Wordpress News

WPTavern: Tectonic Shifts in Retail Industry are Creating Unprecedented Opportunities for Independent Stores

Wordpress Planet - Wed, 04/29/2020 - 08:17

Major retailers that are part of the critical infrastructure for distributing household essentials, healthcare items, and shelf-stable food, are raking in the cash during this pandemic. While consumer spending at bars, restaurants, and places of entertainment has dropped precipitously, spending at Amazon and Walmart has increased considerably in the past few weeks. The companies cannot hire workers fast enough to meet consumer demand.

According to a report from Facteus, a firm that provides data from billions of transactions from over 1,000 financial services companies, Amazon and Walmart’s year-over-year growth recently hit 80% and 18%, respectively in the past few weeks.

The pandemic has worked as a catalyst for pre-existing trends, “accelerating the retail reckoning,” as Derek Thompson predicts in his recent article on how The Pandemic Will Change American Retail Forever. Brick and mortar storefronts are rapidly becoming obsolete in a world that is forcibly consigned to shopping from home.

There are still many uncertainties about SARSCoV-2 and how humanity will safely find its way out of lockdown. Recovery from the virus may not confer long-term immunity and a vaccine may be more than a year away, likely pushing social distancing measures into 2021. Consumer behavior may be forever altered by this experience, as many people may continue to avoid in-person browsing at stores long after the worst is over.

While it might seem like the retail titans are still uncontested in their domination, there are tectonic shifts happening in the retail industry that are giving smaller, independent stores an unprecedented opportunity to gain new customers online. Merchants that can adapt and excel at getting products to a homebound population stand to be the most resilient during this pandemic.

In order to keep up with demand, Amazon has had to delay shipments of non-essential items by up to a month in some cases, prioritizing household basics and medical supplies. Major grocery retailers are competing against one another to hire furloughed workers in order to keep up with the demand for groceries with so many people eating at home. Independent stores that can be found online have the opportunity to step up and fill in the gaps where major retailers cannot meet the demand fast enough.

People are more inclined to support small businesses right now in light of current circumstances. Amazon’s severely strained relationship with buyers, sellers, affiliates, and employees is also contributing to consumers’ eagerness to support independent stores.

On April 21, Amazon slashed commission rates nearly in half for most product categories, negatively impacting media companies and publishers that have not diversified their affiliate revenue sources.

Amazon’s essential workers are planning to join others from Instacart, Whole Foods, Walmart, Target, and FedEx in a strike on Friday. They are protesting their employers’ record corporate profits which they say have come at the expense of workers’ health and safety. Many consumers have already grappled with a question of conscience in continuing to shop on Amazon after hearing reports of grueling labor conditions for years.

Another major development in the retail industry has come to light as the result of a recent Wall Street Journal investigation, which revealed that Amazon is using data from its sellers to launch competing products. Merchants selling successfully on Amazon are not safe from having their products copied and their businesses effectively cannibalized.

Documents obtained by the WSJ, along with interviews from more than 20 former employees of Amazon’s private-label business, described how the marketplace operator uses third-party sellers’ data to gain a competitive advantage:

In one instance, Amazon employees accessed documents and data about a bestselling car-trunk organizer sold by a third-party vendor. The information included total sales, how much the vendor paid Amazon for marketing and shipping, and how much Amazon made on each sale. Amazon’s private-label arm later introduced its own car-trunk organizers.

The WSJ exposé details the great pressure that Amazon executives are under to deliver successful private-label products:

Former executives said they were told frequently by management that Amazon brands should make up more than 10% of retail sales by 2022. Managers of different private-label product categories have been told to create $1 billion businesses for their segments, they said.

This practice of launching competing products with access to third-party sellers’ data has been happening for years but is an especially hostile tactic to employ in a time when Amazon’s revenue is skyrocketing and small businesses are struggling to stay afloat. It is a sobering reminder of the value of hosting your own online store and the importance of owning your own data.

There are some positive developments in the industry that should give small business owners confidence in maintaining independence from the dominant forces in online retail.

Wired published an article this week titled The Coronavirus Pandemic Is Changing How People Buy Books by Kate Knibbs. She describes how one indie bookseller’s e-commerce startup has found unlikely success in positioning itself as “an easy way to buy books online without further enriching Jeff Bezos:”

Bookshop went from a well-intentioned startup facing an uphill battle to one of the most popular ways to buy books online in a matter of weeks. The New York Times, BuzzFeed, Vox, and The New Republic are all affiliate partners now. Its headcount has doubled in size. Hunter expects to hit $6 million in sales by May, eons ahead of its loftiest projections from January. If the company’s performance holds steady, it could do $60 million in sales a year, although Hunter is assuming post-quarantine life will be different. “I’m sure that when things open back up, our sales will drop, maybe even cut in half,” he says. “But even then, we’re still one of the top 10 bookstores in the US.”

Yesterday, Shopify launched its new Shop app, touting modularized, distributed marketplaces as the future of e-commerce. The app allows shoppers to browse local merchants and make purchases. It provides a new vehicle of exposure for the company’s 1m+ merchants on its platform. Businesses do not have to pay to have access to the app, nor do they pay commissions on the sales it generates.

Google is also making it easier for smaller stores to be found on the web by opening up the Shopping tab to free listings and partnering with WooCommerce, Shopify, and BigCommerce. This essentially gives more free traffic to small businesses whose listings will break up the longstanding dominance of major online retailers in the Shopping tab.

WordPress developers with e-commerce experience have the opportunity to build products and stores that will help traditional brick-and-mortar businesses start selling online quickly, so they can continue to find success in. the brave new world of online-first retail. WordPress has a plethora of plugin options for making e-commerce accessible to store owners, no matter how simple or complex the store’s requirements.

Independent WooCommerce Stores Are Booming

One user in the WooCommerce community’s Facebook group asked how the coronavirus is impacting members’ e-commerce stores. Responses were varied based on the types of products that the merchants were selling, but the vast majority of responses from store owners and developers were positive reports of increased sales:

  • “I have a client selling cleaning products. He got several pallets of hand sanitizer in and sold out in a week. He was doing about $2000 in sales a day.”
  • “My client does fruit and veg online. Went from £4k a month trickling along as a side part of his business, to £150k last month and the heading for the same this month.”
  • “We are selling plumbing and home improvement tools and items sales have quadrupled.”
  • “Positive impact. Highest sales for me on my indoor activities niche (puzzles, board games).”
  • “Sales are up more than 1000% – natural supplements”
  • “Built a cake delivery service to sell slices of cake locally…… £4K in a day and sold out. It’s crazy.”
  • “800% increase on a niche plant site I host”
  • “Compared to same month last year, up approx 250% (garden products)”
  • “3000% increase during the last month compared to monthly average over the last year. Natural health products”
  • “Our canvas printing site is up 20%”
  • “We are selling more Glass Bongs than ever. People are staying home and getting stoned.”

Saad Munir, the CEO of an e-commerce marketing agency, manages 28 stores for their clients with $30-$500k sales per month in various niches.

“Some of them are popular brands of their niche,” Munir said. “We have seen a drop in sales of up to 80% in non-essential and medium luxury products, and a 400% increase in essential products. However, now non-essential and daily-use products have also started getting good sales since everyone is home and sticking to their devices during this social distancing. We also have clients of furniture e-commerce stores. This means high-ticket items. They have even seen increased sales in bedsets, sofas, etc. So, for sure online sales are increasing. We also on-boarded several new clients and most of these stores are in WooCommerce.”

In the WooCommerce Help & Share group, one member asked for help collating all his orders into one list after his artisan cheese business increased exponentially overnight. Another member asked for help optimizing his client’s store after their pre-COVID-19 revenue went from less than £1k/month to almost £2k sales per day.

If independent self-hosted stores are able to perform well during this crisis, they have the opportunity to earn customers’ loyalty for continued business long after social distancing requirements are no longer necessary. It’s a unique opportunity that may not have been possible on such an accelerated timeline without this exact set of circumstances.

These recent shifts in online retail are the first cracks in the ice towards a web that is more friendly for smaller, independent stores. The trend towards buying all of life’s necessities online has evolved overnight to include a wider spectrum of consumer demographics than ever before. Diverse independent stores are crucial for meeting this demand without losing the unique and varied shopping landscape that the pandemic has forced to be temporarily closed.

WPTavern: Tectonic Shifts in Retail Industry are Creating Unprecedented Opportunities for Independent Stores

Wordpress Planet - Wed, 04/29/2020 - 08:17

Major retailers that are part of the critical infrastructure for distributing household essentials, healthcare items, and shelf-stable food, are raking in the cash during this pandemic. While consumer spending at bars, restaurants, and places of entertainment has dropped precipitously, spending at Amazon and Walmart has increased considerably in the past few weeks. The companies cannot hire workers fast enough to meet consumer demand.

