.
Archive blocks present a simple way to grant your users access to additional information without asking them to stray from the post they are on.
This is one of our favorite, simple WordPress blocks.
This block allows you to display various other posts in a list or grid view. It’s fantastic for highlighting new content and a great way to lead visitors to other posts you recommend. It even lets you add media for each embedded post, which helps you add these recommendations without needing to sacrifice style along the way.
As long as you’ve got the room for it, this block is a fantastic way to internally promote content.
Are you a smaller site that publishes a variety of content? If so, then categories blocks may end up being some of your most used WordPress blocks.
Categories blocks let you easily embed an in-post category section. This category section lets your visitors jump between the various content sections of your website. For instance, you could display “Tips, Guides, and Recommendations.” You can even create subsections that break down those categories even further.
Definitely use this block if you don’t want your sidebars to do all the heavy lifting.
We love the block editing features in WordPress. WordPress blocks are simply a great way to expand functionality with a minimal learning curve. That said, there are times when you just want to go back to the old way of doing things.
That’s what the Classic Block is for. It lets you edit your WordPress content in the classic “pre-block” style. This can be great for websites transitioning between the two styles. For instance, you may have some HTML code that doesn’t quite translate to the new format. You may also just like doing things the old way.
In any case, it’s nice that WordPress enabled this option in this new mode. That being said, we wouldn’t advise relying on this for too long given the trends of the industry.
Speaking of “classic” WordPress, one of the most jarring transitions to WordPress blocks involves coding. In the old days, it was fairly easy to insert code wherever you wanted in WordPress. In the block format, that functionality may appear to be missing.
It turns out it’s not, though. Instead, coding features have been moved to the Code block. This is the block that allows you to fairly easily insert coding into whichever block area you may like. If done correctly, your code should appear on the published page just as it would have done in the old WordPress format.
This can also be a great way to create custom WordPress blocks, which is something that we’ll talk about more in an upcoming post.
It used to be surprisingly difficult to group images in columns in WordPress. Thankfully, this is another instance of WordPress blocks making formerly advanced features easy to access.
This block lets you horizontally arrange images in a column-like style. It actually lets you do even more than that, but that’s the basic function that most people will use it for.
While this block is great for photographers, its usefulness hardly stops there. Bloggers, portfolio creators, and business can almost certainly find a use for this fascinating formatting style.
A great cover image can make all of the difference. Whether it’s on a post or the first thing that users see when they visit your site, cover images so often set the tone.
The Cover block is yet another of those WordPress blocks that make an essential function even easier. In its simplest form, this WordPress block allows you to add a vibrant cover image. You can even put a little text over the image when needed. However, the true beauty of this block is how it lets you create a “fixed” background image for extra style points.
Be sure to play around with the full functionality of this block for whenever you need to incorporate cover images.
Event Countdown Block
A countdown is one of the oldest, most effective online promotional tactics. From letting visitors know when a sale ends to promoting a big internal event, countdowns are an immediate attention grabber.
Event Countdown blocks function pretty much as you imagine they would. These WordPress blocks allow you to create a simple in-page countdown that is easy to see and informative. They’re also shockingly easy to finalize. Just give the countdown a name and an end date, and this block does the rest of the work.
While an event countdown may not always be useful to you, you’d be surprised by how much mileage you can get out of one.
Do you find yourself regularly offering downloads to your visitors? If so, you probably just rely on hyperlinks. The problem with hyperlinks, though, is that hyperlinks will never be quite as efficient as simply being able to download a file.
That’s where file blocks come into play. These WordPress blocks allow you to easily insert files just as you would insert images or other media. Once the file has been inserted, you are then able to name the file and create a direct download link to it.
The functionality of this block is quite simple, but that’s also the beauty of it. There is so much you can do with these direct download links, and this block makes it easier than ever to use them.
Are you jealous of websites that have a professional-looking contact form instead of just an email address? Have you ever wondered what it would take to create one yourself? Well, thanks to WordPress blocks, the answer to that question is “not much.”
A Form block lets you easily create a contact form by just filling out some basic information requests. It does nearly all the formatting, which means you can rest assured that the final result will look professional.
We highly recommend that you use this style of block in place of simply listing your contact information. It’s more secure and it just looks better.
Creating an image gallery before WordPress Blocks was…interesting. It was certainly possible, but getting one to look professional required a bit of effort.
