The new Gutenberg Block Editor is changing the way we use to use WordPress, previously with WordPress and its TinyMCE editor we were only able to write posts and for building custom pages we often use page builders but Gutenberg is changing this and trying to remove the necessity of page builders.
Elementor on of the most popular WordPress page builder and in this article we are going to compare Elementor and Gutenberg Block Editor. Hopefully, by the end of this article, you’ll know which one is better and which one you should choose.
One thing I want to clarify here is that I am not comparing the Elementor Pro with Gutenberg but a free version of Elementor with Gutenberg. Why? because I believe if you add price to the factor then things can go a little sideways and since WordPress itself is open-source software and completely free to use, I feel betrayed to compare it with a paid alternative. However, I will share a piece about it below but the main compression will be between Elementor(free) and Gutenberg.
I am pretty sure being in WordPress you’re already familiar with both Gutenberg and Elementor but still, I am going to start with a quick brief intro just to clear things out and for someone who is new to WordPress and reading to decide what to learn.
What is Gutenberg?
Gutenberg is a code name for the new Block-based editor for WordPress. Gutenberg is also widely referenced as Block Editor because that is what’s its real name. Gutenberg was introduced back in December 2018 and is now a default editor of WordPress since the WordPress 5.0 update.
Since its initial launch, Gutenberg is constantly evolving and solving the problems we are having and new features we are recommending. Gutenberg Block Editor is still not completed yet and it has a long way to go. It is planned to make Gutenberg a full site editor with the option to edit every part of the website.
Gutenberg works on the concept of blocks basically every component like your paragraph, headings, images, videos all are separate blocks and you can modify and edit every single one of them individually.
It also offers some unique features like reusable blocks, custom blocks, block patterns which makes content reusability a lot easier. You can read more about it in our detailed article here.
What is Elementor?
Elementor is one of the most popular page builders for WordPress and it’s been a favorite tool for developers designing amazing look webpages for years. Elementor has a drag and drop based editor which is very easy to use and very minimal interface and that’s why it is very massively adapted.
Elementor is a freemium plugin which means it is free to use with limited functionality and to use it fully you’ll need to buy a subscription. But even the free version of Elementor is pretty powerful and you can create some amazing designs with it.
With Elementor you can design some very complex web pages without using any code. It has a lot of elements and features available and you can easily design almost anything with simple drag and drop and see the changes in real-time.
Gutenberg vs Elementor
Now let’s compare Gutenberg Block Editor with Elementor and see which one is better for you. For this comparison, we are taking five main things into consideration Speed, Features, Responsiveness, Learning, and The Ecosystem. Now let’s compare both of them on these five criteria.
Since Google officially started considering page speed into page ranking factor because of better user experience page speed becomes one of the key components of the website and the faster your site is higher the chances of your site to be ranked on top.
In terms of page speed, Gutenberg Block Editor outperforms Elementor with a small margin. The reason behind this is simple Block Editor doesn’t load anything extra during page load which makes it super fast and super light. Page speed is one of the main reasons developers are moving towards Gutenberg Block Editor.
Don’t take me wrong though Elementor is also pretty fast and reliable, but Gutenberg Block Editor is better. The reason Elementor is slow is that it adds some extra code to assist its advanced features.
In terms of features, Elementor is the straight-up winner with a pretty big margin in my opinion. Elementor has a lot of design options like animation, padding, margin controls, shadows, borders, corner radius, and much more. Some pretty basic but very necessary features that can make your web design much better.
Gutenberg Block Editor is also trying its best to compete and constantly adding a lot of features similar to Elementor but it lacks some basic but important controls like margin, padding, corner radius, shadows, and other smaller things like that.
However, some features of Gutenberg still outperform Elementor like the reusable block and blocks patterns. Elementor has a similar template feature like this but it’s not as seamless as Gutenberg.
If you take blog posts into consideration then Elementor is straight-up bad and to be honest, Elementor never intended to be the post maker instead it always focuses on page building. On the other hand, Gutenberg is by far the best post-writing editor on any CMS website. It’s easy straightforward, clean, and very powerful and with the help of blocks, you can do much more in your blog posts.