According to a report from Facteus, a firm that provides data from billions of transactions from over 1,000 financial services companies, Amazon and Walmart’s year-over-year growth recently hit 80% and 18%, respectively in the past few weeks.

The pandemic has worked as a catalyst for pre-existing trends, “accelerating the retail reckoning,” as Derek Thompson predicts in his recent article on how The Pandemic Will Change American Retail Forever. Brick and mortar storefronts are rapidly becoming obsolete in a world that is forcibly consigned to shopping from home.

There are still many uncertainties about SARSCoV-2 and how humanity will safely find its way out of lockdown. Recovery from the virus may not confer long-term immunity and a vaccine may be more than a year away, likely pushing social distancing measures into 2021. Consumer behavior may be forever altered by this experience, as many people may continue to avoid in-person browsing at stores long after the worst is over.

While it might seem like the retail titans are still uncontested in their domination, there are tectonic shifts happening in the retail industry that are giving smaller, independent stores an unprecedented opportunity to gain new customers online. Merchants that can adapt and excel at getting products to a homebound population stand to be the most resilient during this pandemic.

In order to keep up with demand, Amazon has had to delay shipments of non-essential items by up to a month in some cases, prioritizing household basics and medical supplies. Major grocery retailers are competing against one another to hire furloughed workers in order to keep up with the demand for groceries with so many people eating at home. Independent stores that can be found online have the opportunity to step up and fill in the gaps where major retailers cannot meet the demand fast enough.

People are more inclined to support small businesses right now in light of current circumstances. Amazon’s severely strained relationship with buyers, sellers, affiliates, and employees is also contributing to consumers’ eagerness to support independent stores.

On April 21, Amazon slashed commission rates nearly in half for most product categories, negatively impacting media companies and publishers that have not diversified their affiliate revenue sources.

Amazon’s essential workers are planning to join others from Instacart, Whole Foods, Walmart, Target, and FedEx in a strike on Friday. They are protesting their employers’ record corporate profits which they say have come at the expense of workers’ health and safety. Many consumers have already grappled with a question of conscience in continuing to shop on Amazon after hearing reports of grueling labor conditions for years.

Another major development in the retail industry has come to light as the result of a recent Wall Street Journal investigation, which revealed that Amazon is using data from its sellers to launch competing products. Merchants selling successfully on Amazon are not safe from having their products copied and their businesses effectively cannibalized.

Documents obtained by the WSJ, along with interviews from more than 20 former employees of Amazon’s private-label business, described how the marketplace operator uses third-party sellers’ data to gain a competitive advantage:

In one instance, Amazon employees accessed documents and data about a bestselling car-trunk organizer sold by a third-party vendor. The information included total sales, how much the vendor paid Amazon for marketing and shipping, and how much Amazon made on each sale. Amazon’s private-label arm later introduced its own car-trunk organizers.

The WSJ exposé details the great pressure that Amazon executives are under to deliver successful private-label products:

Former executives said they were told frequently by management that Amazon brands should make up more than 10% of retail sales by 2022. Managers of different private-label product categories have been told to create $1 billion businesses for their segments, they said.

This practice of launching competing products with access to third-party sellers’ data has been happening for years but is an especially hostile tactic to employ in a time when Amazon’s revenue is skyrocketing and small businesses are struggling to stay afloat. It is a sobering reminder of the value of hosting your own online store and the importance of owning your own data.

There are some positive developments in the industry that should give small business owners confidence in maintaining independence from the dominant forces in online retail.

Wired published an article this week titled The Coronavirus Pandemic Is Changing How People Buy Books by Kate Knibbs. She describes how one indie bookseller’s e-commerce startup has found unlikely success in positioning itself as “an easy way to buy books online without further enriching Jeff Bezos:”

Bookshop went from a well-intentioned startup facing an uphill battle to one of the most popular ways to buy books online in a matter of weeks. The New York Times, BuzzFeed, Vox, and The New Republic are all affiliate partners now. Its headcount has doubled in size. Hunter expects to hit $6 million in sales by May, eons ahead of its loftiest projections from January. If the company’s performance holds steady, it could do $60 million in sales a year, although Hunter is assuming post-quarantine life will be different. “I’m sure that when things open back up, our sales will drop, maybe even cut in half,” he says. “But even then, we’re still one of the top 10 bookstores in the US.”

Yesterday, Shopify launched its new Shop app, touting modularized, distributed marketplaces as the future of e-commerce. The app allows shoppers to browse local merchants and make purchases. It provides a new vehicle of exposure for the company’s 1m+ merchants on its platform. Businesses do not have to pay to have access to the app, nor do they pay commissions on the sales it generates.

Google is also making it easier for smaller stores to be found on the web by opening up the Shopping tab to free listings and partnering with WooCommerce, Shopify, and BigCommerce. This essentially gives more free traffic to small businesses whose listings will break up the longstanding dominance of major online retailers in the Shopping tab.

WordPress developers with e-commerce experience have the opportunity to build products and stores that will help traditional brick-and-mortar businesses start selling online quickly, so they can continue to find success in. the brave new world of online-first retail. WordPress has a plethora of plugin options for making e-commerce accessible to store owners, no matter how simple or complex the store’s requirements.

Independent WooCommerce Stores Are Booming

One user in the WooCommerce community’s Facebook group asked how the coronavirus is impacting members’ e-commerce stores. Responses were varied based on the types of products that the merchants were selling, but the vast majority of responses from store owners and developers were positive reports of increased sales:

  • “I have a client selling cleaning products. He got several pallets of hand sanitizer in and sold out in a week. He was doing about $2000 in sales a day.”
  • “My client does fruit and veg online. Went from £4k a month trickling along as a side part of his business, to £150k last month and the heading for the same this month.”
  • “We are selling plumbing and home improvement tools and items sales have quadrupled.”
  • “Positive impact. Highest sales for me on my indoor activities niche (puzzles, board games).”
  • “Sales are up more than 1000% – natural supplements”
  • “Built a cake delivery service to sell slices of cake locally…… £4K in a day and sold out. It’s crazy.”
  • “800% increase on a niche plant site I host”
  • “Compared to same month last year, up approx 250% (garden products)”
  • “3000% increase during the last month compared to monthly average over the last year. Natural health products”
  • “Our canvas printing site is up 20%”
  • “We are selling more Glass Bongs than ever. People are staying home and getting stoned.”

Saad Munir, the CEO of an e-commerce marketing agency, manages 28 stores for their clients with $30-$500k sales per month in various niches.

“Some of them are popular brands of their niche,” Munir said. “We have seen a drop in sales of up to 80% in non-essential and medium luxury products, and a 400% increase in essential products. However, now non-essential and daily-use products have also started getting good sales since everyone is home and sticking to their devices during this social distancing. We also have clients of furniture e-commerce stores. This means high-ticket items. They have even seen increased sales in bedsets, sofas, etc. So, for sure online sales are increasing. We also on-boarded several new clients and most of these stores are in WooCommerce.”

In the WooCommerce Help & Share group, one member asked for help collating all his orders into one list after his artisan cheese business increased exponentially overnight. Another member asked for help optimizing his client’s store after their pre-COVID-19 revenue went from less than £1k/month to almost £2k sales per day.

If independent self-hosted stores are able to perform well during this crisis, they have the opportunity to earn customers’ loyalty for continued business long after social distancing requirements are no longer necessary. It’s a unique opportunity that may not have been possible on such an accelerated timeline without this exact set of circumstances.

These recent shifts in online retail are the first cracks in the ice towards a web that is more friendly for smaller, independent stores. The trend towards buying all of life’s necessities online has evolved overnight to include a wider spectrum of consumer demographics than ever before. Diverse independent stores are crucial for meeting this demand without losing the unique and varied shopping landscape that the pandemic has forced to be temporarily closed.

WPTavern: Tectonic Shifts in Retail Industry are Creating Unprecedented Opportunities for Independent Stores

Wordpress Planet - Wed, 04/29/2020 - 08:17

Major retailers that are part of the critical infrastructure for distributing household essentials, healthcare items, and shelf-stable food, are raking in the cash during this pandemic. While consumer spending at bars, restaurants, and places of entertainment has dropped precipitously, spending at Amazon and Walmart has increased considerably in the past few weeks. The companies cannot hire workers fast enough to meet consumer demand.

According to a report from Facteus, a firm that provides data from billions of transactions from over 1,000 financial services companies, Amazon and Walmart’s year-over-year growth recently hit 80% and 18%, respectively in the past few weeks.

