Episode 189: Page Builder Potpourri with David McCan

Show Summary

Rob Cairns sits down and talks all things Page Builders with David McCan.

Show Highlights:

  1. Why a page builder?
  2. Advantages of a page builder.
  3. Is Gutenberg a page builder?
  4. Features of various page builders.
  5. What page builders we like and do not like

Show Notes



Hey everybody, Rrob.

Cairns here and here.

I’m with David McCan today and we’re going to talk about page builders.

How are you today, David?

Doing well, Robert, how are you?

Well, not too bad for a cold winter day in in Toronto, in Canada, but that’s about the norm as you know so.

But you know, that’s the way it.

Is so I thought.

We’d talk about page builders and you’re kind of somebody I look to for amazing page builder comparisons.

You’ve been on the page Builders summit.

You’ve kind of been all over the place on page builders.

You run an amazing Facebook book group.

Why did you kind of sort ignition to page builders versus something else in WordPress?

Well, uhm.

One of the.

First puzzles that I tried to solve with WordPress was.

How do you create templates for custom post types?

You know the single and archive.

And the pro page builders have a theme builder feature, so that’s kind of fascinated me.

Looking at the different options, you know it started out with Beaver Themer I think was the first or one of the first ones.

That really gave you that ability.

And now there’s probably a dozen different ones.

They all do it a little bit differently.

But anyway, that that was the puzzle that you know kind of caught my interest.

Yeah, it’s funny when we we start talking about what caught your interest with page builders.

My first big experience with a page builder.

Was the theme called Headway Things?

If you remember, back in the day before they got into all kinds of financial trouble and other issues, which I I don’t want to get into and they kind of worked.

If you recall, on a system of block based editing which is kind of where we’re headed now, isn’t it?

Yeah, I was never a headway user.

Uhm, I I guess the 1st.

Uh, one that I got into was dynamic website builder.

It was like a Genesis child theme that had some builder like.

You know layout, styling features and then divvy was probably the first theme builder you know.

Option that I got into.

And it’s funny because when I think about page builders and we know about things like Beaver Builder and Vivian L.

Mentor and oxygen and Brizzly and we’ll go there.

But, interestingly enough, the number one selling theme on Themeforest is.

A theme that has a page builder built in and it’s the only theme that is ever on theme. Phyllis sold over $1,000,000 and that is Veda which is really interesting and they have their own proprietary page builder so that’s how much page builders have impacted.


Yeah, it’s it’s made a big difference.

It was the standard.

It is the standard now.

Gutenberg is making some inroads, I think for.

You know certain types of sites you can these days use Gutenberg instead of a page builder.

But I think the page builders still have a lot more you know, deeper and more consistent layout and styling options.

So I would argue and maybe you would disagree with me that Gutenberg is a form of a page builder and that.

You know it’s just another way of doing things.

Would you agree or disagree or?

You know it started out.

I thought they were really focusing on being a content editor because, you know, when you go into Gutenberg, you get that notice and it tries to take you to kind of know distraction mode, distraction, free writing.

As if you know you’re writing your blog post.

And then they it seems like they kind of switched and.

Wanted to add more page builder like features they may have had that plan all along, but that’s kind of the way it seems to me.

I I think it’s it’s definitely getting page builder features now that’s for sure.

You know, it’s funny when you talk about that. I remember when Gutenberg was announced at Word camp, US like a number of years ago and word Camp Toronto was the weekend before and all the buzz that weekend at Word Camp, Toronto.

Gutenberg was gonna drop at word camp US the following week and I was one of those.

Really big naysayers.

Three years ago and I said, ah, you’d never get me to use Gutenberg and you can laugh at me now because as you know, I’m kind of all in with Gutenberg on my own site and a couple other sites and buildings.

So I think I think things evolve and that’s what we have to read.

And I think the whole purpose of either Gutenberg or a page builder like Beaver Builder Elementor is to give people the options of building a really good website with going no code.

What are your thoughts on that one?

I that’s definitely one of the big selling points and you know, from everything Matt Mullenweg has said he wants to compete with the likes of Wix and other.

Uh, kind of site providers who have.

Visual builders and that are no code or, you know.

I mean, I think you can get in there if you’re a developer.

