Beaver Builder Review: An Intuitive Drag and Drop Builder for WordPress

My Rating:
Review by: Joe Fylan

Beaver Builder is a drag and drop page builder plugin for WordPress that aims to help you build custom sites in minutes not months.

The plugin comes with a range of professional looking home page and content page layouts, as well as a great selection of useful modules that can be dragged and dropped into place. Everything on your pages can be fully customized, allowing you to personalize your designs as much as you like.

As the page builder WordPress plugin category is becoming increasingly competitive, this review will help you decide if this is the right page drag and drop builder for you.

Beaver Builder Review

Beaver Builder Features

The Beaver Builder page builder plugin works with any WordPress theme, including your custom designs. However, depending on the pricing plan you choose, it does come with its own theme to ensure you can get up and running as quickly as possible.

While there are many page builder plugins available for WordPress, not all of them are front end builders that allow you to directly build and edit your site’s layouts and content on the front end of your website.

Beaver Builder however, is a front end page editor and builder, so rather than working with an abstract system that is used to provide a representation of the layout of your pages, Beaver Builder lets you carry out your work in a way that closely resembles how your visitors will experience it when it goes live.

Beaver Builder Templates

The main advantages of this is that it saves you from having to mentally translate the building blocks on the page in order to try and determine how they will look to your visitors. It also speeds up the design process considerably as you are no longer constantly switching between browser windows and waiting for pages to reload.

As well as the intuitive interface, one of the highlights of Beaver Builder is the selection of 12 pre-built home page and 11 inner page layouts. The second group includes templates for pages such as about us, services, portfolios, contact, and blog archive pages, as well as a few other options.

All layouts can be fully customized with the builder or used as they are out of the box. You can view the full selection of layouts and see them in action on the BeaverBuilder site.

Beaver Builder Content Templates

The home pages that you build can be setup to be full width, and the included templates can double up as landing pages. This helps make Beaver Builder a great option for anyone looking to add professional landing or sales pages to their current theme and website.

The modules that can be inserted into the layouts are all very impressive. Among the many options you get access to are calls to action buttons, sliders, icons, maps, pricing tables, and social buttons, to name a few.

Builder Beaver is certainly a feature packed option, but how easy it is to use will greatly affect how much value you get from this drag and drop page builder tool. So let’s take a look at the Beaver Builder user experience.

Using the Beaver Builder Plugin

Once the plugin is activated on your site, with or without with the optional theme, you can start using this tool straight away.

There is a small set of options available for configuring the plugin, but they don’t take long to work through. From the settings you can decide which of the modules to enable, which page templates to use, and which post types to enable the builder for.

This means that you can use Beaver Builder to design both posts and pages – something that isn’t always on offer with other plugins of this type.

Beaver Builder Settings

Once you are all set up you can begin using the builder to create your custom page layouts and inserting the available modules into place.

Launching the Builder

To launch the builder you can either create a new page or post, and then click on the Page Builder tab, or click on the Page Builder link from the post list screen.

Beaver Builder Launch Builder

Choosing a Template

Once you’ve launched the Page Builder, the view switches to the front end of your website and gives you the opportunity to choose one of the included 12 home page layout templates, or 11 content page templates. You can also start from a blank canvas or load a saved template you created earlier.

Beaver Builder Choose a Template

If you do go with the blank canvas option, you can get started by dropping a row layout or module onto the screen and then expanding your design from there.

Beaver Builder Blank Canvas

Adding Modules

There are three groups of modules available: basic, advanced, and WordPress widgets. The last group includes all the widgets that are active on your site, including the core WordPress widgets, as well as those that have been added by any plugins you’ve installed, or custom widgets you might have created.

When you add a module to your layout, you then get access to the module-specific controls for customizing it. Depending on the module, this allows you to enter some text, add an image, and format the elements of the module in other ways.

Beaver Builder Edit Module

Each time you make a change to the settings, you get a live preview of how it will look, without the need to click on any buttons or switch windows. If you decide to start off by using one of the included layouts, then the page is populated with all the content from that template.

Beaver Builder Home Page Layout

 

Editing the Templates and Layouts

All the elements of the templates can be edited by hovering over them to access the context menus. When working from a template, you can also add in any of the modules as you could when starting with a blank template. Once you’ve finished building your custom page layout, you can click on the Tools menu to save the template. Saved templates can then be used as starting points when creating a new page in the future.

Beaver Builder Tools

As Builder Beaver has a great selection of templates and modules for building website home pages and content pages, after you’ve created your first layout, you can then move on and start working on the inner pages of your website.

