Guest Essay

Ignore Full Site Editing

How I learned to stop worrying and love WordPress themes.

different lego type building blocks side by side

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Last weekend I watched one of my favorite movies of all time, the 1964 Stanley Kubrick classic Dr. Strangelove

The movie satirizes how illogical thinking and bad decisions lead to mutual assured destruction when a new technology bypasses a previously reliable system of command and control.

The movie reminded me of the conversations I’ve been having lately with WordPress professionals. 

After the introduction of Full Site Editing, most everyone is feeling uncertain about the future direction of WordPress.

It has caused legitimate concerns about the disruption of a previously reliable system and left folks asking:

“What will Full Site Editing mean to my clients, my business, my desire to continue creating in WordPress?”

My response may not be what you were expecting: Ignore Full Site Editing.

Instead, your products or services can be the bridge that takes WordPress sites from the old world of Classic Editor to the new world of the Block Editor, without the need to travel to the future world promised by Full Site Editing.

We finally have enough stability and functionality to abandon the Classic Editor, but the path and process is not clear for anyone. It presents an opportunity for anyone who wants to pioneer the trail, come back and share their knowledge. 

And most importantly, the tools one needs to make the journey are right in front of us today, based on existing WordPress themes.

WordPress is blessed with many creators producing a combination of traditional WordPress themes,  modern Gutenberg blocks, and an array of gorgeous Starter Templates

Companies such as Kadence, Astra, GeneratePress, GenerateBlocks provide these powerful combinations, that I like to refer to as “Stacks”.

Stacks provide the reliable system upon which WordPress can finally act like a coherent platform for business owners, freelancers and agencies.

More importantly, they provide a bridge to years of shared knowledge, documentation and collaboration to solve problems, such as the more than 183,000 questions answered in StackOverflow.

With Stacks, very few new skills are required for WordPress professionals to launch and sell innovative solutions after learning the basics of the Block Editor. 

While many well known theme founders like Ben Ritner and Brian Gardner debate the merits of Full Site Editing as an accessory or a replacement for traditional themes, these uncertainties provide a unique opportunity for WordPress professionals to help others that need to make the same journey.

Today, one can leverage the power of Stacks to bridge the gap between the old WordPress and the new. With so many existing businesses facing the need for this transition, opportunities abound.

We can selectively use Stacks while disregarding or slowly phasing-in our use of Full Site Editing features, to avoid disrupting our reliable system with too much, too soon.

The open source nature of WordPress provides us with a unique freedom to be innovative and a  competitive advantage in a world facing recession, economic uncertainty and global strife.

Personally, I prefer when change comes to an existing marketplace like WordPress.

I embrace the disruption like shaking up a snow globe to see new opportunities, alliances and perspectives emerge after things settle down again.

Perhaps my view is a result of growing up as a member of Generation X, where the world could have ended at any moment, but never did. 

So I welcome you to join me in being optimistic, enthusiastic and entrepreneurial about these changes to WordPress… so long as we ignore Full Site Editing (for now) and love WordPress themes!


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Entrepreneur, Attorney, WordPress Strategist & Marketing Automation Expert. Founder LaunchFlows.

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