But you know, most people don’t see any code.

I it’s interesting that you bring up no code because.

I think there’s a little bit of a move.

I meant.

You know to not be afraid of code you know, kind of as a power user.

You come across code snippets or, you know you have some experience with CSS and a little bit of code.

Can you know save you needing to?

Install another plugin or something so.

I’ve seen people kind of more embracing code a little bit more these days than maybe they used to.

No, I I would agree with that dumb I’m and I don’t know if you know this.

I’m a programmer by trade so even before I got into Technical Support in web design, I’m a programmer.

And to be fair, I’m at the point now where I almost try to avoid writing code unless it’s a snippet here or snippet there, I think.

You know, if we if we keep going on this whole philosophy about oh we should write code to to speed everything up, then maybe we shouldn’t have acms and we should just write the website from scratch because that would speed everything up.

So I’m kind of in that camp where I truly believe.

Though people shortcut in the wrong spots and I think one of the things they can do is actually go buy some really good web hosting and stop.

Spending time in the new fold, the edges of the world and actually go by something that’s quite reasonable and that would go along way, just speeding up their sites and not have to worry about code or ACMS.

Well, there’s no arguing with that.

You know good hosting.

Is the foundation makes a big diff.

Yeah, and if you don’t build from the bottom up, you’re not gonna get anywhere, so let’s jump in the page builders per say.

You’ve kind of worked at a mall and I know on the page builder summit you did a bit of a comparison of several of them on video, by the way, which I really enjoyed.

It was a a well done session.

I’m one of my.

Probably my favorite non gootenberg session in the whole summit, so well done to you David.

Uhm, what do you look for when you’re?

Looking at a page builder like what’s your criteria?

Well, uhm.

Of course you don’t wanna have bugs.

You know things that you know, crash and burn on you.

I think consistency is important sometimes.

There’ll be a a product you know a page builder where they’ll have regression bugs or.

You know it, just they they kind of never overcome some problems.

It’s everybody has all programs have bugs and problems, but it’s kind of you know that.

Consistent moving forward I look for that and.

David Wormsley has.

You know, drilled into me over and over again.

It’s really important to take a look at the team behind the product.

And feel comfortable that you know there are people of integrity and who are looking out for their customers, so that’s something.

You know it’s easy to overlook that.

There’s a strong element, and you alluded to this earlier.

There’s a strong element of personal preference.

Some page builders click for some people and not for others.

I’ve seen that with Beaver Builder and elementor.

Some people will.

You know, use elementor and then go try Beaver Builder and say, oh I just couldn’t understand how to how it worked and vice versa.

So I think there’s, uh, a bit of, you know, kind of personal.

A choice that goes beyond all the specs.

Yeah, it’s the old coke.

And Pepsi or Apple and PC argument.

Isn’t it?

Yeah yeah yeah.

Coke and Pepsi.

That’s a great.

A great analogy.

Yeah, and you’d never catch me dead with a Pepsi in my hand so.

There you go.

So there there you go, you know, but so.

So that’s a really good analysis and I, I think personal look and feel has a lot to do with it.

Uhm, I have a saying.

In my business one of the things is it’s the tool that you know how to use.

Well, not to tool all your friends tell you to use, and I think that’s really important is if you decide to go with Devi and I know.

A number of people, say for example, our device.

They actually have learned to master their tool really well, and then when people say to them well, why don’t you switch to Beaver Builder switched elementor?

They look at you and say, why would I?

I can I could do stuff in this.

Tool very quickly.

That’s another good good point and not to keep mentioning David Wormsley, but that’s often his RESP.

Thoughts when people say why don’t you try as this other builder?

He’ll say, oh, I still don’t know how.

Haven’t mastered Beaver builder yet.

I’m still learning new things.

Yeah, and and you could keep mentioning David.

He’s a friend and you know I love what he talks about.

So it’s you know, and he’s he’s often on WP builds with Nathan Wrigley and I just love these sessions.

They do where they’re actually building up a business.

They’re doing 1 right now where they’re taking you through.

Building a development shop type business.

It’s quite interesting, so they Davidson an amazing resource and anybody should check him out.

Really as you are so so we go from there and.

