25 Awesome Shortcodes & Page Builder Plugins For WordPress

25 Awesome Shortcodes & Page Builder Plugins For WordPress

Oftentimes premium WordPress themes come with all sorts of shortcodes and builders built-in, but what if you ever decide to switch themes? Well, you’ll lose all the capabilities of your shortcodes unless you manually transfer over the code to your new theme. Better solution? Use a plugin! There are many great shortcode and page building plugins out there that are perfect for spicing up your site without the risk of having to re-do everything when you switch themes. Below you’ll find a good mix of free & premium shortcode and page-building options, so be sure to take a look at each one!

Best Shortcodes WordPress Plugins

First let’s dig into shortcodes. These nifty plugins will make adding custom content to your posts and pages easy breezy. Adding buttons, tabs, toggles, social links and more has never been so easy!

Symple Shortcodes

Symple Shortcodes WordPress Plugin

The ultimate in free shortcode technology, I definitely recommend our very own Symple Shortcodes plugin developed right here at WPExplorer. It’s got loads of shortcodes for buttons, toggle, tabs, highlights, and more. With all these options it’s easy to create custom looking posts and pages no matter what WordPress theme you’re using. Plus it’s constantly updated to work great with the latest version of WordPress! It’s a great, and 100% free, plugin that you should install today!

Get the “Symple Shortcodes” Plugin

Vision Shortcodes

Vision Shortcodes WordPress Plugin

Vision Shortcodes is an awesome shortcode plugin from CodeCanyon that makes inserting and using shortcodes super easy. The plugin adds an easy insert button to your WordPress content editor, so all you have to do is click to add accordions, buttons, columns, dividers, drop caps, icons, pricing tables, testimonials and more.

Get the “Vision Shortcodes” Plugin

Shortcodes Pro

Shortcodes Pro WordPress Plugin

Shortcodes Pro is a free and simple shortcode plugin available on WordPress.org. The plugin makes it easy to create shortcodes, add TinyMCE rich editor buttons for your shortcodes to insert them into your posts, and Quick-tags within the admin panel. This is a great plugin, and since it’s free there really isn’t any reason not to get it.

Get the “Shortcodes Pro” Plugin

GT Shortcodes

GT Shortcodes WordPress Plugin

GT Shortcodes is an easy to use shortcodes plugin. With all the shortcode options, variations, styles, colors and more there are tons of shortcode possibilities. GT is also responsive, so as you insert block-quotes, icons, charts, Google maps, highlights, banner ads or any other shortcode it will responsively adjust with the rest of your WordPress theme.

Get the “GT Shortcodes” Plugin

Shortcodes Ultimate

Shortcodes Ultimate WordPress Plugin

Shortcodes Ultimate is a free shortcode plugin with over 30 shortcodes ready to go. Just install and start using them! This is a great free plugin with tons of useful shortcodes for boxes, buttons, tabs, etc as well as specializes shortcodes for adding a nivo slider, carousel, or custom gallery.

Get the “Shortcodes Ultimate” Plugin

Styles With Shortcodes

Styles With Shortcodes WordPress Plugin

Styles with Shortcodes is an awesome premium plugin. This plugin comes with over 100 shortcodes (including buttons, quotes, social bookmarking/sharing, alert boxes, and more) as well as a shortcode generator. The plugin is set up with a built in lightbox, custom post type support, and a shortcode insert tool. This is a great plugin for someone who doesn’t know CSS/PHP/Java but wants to use custom styling options.

Get the “Styles with Shortcodes” Plugin

Zilla Shortcodes

Zillashortcodes WordPress Plugin

The ZillaShortcode plugin by ThemeZilla is an awesome free shortcode plugin option. While in the visual editor, all you have to do is click the “z” icon to open a list of many shortcodes to insert into your page or post. This plugin includes a bunch of useful shortcodes, and is compatible with any theme.