Beaver Builder Pricing

The Beaver Builder plugin is available on two pricing plans:

  • Standard: $99
  • Pro: $199
  • Agency: $399

The main differences between the standard and pro versions includes the Beaver Builder theme, custom module support, the Photoshop files, and multisite support. But if you plan on using the plugin for sites that you’re building for clients, the Agency plan is the way to go. This adds features like network wide settings and while labeling so you can change the branding of the plugin in the WordPress dashboard.

All three versions can be used on an unlimited number of websites, with one year of premium support, updates, and download access. If you want to know exactly what you get for your money, then please visit the pricing plans page on the Beaver Builder website.

Conclusion and Recommendations

The Beaver Builder is a very easy to use drag and drop page builder plugin for WordPress. The included modules are all very useful and as you can also add WordPress widgets and those from third party plugins into your layouts, you will never run out of options for creating your custom pages.

The selection of templates on offer for building your pages, whether home pages, landing pages, or the inner pages of your site, are all very attractive and professional. As they are, they would work really well on most sites, but as they can be easily customized, you should have no trouble adapting them to be an even better match for your needs.

The only obvious way this builder could be improved is if it had the ability to edit text inline on the front end of your website, rather than opening up the text editor when working with text. However, as you type the in the editor, the text on the page is updated simultaneously, giving you a live preview of how it will look when you save the changes.

Beaver Builder Text Editor

The developers of Beaver Builder have definitely got the setup process and interface for creating the layouts right. So if you like the look and functionality of the included modules and layouts, then this is one plugin you can add to your site with confidence.

Get Beaver Builder

  • Updated on:
  • Posted Under: Reviews
Post Author: Joe Fylan

Joe loves trying out the latest themes and plugins and sharing how they can help WordPress users improve their websites, and in turn offer more value to their visitors. If you want to work with Joe to make your WordPress project a success get in touch via his website.