And I gotta ask.

And I know you’ve comparison page builders.

Do you have a a favorite page builder when you’re developing or or do you kind of take it?

Depending on what the project is?

Well, I think you know I’m because I do a lot of reviews.

I want to try everything and sometimes you know when you’re working on a site, that’s the best time because you see.

Kind of things deeper than you would see, just you know, looking around and testing out so I I do and have used a lot of them.

I’ve, you know, I think that.

Just to kind of run through a few.

Of the page builders you know, I think that.

I for a while I was really impressed with Elementor and where they’re going.

There there was a time when all of their new features were just kind of shiny.

Animation, you know display related.

They really neglected some of the dynamic data features.

And then they had an update when they rolled out version three.

That was a disaster.

And uhm.

About a year ago they started with their, uh.

With their experiments, because they have a problem they’ve got so many users.

I think I saw them say 10 million users now.

They’ve got so many users and they’re all these third party add ONS, so they have a real hard time making change and fixing things.

So their solution for that was to do experiments that you could turn on or off in the admin.

Well, I don’t know for sure, but it doesn’t look like any of those experiments they’ve been going on.

For a year have graduated to come.

You know, out of experimental category, maybe there have been some and I’ve missed them, but the list is getting pretty long so.

Yeah, and and they are the biggest page builder out there right now, are are they not?

Yeah, yeah, I think by a long shot, yeah, so you know I was.

I was pretty gung ho on on elementor.

But I’ve cooled on them a lot.

I’ve been kind of waiting for them to, you know, make a comeback and there have been some.

They’ve done some good things.

I think there’s it.

Seems like they’re starting to implement some things you know they.

Have breakpoints and I think they’re going.

To have a flex.

Container option coming out at some point so you know they they are.

It does seem to be moving in the right direction, but.

Uhm, you know I see lots of people.

Talking about moving from Elementor to either oxygen, if they want to go kind of more developer centric or Gutenberg.

So you know that that’s the way it looks to me is.

So that.

Uh, they’ve gotten so big that it’s a little hard for them to pivot now.

Yeah, I I agree with you.

It’s getting really hard.

Do you have thoughts on page builders like Beaver Builder or or even oxygen or divvy?

Yeah I I do Beaver builder.

I think is under rated UM.

And I gave him a hard time for this, because, you know, for not having new features very often.

But in terms of like Beaver Themer, I think has kind of the sweet spot of a you know, template builder.

It has a lot of power and it’s easy to use.

It doesn’t have as much.

It doesn’t expose as much.

To the end user as oxygen does.

But for a lot of people you know they don’t need that so.

And and it’s very stable.

So I really have a lot of respect for the Beaver Builder team and.

I know that the Community has.

Probably had to put up with for years.

People saying, why aren’t you using elementor?

Or now maybe people are telling them to use Gutenberg so?

Uh, anyway and.

I used divvy I mentioned before I used that was one of the first page builders I used.

And I liked it at the time, but I had one divvy site.

That the owner of it never wanted any updates, so I never had a reason to change it.

Just uh, like in November, the owner, uh, he’s an author and he came out.

It’s, uh, I’ll say it’s a family.

It’s my father.

He’s published a bunch of books and.

All of a sudden he has a new book coming out and he wants to totally redo his site.

So uhm, so I jumped in and.

I don’t know if it’s just that it’s been so long since I’ve used divvy or it just hasn’t kept up, but it was kind of painful.

So uhm, you know, I switched over to using the cadence theme and Gutenberg and cadence blocks.

Much smoother sailing for me, and like I said that could be just what I’m used to, but.

How’s that experience going with Cadence and and as as everybody knows, I’m kind of all in with cadence these days on my site and I’ve got a a site for Crime Stoppers.

I’m in one of the chapters in Toronto.

I’m moving the cadence in the process of.

So how’s your experience been with that?

Good, I use cadence team.

Uh, on web tianji my main site.

And I’m really impressed.

The developer, you know, there’s kind of a a profile.

I think Tom Osborne from generate press is kind of similar.

You know?

Really talented developer, a lot of attention to detail.

Well, seems true.

Uh, with Ben of Cadence and just as you’re using it, yeah, I’m sure you’ve seen this.