Get the “ZillaShortcodes” Plugin

WordPress Shortcodes

WordPress Shortodes Plugin

WordPress Shortcodes has over 100k users around the world, and for good reason. This beautiful and free WordPress plugin includes lots of useful shortcodes for alerts, vcards, buttons and more. Plus it’s easy to add shortcodes with the shortcodes editor lightbox that allows you to add your content or make shortcode choices (by adding in parameters) before your insert them.

Get the “WordPress Shortcodes” Plugin

Intense Shortcodes

Intense Shortcodes WordPress Plugin

The Intense Shortcodes plugin is a popular shortcode plugin from CodeCanyon. The plugin includes 45 awesome shortcodes that you can use to create custom looking posts and pages with shadows, timelines, maps and more. Plus the plugin integrates perfectly with the Visual Composer Page Builder plugin mentioned below.

Get the “Intense Shortcodes” Plugin

Arconix Shortcode Collection

Arconix Shortcodes WordPress Plugin

Arconix is a free basic shortcode collection plugin on WordPress.org. The plugin includes 8 style shortcodes, 5 utility shortcodes, and supports 5 columns. This plugin is great for when you just need a few custom style/utility options, and if you know a bit of code the developer made it simple to make tweaks to the CSS of this plugin if you can/want to.

Get the “Arconix” Plugin

Authentic Shortcodes

Authentic Shortcodes WordPress Plugin

Authentic Standard Shortcodes is a free WordPress plugin from Authentic Themes. This plugin includes handy shortcodes for post/page elements you might want to add such as buttons, highlights, social icons, toggles and tabs. Start creating your own unique post and page layouts today!

Get the “Authentic Shortcodes” Plugin

Best Page Builder WordPress Plugins

Now, onto page builders. Each of these page or content builders make it easy for you to create custom page layouts. This way if you theme didn’t come with a page layout your want, you can just build it!

Visual Composer For WordPress

Visual Composer WordPress Plugin

Visual Composer is an easy to use page builder plugin that allows your to build beautiful pages all by dragging and dropping modules to your desired page location. The plugin also includes content “blocks” (the equivalent of shortcodes) for everything from Google maps and social icons to accordions and tabs. This is a great plugin built on the jQuery UI framework and Twitter Bootstrap, so you know it has a strong code core.

Get the “Visual Composer” Plugin

Themify Page Builder

Themify Page Builder WordPress Plugin

Themify released their own drag & drop page building WordPress plugin and it’s definitely a must have (and if you’re considering using a Themify theme the plugin is already included with the Themify framework – yay!). This plugin includes a great live front-end preview so you can visually see what you’re creating as you add page elements.

Get the “Themify Builder” Plugin

Elegant Themes Drag & Drop Builder

Elegant Builder WordPress Plugin

The Elegant Page Builder is a clean and easy to use page builder plugin. The plugin is designed to work with any theme (not just Elegant Themes). To add a module to a post or page simply drag it onto your canvas, adjust the settings, and change the size by stretching the container. You can also use this plugin seamlessly with the Elegant Shortcodes Plugin for all of your design needs.

Get the “Elegant Page Builder” Plugin

Page Builder by SiteOrigin

Page Builder by SiteOrigin WordPress Plugin

The Page Builder by SiteOrigin is a free WordPress plugin with nearly 500K users (wow!). This builder uses widgets that you can drag and drop into responsive multi-column layouts. This plugin works with the widgets you already have, plus adds some more that you’ll probably find useful (gallery, images, videos, post loop, button, callout, list, pricing, and testimonials).

Get the “Page Builder by SiteOrigin” Plugin

ZOOM Builder

ZOOM Builder WordPress Plugin

The ZOOM Builder by WPZoom is a fantastic page building plugin that you can use to create custom layouts without the fuss of having to learn code. Simply use the builder to drag and drop page elements into place. It’s that easy. Plus the plugin is responsive ready, so all your custom layouts will look great on any device.