The pandemic has worked as a catalyst for pre-existing trends, “accelerating the retail reckoning,” as Derek Thompson predicts in his recent article on how The Pandemic Will Change American Retail Forever. Brick and mortar storefronts are rapidly becoming obsolete in a world that is forcibly consigned to shopping from home.

There are still many uncertainties about SARSCoV-2 and how humanity will safely find its way out of lockdown. Recovery from the virus may not confer long-term immunity and a vaccine may be more than a year away, likely pushing social distancing measures into 2021. Consumer behavior may be forever altered by this experience, as many people may continue to avoid in-person browsing at stores long after the worst is over.

While it might seem like the retail titans are still uncontested in their domination, there are tectonic shifts happening in the retail industry that are giving smaller, independent stores an unprecedented opportunity to gain new customers online. Merchants that can adapt and excel at getting products to a homebound population stand to be the most resilient during this pandemic.

In order to keep up with demand, Amazon has had to delay shipments of non-essential items by up to a month in some cases, prioritizing household basics and medical supplies. Major grocery retailers are competing against one another to hire furloughed workers in order to keep up with the demand for groceries with so many people eating at home. Independent stores that can be found online have the opportunity to step up and fill in the gaps where major retailers cannot meet the demand fast enough.

People are more inclined to support small businesses right now in light of current circumstances. Amazon’s severely strained relationship with buyers, sellers, affiliates, and employees is also contributing to consumers’ eagerness to support independent stores.

On April 21, Amazon slashed commission rates nearly in half for most product categories, negatively impacting media companies and publishers that have not diversified their affiliate revenue sources.

Amazon’s essential workers are planning to join others from Instacart, Whole Foods, Walmart, Target, and FedEx in a strike on Friday. They are protesting their employers’ record corporate profits which they say have come at the expense of workers’ health and safety. Many consumers have already grappled with a question of conscience in continuing to shop on Amazon after hearing reports of grueling labor conditions for years.

Another major development in the retail industry has come to light as the result of a recent Wall Street Journal investigation, which revealed that Amazon is using data from its sellers to launch competing products. Merchants selling successfully on Amazon are not safe from having their products copied and their businesses effectively cannibalized.

Documents obtained by the WSJ, along with interviews from more than 20 former employees of Amazon’s private-label business, described how the marketplace operator uses third-party sellers’ data to gain a competitive advantage:

In one instance, Amazon employees accessed documents and data about a bestselling car-trunk organizer sold by a third-party vendor. The information included total sales, how much the vendor paid Amazon for marketing and shipping, and how much Amazon made on each sale. Amazon’s private-label arm later introduced its own car-trunk organizers.

The WSJ exposé details the great pressure that Amazon executives are under to deliver successful private-label products:

Former executives said they were told frequently by management that Amazon brands should make up more than 10% of retail sales by 2022. Managers of different private-label product categories have been told to create $1 billion businesses for their segments, they said.

This practice of launching competing products with access to third-party sellers’ data has been happening for years but is an especially hostile tactic to employ in a time when Amazon’s revenue is skyrocketing and small businesses are struggling to stay afloat. It is a sobering reminder of the value of hosting your own online store and the importance of owning your own data.

There are some positive developments in the industry that should give small business owners confidence in maintaining independence from the dominant forces in online retail.

Wired published an article this week titled The Coronavirus Pandemic Is Changing How People Buy Books by Kate Knibbs. She describes how one indie bookseller’s e-commerce startup has found unlikely success in positioning itself as “an easy way to buy books online without further enriching Jeff Bezos:”

Bookshop went from a well-intentioned startup facing an uphill battle to one of the most popular ways to buy books online in a matter of weeks. The New York Times, BuzzFeed, Vox, and The New Republic are all affiliate partners now. Its headcount has doubled in size. Hunter expects to hit $6 million in sales by May, eons ahead of its loftiest projections from January. If the company’s performance holds steady, it could do $60 million in sales a year, although Hunter is assuming post-quarantine life will be different. “I’m sure that when things open back up, our sales will drop, maybe even cut in half,” he says. “But even then, we’re still one of the top 10 bookstores in the US.”

Yesterday, Shopify launched its new Shop app, touting modularized, distributed marketplaces as the future of e-commerce. The app allows shoppers to browse local merchants and make purchases. It provides a new vehicle of exposure for the company’s 1m+ merchants on its platform. Businesses do not have to pay to have access to the app, nor do they pay commissions on the sales it generates.

Google is also making it easier for smaller stores to be found on the web by opening up the Shopping tab to free listings and partnering with WooCommerce, Shopify, and BigCommerce. This essentially gives more free traffic to small businesses whose listings will break up the longstanding dominance of major online retailers in the Shopping tab.

WordPress developers with e-commerce experience have the opportunity to build products and stores that will help traditional brick-and-mortar businesses start selling online quickly, so they can continue to find success in. the brave new world of online-first retail. WordPress has a plethora of plugin options for making e-commerce accessible to store owners, no matter how simple or complex the store’s requirements.

Independent WooCommerce Stores Are Booming

One user in the WooCommerce community’s Facebook group asked how the coronavirus is impacting members’ e-commerce stores. Responses were varied based on the types of products that the merchants were selling, but the vast majority of responses from store owners and developers were positive reports of increased sales:

  • “I have a client selling cleaning products. He got several pallets of hand sanitizer in and sold out in a week. He was doing about $2000 in sales a day.”
  • “My client does fruit and veg online. Went from £4k a month trickling along as a side part of his business, to £150k last month and the heading for the same this month.”
  • “We are selling plumbing and home improvement tools and items sales have quadrupled.”
  • “Positive impact. Highest sales for me on my indoor activities niche (puzzles, board games).”
  • “Sales are up more than 1000% – natural supplements”
  • “Built a cake delivery service to sell slices of cake locally…… £4K in a day and sold out. It’s crazy.”
  • “800% increase on a niche plant site I host”
  • “Compared to same month last year, up approx 250% (garden products)”
  • “3000% increase during the last month compared to monthly average over the last year. Natural health products”
  • “Our canvas printing site is up 20%”
  • “We are selling more Glass Bongs than ever. People are staying home and getting stoned.”

Saad Munir, the CEO of an e-commerce marketing agency, manages 28 stores for their clients with $30-$500k sales per month in various niches.

“Some of them are popular brands of their niche,” Munir said. “We have seen a drop in sales of up to 80% in non-essential and medium luxury products, and a 400% increase in essential products. However, now non-essential and daily-use products have also started getting good sales since everyone is home and sticking to their devices during this social distancing. We also have clients of furniture e-commerce stores. This means high-ticket items. They have even seen increased sales in bedsets, sofas, etc. So, for sure online sales are increasing. We also on-boarded several new clients and most of these stores are in WooCommerce.”

In the WooCommerce Help & Share group, one member asked for help collating all his orders into one list after his artisan cheese business increased exponentially overnight. Another member asked for help optimizing his client’s store after their pre-COVID-19 revenue went from less than £1k/month to almost £2k sales per day.

If independent self-hosted stores are able to perform well during this crisis, they have the opportunity to earn customers’ loyalty for continued business long after social distancing requirements are no longer necessary. It’s a unique opportunity that may not have been possible on such an accelerated timeline without this exact set of circumstances.

These recent shifts in online retail are the first cracks in the ice towards a web that is more friendly for smaller, independent stores. The trend towards buying all of life’s necessities online has evolved overnight to include a wider spectrum of consumer demographics than ever before. Diverse independent stores are crucial for meeting this demand without losing the unique and varied shopping landscape that the pandemic has forced to be temporarily closed.

Post Status: Professional WordPress Plugin Development: Interview with the authors

Wordpress Planet - Wed, 04/29/2020 - 04:27

Professional WordPress Plugin Development was one of the most helpful books I've ever read. To see a new edition with two returning authors, nine years after the original, is very exciting.

This edition of the book will be sure to offer a great resource for developer education for years to come. Brad Williams, Justin Tadlock, and John James Jacoby are each extremely talented developers and communicators. The work they can accomplish together is even greater.

Cory talks to them about their histories, the book, the process, and much more. We hope you enjoy this episode of Post Status Draft.

You can pre-order Professional WordPress Plugin Development now on Amazon. It is slated to be released June 10th.

Episode Partner: Gravity Forms

Gravity Forms is the easiest-to-use and most trusted tool for creating advanced forms for your WordPress-powered website. I use Gravity Forms on every WordPress site I own, and I know I can always rely on its power, flexibility, and reliability.

Try Gravity Forms today.

