If you’ve spent any time looking for WordPress plugins online, chances are you’ve encountered page builders. These handy tools make it easier for non-coders to design attractive sites with lots of cool features. There are plenty of popular options, which you’ll see recommended time and time again.
At the same time, few of these solutions try anything particularly new. If you’re in the market for a page builder, whether as a new or an experienced WordPress user, it’s worth seeing what else is out there. Colibri, for example, is an up-and-coming page builder with an exciting new way of enabling you to design pages.
In this post, we’re going to introduce you to Colibri and show you how it works. Let’s jump right in!
Why You May Need a Page Builder in the First Place
As a platform, WordPress makes it pretty easy to create content. At the same time, its default feature set is fairly limited. Plugins are necessary for adding in key functionality – such as the ability to design posts and pages in a front-end visual interface.
That’s where page builders come in. These solutions enable you to drag-and-drop elements onto the page, rearrange and customize them, and add in cool features. WordPress itself now has a basic page builder in the form of the new Block Editor, although it’s simple enough that it’s not yet competitive with external tools.
There are a lot of popular page builders that have been around for years, and many of them have a lot to offer. Still, almost all of the existing solutions have the same downside. They can only be used to create parts of your site – for example, only your pages and posts.
This makes it difficult to ensure that all of your site’s content looks the same, and provides limited control over your headers, footers, menus, and so on. Even page builders that do let you modify some of those elements require a lot of switching back and forth between various parts of the WordPress dashboard, which can be time-consuming.
Fortunately, there are up-and-coming entries in the page builder market that are looking to address those issues. Next up, we’ll show you one option that’s definitely worth checking out.
An Introduction to Colibri – A New Type of Page Builder
Colibri is a WordPress page builder, but it doesn’t look much like its competitors. That’s because it isn’t a plugin, but an online platform for creating WordPress websites:
With this platform, you can set up a new WordPress site through your online account and start editing it right away in your browser. You’ll be able to design entire pages from top to bottom – including content, footers, headers, menus, and so on.
Plus, all of that work happens in one screen that’s based on the familiar WordPress Customizer. This makes the design process quick and streamlined, and eliminates the need to navigate around to various tabs and settings. It’s designed from the ground up to be an intuitive, user-friendly system for building attractive websites fast.
Some of Colibri’s key features include:
- An editing interface that lets you design your entire site within the WordPress Customizer
- Lots of pre-built content to get you started, including more than 150 page sections
- 25+ components you can use in the drag-and-drop editor, including the basics as well as contact forms, buttons, maps, social icons, various types of menus, and more
- Plenty of customization options, enabling you to tweak each element’s styling
- A responsive design, so your site will look good and function smoothly on mobile devices
Best of all, Colibri is completely free to use. It’s in ‘early access’ right now, which means the developers are still working hard on finalizing the platform. Don’t worry, however – it’s perfectly functional in its current state.
Plus, if you sign up for an account now, you’ll get free access to all Pro features, even when premium versions of the product are released later on. That makes this an excellent time to try this new page builder out, and see if you like its way of doing things.
A Quick Look at Colibri in Action
Since this page builder is so different from its competitors, it can be difficult to grasp how it works at first. In reality, it’s incredibly easy to pick up. Let’s take a look at what using Colibri to design a website is like.
After signing up for an account, you’ll immediately be able to start a new site (or ‘project’). You can begin from scratch, or select a template and customize it as needed:
We’ll select the Business 1 template for now, although there are lots of strong options here. After making your selection, you’ll be taken straight to the WordPress Customizer:
It may look like there’s a lot here – and there is. Every single part of the page can be selected and customized. If you click on one of the buttons, for instance, you’ll see new options in the sidebar that let you change its text, size, URL, and more:
On the other hand, clicking on the background will let you make changes to the page’s actual layout:
You can add and remove sections at will, and tweak nearly everything about them. When you’re done editing the first page, you can select the Add or edit other pages icon in the top-left corner to work on your site’s other pages:
This means that you can design your entire website right here in this one interface. At the same time, you can also use Preview changes to visit the site’s actual dashboard:
Once your site is ready to go, you can select Download Colibri Importer in your dashboard. This will download a transfer plugin, which you can install on a live site that’s set up on any web host you like. Running the plugin will enable you to import your entire project. This means that you can make your Colibri site live in just minutes.
The problem with a platform like WordPress that’s been around for a while is that it can become stagnant. People get used to a certain way of doing things, and stop innovating as heavily. Among other things, this has led to a market full of page builders that work largely the same way, and have the same basic strengths and weaknesses.
That’s why Colibri is so intriguing – it’s not afraid to try something different. It combines the ease of use found in a website builder with WordPress’ inherent flexibility, capitalizing on the strengths of both. The result is a page builder that’s incredibly streamlined, yet offers a lot of potential for customization and unique designs.
Have you tried Colibri, and what was your experience like? Share your thoughts with us in the comments section below!
Image credit: Lex Photography.