Get the “ZOOM Builder” Plugin

MotoPress Content Editor

MotoPress Content Editor WordPress Plugin

MotoPress is a content editor WordPress plugin. The way this plugin works is by replacing the default WordPress editor when it’s installed. This way you can use all of MotoPress’ great page elements to create custom layouts – either from the back-end or in the front-end live editor.

Get the “MotoPress” Plugin

IG Page Builder

IG Page Builder WordPress Plugin

The IG Page Builder is free WordPress plugin that is an easy and flexible page building solution that uses shortcodes to make creating custom page layouts simple. The drag and drop page builder has lots of included page elements, but it also supports and WordPress widgets you’ve installed.

Get the “IG Page Builder” Plugin

Live Composer

Live Composer WordPress Plugin

With the Live Composer you can visually create pages on the front-end of your WordPress installation. The Live Composer WordPress plugin adds in a custom modules bar that you can use to insert and edit page modules such as text, blog posts, galleries, testimonials, staff members, promos and much more. This makes it easy for any user to create custom page layouts in minutes!

Get the “Live Composer” Plugin

Awesome Builder

Awesome Builder WordPress Plugin

The Awesome Builder from CodeCanyon is a versatile page builder that includes drag & drop page building elements and it’s very own set of shortcodes. This makes creating your custom posts and pages even more flexible. Plugin you can drop any WordPress widget into your designs while creating layouts for desktops, tablets and phones.

Get the “Awesome Builder” Plugin

Page Layout Builder

Page Layout Builder WordPress Plugin

The free Page Layout Builder WordPress plugin is a great option to quickly and easily create page layouts without having to be a web developer or designer. If you can drag and drop widgets, you can build a new page layout. Plus the plugin is compatible with over 3000+ widgets from WordPress.org so you can add even more page building options if you need them.

Get the “Page Layout Builder” Plugin

Ether Content Builder

Ether Builder WordPress Plugin

The Ether Content Builder Plugin works with any WordPress theme and offers a variety of features to build custom posts and pages. Use the visual composer to drag and drop the built-in widgets (or use third party ones) wherever you want.  With responsive options, grid sliders, headers, rich text, pricing tables, social sharing buttons, and more this is a truly great plugin.

Get the “Ether Content Builder” Plugin

PlugiNedit Editor

PlugiNedit Editor WordPress Plugin

PlugiNedit is a free WordPress plugin you can use to create custom layouts. With this plugin you have all of the benefits of an HTML editor, plus you can drag, drop and layer elements to design custom pages. The plugin also includes support for responsive, adaptive, fluid and fixed layouts.

Get the “PlugiNedit” Plugin

Content Builder

Content Builder WordPress Plugin

Content Builder is a helpful page builder plugin. Change up your posts and pages with drag and drop functions for the layout, gallery, tabs, videos, Google maps, headings, dividers, rich text or images. Customize your website with just a few clicks, add YouTube or Vimeo videos in a snap, and easily manage your content.

Get the “Content Builder” Plugin

Aqua Page Builder

Aqua Page Builder WordPress Plugin

The Aqua Page Builder is a free WordPress plugin that gives you the power to create custom page templates for your WordPress site. Simply use the drag & drop editor to create your own custom page layouts which are then saved as page templates. Then when you create a new page, just select your custom template to use your layouts!

Get the “Aqua Page Builder” Plugin

Reader Thoughts and Suggestions

Let me know what you think! Do you use any of the plugins listed? How is it? Or did a I miss a must have plugin? Let me know!

Kyla
Hi! My name is Kyla, and I'm the VP at WPE. Although I'm still new to WordPress, I love every bit and I have fun sharing what I learn with all of you!
Kyla
This article has 80 comments
  1. Adam says:

    Guess my comment didn’t get approved. Could I at least have a copy of it for an article I’m writing? Thanks

    1. AJ Clarke | WPExplorer says:

      I would love to see your original comment as well, but there wasn’t any…

      Admin
      1. Adam says:

        :) Wasn’t any what? The comment was a couple paragraphs long. Was that the reason?

