I don’t need to remind you just how awesome WordPress is. You know this already.
I can clearly remember the first time I started using the platform myself back in 2009. A daunting experience at first, but I soon learned just how powerful WordPress really was.
Since my discovery of WordPress, plugins and a host of awesome themes, I have built every single site that I own, including many clients sites with it.
Yep, I love WordPress and I’m sure you do too. Except for one little part of WordPress that I hate, well in fact it’s a pretty big part actually.
The editor inside of WordPress is what I’m talking about… It sucks!
And I’m sure I speak for many others out there who just struggle with making any piece of content, blog post or static page look the way they want it to look, using the very basic primitive editor inside of WordPress.
Well this struggle came to an end for me when I discovered Thrive Content Builder, and boy if you haven’t come across this plugin yet, you’re going to love it.
The beauty of the Thrive Content Builder plugin is that you can use it alongside which ever WordPress theme you so desire, be it Genesis or a Thrive theme even, when you create a custom page using Thrive Content Builder, your WordPress site isn’t affected one single bit.
In this review I’m going to share with you all of the awesome features you can expect to find inside the Thrive Content Builder, and how you can use it to create attractive, conversion optimised content, pages, blog posts and much more.
The Thrive Content Builder, also known as the Visual Editor, is a WordPress plugin created by Thrive Themes.
It was designed to make it easy for anyone wanting to create attractive custom page layouts inside of WordPress, without the need for knowing or writing complicated HTML or CSS.
The Content Builder plugin is a simple point, drag and drop editor that allows even a complete beginner, to place elements inside any area of a page or blog post within WordPress and make it look awesome. And there’s plenty of elements to choose from in the Content Builder plugin.
The best thing about creating page layouts using the Thrive Content Builder plugin is that it really is a WYSIWYG experience.
WYSIWYG = What You See Is What You Get.
In other words it’s a front end editor, nothing is done in the back end of WordPress, accept to publish the post or page your’e working on afterwards. A true WYSIWYG editor if you like.
In addition to being able to create custom design page layouts form complete scratch, Thrive Content Builder comes with many pre-designed templates, which includes:
So as you can see there’s a lot of different page layouts and templates ready for you to start using, in fact there’s currently over 120 page templates to choose from in total.
And the other beauty is that any of these pages can be customised even further using the front-end content builder editor.
OK so let’s look at some of the other key features inside the Content Builder plugin in more detail.
The front end editor is rammed with tons of useful design elements to help you create the perfect custom page layout and design.
Here is a screen grab my homepage in edit mode built using the Content Builder plugin. The editor can be easily collapsed giving you more on-screen real estate to work around.
As you can see from the image above all the tools and elements are located in the right sidebar. I personally find working with Content Builder elements a pleasure as I’m right handed like most people I imagine.
At the top of the editor you have “Save Changes” and “Preview” so you can check on the page you’re working on in real-time.
You also have a drop down menu to access page settings and of course to access the built-in landing page and other page templates which you can load immediately to begin working on.
At the top there is also an “Undo” and “Redo” button, option to view the HTML of the page you’re working on, save page content as template should you want to use the same design and layout on other pages of your site, and a revision history page, which is useful for reverting back to previous edits without losing your mind.
If you look at the image above you’ll see at the bottom of the editor you have options to collapse the editor, and you can also make changes to the global design settings. Currently there are three design settings to choose from:
What makes the content builder truly a stand out plugin from anything else we’ve seen before for WordPress, is the huge library of built-in elements.
Below you’ll find a screen capture of all the elements currently available. You will notice that the multi-style elements have sub-elements as well, which means even more design and creative ability.
The elements inside of the Simple Content Elements tab is pretty self explanatory, I won’t go into detail with those. You have all the basic elements, many of which you’ll be familiar with by using the default WordPress editor.
So let me share with you all of the elements inside the Multi-Style Elements Tab first, so that you can see what they look like inside a post or page.
Content Templates – This is where your saved content templates are kept, so that you can use them on other pages on your blog or website, a huge time saver.
Column layouts – One of the most awesome features in the Content Builder plugin. You can add a variety of column layouts and up to 5 columns in any page or post. Technically you could also add 10-column layouts simply by adding two 5 columns, each one inside a 2 column layout. See image below for columns options.