Post Status: Professional WordPress Plugin Development: Interview with the authors

Wordpress Planet - Wed, 04/29/2020 - 04:27

Professional WordPress Plugin Development was one of the most helpful books I've ever read. To see a new edition with two returning authors, nine years after the original, is very exciting.

This edition of the book will be sure to offer a great resource for developer education for years to come. Brad Williams, Justin Tadlock, and John James Jacoby are each extremely talented developers and communicators. The work they can accomplish together is even greater.

Cory talks to them about their histories, the book, the process, and much more. We hope you enjoy this episode of Post Status Draft.

You can pre-order Professional WordPress Plugin Development now on Amazon. It is slated to be released June 10th.

Episode Partner: Gravity Forms

Gravity Forms is the easiest-to-use and most trusted tool for creating advanced forms for your WordPress-powered website. I use Gravity Forms on every WordPress site I own, and I know I can always rely on its power, flexibility, and reliability.

Try Gravity Forms today.

Post Status: Professional WordPress Plugin Development: Interview with the authors

Wordpress Planet - Wed, 04/29/2020 - 04:27

Professional WordPress Plugin Development was one of the most helpful books I've ever read. To see a new edition with two returning authors, nine years after the original, is very exciting.

This edition of the book will be sure to offer a great resource for developer education for years to come. Brad Williams, Justin Tadlock, and John James Jacoby are each extremely talented developers and communicators. The work they can accomplish together is even greater.

Cory talks to them about their histories, the book, the process, and much more. We hope you enjoy this episode of Post Status Draft.

You can pre-order Professional WordPress Plugin Development now on Amazon. It is slated to be released June 10th.

Episode Partner: Gravity Forms

Gravity Forms is the easiest-to-use and most trusted tool for creating advanced forms for your WordPress-powered website. I use Gravity Forms on every WordPress site I own, and I know I can always rely on its power, flexibility, and reliability.

Try Gravity Forms today.

WPTavern: David Vongries Takes Over as New Owner of the Kirki Customizer Framework

Wordpress Planet - Tue, 04/28/2020 - 18:39

Ari Stathopoulos sold Kirki, his 6-year-old customizer framework, last week. The plugin is a widely-used tool for theme authors and currently has over 400,000 installations. It is also bundled as a drop-in package within an unknown number of themes, likely numbering in the hundreds. David Vongries, the owner of the Page Builder Framework theme, has taken over the project.

All of Kirki’s customizer controls, including those that were previously commercial/premium, are now open under the Kirki Framework GitHub organization.

Stathopoulos tweeted his decision to seek a buyer on April 8. “This is an announcement I never thought I’d make,” he wrote. “As much as it saddens me, I have decided to sell the Kirki #WordPress plugin. With 500,000+ installations and included in hundreds of themes I no longer have the ability – as an individual developer – to maintain it. And even though I had big dreams and wanted to facilitate things for the WordPress editor as well, the plugin has grown beyond me…It is no longer possible for a single person to maintain such a beast.”

Between his fulltime day job, a representative role for the theme review team, and maintaining other open-source projects, Stathopoulos was pulling 16-hour days of work. Not to mention, he had the usual life elements he needed to make time for in his routine. The Kirki project was not something he could devote any extra time to. Stathopoulos said he knew that spending too much time behind the screen was detrimental to his mental and physical health. He needed to make changes for his personal well-being. Still, it was tough to let go of a project he had invested years into.

“Letting go of a project like that feels extremely weird!” he said. “It’s a weird mix of sadness, stress, and relief. I feel sad because it’s out of my control. I feel stressed because it’s out of my control. And I feel relieved because it’s out of my control.”

While he suspects the sadness and stress of letting go of his project will subside, he said he already feels relieved to no longer have the responsibility of managing such a huge project alone. “I am no longer responsible for the hundreds of themes that use it; it’s liberating,” he said.

No Deal for the Highest Bidder

Stathopoulos did not want to let this passion project go to anyone. He wanted someone with the vision to see the project evolve. He had several offers for Kirki. Over 400,000 installations can make for a lucrative opportunity for someone with the right marketing skills. It would have been easy for him to take the highest bid and jump ship, but that is not his style.

“Kirki is a weird case,” he said. “It may have 400,000 installations and used by hundreds of themes both free and premium, but the actual ‘clients’ are the theme authors, not the end-users. That fact limits the potential for monetizing the plugin ethically. There were quite a few bids, some were high, some were low, but what surprised me is that a lot of them were not interested in helping the community in any way.”

Stathopoulos said the majority of the offers were from buyers with no interest in growing the plugin. Most of them seemed to be looking for a quick buck. He steered clear of them because he did not want to see end-users blasted with obtrusive ads, upsells, or spam.

“In the end, I didn’t go with the highest bid, which was 2.5 times the price I gave it for,” he said. “Though I admit I was seriously tempted to ‘take the money and run.’ I went with what I felt was an ethical choice, someone who actually uses the project on a daily basis, wants to evolve it, and I feel will honor the open-source spirit and the six years of sweat.”

Stathopoulos decided to sell to Vongries. The two had previously worked together on multiple occasions on the Kirki project and he felt it was the right move.

“Once I decided that he should get it, the process went pretty smooth, and there were no hiccups,” said Stathopoulos. “The hard part was deciding who should get it.”

Vongries was almost a natural choice as a new owner. He and his team had been using Kirki since its inception. “I think it’s an incredible framework and it makes working with the WordPress customizer so much easier,” he said.

He reached out to Stathopoulos immediately upon seeing it was for sale. The two had a conversation soon thereafter and shared similar visions for the plugin.

“I always looked at Kirki as something special and wanted to get involved,” said Vongries. “Until recently though, I wouldn’t have had the resources to do so, but since the team around MapSteps has grown it just all happened at the right time. Being a Kirki user myself, I looked at this from both perspectives — from a developer standpoint and as someone that has been using the plugin for years.”

The Future of Kirki

Over the past 18 months, Stathopoulos has rewritten the plugin and split it into around 50 Composer packages. The plan was to make these packages installable as individual components for plugin and theme authors. Instead of bundling the entire Kirki library, developers can use the pieces they need. At this point, these components should be stable, but they have not been widely tested by theme authors, who are accustomed to working with the full framework.

He was also excited about the potential move away from the customizer and working with full-site editing and global styles. Right now, it is unclear how the future of the Gutenberg project will impact the customizer. Many theme authors are now looking at it as a dying piece of the platform. Stathopoulos felt like there was still room to grow and transition into the new era.

“My vision for Kirki was to combine some things with full-site editing, and allow themes that were using Kirki to automatically get global styles when they land in WordPress core,” he said. “That would be truly amazing, and I’m sure it will be possible to do once there is an API for global styles. If [Vongries] goes in that direction, there’s definitely potential for monetization there, while at the same time he’ll help people build better things. Can you imagine a painless transition to global styles for themes that use Kirki? That would be a great thing to see!”

However, the project is out of the former owner’s hands now. It is Vongries’ vision that must lead the project moving forward.

“I respect Ari a lot and he has done an amazing job with Kirki,” said Vongries. “[Stathopoulos] said he would love to continue to contribute to the project, and he is more than welcome to do so.”

The immediate plan is to launch Kirki 4.0. It is nearly ready to roll out, awaiting some fine-tuning and final testing. Vongries and his team are also about to begin work on new extensions that bring more controls and functionality to the framework and, potentially, Gutenberg.

“We are going to explore how we can make the connection between the existing functionality in Kirki and the upcoming features in Gutenberg and Gutenberg in general,” he said. “At this point, we have some ideas about how we can adapt Kirki to the ever-changing WordPress platform. But for now, they are only ideas. We are certain that we will be able to provide a useful tool for developers, regardless of the direction WordPress and Gutenberg goes.”

The new team behind Kirki is still working on the long-term roadmap. It will be exciting to see where they take it. For now, it is still the go-to customizer framework for many theme authors. And, it is in the hands of someone who has been using the project for years.

WPTavern: David Vongries Takes Over as New Owner of the Kirki Customizer Framework

Wordpress Planet - Tue, 04/28/2020 - 18:39

Ari Stathopoulos sold Kirki, his 6-year-old customizer framework, last week. The plugin is a widely-used tool for theme authors and currently has over 400,000 installations. It is also bundled as a drop-in package within an unknown number of themes, likely numbering in the hundreds. David Vongries, the owner of the Page Builder Framework theme, has taken over the project.

All of Kirki’s customizer controls, including those that were previously commercial/premium, are now open under the Kirki Framework GitHub organization.