There’s just lots of little details and things he thought of.

Make our lives easier.

I was a little nervous when Cadence was purchased.

You know Liquidweb purchased Cadence and I was wondering what would happen, but they’ve kept the.

Innovations and updates going.

The cadence theme builder, which is part of the pro theme along with the pro version of the blocks cadence blocks.

Uhm, you know is is nice.

It’s easy to use.

You know, I’m I, you know it’s there’s a reason why it’s growing really fast.

There there is and A and a shout out. Their marketing team has done a really amazing job up there too as well, and one of the people involved in the big push marketing is a is a good friend. Cathy’s aunt, who’s been was at work friends and then went to.

Ninja forms and then the cadence and the team up there.

From all I know inside is just remarkable now.

Cadence for context falls under the I think brand of Stellar WP, which is a liquid web brand.

So just to put that up there, if people don’t understand the relationship.

And yeah, they’ve done.

They’ve done an absolute amazing job, and.

I have nothing but could say things to say about cadence, so that’s that’s important I think, and I think also, what makes it happy you.

You alluded to this earlier with the talking about David warms, and we’ve chatted about this.

It’s finding a plugin or a theme that will be well supported and what the background.

Is and Ithemes certainly has a tradition of supporting their plugins?

So I think that that really helps as well.

I think you’ve got that name behind it, which is a a big deal as well.

Yeah, I worry a little that you know I get the sense that, uhm.

Ben Ritner is is might be under a lot of pressure these days.

You know, I I’m just kind of.

This is like you know million mile away view.

Yeah, but you know I used to see on on their blog pictures of them all the family and you know his sister or wife and friends or wherever going out on hikes and and things and.

Uhm, I know that Chris Lima was, you know, involved in all the purchases bent that have been going on with liquidweb and stellar.

And one of the things that he’s mentioned is that he wants to kind of bring the best practices that the different.

Brand the different products you know, the developers all had different experiences and so we wanted to kind of take the best and get them to share and help each other.

And I know that you know not only do they have the cadence theme, which is, which is very advanced.

You know general purpose theme.

They have cadence blocks which.

You know has the dynamic data options working with advanced custom fields and tool set.

But then they have, you know, a number of other plugins and features, and they just keep coming out, so I hope he’s getting you know.

Hope the team is growing and you know he’s not getting burned out.

Yeah, I I agree with it now.

You just mentioned tool set which is uh, a plugin for dealing with custom fields.

And and I know it’s not kind of the premises discussion, but we’re diving into.

Do you prefer advanced custom fields by ACF, ACF?

Do you prefer pods or do you prefer tools that where do you kind of sit in that room?

I was a toolset.

You know, advocate and fan for.

Uh, many years and I really liked the.

They had a kind of incremental development.

Model and I thought it was really good.

They I think they were.

Kind of struggling, you know tool set.

You can build almost anything with it, so I get the sense that there’s a lot of support requests because everyone wants to do something you know individual unique.

And so it seems like the development has slowed down and they’ve really kind of trying to focus in on a few things and they do have tool set blocks so.

That’s an option for creating.

You know your templates with tool set blocks with Gutenberg.

So you know I’m actually using tool set on web tianji.

Uh, because I’ve got a lot of custom post types and whatnot on that site.

But all my other sites I’m using advanced custom fields or metabox.

OK, so I’d say either that’s the other option.

If you were doing woo commerce, is there a page builder that works better that you know of?

Or is it kind of choose one with the exception of maybe oxygen?

Which has had issues with woo over the years.

What what’s your feeling there?

I’m not a Super Woo commerce expert, but.

I do see that there are a lot of third party add ONS for woo commerce in the Elementor ecosystem elementor itself, you know, has been.

They released some new features for woo commerce.

That’s another area where they were kind of criticized.

They kind of.

Did some initial.

Work and then they’ve just left it for a few years.

But there are tons of third party add ONS for customizing.

Your WooCommerce store, it seems like.

Uh, the Woo commerce team.

Are they?

You know they’re focusing on Gutenberg.

I, from what I’ve seen, woo commerce doesn’t work yet with full site editing.

So I guess you know if if you were to put me on the spot and I had to guess, I’d say, elementor.