        1. AJ Clarke | WPExplorer says:

          That shouldn’t be a reason for a comment not going through…Not sure what happened, maybe you closed the browser before the comment went through, idk. WP could have put it in the SPAM box, but I don’t know because we empty that quite often so I can’t check.

          Would love to hear your thoughts though!

          Admin
  2. Lateef Adewale says:

    i have used shortcodes ultimate and i so loved the simplicity. Thanks.

  3. Colin says:

    Thanks for this list, I’m looking for a good content builder and this has really helped. Ether and Visual Composer look like they might work, so trying to decide which one to get :)

  4. btw says:

    I can’t find a good working visual builder like “Visual Composer” or “Ether ” witch Ill be able to install on my WPMU (WordPress multisite), The license for both is per site and I would like my users to open as much sites as they want.. Any help?
    Tx

    1. AJ Clarke | WPExplorer says:

      In my opinion 1 multi-site install is a single domain and thus considered one site.

      If you use one I’m pretty sure no one will ever know ;)

      Admin
      1. Robby says:

        btw, checkout the FastLine Page Builder. It has unlimited installs per license and the developer version is multisite compatible.

  5. Webgirl says:

    Hi Kayla, I’m hoping you can help me. I installed ADAPT theme for a client, but bullet lists don’t work on the Portfolio pages – the only pages that the client is using. I installed Shortcodes Ultimate but the bullet lists are clunky and alignment of the bullet is unattractive. Is there any way I can fix the css for the Portfolio pages to allow bulleted lists? I changed the ul code but it also affected the top Menu – any help will be greatly appreciated. I couldn’t find any support pages or any way to contact the owner of this website. I’m sure I’ve missed it somehow … Thanks in advance!

    1. Kyla says:

      Hi there! Open single-portfolio.php and on line 59 add the class name “entry” on the single-portfolio-right div. We’ll update the theme soon. Thanks for pointing it out! :-)

      Admin
  6. Webgirl says:

    5:00am here and just followed your suggestion – YAY! It worked! Thanks SOOOO MUCH, Kayla! when my client wakes up they’ll be VERY happy :-)

  7. gokuu says:

    Hi ,
    If possible please tell me about the page builders used by Kriesi and GoodLayers ( themeforest authors).

    1. Benbodhi says:

      Both Kriesi and Goodlayers made their own custom visual page builders I believe.

      1. AJ Clarke says:

        The Kriesi builder I’m pretty certain is the Visual Composer plugin that has been modded. It looks and functions 99% the same. GoodLayers I think was one of the first people to have a page builder on a theme on ThemeForest so I think it is truly unique. Either-way a builder should be a plugin and never built-into the theme – would be a shame to switch themes and re-do everything!

        Admin
        1. Bill says:

          Exactly what I was thinking. Page builder should be a plugin which is what makes me not want to use themes that have their own built in.

          1. AJ Clarke says:

            Correct, the best way to do it is to provide support for a page builder plugin (such as out Total theme) which doesn’t have the plugin built-in but it includes extensions and better styling for it.

            Admin
    1. AJ Clarke | WPExplorer says:

      No comment was spammed. Comments are moderated and I was sleeping so it hadn’t been accepted yet.

      My personal opinion is that I don’t like those at all. The main reason is because if you create an entire site based on a page builder that’s included with the theme, if you ever switch themes where does all your content go? I think page builders / shortcodes that work directly in the post editor are a much better solution.

      Admin
  8. Steven Ma says:

    Hi Kayla, thanks for this post. Great list, it’s probably been the most helpful I’ve come across recently. After tediously demo-ing all the options, I’ve sett;ed on Ether as a content builder. Main reasons are that it is an add-on tab in the editor – you can still access and use the visual and plain text editors at the same time, and together with the page builder. Other builders replace it completely, so that if you switch from the page builder to a plain text editor, you lose all your settings. Second, Ether allows you to use your existing widgets in post layout.

