It will depend on many things going right over the next couple of months. WordPress 6.0 is scheduled for launch on May 24, 2022. The 6.0 Beta 1 is on April 12. Even with a slightly extended cycle, major updates come fast.
Across the community, I’m getting questions around when the beta label for the site editor will be removed. While not explicitly stated in the 6.0 post, I know it’s been discussed around having it removed for 6.0 as this was meant to be a temporary label to communicate that the site editor is still in early stages.
In order to track this concern and have a place to point people, I’m opening this issue so, when the time comes, a decision can be made and folks can be notified.
In response, Courtney Robertson said she would like to see a unified effort on creating support material across LearnWP, HelpHub, and DevHub. “What would the community’s expectation be for supporting resources related to beta, and what capacity do teams have to reach that goal?” she asked.
What does the 3rd party ecosystem struggle with today for adopting FSE?
What impact with this have for end site builders using products (plugins) that want to but can’t yet work with Site Editor because features are missing (custom post types, templates, shortcodes) and the following impact to their clients?
What areas feel incomplete yet in Site Editor?
“Before removing the label, we need feedback about the expectations when there is no beta label,” she wrote.
Alex Stine noted accessibility issues as a blocker for removing the beta label. Dave Ryan added items that theme authors were still hard-coding because they are unsupported in the editor.
Avoiding the WordPress 5.0 Gutenberg debacle should be a priority. The block editor was arguably the worst feature rollout in the platform’s history, one that has left a fractured community that is, over three years later, still picking up some of the pieces of itself.
The problem was more about communication than anything. It was not that the block editor was in and of itself a poor product. It just felt very much like beta software that was switched on overnight — the platform’s users its guinea pigs. Plus, the lack of a built-in method of staying on the classic editor without installing a plugin made for a rough transition.
Some FSE features like block-based widgets and nav menus have also had problematic rollouts. Developers and end-users have often needed to scramble for solutions without an appropriate transition period before switching the features on when ready.
However, the site editor and global styles have been entirely opt-in FSE features thus far. That is not changing anytime soon. Users must explicitly activate a block theme to access them.
This has made for a far gentler transition, allowing early adopters to test the waters before the rest of the world. And, make no mistake, the site editor and block-based themes fundamentally change how WordPress’s theme and customization system has worked for years.
We will be lucky if even 100 block themes are in the official directory when WordPress 6.0 launches. Today, there are 53, a fraction of the 1,000s of themes in total.
There is little harm that could be done by keeping the site editor in beta for a while longer. When something breaks, it feels better knowing it is an experimental feature.
Of course, it must come to an end one day as we peel back the label and let the site editor shine in its own light. It cannot stay in beta endlessly, and “6.0” is a nice, round, feel-good number. Despite WordPress marching to the beat of its own versioning drum, it does not erase how much those “x.0” releases feel like they should be revolutionary in some way. Putting a stamp of approval on the site editor would be a highlight, but it would likely be premature.
WordPress 6.1 may be a more opportune moment. There is no pressing need to rush support material, bypass accessibility issues, or not let features mature for a cycle or two.
One of the best aspects of WordPress is that it allows for a wide range of plug-ins, which can customize the website and provide helpful functionality for businesses trying to attract customers, produce content, and generally engage online. Unfortunately, that’s one of the biggest downfalls for WordPress when it comes to security.
“Vulnerabilities from plugins and themes remain as one of the biggest threats to websites built on WordPress.”
According to the study from Patchstack, there has been a 150% increase in WordPress vulnerabilities since last year, which as researchers put it is “a significant increase.” Even worse, 29% of these vulnerable WordPress plug-ins are never patched, leaving the door open for some serious security problems.
29% 0f WordPress vulnerabilities are never patched
To be fair, though, WordPress is not technically the problem. The core platform for WordPress represents a mere 0.58% of security vulnerabilities. Unfortunately, the massive library of plug-ins is the downfall here, so if you want to stay secure, it’s best to avoid these tools if you can.