Gallery blocks change all of that. By designating a block of space for a gallery, these blocks eliminate most of the more cumbersome steps of the old gallery creation process. You just pick the images you want to display and use a few simple commands to format them as you wish.
Yes, it really is that simple. If you’ve been holding off from embedding image galleries in the past because it was a bit too complicated, you’ll learn to love what they can add to your site.
Group blocks are some of those WordPress blocks that are hard to really define. That’s because these blocks are really all about what you choose to make of them.
Group blocks allow you to “group” several block styles together in a single area. This makes it easier to format paragraphs so that headers and text are closer together. You can also do things like color-code column blocks to make them easier to distinguish.
While Group blocks are fascinating in and of themselves, we also love them as companions to the “Reusable Block,” which lets you automatically insert your custom grouped creations.
Image Compare Block
Do you know those “slider” comparison images some websites use? You know, the ones that let you slide over an image in order to compare two visuals? You’ve probably assumed those were somewhat difficult to format.
Here again, though, we see that WordPress blocks actually make that formatting trick shockingly easy. By utilizing a simple Image Compare block, you too can create simple (yet incredibly stylish) image comparisons for your website.
Whether you’re comparing two products or just want to add a little flair to your portfolio, the uses of this incredible feature will change how you think about images.
Page Break Block
Few people enjoy long walls of text. While there is quite a bit you can do to avoid such formatting, it’s hard to beat the versatility and simplicity of a page break. Just as it sounds, page breaks separate longer posts into multiple pages.
WordPress blocks allow you to insert those pages easier than ever before. You just add a Page Break block wherever you want one page to end and another to begin, and you’re set.
Page breaks should primarily be used to make an article more readable, but that’s hardly their only benefit. Breaking a larger article into more pages can also easily enhance user engagement.
Podcast Player Block
Many websites utilize podcasts. Whether they’re promoting their own or linking to others, embedding a podcast can be a fantastic way to keep people on your website.
With a Podcast Player block, you can insert podcasts into a post easier than ever before. Yes, this block makes it so that you can embed a podcast using nothing more than the podcast’s URL. However, that’s hardly the extent of what this block can do. It also lets you format your embed so that you can determine how much information it does (or doesn’t) display.
This is just one of the best ways to insert podcasts into your WordPress website.
Post Carousel Block
We’ve looked at a few WordPress blocks that are designed to showcase your other posts. However, there are few better ways to feature your content than a post carousel. They offer the dual advantage of focusing on individual posts while scrolling through multiple pieces of content.
Post Carousel blocks allow you to create custom carousels. You get to choose how many posts are featured, how long they are displayed for, and which posts you highlight. Not only does it show your visitors what else is on your site, but it’s a great way to keep up with daily content offerings.
If you find yourself regularly posting a variety of content, this is how you should be promoting it within a page.
Premium Content Block
We’ve spoken before about the value of premium content. It’s one of the best ways to organically generate revenue for your site. After all, charging for your content is just one of the most logical ways to make money.
Premium Content blocks let you easily “gate” your premium posts. Not only do they eliminate much of the hassle that comes with separating your free and premium content, but they’re a great way to let users know what else is out there if they pay a small fee.
When you’re looking to monetize a more established website, you’ll need WordPress blocks like this that are designed to help turn your content into a “premium” product.
Pullquotes are among the most underrated formatting tools. They allow you to highlight bits of text in order to grab attention and generate more informed discussions even amongst those who just read the headlines.
Thankfully, Pullquote blocks make it easier than ever to utilize this formatting technique. By inserting one of these blocks, you can highlight whatever kind of quote you want within the body of a text. Think of it as a way to break up text without using headings or page breaks.
Pullquotes are nearly essential for longer articles. Don’t ignore them now just because they were somewhat annoying in the past.
Ratings are a fantastic way to convey a lot of information in a short space. Whether you’re reviewing a movie, a product, or anything in-between, they allow you to immediately grab a reader’s attention and generate discussion.
Ratings are easier than ever thanks to the Ratings blocks. These blocks allow you to easily insert a simple “star” rating system for whatever purposes you may need. You even have the ability to customize the color of your star system.
It’s not the most complex rating system out there, but it’s a tremendous way to utilize ratings if you’re just looking for something simple.