Web designers on the forum - can you help me?

Alan de Robson
Posts: 33
Joined: Mon 15 Sep, 2014 12.24

I have been trying for days to learn Elementor but it's getting the better of me.

Would someone be able to recommend a WYSIWIG WordPress editor for the terminally stupid like me?

Ideally, it'll be drag and drop so I can put all the design elements into place for the templates for pages and posts.

Then, rather than faffing on loading up Elementor (for example), I could then use the standard editor to create new posts and pages around the templates.

Does anyone know what I mean? Please help me. TIA.
Dr Lobster*
Posts: 2057
Joined: Sat 30 Aug, 2003 20.14

I’ve used many over the years. Elementor has its quirks but is the best in my opinion. Look after sites built with WP Bakery, Beaver and ThemecoPro/Cornerstone too.

The trick with elementor is you got to build your whole site with it, including the theme. If you try and mix with a different theme I find you end up with weird issues.

Just stick with it. Get some cheap hosting or install Wordpress into a vm and just play around with it. Will take a few months to learn its quirks but it is worth the effort.

You can use the theme designer to apply different templates to specific pages or post taxonomies. It integrates with custom fields so you can add additional properties to your posts and display them in page - good for product, vacancy pages etc

What you struggling with specifically?
Alan de Robson
Posts: 33
Joined: Mon 15 Sep, 2014 12.24

Everything, Dr L.

Back in the pre-responsive days, I could easily build sites with Frontpage 2003 although I wouldn't have known how to build an e-commerce store or a blog.

Thanks for sharing your thoughts on Elementor. I sat at my desk and felt sorry for myself for 30 minutes because I was struggling last night.

Part of the problem is that I just don't really understand WordPress so I have signed up for a course on Udemy where some English guy goes through it step by step for 9 hours. He also has a course on Elementor (also 9 hours long) which I'll take afterwards.
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WillPS
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Joined: Tue 22 Apr, 2008 18.32
Location: Carlton
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HTML is not primarily a visual medium, it's a means of structuring and formatting information in a manner which can then be interpreted either visually or another way to suit the user's needs.

This is going to sound like a real dick thing to say - but if you're relying on a tool that allows you to drag and drop shapes around on a screen like a PowerPoint presentation, you're doing it wrong.

Learn HTML, old school. Learn how to make CSS do the work of making the document look the way you want it to. Once you get it but find it a bit of a ball ache, experiment with frameworks like Bootstrap and Tailwind which act as shortcuts - but do it the hard way first.
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Dr Lobster*
Posts: 2057
Joined: Sat 30 Aug, 2003 20.14

I would argue that not everyone who wants to build a website needs to learn it the old school way - and here’s why:

A lot of smaller businesses just want a web presence which is really just a landing page they can stick in their marketing materials with a little bit of info about what they do and how to contact.

With Wordpress and a decent page builder somebody who has some half an eye for design and some patience you can knock up something quite serviceable fairly quickly - I agree knowing html, css and JavaScript you’re going to be able to do some wizzy things and format everything just so but if all you want are some pages in a menu structure with static content on them - then really that’s what Wordpress is great at.

Bootstrap is a good framework and I use it with Blazor pages but it makes building a simple site much harder than it needs to be, imo.
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WillPS
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Dr Lobster* wrote: Fri 15 Oct, 2021 22.37 I would argue that not everyone who wants to build a website needs to learn it the old school way - and here’s why:

A lot of smaller businesses just want a web presence which is really just a landing page they can stick in their marketing materials with a little bit of info about what they do and how to contact.

With Wordpress and a decent page builder somebody who has some half an eye for design and some patience you can knock up something quite serviceable fairly quickly - I agree knowing html, css and JavaScript you’re going to be able to do some wizzy things and format everything just so but if all you want are some pages in a menu structure with static content on them - then really that’s what Wordpress is great at.

Bootstrap is a good framework and I use it with Blazor pages but it makes building a simple site much harder than it needs to be, imo.
I agree, doing things properly in the case you've identified would be using a hammer to crack a nut. I'm not really sure why you even need a page builder with that use case tho. Get a decent theme and customise it within WordPress.
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Dr Lobster*
Posts: 2057
Joined: Sat 30 Aug, 2003 20.14

Alan de Robson wrote: Fri 15 Oct, 2021 08.09 Everything, Dr L.

Back in the pre-responsive days, I could easily build sites with Frontpage 2003 although I wouldn't have known how to build an e-commerce store or a blog.

Thanks for sharing your thoughts on Elementor. I sat at my desk and felt sorry for myself for 30 minutes because I was struggling last night.

Part of the problem is that I just don't really understand WordPress so I have signed up for a course on Udemy where some English guy goes through it step by step for 9 hours. He also has a course on Elementor (also 9 hours long) which I'll take afterwards.
a few thoughts on elementor;

install the elementor theme and switch your site to use it

spend some time setting up all the global site typography and colours so everything is consistent across all your pages

don't try and tackle the whole elephant in one go - start with the header / menu system get it working on desktop, then mobile etc

then your inner page template - get that working and formatted how you like it to complement your header (usually this is pretty easy as the page content is just inserted in a empty page with a container option

then get your footer sorted

the templating system takes a bit of time to get your head around but once you do, it's really intuitive and works well. it does a lot of the hard work for you and most of the responsive design reflowing is taken care of. you usually don't really need to do a lot to make your pages work on mobile.

the layout in system in elementor is based around rows and columns, you can over lay things on top of the rows and columns by using negative margins and using the z order property to make things appear on top of or behind other elements.

other than that it's just a case of playing around with all the components to see how they work - but getting your global styles and colours really helps get the look of the site established

hth
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