Stathopoulos tweeted his decision to seek a buyer on April 8. “This is an announcement I never thought I’d make,” he wrote. “As much as it saddens me, I have decided to sell the Kirki #WordPress plugin. With 500,000+ installations and included in hundreds of themes I no longer have the ability – as an individual developer – to maintain it. And even though I had big dreams and wanted to facilitate things for the WordPress editor as well, the plugin has grown beyond me…It is no longer possible for a single person to maintain such a beast.”

Between his fulltime day job, a representative role for the theme review team, and maintaining other open-source projects, Stathopoulos was pulling 16-hour days of work. Not to mention, he had the usual life elements he needed to make time for in his routine. The Kirki project was not something he could devote any extra time to. Stathopoulos said he knew that spending too much time behind the screen was detrimental to his mental and physical health. He needed to make changes for his personal well-being. Still, it was tough to let go of a project he had invested years into.

“Letting go of a project like that feels extremely weird!” he said. “It’s a weird mix of sadness, stress, and relief. I feel sad because it’s out of my control. I feel stressed because it’s out of my control. And I feel relieved because it’s out of my control.”

While he suspects the sadness and stress of letting go of his project will subside, he said he already feels relieved to no longer have the responsibility of managing such a huge project alone. “I am no longer responsible for the hundreds of themes that use it; it’s liberating,” he said.

No Deal for the Highest Bidder

Stathopoulos did not want to let this passion project go to anyone. He wanted someone with the vision to see the project evolve. He had several offers for Kirki. Over 400,000 installations can make for a lucrative opportunity for someone with the right marketing skills. It would have been easy for him to take the highest bid and jump ship, but that is not his style.

“Kirki is a weird case,” he said. “It may have 400,000 installations and used by hundreds of themes both free and premium, but the actual ‘clients’ are the theme authors, not the end-users. That fact limits the potential for monetizing the plugin ethically. There were quite a few bids, some were high, some were low, but what surprised me is that a lot of them were not interested in helping the community in any way.”

Stathopoulos said the majority of the offers were from buyers with no interest in growing the plugin. Most of them seemed to be looking for a quick buck. He steered clear of them because he did not want to see end-users blasted with obtrusive ads, upsells, or spam.

“In the end, I didn’t go with the highest bid, which was 2.5 times the price I gave it for,” he said. “Though I admit I was seriously tempted to ‘take the money and run.’ I went with what I felt was an ethical choice, someone who actually uses the project on a daily basis, wants to evolve it, and I feel will honor the open-source spirit and the six years of sweat.”

Stathopoulos decided to sell to Vongries. The two had previously worked together on multiple occasions on the Kirki project and he felt it was the right move.

“Once I decided that he should get it, the process went pretty smooth, and there were no hiccups,” said Stathopoulos. “The hard part was deciding who should get it.”

Vongries was almost a natural choice as a new owner. He and his team had been using Kirki since its inception. “I think it’s an incredible framework and it makes working with the WordPress customizer so much easier,” he said.

He reached out to Stathopoulos immediately upon seeing it was for sale. The two had a conversation soon thereafter and shared similar visions for the plugin.

“I always looked at Kirki as something special and wanted to get involved,” said Vongries. “Until recently though, I wouldn’t have had the resources to do so, but since the team around MapSteps has grown it just all happened at the right time. Being a Kirki user myself, I looked at this from both perspectives — from a developer standpoint and as someone that has been using the plugin for years.”

The Future of Kirki

Over the past 18 months, Stathopoulos has rewritten the plugin and split it into around 50 Composer packages. The plan was to make these packages installable as individual components for plugin and theme authors. Instead of bundling the entire Kirki library, developers can use the pieces they need. At this point, these components should be stable, but they have not been widely tested by theme authors, who are accustomed to working with the full framework.

He was also excited about the potential move away from the customizer and working with full-site editing and global styles. Right now, it is unclear how the future of the Gutenberg project will impact the customizer. Many theme authors are now looking at it as a dying piece of the platform. Stathopoulos felt like there was still room to grow and transition into the new era.

“My vision for Kirki was to combine some things with full-site editing, and allow themes that were using Kirki to automatically get global styles when they land in WordPress core,” he said. “That would be truly amazing, and I’m sure it will be possible to do once there is an API for global styles. If [Vongries] goes in that direction, there’s definitely potential for monetization there, while at the same time he’ll help people build better things. Can you imagine a painless transition to global styles for themes that use Kirki? That would be a great thing to see!”

However, the project is out of the former owner’s hands now. It is Vongries’ vision that must lead the project moving forward.

“I respect Ari a lot and he has done an amazing job with Kirki,” said Vongries. “[Stathopoulos] said he would love to continue to contribute to the project, and he is more than welcome to do so.”

The immediate plan is to launch Kirki 4.0. It is nearly ready to roll out, awaiting some fine-tuning and final testing. Vongries and his team are also about to begin work on new extensions that bring more controls and functionality to the framework and, potentially, Gutenberg.

“We are going to explore how we can make the connection between the existing functionality in Kirki and the upcoming features in Gutenberg and Gutenberg in general,” he said. “At this point, we have some ideas about how we can adapt Kirki to the ever-changing WordPress platform. But for now, they are only ideas. We are certain that we will be able to provide a useful tool for developers, regardless of the direction WordPress and Gutenberg goes.”

The new team behind Kirki is still working on the long-term roadmap. It will be exciting to see where they take it. For now, it is still the go-to customizer framework for many theme authors. And, it is in the hands of someone who has been using the project for years.

WPTavern: David Vongries Takes Over as New Owner of the Kirki Customizer Framework

Wordpress Planet - Tue, 04/28/2020 - 18:39

Ari Stathopoulos sold Kirki, his 6-year-old customizer framework, last week. The plugin is a widely-used tool for theme authors and currently has over 400,000 installations. It is also bundled as a drop-in package within an unknown number of themes, likely numbering in the hundreds. David Vongries, the owner of the Page Builder Framework theme, has taken over the project.

All of Kirki’s customizer controls, including those that were previously commercial/premium, are now open under the Kirki Framework GitHub organization.

Stathopoulos tweeted his decision to seek a buyer on April 8. “This is an announcement I never thought I’d make,” he wrote. “As much as it saddens me, I have decided to sell the Kirki #WordPress plugin. With 500,000+ installations and included in hundreds of themes I no longer have the ability – as an individual developer – to maintain it. And even though I had big dreams and wanted to facilitate things for the WordPress editor as well, the plugin has grown beyond me…It is no longer possible for a single person to maintain such a beast.”

Between his fulltime day job, a representative role for the theme review team, and maintaining other open-source projects, Stathopoulos was pulling 16-hour days of work. Not to mention, he had the usual life elements he needed to make time for in his routine. The Kirki project was not something he could devote any extra time to. Stathopoulos said he knew that spending too much time behind the screen was detrimental to his mental and physical health. He needed to make changes for his personal well-being. Still, it was tough to let go of a project he had invested years into.

“Letting go of a project like that feels extremely weird!” he said. “It’s a weird mix of sadness, stress, and relief. I feel sad because it’s out of my control. I feel stressed because it’s out of my control. And I feel relieved because it’s out of my control.”

While he suspects the sadness and stress of letting go of his project will subside, he said he already feels relieved to no longer have the responsibility of managing such a huge project alone. “I am no longer responsible for the hundreds of themes that use it; it’s liberating,” he said.

No Deal for the Highest Bidder

Stathopoulos did not want to let this passion project go to anyone. He wanted someone with the vision to see the project evolve. He had several offers for Kirki. Over 400,000 installations can make for a lucrative opportunity for someone with the right marketing skills. It would have been easy for him to take the highest bid and jump ship, but that is not his style.

“Kirki is a weird case,” he said. “It may have 400,000 installations and used by hundreds of themes both free and premium, but the actual ‘clients’ are the theme authors, not the end-users. That fact limits the potential for monetizing the plugin ethically. There were quite a few bids, some were high, some were low, but what surprised me is that a lot of them were not interested in helping the community in any way.”

Stathopoulos said the majority of the offers were from buyers with no interest in growing the plugin. Most of them seemed to be looking for a quick buck. He steered clear of them because he did not want to see end-users blasted with obtrusive ads, upsells, or spam.

“In the end, I didn’t go with the highest bid, which was 2.5 times the price I gave it for,” he said. “Though I admit I was seriously tempted to ‘take the money and run.’ I went with what I felt was an ethical choice, someone who actually uses the project on a daily basis, wants to evolve it, and I feel will honor the open-source spirit and the six years of sweat.”

Stathopoulos decided to sell to Vongries. The two had previously worked together on multiple occasions on the Kirki project and he felt it was the right move.

“Once I decided that he should get it, the process went pretty smooth, and there were no hiccups,” said Stathopoulos. “The hard part was deciding who should get it.”

Vongries was almost a natural choice as a new owner. He and his team had been using Kirki since its inception. “I think it’s an incredible framework and it makes working with the WordPress customizer so much easier,” he said.

He reached out to Stathopoulos immediately upon seeing it was for sale. The two had a conversation soon thereafter and shared similar visions for the plugin.

“I always looked at Kirki as something special and wanted to get involved,” said Vongries. “Until recently though, I wouldn’t have had the resources to do so, but since the team around MapSteps has grown it just all happened at the right time. Being a Kirki user myself, I looked at this from both perspectives — from a developer standpoint and as someone that has been using the plugin for years.”

The Future of Kirki

Over the past 18 months, Stathopoulos has rewritten the plugin and split it into around 50 Composer packages. The plan was to make these packages installable as individual components for plugin and theme authors. Instead of bundling the entire Kirki library, developers can use the pieces they need. At this point, these components should be stable, but they have not been widely tested by theme authors, who are accustomed to working with the full framework.

He was also excited about the potential move away from the customizer and working with full-site editing and global styles. Right now, it is unclear how the future of the Gutenberg project will impact the customizer. Many theme authors are now looking at it as a dying piece of the platform. Stathopoulos felt like there was still room to grow and transition into the new era.

“My vision for Kirki was to combine some things with full-site editing, and allow themes that were using Kirki to automatically get global styles when they land in WordPress core,” he said. “That would be truly amazing, and I’m sure it will be possible to do once there is an API for global styles. If [Vongries] goes in that direction, there’s definitely potential for monetization there, while at the same time he’ll help people build better things. Can you imagine a painless transition to global styles for themes that use Kirki? That would be a great thing to see!”

However, the project is out of the former owner’s hands now. It is Vongries’ vision that must lead the project moving forward.

“I respect Ari a lot and he has done an amazing job with Kirki,” said Vongries. “[Stathopoulos] said he would love to continue to contribute to the project, and he is more than welcome to do so.”

The immediate plan is to launch Kirki 4.0. It is nearly ready to roll out, awaiting some fine-tuning and final testing. Vongries and his team are also about to begin work on new extensions that bring more controls and functionality to the framework and, potentially, Gutenberg.

“We are going to explore how we can make the connection between the existing functionality in Kirki and the upcoming features in Gutenberg and Gutenberg in general,” he said. “At this point, we have some ideas about how we can adapt Kirki to the ever-changing WordPress platform. But for now, they are only ideas. We are certain that we will be able to provide a useful tool for developers, regardless of the direction WordPress and Gutenberg goes.”

The new team behind Kirki is still working on the long-term roadmap. It will be exciting to see where they take it. For now, it is still the go-to customizer framework for many theme authors. And, it is in the hands of someone who has been using the project for years.

WPTavern: David Vongries Takes Over as New Owner of the Kirki Customizer Framework

Wordpress Planet - Tue, 04/28/2020 - 18:39

Ari Stathopoulos sold Kirki, his 6-year-old customizer framework, last week. The plugin is a widely-used tool for theme authors and currently has over 400,000 installations. It is also bundled as a drop-in package within an unknown number of themes, likely numbering in the hundreds. David Vongries, the owner of the Page Builder Framework theme, has taken over the project.

All of Kirki’s customizer controls, including those that were previously commercial/premium, are now open under the Kirki Framework GitHub organization.

Stathopoulos tweeted his decision to seek a buyer on April 8. “This is an announcement I never thought I’d make,” he wrote. “As much as it saddens me, I have decided to sell the Kirki #WordPress plugin. With 500,000+ installations and included in hundreds of themes I no longer have the ability – as an individual developer – to maintain it. And even though I had big dreams and wanted to facilitate things for the WordPress editor as well, the plugin has grown beyond me…It is no longer possible for a single person to maintain such a beast.”

Between his fulltime day job, a representative role for the theme review team, and maintaining other open-source projects, Stathopoulos was pulling 16-hour days of work. Not to mention, he had the usual life elements he needed to make time for in his routine. The Kirki project was not something he could devote any extra time to. Stathopoulos said he knew that spending too much time behind the screen was detrimental to his mental and physical health. He needed to make changes for his personal well-being. Still, it was tough to let go of a project he had invested years into.

“Letting go of a project like that feels extremely weird!” he said. “It’s a weird mix of sadness, stress, and relief. I feel sad because it’s out of my control. I feel stressed because it’s out of my control. And I feel relieved because it’s out of my control.”

While he suspects the sadness and stress of letting go of his project will subside, he said he already feels relieved to no longer have the responsibility of managing such a huge project alone. “I am no longer responsible for the hundreds of themes that use it; it’s liberating,” he said.

No Deal for the Highest Bidder

Stathopoulos did not want to let this passion project go to anyone. He wanted someone with the vision to see the project evolve. He had several offers for Kirki. Over 400,000 installations can make for a lucrative opportunity for someone with the right marketing skills. It would have been easy for him to take the highest bid and jump ship, but that is not his style.

“Kirki is a weird case,” he said. “It may have 400,000 installations and used by hundreds of themes both free and premium, but the actual ‘clients’ are the theme authors, not the end-users. That fact limits the potential for monetizing the plugin ethically. There were quite a few bids, some were high, some were low, but what surprised me is that a lot of them were not interested in helping the community in any way.”

Stathopoulos said the majority of the offers were from buyers with no interest in growing the plugin. Most of them seemed to be looking for a quick buck. He steered clear of them because he did not want to see end-users blasted with obtrusive ads, upsells, or spam.

“In the end, I didn’t go with the highest bid, which was 2.5 times the price I gave it for,” he said. “Though I admit I was seriously tempted to ‘take the money and run.’ I went with what I felt was an ethical choice, someone who actually uses the project on a daily basis, wants to evolve it, and I feel will honor the open-source spirit and the six years of sweat.”

Stathopoulos decided to sell to Vongries. The two had previously worked together on multiple occasions on the Kirki project and he felt it was the right move.

“Once I decided that he should get it, the process went pretty smooth, and there were no hiccups,” said Stathopoulos. “The hard part was deciding who should get it.”

Vongries was almost a natural choice as a new owner. He and his team had been using Kirki since its inception. “I think it’s an incredible framework and it makes working with the WordPress customizer so much easier,” he said.

He reached out to Stathopoulos immediately upon seeing it was for sale. The two had a conversation soon thereafter and shared similar visions for the plugin.

“I always looked at Kirki as something special and wanted to get involved,” said Vongries. “Until recently though, I wouldn’t have had the resources to do so, but since the team around MapSteps has grown it just all happened at the right time. Being a Kirki user myself, I looked at this from both perspectives — from a developer standpoint and as someone that has been using the plugin for years.”

The Future of Kirki

Over the past 18 months, Stathopoulos has rewritten the plugin and split it into around 50 Composer packages. The plan was to make these packages installable as individual components for plugin and theme authors. Instead of bundling the entire Kirki library, developers can use the pieces they need. At this point, these components should be stable, but they have not been widely tested by theme authors, who are accustomed to working with the full framework.

He was also excited about the potential move away from the customizer and working with full-site editing and global styles. Right now, it is unclear how the future of the Gutenberg project will impact the customizer. Many theme authors are now looking at it as a dying piece of the platform. Stathopoulos felt like there was still room to grow and transition into the new era.

“My vision for Kirki was to combine some things with full-site editing, and allow themes that were using Kirki to automatically get global styles when they land in WordPress core,” he said. “That would be truly amazing, and I’m sure it will be possible to do once there is an API for global styles. If [Vongries] goes in that direction, there’s definitely potential for monetization there, while at the same time he’ll help people build better things. Can you imagine a painless transition to global styles for themes that use Kirki? That would be a great thing to see!”

However, the project is out of the former owner’s hands now. It is Vongries’ vision that must lead the project moving forward.

“I respect Ari a lot and he has done an amazing job with Kirki,” said Vongries. “[Stathopoulos] said he would love to continue to contribute to the project, and he is more than welcome to do so.”

The immediate plan is to launch Kirki 4.0. It is nearly ready to roll out, awaiting some fine-tuning and final testing. Vongries and his team are also about to begin work on new extensions that bring more controls and functionality to the framework and, potentially, Gutenberg.

“We are going to explore how we can make the connection between the existing functionality in Kirki and the upcoming features in Gutenberg and Gutenberg in general,” he said. “At this point, we have some ideas about how we can adapt Kirki to the ever-changing WordPress platform. But for now, they are only ideas. We are certain that we will be able to provide a useful tool for developers, regardless of the direction WordPress and Gutenberg goes.”

The new team behind Kirki is still working on the long-term roadmap. It will be exciting to see where they take it. For now, it is still the go-to customizer framework for many theme authors. And, it is in the hands of someone who has been using the project for years.

WPTavern: WordCamp Europe 2020 Online Registration Now Open: Tickets are Free

Wordpress Planet - Mon, 04/27/2020 - 23:10

WordCamp Europe 2020 is just 37 days away. Organizers announced in April that the event, which was supposed to be hosted in Porto, is moving to be 100% online this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. WCEU will kick off with a virtual Contributor Day on June 4, followed by two half days of talks and workshops broadcasted via livestream.

WordCamp Europe is one of the largest regional WordCamps on the planet and has been hosted in many magnificent venues and inspiring cities over the years. The event routinely sells out of tickets and sponsor packages, as companies and attendees rally around this unique opportunity to connect across boundaries, uniting Europe through a shared love of WordPress.

For the first time in the event’s eight-year history, the European WordPress community will have to forego the in-person networking time that many have come to value as both a personal and professional highlight of the year. WCEU Organizers have worked for the better part of a decade to make it one of the most polished and efficient WordCamps. Now the team is forced to pivot and use their expertise to host a top-notch virtual event.

Past local organizing teams have been successful at creating an intimate atmosphere that facilitates rewarding connections with a focus on hospitality. These in-person connections add context to remote interactions and conversations long after the event concludes. Reaching this same high level of interpersonal connectivity between attendees is going to be a challenge for this online edition, but WCEU organizers have a long track record of adapting to different environments. Dozens of other WordPress meetups, WordCamps, and educational events are currently facing the same challenges and are moving online.

Registering for a ticket to WCEU is optional but attendees who want to participate in the virtual networking, Q&A sessions, and contributor day will have be registered. Organizers were expecting approximately 3,000 attendees but hosting the event online may affect those numbers in either direction. Tickets are available for free on the WCEU website, thanks to the event’s sponsors. After eight hours of open registration, there are 4,257 tickets remaining. The event will return to Porto, Portugal, on June 3-5, 2021.

Lark

Drupal Themes - Mon, 04/27/2020 - 20:47

An administrative theme for Drupal 8 and 9

WPTavern: Should the Block Editor Have a Grid System?

Wordpress Planet - Mon, 04/27/2020 - 20:24

Laying out a webpage design and getting every element aligned perfectly can be a tough job. Even many developers rely on CSS grid frameworks. Granted, with the introduction of the flexbox and grid systems in the CSS language, such frameworks are becoming unnecessary. Whether it is getting the vertical and horizontal rhythm down or simply aligning an image next to a bit of text, page layouts are often done best via some sort of grid system.

This becomes even more apparent when building a page layout visually through the WordPress block editor. The current iteration of the editor does a fine job of being a general content editor while providing the ability to insert various elements into the page.

However, it is not by any means a page builder — yet.

The question is, before we engage in full-site editing, global styles, block patterns, and other upcoming tools, whether a grid system should be a part of the equation. If so, how should that system work? Will it be configurable by theme authors? How will it handle tablet and mobile views? Will the grid be visible to users or a hidden thing in the background?

As more block plugins are released, particularly with those that may have multiple elements that may need to be aligned, it might be time we consider a grid system. Such a system may benefit existing core blocks right now, such as Columns and Media & Text. Or, it may be better as a separate, standalone block.

Including a grid system also has the additional benefit of standardizing on layout-related class names that theme authors can use in their CSS, even outside the content editor. This would bring better compatibility across the board when users inevitably switch themes.

A Starting Point: Layout Grid Block Three-column layout with Layout Grid Block.

Automattic, as part of its Block Experiments project, has released the Layout Grid Block plugin. It is essentially a beefed-up version of the core Columns block. The major difference is that column alignment snaps to a specific point in the grid. This grid is also displayed in the background while editing the post.

The tricky thing with grids is not simple alignment in columns in desktop view. It is dealing with how those columns transform on smaller devices like tablets and smartphones. Sometimes that is a guessing game from a theme design perspective because the theme author is not privy to the actual content that needs to be aligned. In turn, designers make best-guess decisions and hope it works for most.

The Layout Grid block has a “Responsive Breakpoints” tab under the block options panel that allows users to configure this based on device. Users can decide how individual columns span the grid. The grid system is based on a varying number of grid sections based on the device:

  • Desktop: 12 Sections
  • Tablet: 8 Sections
  • Mobile: 4 Sections

Imagine wanting to display a simple image with text to the next of it. There are various ways to do this currently in the block editor. Each has its pros and cons, depending on what you want to do. From a user experience and visual standpoint, I love seeing the grid lines in place as I determine how it should be displayed.

Aligning an image and text on a grid.

Another upside of having a grid system is consistency in design. If users can scale the width of columns based on arbitrary numbers, much like they can now do with the Media & Text block, there is no consistency with sizing items horizontally on the page. A grid system changes that.

Layout Grid Block still needs some polishing at this point. There are some trivial pain points in the UI that could be improved. On the whole, my experience with this block offered a compelling argument for including a grid system in core.

The plugin addresses simple one, two, three, and four columns right now. The grid system in CSS is much more powerful than basic horizontal columns. However, starting with the basics would give us a place to build from.

Should Core Include a Grid?

There is at least one open ticket on the Gutenberg repository for addressing a grid system. Mark Uraine, the author of the ticket, posted seven key questions:

  1. Should the grid system be responsive?
  2. Should there be a default Gutenberg grid system, but allow themes to register their own?
  3. Should the grid system conform to the current structure of Gutenberg blocks, or should it be its own thing that we need to restructure the blocks to in the editor?
  4. Should the grid include gutters?
  5. Should the grid include, or allow, any vertical alignment snaps?
  6. What should the grid be based on? (ie. 12 columns, pixel grid, etc.)
  7. Should the grid allow toggling on/off? And also include a setting to show, or not, when resizing objects in the editor?

The ticket had some solid discussion nearly a year ago but not much as of late. Would you like to see a grid system in the editor? If so, how would you want it to work?

WPTavern: Should the Block Editor Have a Grid System?

Wordpress Planet - Mon, 04/27/2020 - 20:24

Laying out a webpage design and getting every element aligned perfectly can be a tough job. Even many developers rely on CSS grid frameworks. Granted, with the introduction of the flexbox and grid systems in the CSS language, such frameworks are becoming unnecessary. Whether it is getting the vertical and horizontal rhythm down or simply aligning an image next to a bit of text, page layouts are often done best via some sort of grid system.

This becomes even more apparent when building a page layout visually through the WordPress block editor. The current iteration of the editor does a fine job of being a general content editor while providing the ability to insert various elements into the page.

However, it is not by any means a page builder — yet.

The question is, before we engage in full-site editing, global styles, block patterns, and other upcoming tools, whether a grid system should be a part of the equation. If so, how should that system work? Will it be configurable by theme authors? How will it handle tablet and mobile views? Will the grid be visible to users or a hidden thing in the background?

As more block plugins are released, particularly with those that may have multiple elements that may need to be aligned, it might be time we consider a grid system. Such a system may benefit existing core blocks right now, such as Columns and Media & Text. Or, it may be better as a separate, standalone block.

Including a grid system also has the additional benefit of standardizing on layout-related class names that theme authors can use in their CSS, even outside the content editor. This would bring better compatibility across the board when users inevitably switch themes.

A Starting Point: Layout Grid Block Three-column layout with Layout Grid Block.

Automattic, as part of its Block Experiments project, has released the Layout Grid Block plugin. It is essentially a beefed-up version of the core Columns block. The major difference is that column alignment snaps to a specific point in the grid. This grid is also displayed in the background while editing the post.

The tricky thing with grids is not simple alignment in columns in desktop view. It is dealing with how those columns transform on smaller devices like tablets and smartphones. Sometimes that is a guessing game from a theme design perspective because the theme author is not privy to the actual content that needs to be aligned. In turn, designers make best-guess decisions and hope it works for most.

The Layout Grid block has a “Responsive Breakpoints” tab under the block options panel that allows users to configure this based on device. Users can decide how individual columns span the grid. The grid system is based on a varying number of grid sections based on the device:

  • Desktop: 12 Sections
  • Tablet: 8 Sections
  • Mobile: 4 Sections

Imagine wanting to display a simple image with text to the next of it. There are various ways to do this currently in the block editor. Each has its pros and cons, depending on what you want to do. From a user experience and visual standpoint, I love seeing the grid lines in place as I determine how it should be displayed.

Aligning an image and text on a grid.

Another upside of having a grid system is consistency in design. If users can scale the width of columns based on arbitrary numbers, much like they can now do with the Media & Text block, there is no consistency with sizing items horizontally on the page. A grid system changes that.

Layout Grid Block still needs some polishing at this point. There are some trivial pain points in the UI that could be improved. On the whole, my experience with this block offered a compelling argument for including a grid system in core.

The plugin addresses simple one, two, three, and four columns right now. The grid system in CSS is much more powerful than basic horizontal columns. However, starting with the basics would give us a place to build from.

Should Core Include a Grid?

There is at least one open ticket on the Gutenberg repository for addressing a grid system. Mark Uraine, the author of the ticket, posted seven key questions:

  1. Should the grid system be responsive?
  2. Should there be a default Gutenberg grid system, but allow themes to register their own?
  3. Should the grid system conform to the current structure of Gutenberg blocks, or should it be its own thing that we need to restructure the blocks to in the editor?
  4. Should the grid include gutters?
  5. Should the grid include, or allow, any vertical alignment snaps?
  6. What should the grid be based on? (ie. 12 columns, pixel grid, etc.)
  7. Should the grid allow toggling on/off? And also include a setting to show, or not, when resizing objects in the editor?

The ticket had some solid discussion nearly a year ago but not much as of late. Would you like to see a grid system in the editor? If so, how would you want it to work?

WPTavern: Should the Block Editor Have a Grid System?

Wordpress Planet - Mon, 04/27/2020 - 20:24

Laying out a webpage design and getting every element aligned perfectly can be a tough job. Even many developers rely on CSS grid frameworks. Granted, with the introduction of the flexbox and grid systems in the CSS language, such frameworks are becoming unnecessary. Whether it is getting the vertical and horizontal rhythm down or simply aligning an image next to a bit of text, page layouts are often done best via some sort of grid system.

This becomes even more apparent when building a page layout visually through the WordPress block editor. The current iteration of the editor does a fine job of being a general content editor while providing the ability to insert various elements into the page.

However, it is not by any means a page builder — yet.

The question is, before we engage in full-site editing, global styles, block patterns, and other upcoming tools, whether a grid system should be a part of the equation. If so, how should that system work? Will it be configurable by theme authors? How will it handle tablet and mobile views? Will the grid be visible to users or a hidden thing in the background?

As more block plugins are released, particularly with those that may have multiple elements that may need to be aligned, it might be time we consider a grid system. Such a system may benefit existing core blocks right now, such as Columns and Media & Text. Or, it may be better as a separate, standalone block.

Including a grid system also has the additional benefit of standardizing on layout-related class names that theme authors can use in their CSS, even outside the content editor. This would bring better compatibility across the board when users inevitably switch themes.

A Starting Point: Layout Grid Block Three-column layout with Layout Grid Block.

Automattic, as part of its Block Experiments project, has released the Layout Grid Block plugin. It is essentially a beefed-up version of the core Columns block. The major difference is that column alignment snaps to a specific point in the grid. This grid is also displayed in the background while editing the post.

The tricky thing with grids is not simple alignment in columns in desktop view. It is dealing with how those columns transform on smaller devices like tablets and smartphones. Sometimes that is a guessing game from a theme design perspective because the theme author is not privy to the actual content that needs to be aligned. In turn, designers make best-guess decisions and hope it works for most.

The Layout Grid block has a “Responsive Breakpoints” tab under the block options panel that allows users to configure this based on device. Users can decide how individual columns span the grid. The grid system is based on a varying number of grid sections based on the device:

  • Desktop: 12 Sections
  • Tablet: 8 Sections
  • Mobile: 4 Sections

Imagine wanting to display a simple image with text to the next of it. There are various ways to do this currently in the block editor. Each has its pros and cons, depending on what you want to do. From a user experience and visual standpoint, I love seeing the grid lines in place as I determine how it should be displayed.

Aligning an image and text on a grid.

Another upside of having a grid system is consistency in design. If users can scale the width of columns based on arbitrary numbers, much like they can now do with the Media & Text block, there is no consistency with sizing items horizontally on the page. A grid system changes that.

Layout Grid Block still needs some polishing at this point. There are some trivial pain points in the UI that could be improved. On the whole, my experience with this block offered a compelling argument for including a grid system in core.

The plugin addresses simple one, two, three, and four columns right now. The grid system in CSS is much more powerful than basic horizontal columns. However, starting with the basics would give us a place to build from.

Should Core Include a Grid?

There is at least one open ticket on the Gutenberg repository for addressing a grid system. Mark Uraine, the author of the ticket, posted seven key questions:

  1. Should the grid system be responsive?
  2. Should there be a default Gutenberg grid system, but allow themes to register their own?
  3. Should the grid system conform to the current structure of Gutenberg blocks, or should it be its own thing that we need to restructure the blocks to in the editor?
  4. Should the grid include gutters?
  5. Should the grid include, or allow, any vertical alignment snaps?
  6. What should the grid be based on? (ie. 12 columns, pixel grid, etc.)
  7. Should the grid allow toggling on/off? And also include a setting to show, or not, when resizing objects in the editor?

The ticket had some solid discussion nearly a year ago but not much as of late. Would you like to see a grid system in the editor? If so, how would you want it to work?

Matt: Tulsa Remote Worker Experiment

Wordpress Planet - Mon, 04/27/2020 - 17:55

Sarah Holder at Citylab has an interesting article on a program that paid people $10,000, a year of co-working, and a subsidized apartment to move to Tulsa, Oklahoma.

Traditionally, cities looking to spur their economies may offer incentives to attract businesses. But at a time when Americans are moving less frequently than they have in more than half a century, and the anticlimactic race to host an Amazon HQ2 soured some governments on corporate tax breaks, Tulsa is one of several locales testing out a new premise:  Pay people instead.

I love this idea, and hope that after the permanent step-up in remote work from the virus we see much more internal mobility between cities in the United States.

Matt: Tulsa Remote Worker Experiment

Wordpress Planet - Mon, 04/27/2020 - 17:55

Sarah Holder at Citylab has an interesting article on a program that paid people $10,000, a year of co-working, and a subsidized apartment to move to Tulsa, Oklahoma.

Traditionally, cities looking to spur their economies may offer incentives to attract businesses. But at a time when Americans are moving less frequently than they have in more than half a century, and the anticlimactic race to host an Amazon HQ2 soured some governments on corporate tax breaks, Tulsa is one of several locales testing out a new premise:  Pay people instead.

I love this idea, and hope that after the permanent step-up in remote work from the virus we see much more internal mobility between cities in the United States.

Matt: Tulsa Remote Worker Experiment

Wordpress Planet - Mon, 04/27/2020 - 17:55

Sarah Holder at Citylab has an interesting article on a program that paid people $10,000, a year of co-working, and a subsidized apartment to move to Tulsa, Oklahoma.

Traditionally, cities looking to spur their economies may offer incentives to attract businesses. But at a time when Americans are moving less frequently than they have in more than half a century, and the anticlimactic race to host an Amazon HQ2 soured some governments on corporate tax breaks, Tulsa is one of several locales testing out a new premise:  Pay people instead.

I love this idea, and hope that after the permanent step-up in remote work from the virus we see much more internal mobility between cities in the United States.

Matt: Tulsa Remote Worker Experiment

Wordpress Planet - Mon, 04/27/2020 - 17:55

Sarah Holder at Citylab has an interesting article on a program that paid people $10,000, a year of co-working, and a subsidized apartment to move to Tulsa, Oklahoma.

Traditionally, cities looking to spur their economies may offer incentives to attract businesses. But at a time when Americans are moving less frequently than they have in more than half a century, and the anticlimactic race to host an Amazon HQ2 soured some governments on corporate tax breaks, Tulsa is one of several locales testing out a new premise:  Pay people instead.

I love this idea, and hope that after the permanent step-up in remote work from the virus we see much more internal mobility between cities in the United States.

Matt: Tulsa Remote Worker Experiment

Wordpress Planet - Mon, 04/27/2020 - 17:55

Sarah Holder at Citylab has an interesting article on a program that paid people $10,000, a year of co-working, and a subsidized apartment to move to Tulsa, Oklahoma.

Traditionally, cities looking to spur their economies may offer incentives to attract businesses. But at a time when Americans are moving less frequently than they have in more than half a century, and the anticlimactic race to host an Amazon HQ2 soured some governments on corporate tax breaks, Tulsa is one of several locales testing out a new premise:  Pay people instead.

I love this idea, and hope that after the permanent step-up in remote work from the virus we see much more internal mobility between cities in the United States.

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