    This plugin is now en essential that I use on all sites. Thanks Kayla, it’s saved me hours of development time when I was using column shortcodes before.

    1. Kyla says:

      Hi Steven – I’m so glad our article was helpful! The Ether plugin is a really nice one. I wish we could use it on our premium themes but they don’t have an extend license :-)

      Admin
    1. AJ Clarke | WPExplorer says:

      I really love the way this builder works, but I do not like the custom design. If you could make it match the WordPress UI it would be probably one of the best layout builders out there and I would consider purchasing for all my themes.

      Admin
      1. bytomigroup says:

        Like Now … Check it again it is a little bit colored but if you want I could change it for you … New features : Google Fonts Contact Form , PayPal Digital Downloads , Doc Viewer (upload a pdf , word doc , excel , and more… and it shows in front with google doc style) , Blog post module on 1 ,2 3 or 4 columns , 4 image styles and more….

        1. AJ Clarke | WPExplorer says:

          It does look better and it’s still a good looking plugin, but I really really think you should make it match the UI. Not just for me, but by default. There is no point in adding textures. Use the same gray gradients and standard buttons WP uses ;)

          Admin
      2. bytomigroup says:

        Hi … thanks for your suggestions…It is much faster now and it works great on all screen resolutions… thanks again

    2. Farzana Neha says:

      Demo looked great. Seemed faster than Visual Composer. May I have any discount for your plugin? :P

      1. AJ Clarke | WPExplorer says:

        Discount for my plugin? I have no idea what you are talking about. Symple Shortcodes is the only one I actually made and its 100% Free GPL.

        Admin
    3. bj93 says:

      @bytomigroup the demo only shows a blank page with the word “pageok” in the upper right corner

  9. Chris says:

    Great and very useful article Kyla. I’m kind of new to WordPress and though impressed by the possibilities, it does ‘bother’ me a bit that each theme comes with it’s own and particular functionality concerning (among other things) page composing and short codes. This may get cumbersome especially when developing websites for multiple clients and supporting those clients.

    A question: when using one or more of the plugins you mentioned in a theme that already has it’s own page builder and short codes, it could get ‘crowded’ in the page and post editing interface area. My thoughts would to disable the functionality of the them itself in such cases. Do you have any experience in that area?

    1. AJ Clarke | WPExplorer says:

      Every theme is built quite differently! But, in General WordPress works the same way. If a theme uses core functions (which I always tend to stick with) and you are very well experienced with WordPress in general all themes should have a familiar feel to them. We are actually currently working on updating all our free and premium themes so they all share the same file structure, admin panel and general setup. It’s a long/slow process, but by the end of the year we feel our portfolio will be much stronger ;)

      I am not actually a huge fan of page builders. I personally believe if you are a good developer you will create custom page templates that fit your client’s needs. This will ensure full future compatibility and keep the admin much cleaner for your user. Plus, if you work with page templates more you can probably easily re-use the basic cod for different projects.

      In general though…use the KISS attitude ;)

      Sounds like you really care for your clients, which seems to be scarse these days! Best of luck with your endeavors ;)

      -Kyla

      Admin
  10. Regina Timothy says:

    I agree. Nicely researched. Just what I was looking for. which one to choose is the new dilemma. I’ll go with content builder first.

  11. Wedding Photographer says:

    Hi there – my template has a ‘portfolio’ feature and as such does not have comments enabled – will any of these allow me to add comments to select portfolios?

  12. Arjun Salyan says:

    Great List! I have settled on using Shortcodes Ultimate.
    Thanks!

    1. AJ Clarke | WPExplorer says:

      I haven’t tried it yet, so I can’t recommend it or not. Personally I’m not a huge fan of front-end “builders” or the UI (doesn’t match WP), that said, it does look very easy and intuitive so it might be a good solution for beginners that can not afford a web designer/developer.

