WordPress is the most widely used content management system in the world. It is an excellent platform for beginners to launch their blog without needing expert knowledge on HTML. WordPress is also useful for sole proprietors who want their business to have an online presence but at the same time do not want to spend a lot of money on it. WordPress is a cost effective content management system with hundreds and thousands of themes that enable a user to set-up its own website within a day.
WordPress has just released an update for its content management system which brings a lot of improvements in terms of features, security, and performance. WordPress 4.3 also includes new customization options for your website and some new shortcuts in the content editor.
WordPress is the heart of many third-party plugins which users utilize to add new features to their website. These third party plugins do offer more features such as a slider, social buttons, gallery and much more but they also slow down the website. WordPress wants to bring everything to the user so their website does not lack in functionality compared to professional custom websites. Let’s take a look at the improvements made in WordPress 4.3:
1- Changes in the content editor
The most notable changes that every user will utilize are the new shortcuts introduced in the content editor. WordPress 4.3 codename “Billie” includes a bunch of new shortcuts for text formatting:
- Use * or – to start an unordered list.
- Use 1. Or 1) to start an ordered list.
- Use ## for H2 and ### for H3 (etc., through H6).
- Use > to transform text into blockquote.
Bloggers faced a lot of issues when writing content for news and reviews. They had to navigate to the text editor or the drop down menus to add headings, bullets and quotes. With these new shortcuts, WordPress has made the task relatively easier. This will reduce the time for writing content for your blog and it is more convenient as well.
2- Appearance and Menus
WordPress 4.3 is now more mobile-friendly than before. Users can customize and make changes directly from their phones without the need of logging into their laptop. “Billie” enable users to customize, create and update menus in the customizer with live preview. This allow developers to check their changes live in the preview pane and see how the menu will look on their website. This makes the building process faster and better for the developers. They do not have to navigate to the site every time they make a change, instead they can just check the live preview and make the changes accordingly.
The second most important update in WordPress 4.3 is user passwords. Whenever you make a new user to access your website’s back-end, you generate a new password for him/her. Now WordPress will develop a strong and difficult to crack passwords by default when a new user is created.
There is a new process to change user password as well. Instead of receiving an email with the log-in details, WordPress will now send a password reset link to the new user. The link will be available for a limited so the user needs to act fast and change his/her password. This is a great feature especially if the account or the email has been compromised, the hacker will not get access to your website.
4- Website Icon
Previously, users had to manually add the website icon which shows up at the top of the browser. Now, WordPress has included this feature in the new “Billie” update. Users can add their favicon or site icon directly from WordPress via the customizer. The small badge will remain even if you change your website’s theme. You can change the favicon from the customizer whenever you feel like.
5- No comments on new pages
In earlier versions, comments were turned on by default when you create a new page. This setting has been reversed in WordPress 4.3. Users will need to switch on the comments manually if they need them in the new page they created. This was one of the most demanded features because most users disable default comments on WordPress and it’s finally here.
This saves time as well as prevents spamming of comments on the website. It is a great addition which will further enhance user experience.
6- WordPress is now more mobile friendly
Phablets and tablets are the latest tech used by millions of users. WordPress was not a mobile friendly platform and users with large tablets were unable to efficiently edit content or make changes to their website. This was rather annoying because it is much easier to work on a tablet while travelling. Many people have blogs who travel around the world and they update it as they visit new places. WordPress 4.3 includes changes to the entire backend which brings a more mobile friendly view. This enables users to have an optimal mobile experience.
7- Hyperlink Previews
Another nice addition in the visual editor is the hyperlink preview pop-up. When you add a hyperlink to the text and move the pointer on top of the text then a small pop-up comes up. The pop-up reveals the hyperlink in full and includes a small icon for edit. Users can edit the hyperlink through that button resulting in time savings and more convenience.
These are major changes made in WordPress 4.3 and they are looking quite good. Some of them were much needed while others were demanded by the WordPress community. Bloggers will be pleased by the changes made in the visual editor while developers will be happier with the changes in the customizer. Overall, WordPress 4.3 will further enhance user’s experience.