OK, that’s it.

That’s a fair comment.

I don’t think who’s quite there with fics yet, and I don’t think it will be there till after the five nine release.

Personally, I think that’s what we’re kind of looking at.

Do you have any concerns with five nine coming out with page builders or or?

Do you just think it’s going to be a?

A quiet day in paradise.

I think we’re going to find out next week.

The you know I’m I’m really.

Curious to see how new users are going to.

You know, react because you know 2022 is a nice theme. It’s it’s very attractive.

But it’s a block based theme, so it’ll be a new paradigm and I’m curious to see if it everything goes smoothly or if it’s one of those things where.

You know, agencies and freelancers say.

You know well, I tried to go with a block based theme and.

You know the clients, they’re just, you know they had no idea what to do.

So what?

What are you thinking will be the response?

Well, I know cadence in the on the block side and the theme side said if you’re smart don’t turn on FC.

It’s not on by default with Cadence right away.

Hey, uh, I think new users are gonna go the box I I really do so if you’re jumping into the WordPress ecosystem today, I don’t think you’re necessarily going to go ahead and get a page bill.

That’s just my feeling now.

I think a lot of dev.

Shops will keep on doing what they’re doing because they know it well, so I’m not a big fan of saying the people.

Go get blocks to Gutenberg because I did one of the reasons I went that way was and you’ve talked about this already in this podcast is take a project and find out what how things work by implementing or testing on a live site or a live project.

And I don’t.

Suggest people do what I did but.

I actually moved.

My site to Gutenberg and did 90% of it on a on a live site and then took the page builder in off at the last minute and then customized some stuff on the back end.

I would almost tell 90% of the people to do this. Don’t do what I did please it, but the reason I did go that way is.

I had over 200 blog posts, including at the Time 150 podcast episodes, so it becomes really hard to keep stuff In Sync and that’s, you know for the average site that’s not typical, and as you would do in a conversation we had on Facebook Messenger, I’ve got a lot going on and.

I do, but that said, I think, UM.

I think Tuesday might be a panic day where things will go in quietly. I’ve got RC3 running at the time of this record on a on a dev site, and I’m not with basically a copy of my live site and I’m not seeing any major issues running around right now, so.

So I think the delay from a pre Christmas release and by the way WordPress please just stop putting out releases in December.

I you know it’s a bad time with Christmas coming with ecommerce running I I think December has to come off the release schedule and I’ve talked to.

Several people are put automatic about that.

I think we need to get away from December releases so the extra six weeks I think has bought them a lot of time, including things that.

Like learn.wordpress.org actually has a training plan. It’s the first time ever that a major release has had a training plan upon warnedorpress.org before release date. So that’s you know, kudos to people like Courtney Robertson and people like that.

And her team for getting not together.

They’ve done an amazing job.

There’s been a lot of talk about FC.

There was a a boulder meet up this week on through meetup.com on zoom and the panel.

It was like people like Courtney and Birgit Polyak and Brian Gardner.

All people involved in the FC space so I think we’ve had time to kind of get the word out which is from even a PR standpoint and a knowledge base has been really good actually.

Yeah, I I, they’ve done a good job.

Uhm, was it Anne McCarthy?

I think it’s her name.

Yeah, I’ve seen a lot of kind of live streams and she’s been a number of podcasts.

Like you know, WP builds, for instance, and uhm I think or interviews.

I guess I should say with Nathan and I think she’s done a.

A good job kind of, you know, just getting out there and educating people and and helping them.

And I think you’re right.

You people who are using.

You know, classic themes aren’t really going to see too much.

You’re you’re going to have a better Gutenberg experience because there have been some nice updates to Gutenberg.

The I was kind of thinking of new users and.

And you know where I think that at this point, full site editing will.

Be a, you know, embraced is for people with little or no budget who are trying to create a site on their own.

And full site editing is going to give them more tools for that and often.

You know, these people like you know, maybe it’s a school teacher or you know someone with a local history project or.

You know a fan site or something they’re willing to put in a little more time.

Instead of spending money.

And so the ability to customize their site.

Is going to be nice for them.

You know, like.

I’ve I’ve helped a lot of people over the years where.

