Are You Ready For Gutenberg Phase Two?

When the Gutenberg editor arrived in early December, it was the biggest change to WordPress in years — possibly ever.

However, WordPress is not done with big changes. The Gutenberg you see today is only “phase one” of this project!

While WordPress users are still acclimating themselves to Gutenberg, more changes are planned in the coming year. Theme designers and plugin creators are slowly rolling out support for Gutenberg. And the WordPress team has recently begun work on Gutenberg Phase 2.

If you’ve used Gutenberg, you’re familiar with the concept of content blocks. Every type of content has its own block. It’s a powerful concept, but as it stands now those blocks are limited to the content *inside* of posts and pages.

Gutenberg Phase 1
Gutenberg Phase 1 is limited to the inside of post content.

What To Expect From Gutenberg Phase 2

In phase 2, blocks are set to break out of the Gutenberg editor and into other parts of WordPress. Widgets are the logical next step. In many ways, widgets are already block-like.

Gutenberg Phase 2
In phase 2, Gutenberg Blocks break out of the post area.

Phase 2 is where widgets and blocks begin to merge. Remember, some widgets are already available as Gutenberg blocks. We’ll see even more widgets turn into blocks as the year progresses.

I expect this change to be less controversial than the changes to the post editor. Widgets aren’t exactly user-friendly in their current state — so, this can only be an improvement.

Gutenberg Phase 2 Widget Manager
A prototype of a more block-like WordPress Widget manager

Once widgets morph into blocks, you can expect to see blocks in the Theme Customizer. And once blocks move to the theme customizer, it’s only a matter of time before WordPress menus turn into blocks. Are you noticing a pattern here?

By this time next year, the entire WordPress experience will be a lot more Gutenberg-like.

By then we’ll be talking about Gutenberg Phase 3, whatever that may be.

In the meantime, Gutenberg Essentials is here to help you learn the basics and bring your WordPress skills up to date.

All images in this post are from the Make WordPress Core blog.