Disclosure
Got something to say? Join the discussion.
  1. This one looks good, I haven't used it yet, but I will test it out. I'm pretty sure that one day WordPress will decide to integrate such page builder in WordPress core, because using plain shortcodes on WordPress for non-tech users is nightmare. If anyone is using WordPress for more than a pure blog then page builder is a must.
  2. useful article, but I did not find in it a link to the site lethemes.com, that previously helped me a lot
  3. webweaverman says:
    How would you use 3rd party plugins with the fronted builder?
    • AJ Clarke says:
      AJ Clarke
      Unfortunately I am not sure how to extend the Beaver Builder. I am more of a "Visual Composer" user at the moment.
      Admin
    • Hi Webweaverman! Beaver Builder supports both short codes and widgets. Most 3rd party plugins (at least ones that render something on the front end) provide one or the other to use.
  4. Joe Fylan says:
    If the 3rd party plugin adds any widgets to your site, they can be inserted into the layouts.
    Author
  5. Charles O says:
    Thanks for the this review. Chris Lema also gave it a very good review so on the strength of two good reviews and no bad press on the web that I could find - I purchased. After using on several site I have to say - I love it. It is so intuitive and easy to use that it cuts development time immensely. In the past I used the Themify Builder and Visual Composer but both of those required saving or updating the page to see the front end. How time consuming. Plus they are clunky to use. Doesn't save time. With Beaver Builder I and my clients can edit pages and stay in the WYSIWYG interface all the time. Visual Composer was good in its time but has failed to innovate and I don't recommend it. I also tried Divi theme with its built in builder but I found that too difficult to use with clients. I was spending all my time trying to train them to use it. Too hard for them to make simple edits as the Divi builder got in the way. It is fine if you do this for a living but my clients are busy making money or providing services and don't want to become Divi experts just to make simple additions and updates. They got frustrated so I dropped it. The same with Thrive Themes' - Thrive Content Builder. My clients could not use it and it didn't have any page templates like Beaver Builder does so again it was a big support issue. Thive Builder also requires you start with a blank page and to only use their builder. With Beaver Builder I can append content to an existing page or post and stay in Visual mode WYSIWYG - nobody else does that. Since you help me discovere Beaver Builder and I feel I have found the perfect balance. Easy to use. Clients get it and love it. They love the page templates and ease of use. I have done a few sites now and haven't gotten any support issues.Just happy customers sending me checks and payments. It works and I don't need to buy add-ons like Visual Composer. My next step is to purchase the Agency upgrade and white label the builder - my clients will think it is my own. Using Beaver Builder with Genesis themes and Dynamik Builder theme is like finding nirvana - I can quickly create great looking custom sites with Dynamik now and not get bogged down with code and plugins. I highly recommend Beaver Builder. I might actually get my life back now as it is saving me so much time. Thank you - Thank you for the review. I hadn't heard of it before your review so you introduced me to my best productivity tool ever.
    • AJ Clarke says:
      AJ Clarke
      I am glad to hear you had a great experience Charles! Good luck with your projects ;)
      Admin
      • Geoffrey Gordon says:
        I also bought the agency label and am looking to white label it. I agree with you man genesis + beaver + dynamic is a wonder mix. Dynamic + Genesis = Custom themes Beaver = Custom easy to edit content that is html free. Although I am thinking that Beaver + Dynamic could replace Genesis as they have their own basic theme and child theme. Just like Genesis. Busy revamping my website and current service offering because beaver is going to make it easier to maintain and create websites. Clients wont have to know html or css.
    • David Hunter says:
      "using Beaver Builder with Genesis themes and Dynamik Builder theme " Why do you need to use all three ? Why not just BB + Genesis ?
      • Geoffrey Gordon says:
        David that is a good mix, i have had time to play with beaver builder for a while now. Beaver builder and its theme is actually sufficient, but if you want a little more speed, i would go for generatepress + Beaver builder. Genesis is lightweight too, but genratepress is just much easier to use and customise. Its also fast than genesis and that is saying alot.
  6. David Anderegg says:
    So with white labeling does that mean that if I purchase the $199 package I can't remove Beaver Builder from the footer?
  7. Joe Fylan says:
    David, I think it means it removes all mention of Beaver Builder from the admin area so you can use it on client sites. You definitely don't have to mention Beaver Builder on the front end of your site to use it.
    Author
  8. I am interested in giving it a go. Since a few of you are current users, can you tell me if this plug-in affects load time? My main interest is in developing mobile friendly pages, so naturally, speed is essential. I plan to keep the sites as compact as possible, as well.
    • AJ Clarke says:
      AJ Clarke
      Hi Joseph, it shouldn't matter as long as you have proper caching setup on your site. When your site is properly cached it doesn't run any PHP since it saves copies of your HTML, so whether you build your pages with a page builder or not it shouldn't make a difference. The biggest affect on your page speed is server related.
      Admin
  9. Beaver Builder is good. I try the demo. Impressed by how fast and easy it is, compare to Visual Composer. I really like it.
  10. Beaver Builder does not play nice with Genesis child themes. It is impossible to figure out how to use it to modify your front home page. It seems to force the entire site to get rid of side bars if you use the suggested method of creating a page for your home page. And that seems to be the only way to acheive a front home page. It seems that unless you are good at coding and developing (in which case you might not even need it) it will be impossible for you to use unless you get their theme, which adds an additional $100. I have tried the free plugin before deciding to buy it and it is impossible to find any usable instructions on how to simply 1) modify my front page, and 2) keep my blog and pages with their existing sidebar. I have wasted an ENTIRE DAY and gotten nowhere. So what I had hoped would make my life easier and saving me time turned out to be a huge waste. Sometimes I have to wonder if these developers have any idea who their average users are and what their needs are. I wish they would stop thinking like devs and developing for devs and start thinking of their potential customers who are average business owner users. This plug in should NOT be touted as easily usable with Genesis child themes. It is not. If I can't make the free plugin work then why would I possibly consider actually buying the plugin. I can only assume that if I can't find a usable tutorial for the free plugin, there probably won't be usable tutorials for the paid version either. My opinion, unfortunately, is that this has wonderful potential, but as it stands, it does not work like it is stated to work. And I resent having to pay an extra $100 to get the Pro package simply to get the theme that MIGHT make it usable. Then, have to renew every year to get updates. Obviously, I'm not an affiliate marketer, so my opinion is based on my user experience as an average small business owner just trying to get a site up that does the work it needs to do. .
    • AJ Clarke says:
      AJ Clarke
      Sorry to hear you have been having issues! I think you should shoot an email to the Genesis team because Genesis is a paid-for product you can ask them for support. Maybe there is something very simple that needs fixing or tweaked in order for both products to play nicely. Personally I haven't tested the Beaver builder with Genesis. That said, both things you mention (modify the front page and keep the blog/pages with a sidebar) definitely seem to be theme related because the Beaver builder is used only for replacing the content inside the post/page and not the way the theme handles your layout and sidebars.
      Admin

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *