[Disclosure: Some of the links in this post are affiliate links and if you go through them to make a purchase I will earn a commission.]
Ten years ago, if you asked me if WordPress was a suitable web platform for the average non-tech person, my answer would have been no. My answer today: maybe.
Before you go running away, throwing your arms up in the air and crying out that “WordPress isn’t for me,” hear me out a bit.
An absolute game-changing plugin called Elementor makes designing and building WordPress pages easy and professional-looking for the self-proclaimed non-techies.
What is Elementor?
Elementor is a FREE page building plugin for WordPress that has an intuitive drag and drop feature, pre-built templates, and works with any WordPress theme.
I use this plugin to design my own website and when designing websites for my clients.
There is a Pro version of Elementor which will give you more features and capabilities, but the Free version is really all you need for a basic yet awesome website.
Here are some of the reasons that I love using Elementor:
1. Easy to use drag and drop editor
Elementor has loads of free widgets, or features, you can use to build your pages. They make it extremely easy to add these widgets by simply dragging the one you want and dropping it into your page. You can create columns and sections easily, too.
“I felt like WordPress was…..really hard to get started with as a non-tech person and the drag and drop ability to build pages that Elementor gives you is just awesome.”Jo Hooper from Mad and Sad Club
2. Live editing
When using the drag and drop editor, you are able to see your edits in real time. This ability to “live edit” makes styling and viewing each element of your web design easier.
3. Elementor comes with pre-built templates
While I don’t recommend using any of the pre-built templates without changing some stuff around, the pre-built templates are amazing for quickly putting together a website.
There are plenty of pre-built templates available on the free version of Elementor. I like to look at a few of them and see what pieces I like from each and take what works for my needs. You don’t need to keep the whole template. You can delete sections and add sections to suit you.
4. Save your designs as templates
This might be my favourite feature of Elementor. When I create a page that I like and want to duplicate it on another page, I can save that design as a template and upload it on my other page.
Similarly, you can save sections you’ve designed as templates if you don’t want to import the whole page as a template design.
“I love being able to save my designs as templates! It makes duplicating my training pages for consistency across my website so much easier.”Harriet McAtee from Nourish Yoga Training
5. Speed and optimization is at Elementor’s core
Without getting too tech-y here, Elementor’s code is developed with the speed and optimization of your website in mind. Since Google uses web speeds as a contributing factor when it ranks websites and pages, Elementor has minimised their code, making it lightweight and efficient.
6. It’s FREE
This is a huge plus. The free version offers so much! I have built several websites using just the free version of Elementor.
One limitation of the free version as opposed to the pro is that your theme will dictate your site’s header, footer, navigation menu, blog posts page, sidebar, and archive pages. So, if you’re sticking with the free version, ensure you’re happy with the way your theme designs these areas of your website. There are other free plugins out there, such as Elementor – Header, Footer & Blocks by Brainstorm Force, that you can use in addition to Elementor to have more control over these elements.
7. It works with ANY WordPress theme
Elementor is a plugin that works with ANY WordPress theme. There are, however, some WordPress themes that have been built with Elementor in mind. You can find a list of themes here that Elementor themselves recommend.
If you are opting to purchase Elementor Pro, I recommend downloading Elementor’s own theme, Hello. This is an incredibly light-weight theme with minimal code to optimize the speed and performance of your website.
If you are opting to use the Elementor Free version, choose a theme whose core design (every aspect of the website minus pages) you like. You cannot change these things in the free version of Elementor and they are decided based on your chosen theme.
8. Zero coding
This is a blog post for non-techies, which means you’ll be pleased to hear: you don’t need to know how to code to use Elementor.
Everything within Elementor is drag and drop friendly with live editing sliders.
9. 100% responsive and mobile friendly
Elementor is made to be responsive. You can preview any of your page designs in Desktop, Tablet, or Mobile modes by clicking on the Responsive Device symbol. You’ll also see little Responsive device symbols on different elements that you’re editing throughout your website. Click on them and always double check the responsiveness of your site. Elementor makes it simple.