WordPress Gutenberg Is Bad For Small Businesses

“All my buttons are gone!”

“Where did my email go?”

“The ‘save’ button disappeared!”

Gutenberg Is an Anti-Feature

You never asked for WordPress to change your entire editing experience.

In fact, millions of people have voted: They love WordPress the way it is!

When Gutenberg is released in the near future, you will log into WordPress and say, “My WordPress is broken!”:

  • “How come I can no longer add images?”
  • “How do I change my post excerpt?”
  • “My ‘Featured Image’ button disappeared!”
  • “Agh! I can’t add an image gallery?”
  • “Where’s the ‘save’ button?!”
  • etc.

The Gutenberg anti-feature will force you to relearn everything you already knew how to do in WordPress.

Small Businesses Crave Stability & Consistency

My friend works for a big corporation that sells tax compliance software.

It’s the best kind of company to own: a boring one that delivers a service that companies are required to by the government to have.

Most of its struggles come from anti-features being forced upon it.

For example, a recent simple change in the Canadian tax code threw everyone at the company into the panic.

It also threw the company’s customers into a panic!

Because small businesses crave stability and consistency above all else.

We like knowing the rules of the game, and anti-features change the rules!

In this case, everyone in the tax compliance food chain experienced an increase in stress, anxiety, and the worst thing: a loss of productivity/profit due to taking their eyes off the ball.

My friend’s corporation had to pull teammates off value-add projects.  The companies down the food chain had to pull people off other projects to make calls, send emails, and stay on top of the newly-required tax software update.  And even the government, itself had to deal with a deluge of phone calls, emails, and unknowns related to this tax update.

Gutenberg Will Cost Small Businesses Money

There’s never been a single case where a software user interface change didn’t frustrate end users and cost businesses money.

With the WordPress Gutenberg plugin’s release around the corner, the only question small business owners are asking is, “How much money will it cost me?”

They are asking their developers, their managers, and God Almighty.

They Are Forcing Gutenberg Down Our Throats!

Don’t you love it when a software update forces you to spend hours re-learning how to do something that worked perfectly yesterday?

Well, prepare to invest hours re-learning how to use WordPress once Gutenberg is released!

If you have a team that uses WordPress, you’re gonna have to re-train them, too!

Gutenberg Isn’t Bad; It’s Just Bad for Small Business Owners.

I’ve been an advocate of the Gutenberg project, in general, because it does a number of things:

  1. It makes blogging more fun.
  2. Forces WordPress community & developers to think differently about how WordPress does big things.
  3. It is risky, and the WordPress community needs to take more risks to stay relevant.

But you know what it doesn’t do?  Gutenberg doesn’t do anything for small businesses who already invested in WordPress.

In fact, it only adds costs to small business budgets.

When Technology Changes, It Creates Business Problems.

You are a small business owner, and you like it when things consistently work.

You don’t need the fanciest, newest things – particularly when they break your team’s workflow.

You especially don’t like investing in staff training for mandatory WordPress “features” that are forced upon you and don’t fix anything that was broken.

Techies & Tech Companies Love New Features That Break Things

So why build an anti-feature like Gutenberg and force it down our throats?

Because there’s money to be made.

Businesses who are paid to do WordPress development, training, bug fixes, etc. thrive in an uncertain environment.

Basically, everyone involved with creating this new anti-feature will thrive!

Heck, even my business stands to gain from the adventure!

But your business?  Nope.  It’ll only cost you money.

Gutenberg Will Break Your WordPress

Small business owners like WordPress for its ease of use.

But the thousands of non-techies who have hired me to train them on WordPress over the years know one thing: WordPress is not simple.

It takes hours of training to learn even basic WordPress stuff.

WordPress developers forget this fact.

In fact, I have trainings scheduled for October to train my customers in how to use Gutenberg!

It’s not their fault.  It’s not my fault.

It’s required training forced upon us by the people who brought you Gutenberg!


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Toby Cryns

Toby Cryns is a freelance CTO, expert WordPress developer, and teacher.

He offers free advice to improve your freelance biz.

He also publishes small droppings every now and them to https://twitter.com/tobycryns and https://twitter.com/themightymo.com

Follow Toby's contributions on Github and WP.org.