WordPress visual editor allows you to create content in a WYSIWYG (What you see is what you get) environment. The visual editor works kind of like a Microsoft word document.
The more you know about the WP editor, the more efficient you can become when editing posts & pages.
WordPress Editor Basics
The toolbar allows you manipulate the style of your content. It enables to following formatting options:
- Bold: Bolds your text
- Italic: Makes your text slanted
- Strikethrough: Puts a line through the text
- Bullet Lists: Unordered Lists that have a bullet point in front of each list item.
- Numbered Lists: Lists that have sequential numbers in front of the list items.
- Blockquote: Indents & Quotes the content, to make it obvious that content is quoted text.
- Horizontal Line: Inserts a full width line, which helps visually break up content.
- Text Align Left: Text that starts on the left side.
- Text Align Center: Text that is centered in the middle of the content area.
- Text Align Right: Text that starts on the right side.
- Insert Link: Allows you to add a URL to text. You also have the option to open that hyperlink in a new window or not.
- Remove Link: Removes the hyperlink.
- Read More Tag: Inserts a read more section, which can be used to create a “teaser” and content sections.
- Toolbar Toggle: Clicking this will expand a second row of icons, showing more editing options
The drop down menu allows you to change the styling of the selected text, from paragraph (normal text formatting), to various default heading styles. Use headings to create hierarchy within your post topics and sub-topics. As a best practice, your page or post title will use the “Heading 1” so all headings within your content should begin at the “Heading 2” level. Using multiple “h1” tags creates confusion for search engines when trying to discover topical cues.
- Underline: Puts a line underneath your content.
- Justify: Stretches your text lines to make the lines the same width, like in newspapers & magazines.
- Text Color: Allows you to change the color of text. Usually used to help certain content or words stand out.
- Paste as Text: Allows you to paste content from another source, without carrying the formatting over.
- Clear Formatting: Gets rid of any text formatting.
- Special Characters: Opens a window of special characters
- Decrease Indent: Moves text further left.
- Increase Indent: Moves text further right.
- Undo: Undo your last action.
- Redo: Redo your last action.
- Keyboard Shortcuts: Makes writing & formatting your content quicker & easier.
When you start a new paragraph, you can use the following shortcuts, followed by a space & it will apply the formatting automatically. (Press “backspace” or “escape” to undo the formatting)
- * = Bulleted list
- – = Bulleted List
- 1. = Numbered List
- 1) = Numbered List
HTML Text Editor:
The visual editor is wonderful to use, especially with all of it’s keyboard shortcuts. It let’s you see the styling of your text, before publishing….but sometimes, it become a real big pain.
If the visual editor is being a little funky when it comes to alignment or paragraph styles, switch it over to the “Text” version, instead of the visual one.
The text version allows you to go in and add HTML tags, exactly where you want them. This can help solve a lot of problems that the visual editor sometimes creates. The HTML text editor allows you to add the basic HTML tags or you can combine them with some CSS to give your content it’s own customized style.
The text editor also allows you to paste codes, so you can include embedded videos from YouTube, Newsletter Sign Up scripts or other extended functionality.
If you’re pasting a large amount of text into the visual editor, from another source, it’s usually smarter to paste the text into the “Text” editor so you don’t get any funky formatting along with it. When you paste it into the “Text” editor….that’s all you’re getting….the text. Then you can go back and format it anyway you’d like.
Distraction Free Mode:
Sometimes when you’re writing a post, you don’t want to be distracted and lose your train of thought…..so the distraction free mode definitely comes in handy.
It’s that box, right under the “Text” tab.
When you click that, it will take all of the other elements off the page, so you’re left with only the WP editor. This can prevent you from feeling overwhelmed when you’re writing.
Combine this….with the keyboard shortcuts and you’ll be way more productive!
WordPress Editor Quick Tips:
When you are editing a list you will notice that each time you begin a new line it will be numbered or bulleted as a new list item. Simply hit the “enter/return” key twice to start a new line (paragraph) outside of your listed elements.
When typing in the WordPress editor, each new line is considered a paragraph. This means that you some extra space is added between sections. To add a single line break (without the extra space) press: “shift” + “enter” keys at the same time.
What is your favorite trick when editing WordPress content?
We’ll make sure to check the comments to add your tips to our collection!