You know there’s something in the PHP template you know, like maybe it has the category showing and they don’t want it, or it doesn’t have a custom taxonomy showing and they do want it or something like that.

And now people are going to be able to do those that level themselves, and so those are the people I think in it.

Actually, who are going to benefit from full site editing?

No, I I would agree and the only thing I would say is if this makes people life easier to DIY their website.

I’m all for it.

I think what people need to be very careful of is if they’re gonna DIY their website.

Maybe they want to bring somebody in to help them walk that site down and take a gander.

’cause I don’t know if you’ve seen the article at the time of this record that broke today.

Bleeping computers reporting that over 90 WordPress themes, plugins backdoored in the supply chain attacks.

So I mean here we go again and I think the problem with people who DIY their websites is they actually don’t take the time to do the security.

To do backups to do things so properly.

Yeah, it’s a little scary.

It’s been a couple of years since I did it, but a few years ago I think I searched for, you know, like the text of the Hello world.

Yep, post.

It’s amazing how many websites get installed for people you know.

Like maybe a hosting company installs it for them or something and it’s just Hello World is the only post on there and they just haven’t gotten around to it and I just worry they’re the sites sitting there they play.

Don’t have like you said, a security plugin or.

You know, things like that.

Let’s see.

I, I think there’s kind of where if somebody going to do a site on their own, they probably should spend a little bit of money and bring somebody in.

Just like walk this thing down for me and be done with it because you know it’s it’s getting scary and sporting out there.

Uhm, in terms of before we went to record you said and I don’t want you to give away the context ’cause we want people to go watch the video you were working on a Bach comparison.

Which one was that?

I was 16 months ago.

I compared.

Cadence blocks stackable blocks and quibbley blocks.

And Quibbley is kind of dropped out of the running, UM, but both stackable and cadence blocks are going strong.

And that was one of the videos of my videos and blog posts that have gotten and keep getting a lot of views so.

I thought I’d do an update and on the eve of full site editing you know Cadence has recently come out with their theme builder.

And stackable is really focusing, I think, on being a solution for.

People wanting to do full site editing so I was doing a comparison of those.

And you know it’s not a bad thing, but the first thing I noticed is that cadence has really grown a lot.

Yeah, it’s fashion.

You know, in the 16 months and stackable has grown, but not at the same rate.

And where can people find that comparison when you finish it?

Web.com is dumb. You know the website.

And go check it out.

’cause David comparisons are always very good and might save you a pilot time down the road.

So that’s you know the important thing there.

Uhm, now the last thing I wanted to touch on is.

In this community, in the WordPress community, everybody trying to save money and we got all these page builders developing.

We’ve seen some LTD’s or lifetime deals, and we’ve seen people just say I’m not doing lifetime dealing than a charge yearly for the page builder subscription. What’s your feeling on in Ltd?

Versus a lifetime deal.

Well, the classic wisdom is that, or, you know, the common sense, wisdom.

Whatever is, lifetime deals make sense.

When the product’s young and the company is trying to bootstrap development and not have to take out a lot of loans or.

You know, get investors, give away the company to investors.

It does seem that there are a few.

Companies like me know divvy still has their lifetime going, I can’t.

And it’s seen them mentioned somewhere they might do away with that, but they still have it going. It’s, you know, I don’t know what it is like. $240 or something. And then you have you have oxygen.

Which we haven’t talked about yet.

But oxygen has, uh, you know their lifetime.

Option, and then there’s some new ones, bricks.

Being one that a lot of people have talked about, bricks builder that has a lifetime.

Devi and oxygen are not new.

They seem to, you know, be going wide.

You know, I almost get the sense that did he could be one of those things where you know the new people buying are paying for support and development to keep it going and it’s not self sustaining.

You know, like if if they took away.

You know that life the you know if they changed the licensing they might have a hard adjustment.

Uhm, but I’ve seen the founder of oxygen say that you know, it just makes them a lot of money.

So you know, having the lifetime deal makes them a lot of money, people, or you know it’s reasonably priced and people are, or, you know, give some more confidence to take a chance on it.

Yeah yeah it.

It doesn’t, it doesn’t.

I mean even Cadence did an Ltd at one time for their entire suite and then and they and they did it.