Search engine optimization (SEO) is one of the top skills needed by marketing professionals and business owners. But it’s getting more challenging every day to understand the ins and outs of this art form, which is a core part of the success of every brand with an online presence.
This article takes a look at the SEO courses and certifications that can increase your knowledge and enhance your career.
The Importance of SEO
Nearly 30% of global web traffic comes from search engines, and, according to a report from Statista, ever since Google introduced its search engine in 1997, it has dominated the search engine market, maintaining a 92.47% market share as of June 2021. Google’s biggest competitor, Bing, only has 7% of the market, and Yahoo has captured 2.85%.
Clearly, when brands wish to optimize their websites for search, it’s Google they’re optimizing for.
Over the years, Google has made thousands of updates to its search engine algorithm, and the SEO techniques that were effective one year may no longer be useful the next. For website developers and marketing professionals, keeping up with the most recent changes in SEO is a required part of the job. Fortunately, there are many different SEO courses and certifications available to help one stay informed.
A 2021 report from HubSpot revealed that approximately 64% of marketers and 63% of brands actively invest time in SEO. With the difficulty and challenges of getting a website to appear on the top search engine results pages (SERPs), there is a lot of pressure to learn as much as possible about SEO tactics and strategies.
Jessica Zhao, CMO of Spacewhite, a low waste, non-toxic cleaning product provider, told CMSWire that SEO is something lots of small business owners don’t think about, but it can make a huge difference in how fast they grow their business.
“When you’re new to the scene you have lots of momentum — propel that by having proper SEO backing you up right from the start,” she said. “For people contemplating a career in SEO, a free taster course is a perfect way to judge whether you’re truly interested and excited by the prospect of learning more.”
Google Garage, along with Coursera and the University of California Davis, offers a four-week SEO Fundamentals course, which starts with an introduction to on-page SEO (11 videos), off-page SEO (four videos), technical SEO (seven videos) and finally, keyword theory and research (six videos).
Unlike many Google Garage courses, which are free, the Coursera SEO course requires membership to Coursera. The platform offers a 7-day free trial and costs $59 per month afterward.
Included with the Coursera subscription are 28 other SEO courses, including:
Search Engine Optimization
Introduction to Google SEO
Advanced Search Engine Optimization Strategies
Increase SEO Traffic With WordPress
Brand Marketing and SEO Tools Using Wix
Greg Rose, chief experience officer at Intellum, a customer education platform provider, told CMSWire that Intellum partners with leaders in the tech industry, including Google, Facebook, Amazon and Twitter, to deliver world-class customer education and certification initiatives.
Rose said that each of these programs must include:
Exceptional user experiences that streamline the process of accessing the required educational content prior to the assessment/exam
Deep understanding of the learner personas and the competencies each persona should acquire or improve during the certification process
A clear strategic reason to offer a certification
A scalable certification program that can grow and flex as the above things grow
HubSpot, which offers courses on a wide variety of subjects, including marketing, sales, service and more, partners with over 500 colleges and universities to align their curricula with industry expectations.
“HubSpot SEO Certification is a great choice for content creators, marketers and anyone looking to brush up their SEO skills on a tight budget,” said Jon Buchan, CEO of Charm Offensive. “HubSpot Academy is a recognized name for offering certification courses in a variety of niches.”
HubSpot’s SEO Certification Course is comprehensive, includes 24 videos and provides marketers with everything they need to become proficient at SEO. It’s broken down into specific topics, starting with an overview and introduction to the course, moving on through the basics, then into more specific aspects of SEO. The course takes approximately three hours to complete.
Each of the lessons includes several videos, and most have a resource section that features slides from the videos, transcripts, links to mentioned SEO tools and websites and links to related articles and blogs. Once a student has watched the videos in each lesson, there is a short quiz to see if they have retained the information and then an opportunity to work through an SEO worksheet.