      Admin
  13. vijaykansala says:

    I have checked this page and found that its missing one another useful free plugin (Easy bootstrap shortcodes) to create responsive content based on twitter bootstrap 3.0, you can
    check [url removed]

    1. AJ Clarke | WPExplorer says:

      I tested the plugin you mentioned above, the issue is the plugin isn’t coded properly. The CSS targets standard div classes such as “.container” without any prefix. So your plugin would likely cause issues on a lot of themes (ruin main layouts). Overall it does look like a decent plugin, but needs some fixes. Thanks for the suggestions!

      Admin
      1. vijaykansala says:

        Hi Clarke,

        Thanks for your comments, but we are using this on Twitter Bootstrap3.0 based themes as this plugin is developed for that, and we have not found any issue yet.

        1. AJ Clarke | WPExplorer says:

          I understand, but you need to realize that most WordPress users probably don’t even know what Bootstrap is, people are going to download your plugin use it on their theme and if it messes things up you’ll just end up with negative reviews and lots of forum questions. Your plugin should work with any theme. Why would you limit your plugin to Bootstrap only?

          Of course that’s just my opinion ;)

          ps: I also realized that it changes the design of some custom metabox in the dashboard, which it shouldn’t. Make sure any CSS in the dashboard is targeting your plugin elements only.

          Admin
  14. Carlos Galvan – Photographer / Wedding Photojournalist says:

    Kayla, thanks for the post. I was looking for a good, easy, repeatable way to insert button links on my site. I’m going to try out Symple Shortcodes but was wondering, did you list these by order of your favorite?

  15. Vivek Srivastava says:

    Symple- one of the finest plugins made for wordpress. I have struggled many times to do small small things and for that I had to modify CSS and javascript. The plugin was so wonderful that I guess I will never have to write those kind of codes ever again. The plugin is so great that I felt a need to write a small series of articles on Symple shortcode. The first part of the article is – http://www.monkshouts.org/how-to-write-better-blog-posts-part-1/
    and the second part of the article is http://www.monkshouts.org/how-to-write-better-blog-posts-part-2/. Thanks WPExplorer team for this great plugin.

    – Apart from this review part I would like to ask you guys whether you could suggest some free plugin to write reviews on products such as building product store kike codecanyon.
    Is there any possibility to achieve this using Symple.
    - How can we modify functionalities of symple short codes such as if I want to use scale out of ten or may be to provide ratings out of 5 rather than percentage.
    - How can we write the name of testimonial author in the box only rather than displaying it outside the box?
    It would be great if solutions to these queries can be suggested by the wpexplorer.

    1. AJ Clarke says:

      Hey Vivek,

      This is awesome, thanks so much for sharing on your blog! We really appreciate it ;)

      I would recommend the Taqyeem plugin for reviews, it is a premium plugin though and I’m not a huge fan of the design but if you know CSS you can tweak it to look great.

      That said…if you just need simple ratings, you really should look into building it into your theme. You could use a custom field for the rating and then in your theme add code to display the rating and also for Rich Snippets.

      Admin
  16. Ahsan Parwez says:

    Interesting list of plugins. Will give them a test drive :)

    These can certainly speed up our work.

    Contributor
  17. Justin Busa says:

    Hi Kyla,

    Great post! This market sure has exploded over the last year. That’s probably why you haven’t heard of the new front-end builder we released last month :) If you’re interested, you can check out an instant live demo here… fastlinemedia.com or read more about it here…fastlinemedia.com. Thanks for your time!

    Justin

    1. AJ Clarke says:

      Hey Justin, I think you guys emailed us or contacted us via ThemeForest (or maybe left a comment before). Either way I remember checking out your builder and it is really nice. Looks freaking awesome. We’ll take a closer look soon. Do you guys have an affiliate program? I am running a business here so it’s pretty important if I’m going to hardcore promote your product ;)

      ps: Does the builder also run off shortcodes? And can it be extended via a 3rd party plugin to add/remove/customize modules?

      Admin
      1. Justin Busa says:

        Hi AJ, thanks for the follow up and the kind words! I’m glad to hear your initial reaction is positive. We definitely have an affiliate program and would love for you to join! You can email us at themes [at] fastlinemedia [dot] com if you have any questions about that.