To be fair for a limited time and then it disappeared.

So you know, I think that’s the way.

That’s the way to handle that, because what you wanna make sure you don’t do is sell too many Ltd.

‘s or lifetime deals and then not be able not generate further income because you’re paying support costs for people who got in cheap and that’s what we gotta be careful of.

Yeah, I think Cadence actually up.

Started to move that direction and they they did have a lifetime separately.

Yeah, for the theme and the blocks and everything, they still have a lifetime.

If you go for the whole bundle.

I have the whole bundle on the nails.

Yeah, so they still have that available, but they did away with a lifetime for the individual products and I think you’re right, you know support.

Is a cost that you know you really you need the, that’s that’s the reason you’re thinking right there.

That’s the reason that tool set went away from a lifetime.

Yep, packages so.

Yeah, so that’s uh, now you had mentioned we haven’t really touched on oxygen and and let’s go there.

Oxygen is kind of developer centric.

What do you like about oxygen and what don’t you like about oxygen?

Well, oxygen.

I was.

A little bit cool on oxygen initially, and then I really jumped into it and did a bunch of videos on it and built a site with it.

I warmed up to it, but it just seemed like it took a long time to build with it and I still think other, you know, people who are using oxygen everyday dispute this, but I still think.

It takes.

Longer to build with oxygen than with other page builders.

But you really do get.

Into the code and you or you have the option to.

It exposes that to you.

And I think in terms of dynamic data oxygen.

UM is, you know, the most.

Powerful option.

You know, they just you know you have conditions built in.

You have PHP.

Uh, you know element that where you can write your own PHP code.

You can edit the stylesheets directly with inside the editor and have that reflected in the builder.

Just you know many, many.

Features, but it’s the kind of thing where.

For me, if I’m in a hurry, it wouldn’t be.

You know where I’d go first, and the other thing with with oxygen is that.

You know when you use a theme like you know any of the the good themes like Astra, Cadence, generatepress.

You know all those the theme author has really done a lot of.

Work for you.

And some of those that work is making sure that.

You know your.

Layout doesn’t go off the rails and kind of explode outside of the boundaries that you know that of your gives and sections and everything that you want.

Oxygen replaces the theme, so to a certain extent the user has to take that responsibility.

So it’s definitely not for everybody, but I could see building some more sites with oxygen.

And just to kind of wrap up, is there an up and coming page builder that you really like something new in the space?

Well, I mentioned bricks and the the developer of bricks.

It’s another one of those.

Situations where you have a really talented developer.

And he’s doing a lot of things, right?

He’s listening to users and.

He’s been regularly putting out good updates, so that’s one I think that is up and coming, and I’ve noticed a switch.

With bricks, this happened with oxygen 2.

Is there started to be a switch where people instead of just talking about it, actually started building sites with it?

And then eventually it happened with oxygen and I’m not sure if it’s happening yet with bricks, but with oxygen you had agencies starting to use it.

And so anyway, I’m seeing a lot more discussion in the bricks Facebook group and in their own forums of.

People actually building sites with it, so it’s starting to take off.

And I think it’s important with some of these up and comers.

’cause what they do is then force the big well known page builders to actually do some stuff and improvise and improve their page builders.

So I I really think they’re really good for the market.

In that respect.

Yeah, we’re lucky having lots of choices.

Yeah, I’m sure.

That was.

That’s something Michael Edwin in the dynamic WordPress group is says you know all the time that we’re really lucky.

Have so many good options.

Yeah, we are.

Thanks for this great conversation.

Where can people get a hold of you:

Your Facebook group sorry, and an on your website.

So my website is: https://www.webtng.com/

And there’s a YouTube channel associated with that: https://www.youtube.com/c/DavidMcCan


And then a little over a year ago started a Facebook group.


WordPress and I’ve just been lucky.

They’ve had really good people joining that group.

They’re pretty helpful and polite and.

Uh, it’s been a lot of fun, so try, we talk a lot about page builders and.

Uh, some about dynamic data should probably talk more about dynamic data given the name of the group, but also kind of just what’s happening in WordPress.

Yep, thank you very much David.

Have a wonderful day.

I enjoyed it.

Thank you for.

Having me thank you.

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