The exam includes 60 questions that are randomly drawn from a total of 73 questions, all of which are answered in the videos and transcripts. The exam takes about an hour to complete, though students are given three hours to finish it. Students must answer at least 45 questions (75%) correctly to pass and must wait 12 hours before taking it again if they do not initially pass.
Upon passing, students are provided with a digital certificate and can display the certificate on their LinkedIn profile or their website. The HubSpot SEO certification is valid for one year.
While LinkedIn Learning, formerly Lynda.com, is not free, it’s affordable enough that it should be considered by any student of SEO or marketing. It offers over 800 SEO courses, learning paths and videos on the subject of search engine optimization.
The learning platform offers a one-month free trial period. Afterward, a monthly subscription costs $39.99, or you can opt for an annual subscription at $26.99 per month.
Subscriptions to LinkedIn Learning also include LinkedIn Premium, and those who are already LinkedIn Premium subscribers receive full access to LinkedIn Learning at no additional cost.
LinkedIn Learning’s Become an SEO Expert program features 10 individual courses, including:
Learning Local SEO
SEO: Keyword Strategy
SEO: Link Building
SEO: Optimize Your Social Media Profiles
Marketing Tools: SEO
SEO: Ecommerce Strategies
Each individual course includes videos and exercise files. When students have successfully completed each course, they will receive a certificate that can be displayed on their LinkedIn profile.
“Certifications can be a great addition to any education program as customers who are proficient in your organization’s tools are likely to get much more out of them, leading to increased retention, loyalty and advocacy,” said Rose.
The Yoast SEO WordPress plugin is used by nearly 10 million websites, more than any other SEO plugin for WordPress. Yoast Academy comes from the same folks that brought you the plugin and offers a free membership with several courses, including two SEO courses:
SEO for Beginners: Includes What Is SEO, Content SEO and Technical SEO, each of which covers four topics, with quizzes at the end.
Yoast SEO for WordPress: Meant for users of the WordPress block editor and teaches how to set up and use the Yoast SEO for WordPress plugin.
The premier Yoast membership, which costs $99 per year, also includes courses on Local SEO, Ecommerce SEO, SEO Copyrighting, Site Structure, Keyword Research, All Around SEO, Technical SEO and more.
Alison provides over 4,000 courses, all of them free, and covers business, sales and marketing, health, language and construction. Alison offers several SEO courses with certifications, including:
Fundamentals of YouTube Marketing and Search Engine Optimization
Build WordPress Sites That Attract Free Traffic
Introduction to Bing SEO — Revised
YouTube Marketing and YouTube SEO Fundamentals
Each course includes several modules with multiple topics. The Fundamentals of YouTube Marketing and Search Engine Optimization, for instance, includes four modules:
YouTube Hacks: Tricks and Features
Creating High-Quality YouTube Content
YouTube Marketing and Promotion Strategies
Once each course is completed, students will have the option to purchase a digital (or printed) certificate that they can share on social media, LinkedIn, etc.
Search engine optimization is a skill that has become an art form over the past two decades. As SEO has evolved, professionals have sought out SEO courses and certifications to keep their skills up to date, as well as to provide value to current and prospective employers.
With free and premium courses available for all skill levels, both SEO students and professionals can learn at their own pace.
There’s a new major release of WordPress available and Jack Wallen provides the scoop on what’s been added.
WordPress is the most widely-used blogging platform on the market. According to W3 Technology Surveys, WordPress is used by 64.1% of content management systems and 42.9% of all websites. That’s significant. It also means the developers of WordPress are always active and working diligently to improve the platform.
Recently, the developers released the latest major milestone in version 6.0. This release includes over 500 enhancements and 400 bug fixes, so not only should you want to upgrade, you should consider this a must.
All of the additions to WordPress were created to make content creation and site-building more intuitive and feature-rich. Site managers will find these changes greatly enhance the functionality of WordPress and provide developers an even deeper understanding of the platform with plenty of available resources.
Let’s take a gander at the new features found in the latest release of this widespread blogging platform.
A good amount of effort has gone into improving the writing experience with WordPress. The enhancements of version 6.0 include the ability to select text across multiple blocks and edit all at once, quick access to the link menu (by way of the [[ sequence shown in Figure A) and the ability to retain applied styles while transforming blocks from one type to another, custom buttons, updated settings for tag clouds and social icons.
You can also group, stack, and place paragraphs in rows by highlighting the paragraphs and clicking the option from the resultant popup menu (Figure B).
You will also find five more template options with WordPress 6.0. Those templates are:
Patterns, patterns everywhere
Block Patterns are a collection of predefined blocks that can be inserted into pages and posts and then customized as needed. As you edit a template, you’ll find a new quick inserter that shows patterns and template parts (Figure C) to make your workflow even more efficient.
Patterns also appear in more places than just templates. You can even use the quick inserter to add patterns to headers and footers or register patterns from the Pattern Directory which allows you to prioritize specific patterns.
One important feature added to WordPress 6.0 is block locking. Once a block has been locked, it cannot be moved or removed. This is an especially important addition when you have multiple people who administer a site if you don’t want them to be able to move blocks around within pages and posts. You can also better control block gaps to add additional spacing between blocks and even do so with a group of blocks.
The list view feature (Figure D) has also been enhanced such that you can now select multiple blocks, modify them as one, and even drag and drop them within the list.
Other enhancements brought about in WordPress 6.0 include the following:
Easier style switching to ensure your entire site is congruous
A new color panel design takes up less space
New border controls
Transparency levels for colors
Export your custom block themes
New core blocks were added such as post author biography
Custom buttons save feature so you can reuse customized buttons
Cover block dynamically grabs your featured image and uses it as a background image
The new features found in WordPress 6.0 make it far more efficient to use, and the bug fixes ensure the reliability of your sites. If you have sites that are currently using the 5.x version of WordPress, I highly recommend upgrading to the latest release so you’re up to date on both features and security.
Project management has become a rather hot topic within the realm of business. With good reason. With project management at your side, the workflow of your company can be made exponentially more efficient. Without project management? You know what happens. Chaos.
If that sounds like eventually you’d like to avoid, then a good project management tool is in your future.
If you happen to depend on WordPress and would love to add project management features to the platform, you’re in luck. You could turn a basic WordPress deployment into a full-fledged project management tool with just a few simple-to-install plugins. Even better, most of these plugins are free to use or at least have a free version.
Let’s take a look at some of the project management solutions available to WordPress.
WordPress Project Manager helps make project management and team collaboration quite simple, while offering plenty of advanced features such as milestones, file sharing, notifications, pusher integration, to-dos, task assignments, due dates, progress bars and comments.
With WP Project Manager, you can create multiple projects and view them all from a handy overview (Figure A). However, the free version of this tool only gives you the basics. It’s not until you upgrade to the Premium version that you can add a calendar, reporting tools and progress indicators.
The company behind WP Project Manager also offers other modules to expand the platform with recurring tasks, kanban boards, Gantt charts and more. But the best thing about WP Project Manager is that it’s user-friendly enough that anyone can get up to speed quickly.
The company behind WP Project Manager offers three different plans:
Personal ($55/year) – All of the features in the free version plus one year of updates & support.
Professional ($104/year) – Everything in the Personal plan, plus five domains, Gantt charts, invoicing, time tracker and ticket-based support.
Business ($174/year) – Everything in Professional, plus 10 domains, kanban, WooCommerce integration, Stripe integration, recurring tasks and custom fields.
Project Panorama takes a full visualization approach to project management so your teams can get a clear picture of project progress. Each team member gets their own dashboard for their assigned projects and tasks.
Project Panorama integrates into WordPress so well that it feels as though you are using a WordPress native feature instead of a third-party tool. You can create projects, assign them to clients, assign automatic progress and phase progress calculations, attach files and media, view kanban boards, use delay tracking, add subtasks and more.
Once you’ve created your project, you then publish it so all of your team members can view the progress (Figure B).
Project Panorama offers four different paid plan options:
Personal ($69/year) – Includes core functionality plus official free add-ons, email support and plugin updates.
Agency ($99/year) – Includes everything in the Personal plan plus five sites.
Enterprise ($129/year) – iIncludes everything in the Agency plan plus all future paid add-ons and unlimited sites.
Lifetime ($299) – This one time payment includes everything in Enterprise without the yearly payment.
Business Manager is more than just project management. With this one-stop shop tool, you’ll add HR, CRM, ERP, document management and project management. And although it’s the project management feature that we want to focus on, it’s undeniable that having those extra features make Business Manager a real winner for those who use WordPress as their hub for getting things done.
Business Manager project management includes all the features you need, such as project assignment, special statuses, progress tracking and timelines, drag and drop kanban, notes and even file attachments.
The one thing to keep in mind with Business Manager is that projects are viewed not within published WordPress pages but within the add page or post page (Figure C). Also, to get the most out of Business Manager, you need to add Employees from within the Employees feature of the plugin in order to assign tasks to users.
Business Manager is completely free to use and doesn’t offer paid options.
Kanban for WordPress
If your only project management need is kanban, there’s a WordPress plugin made specifically for you. That plugin is aptly named Kanban for WordPress.
With this plugin, you can define your boards with built-in plugins to serve project management, editorial calendars, job applicants, sales pipeline, and basic or custom kanban boards. What I like the most about Kanban for WordPress is that it looks and functions exactly like a typical Kanban board (Figure D).
You can also customize your statues (columns) and even set them to auto-archive.
Although Kanban Boards for WordPress might not have all the bells and whistles you’ll find in other kanban options, if you’re looking for a very simple kanban addition to your WordPress site, you cannot go wrong with this free add-on.
There is also a Pro version of Kanban for WordPress which gives you more control over your workflow and adds tasks comments, advanced user management, task details & attachments, notifications, task colors and multiple boards. The Pro version costs $149/year or $499 for lifetime access.
If you’re looking to add project management to your WordPress sites, any one of these plugins would be a great option. Whether you’re looking for basic kanban, or something to serve as a single-point-of-entry for management of projects, customers, clients and staff, you’ll find something here to meet your needs.
New research finds that timing matters for standards and subsidies.
Light bulbs were back in the news last month, with the Department of Energy announcing new tighter U.S. rules for energy efficiency. By July, manufacturers must stop making bulbs that produce less than 45 lumens per watt, effectively phasing out not only incandescents but also halogen incandescents.
These new rules accelerate a technological transition that has already been going on for more than a decade. New research by economist Sarah Armitage shines a bright light on the timing of this historic transition. In particular, Armitage asks whether early support for CFLs crowded out later adoption of LEDs. Her results are fascinating and imply that when it comes to environmental policies, it is important not only to choose the right tools, but also to get the timing right.
When we think about energy transitions we typically think of the growth of renewables, electrification of buildings and vehicles, and phasing out fossil fuels. But one of the most important recent energy transitions is the humble light bulb.
After being dominated by traditional incandescents for 100+ years, in the last two decades the light bulb market has transitioned to halogen incandescents and CFLs, and then, finally, LEDs, with the price of LEDs falling 90% over the last decade.
For me, it is helpful to think about these technologies in terms of lumens per watt. Like other measures of energy efficiency, this tells us how much is produced per unit of energy. The new U.S. energy efficiency rules require bulbs to produce 45 lumens per watt, and neither incandescents nor halogens can meet this standard.
Can we just take a minute and appreciate these energy-efficiency gains? Rarely does a new technology come along which does the same thing, but using a small fraction of the amount of energy. Going from an incandescent to an LED is like replacing a car that gets 25 miles-per-gallon with another one that gets 130 mpg!
Ok but the road from incandescents to LEDs has not been smooth or easy. Armitage’s research is aimed at understanding the timing of this transition, and the role played by standards and subsidies.
One of the key features of the analysis is that it takes durability seriously. In addition to being more energy-efficient, these new bulbs also have much longer lifetimes. Traditional incandescents burn out quickly, in part because they produce so much heat, but the later technologies last much longer.
This durability matters. Interestingly, Armitage documents a 40% decrease in U.S. light bulb shipments over the last decade. Are people sitting around in the dark? No! They are buying fewer light bulbs because their bulbs last longer.
Armitage estimates a dynamic model of residential lighting demand that takes this durability into account, and then uses the model to evaluate alternative timing for standards and subsidies.
The figure below shows U.S. market shares for general purpose light bulbs. Back in 2010, the market was dominated by incandescents and, to a lesser extent, CFLs. In part, this early market share for CFLs reflects widespread subsidies which CFLs received throughout the first half of this period.
Between 2012 and 2014, U.S. federal standards were implemented which effectively banned incandescents. As you can see in the figure, the market quickly transitioned. By far the biggest winner initially was the halogen incandescent, a bulb created to be just efficient enough for the U.S. standards. CFLs also increased market share in 2014 and 2015.
Armitage uses her model to show that these CFLs and halogens crowded out later adoption of LEDs. Why? It goes back to durability. Once you install a light bulb, it tends to be there for a long time. Halogens (about 2,000 hours) and CFLs (about 8,000 hours, depending on usage), in particular, tend to last a lot longer than incandescents (about 1,200 hours).
People tend not to replace light bulbs as long as they are still working. So these CFLs and halogens kept being used year after year. Even today, there are hundreds of millions of CFLs and halogens still working and still being used in U.S. sockets. Ask yourself, do you still have CFLs and halogens installed in your home? I know I do.
Armitage then uses her model to simulate policy counterfactuals. That is, she asks how the transition would have been different with alternative timing for subsidies and standards.
She finds that if the U.S. had delayed these federal standards until 2017 or 2018, we would have sold millions *more* LED bulbs. LEDs were cheap enough by that time that many households would have jumped all the way to LEDs rather than adopting one of the intermediate technologies. Ironically, these early energy efficiency standards actually slowed later adoption of an even more energy-efficient technology.
On the other hand, the standards did accelerate the retirement of traditional incandescents. Armitage finds that, to minimize energy consumption (and thus, environmental externalities) over this time period, you want to implement standards as early as possible and phase out CFL subsidies after 2014. This combination of policies gets the worst offenders out of the market quickly, while minimizing crowd out from long-lasting CFLs.
The key takeaway from the research is that early policy action generates immediate environmental benefits from increased adoption of available efficient products, but may crowd out later adoption of even better products.
In the long run, LEDs are probably going to be the overwhelmingly dominant light bulb technology worldwide. They are so efficient, so durable, so versatile, that it seems hard to think otherwise. But Armitage’s research is an important reminder that the journey is just as important as the destination. If it takes another decade for LEDs to completely take over, that means a whole lot of additional carbon emissions in the meantime.
In future work, it will be interesting to study this next wave of federal standards. How quickly will halogens be phased out? How long will it take for the existing stock of CFLs and halogens to burn out? I wonder if it also might be worth thinking about a “cash for clunkers” style policy where we pay people for their old bulbs. There is sunk cost fallacy and other behavioral constraints at play here that might be ameliorated with a policy nudge.
Finally, I wonder about the rebound effect. Nobel laureate Bill Nordhaus showed that, as lighting has become cheaper, humans have massively increased their consumption, using thousands of times more lumens today than they did in previous centuries. Have we finally reached the saturation point, or is there more scope for increased usage?
Keep up with Energy Institute blogs, research, and events on Twitter @energyathaas.
A common way is to use a centralized crypto payment gateway. Going this way implies that one has to trust intermediaries who accept the donations on one’s behalf, which contradicts the core idea of decentralization. Additionally, the number of cryptocurrencies that can be accepted with this option is often very limited.