        The builder doesn’t run off shortcodes, so users don’t have to deal with “shortcode soup” should they deactivate it, but it does support them and can be extended via a 3rd party plugin to add custom modules or turn off existing ones. Let me know if you have any other questions or feedback!

        Thanks,
        Justin

        1. AJ Clarke says:

          Thanks for the reply, I’ll have someone get back to you soon.

          Admin
  18. Mike Baldock says:

    Excellent post Kyla, I am new to WP and currently building my site using the Ultra theme, love it!! Are there any shortcodes/plugins available for menu bar customization? Or…can you direct me to support for this type of question?

    1. AJ Clarke says:

      Hi Mike, I’m not quite sure what theme you are using, but if its the Premium Theme “Ultra” that’s available on ThemeForest(that I made) please post your question there and someone will get back to you. Please explain what you mean by “available for menu bar customization” because I’m not quite sure what that means. Thanks!

      Admin
      1. Mike Baldock says:

        I want to change the tab text color in the main menu bar, it is the Ultra Premium. I will reach out to Themeforest, thanks for the help AJ.

  19. hillarynguyen says:

    nice article! I’m using IG PageBuilder and think that it is the best page builder I’ve used so far, even better than most premium builders.

  20. Paal Joachim Romdahl says:

    Hey AJ any plans on adding Symple Shortcodes plugin to the WordPress Repository?
    Is there an automatic update feature similar to plugins at the Repository?

    Have a great day!

    1. AJ Clarke says:

      Nope I will not be adding any themes or plugins to the repository for a few reasons, which I rather not get into. Symple Shortcodes (the latest version) does have built-in auto updates ;)

      Admin
  21. Pub Msu says:

    Basic question: are these shortcode plugins and page builders compatible with ANY theme or how does this work?

    1. AJ Clarke says:

      As long as the theme is coded properly, then yes they should work.

      Admin
  22. fredrix says:

    You mentioned shortcode soup. As I go about choosing a Page Builder from all these options I wish there were a way of knowing which of them were “shortcode based.” (is that the right way to say it?) Or which were not “shortcode based.” Is there a way to tell? Many thanks for this great post!

    1. AJ Clarke says:

      The only way to know if it’s shortcode based is if it says it in the product description otherwise I recommend you ask the developer. I personally prefer the ones that are shortcode based (for several reasons).

      Admin
  23. fredrix says:

    oops! I forgot to check the follow up notification – so I’ll do it here!

  24. Karen says:

    But- you seemed to say that leaving the shortcode soup was a bad thing? Can you tell me why you prefer shortcode based? Many thanks!

    1. AJ Clarke says:

      I prefer the shortcodes because they are a native function in WordPress. Some builders don’t use shortcodes and as a result you aren’t able to convert old pages into builder pages or easily expand the page builder to include new modules of your own. For example the Visual Composer has a built-in page that allows you to turn any shortcode you have into a page builder module and because a lot of plugins use shortcodes to output data it becomes very useful for non-developers. From a developer point it will also allow you to take an older theme that might have been shortcode driven and convert it into a theme with page builder functionality.

      Ultimately I just believe in using core functions. In the long run you will run into a lot less issues. Because shortcodes are built-into the core it’s less likely that a WordPress update would cause your site to stop working. Even if the page builder itself has issues, the actual front-end should always work.

      Admin
  25. bj93 says:

    This is really a great post with some great questions and answers.

    You said ” For example the Visual Composer has a built-in page that allows you to turn any shortcode you have into a page builder module”

    Does this mean that if I have a theme that has some shortcodes I can turn those shortcodes into a page builder element?

    1. AJ Clarke says:

      Yes you can learn about the shortcode mapper here. I include the Visual Composer for free with my Total WordPress theme. Honestly I think the design could be improved a bit, but overall its pretty fantastic.

      Admin

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