Another thing I wanna point out is Gutenberg is trying to bring more features and tools to its ecosystem and in the coming months Gutenberg may have all the features that Elementor now has but on the other hand Elementor will have the same amount of time to improve itself so only time can tell what would be the future of it.
Our next and very important criterion is responsiveness. You might be surprised to know that more than 56 percent of global web traffic comes from mobile devices according to the latest 2021 data. So your site must need to be responsive in order to handle more than half of the internet.
In terms of responsiveness, Elementor is better than the Block Editor. Gutenberg almost gives no control over different device sizes it all depends on the theme and blocks you are using. On the other hand, Elementor gives a lot more control over how you want to show your content in different devices sizes.
With Elementor you can separately design your content for mobile, tablets, and laptops. You can even show or hide certain contents based on which device the webpage is loading. And dedicated control for basic things like margin and padding based on mobile devices makes things very responsive.
Learning is one of the most underrated parts of Gutenberg and Elementor comparison and many articles on the internet miss this part. But in my opinion for beginners, this is the main factor. Don’t know about others but when I started learning is something that takes my most of the time and that is why this comparison is necessary.
In terms of learning and community support Elementor still takes a lead, Elementor has been in the market for so long it was released 2 years before Gutenberg and loved by various developers since. And on the internet, there is an unlimited amount of content related to Elementor.
On the other hand, Gutenberg is just recently being adopted by the masses, and tutorials and articles related to Gutenberg just started to pop up on the internet but still, there are very few of them and most of the advanced stuff is still very limited. One great example can be the official WordPress documentation for custom blocks that is still not fully completed yet.
Now let’s take a look at Gutenberg and Elementor ecosystem, Elemntor is created and maintained by a third-party multi-million dollar company and Block Editor is being developed by the people who created the WordPress. So both of the editors are backed by pretty powerful companies.
Now in terms of support, there are many full-fledged very powerful both paid and free plugins available for Elementor by third-party developers. Not just plugins but a lot of themes are also created for working smoothly with Elementor in fact Elementor is compatible with almost every theme currently available on the WordPress theme repo.
However, that is not the case for Gutenberg Block Editor, as I said before a Gutenberg just recently becomes a part of the mainstream, and even though a lot more developers and companies are coming to this space still plugin and theme support for Gutenberg is lacking. Even worse not all themes are fully supported by Gutenberg Block Editor yet and as Gutenberg keeps getting updated even fewer themes will be compatible with.
However, most of the big players already adapting and constantly updating their themes to support the changes of Gutenberg but still, there is a high chance that after the Gutenberg update might some themes may break or don’t have the latest features.
Now let’s talk about paid pro version of Elementor, let me get this straight in terms of functionality Elementor Pro is way ahead of Gutenberg Block Editor. To put it more simply Elementor Pro is what Gutenberg is trying to be in its upcoming updates a Full Site Editor.
Elementor Pro has a lot of superior features than the Gutenberg, Elementor Pro can be your complete theme you can edit any page of your site with its pro version. Elementor Pro unlocks other more useful features like the ability to add custom CSS for every component a wide variety of premium elements to make more robust designs.
So it’s obvious that Elementor Pro and Gutenberg are in a whole different league right now, but it is also true that planned updates in Gutenberg that unlock the full side editing and the level of mass adoption clearly indicate that Gutenberg may leave Elementor Pro behind soon.
Which One is Better?
Well, this is where things get interesting because what I am about to tell you may change your whole perspective of comparing them. You can actually use both of them together on the same website so need to choose just one.
Another thing to keep in mind is that there are a couple of free plugins available in the WordPress repo that can bring many Elementor features like margin, padding, controls based on device size, shadows, and animation to Gutenberg.
In the end, I can say that it mostly depends on how you wanna use and build your site if you wanna build something simple and more focused on writing then Gutenberg is a better option. But if you care less about writing and are more focused on the overall design and wanna create some advanced designs then choose Elemetor.
But the actual best option which shoots all of us, in my opinion, is to use both don’t buy Elementor pro just yet try both of them see what you can do and then if you really feel the need go for pro and if only Gutenberg can satisfy you uninstall the Elementor.