Another option is to provide wallet addresses in plain text on their site. Besides the aesthetics, this way requires that you have high administrative overhead with monitoring different wallets and converting tokens to hedge against volatility.
DePay Donations offers an alternative with a new paradigm enabled by decentralized finance. It maximizes decentralization, interoperability and token acceptance while minimizing the administrative burden on the donation recipient.
Open-source payment protocol.
Supporting multiple blockchains.
Middleman-free P2P payments from supporter-wallet to receiver-wallet.
Supporting 100+ of the most popular cryptocurrency wallets.
Decentralized token conversion via liquidity pools such as Uniswap or PancakeSwap.
Selecting the tokens to be received after on-the-fly conversion of incoming donations.
Accepting donations with tens-of-thousands of tokens on supported blockchains.
Triggering the widget by clicks on buttons or custom links.
Style settings with live preview & custom CSS support.
“WordPress has shaped the internet for almost 20 years now. We are thrilled to enable people running their WordPress installation to accept Web3 donations as simple as installing a plugin (literally).” says Sebastian Pape, Founder, CEO & CTO at DePay.
DePay pioneers Web3 Payments with the power of DeFi. Driving mass adoption of blockchain based payments, DePay merges the core ideas of decentralization and interoperability with state-of-the-art Web3 technologies.
Koji, a popular “link in bio” platform that provides apps to the creator economy, has launched a WordPress plugin for the block editor. The San Diego-based startup has raised $36.1M, most recently securing $20M in a funding round led by Jump Capital. Koji has attracted 150,000 users since its official launch in March 2021. It offers a way for creators on TikTok, Instagram, Twitch, and other social media platforms to monetize their followings.
“WordPress, along with the bloggers and creators it supports, is a cornerstone of the modern creator economy,” Koji CEO Dmitry Shapiro said. “This integration is a massive addition to the power and extensibility of WordPress, giving bloggers a frictionless and intuitive way to incorporate Koji mini apps in their content strategies.”
The new plugin introduces a Koji App block that gives users access to Koji’s app store and 200+ web-based mini apps. The apps offer a wide array of interactive functionality, such as e-commerce, games, video guestbook, calendar scheduling, NFT storefronts, billboards, and more.
Although the plugin’s description page says that it allows users to “embed any Koji app,” it’s not explicit about how that looks on the frontend. The app store launches in an overlay where you select and customize the app. In testing the plugin, I found that when when you insert the app into your WordPress site, it just shows up as a black button that says “My Koji App.” You can customize the button’s color and text, but that’s about it. The button launches the app in a lightbox-style overlay on top of the page content.
The image above is a screenshot of two buttons that Koji inserted representing a Tip Jar app and an Ask Me Anything app. There is no way to differentiate the two besides editing the text.
The screenshots on the plugin’s details page show how the app is launched over the content, but it doesn’t show what users see on the page before they click the link.
I was not particularly impressed with this first version of the plugin, as it seems to misrepresent what it actually does. The plugin places links in plain black buttons that will launch an iframe of the Koji app on the page. It doesn’t make much use of the block editor’s customization features, nor does it provide any kind of visual preview of the app on the page. Even a small thumbnail preview would be far superior to a plain black button.
The plugin says that embedding these apps allows users to “sell downloadable files, sell custom video requests like shoutouts and birthday greetings, embed games that can be played by visitors, and more.” It does make it possible for users to do these things in the iframe popup, but the plugin doesn’t provide any kind of preview for these apps that would compel a visitor to click on them.
The Koji Block plugin offers a nominal integration between the Koji platform and WordPress, but misses an opportunity to display visually appealing previews within content. For an app platform with hundreds of colorful, interactive apps, the plain black button method of displaying them is uninspiring.
Koji collects fees on apps with e-commerce capabilities. If you are looking to collect donations or sell products on your WordPress site, there are many more homegrown (and visually appealing) ways to do so. This plugin is best-suited to creators who are already heavily using the Koji platform and want a simple way to link to an app from WordPress.