Content boxes – Allows you to add styled content boxes with or without headline titles.
Symbol box – Allows you to add a numbered or icon box with custom content placed inside. Perfect element for adding to your sales page or pillar blog posts. See image below.
Social Share Buttons – You can add customisable or simple social share buttons to any page using Content Builder. There are additional options for changing the settings and behaviour of your social buttons too. Social Share Buttons currently supports Facebook Share, Google Share, Twitter Tweet, LinkedIn Share, Pinterest Pin and Xing Share. See images below.
Quote share – Allows you to add tweetable quotes inside your content, great for boosting engagement on blog posts or testimonial pages.
Styled lists – Allows you to add styled bullet-point lists inside your content. Check out some of the examples below.
Dividers – Pretty self explanatory again really, some styled dividers to help organise your content in pages.
Testimonial – Another one of my favourite elements, perfect for landing pages and creating a client testimonial page on your site. You can choose from 5 styles with an added picture, or 4 styles with no picture. Here’s a sample.
Call To Action – Adding call-to-actions is a great way to engage with your audience on your sales pages and other landing pages. Make it easy for visitors to purchase your products and services. There are 5 styles of CTA’s to choose from, here’s one example of a CTA.
Guarantee Box – No sales page is complete without a money-back guarantee box right? And again there are 5 styles to choose from in the Content Builder multi-styled elements. Here’s a sample.
Here’s a list of the advanced elements inside the Content Builder plugin. You’ll really love these ones.
Widgets – Allows you to add a custom navigational menu anywhere inside a page. Useful if you’re building a custom homepage for your WordPress site.
Pricing table – Allows you to insert a fully customisable pricing table, perfect for those sales landing pages. Here’s an example of 3-column pricing table. You can create up to 5-columns per pricing table.
Tabbed content – Allows you to create tabs with specific content inside each tab. Can you imagine trying to code something like that up using the normal WordPress editor? Very useful feature for creating content with options on sales pages, product information pages and more. See image below.
Feature grid – The Content Builder provides you with up to 4-columns layout feature grids. These are particularly useful for highlighting key features of your products on sales pages, or services on your website’s homepage like I have used below.
You can currently add a feature grid with icons or with images.
Content toggle – Content toggles are great for creating content using minimal space on your web page, keeping your site clean and easy to navigate around. Each toggle can have it’s own unique headline, content complete with images, videos, links and more.
Table – Need to add a table to your landing page or sales page? It’s easy with Content Builder. You just drag the element where you want it and begin editing the number of rows and columns you want to add to your table.
Data elements – These are some very useful elements for adding to your coming soon pages, email opt-in pages or for adding social proof to your opt-in pages. Currently you can add a progress bar, fill counter and number counter to pages. See image below.
Google Maps – Need to add a location of your business premisses or offices for your customers to see? The Google Maps element makes it really easy to embed maps into your custom pages.
Countdown time – Another useful feature for adding to coming soon pages, time-sensitive offer pages, course enrolment pages and more.
Responsive video – This element is simple to add to your pages, helping you to make your videos appear clean and of course mobile responsive.
Table of contents – Perfect for adding to long pillar articles on your blog, course pages and more.
Lead generation – Perfect for adding opt-in forms to your email landing pages.
Post grid – Now this feature wasn’t added so long ago actually, but it’s truly an awesome feature at that, and it’s one that enables more creative form to take place using the content builder plugin.
If you’re building a custom homepage for example, where you want to add a list of your latest blog posts, this element has some awesome customisation options to help you do just that.
If you have a podcast page as well where you want to specifically add your latest podcast episodes, this element is perfect for doing that too.
Thrive Leads forms – Another lead generation feature that allows you to add forms designed in Thrive Leads list building plugin, into your custom pages and opt-in pages.
Comments – Finally we get to comments, and this is another recently added feature to the content builder plugin. You can currently integrate Facebook or Disqus comments into any page you want.
Other elements include inserting borderless content such as images and videos. Adding page sections with customisable backgrounds. Adding Thrive Post lists and Click To Call feature for business pages.
I want to make it very clear that every single element available in the content builder plugin is customisable. You can really create a branded page that not only looks great, but converts well as well.
Setting up this plugin is so easy, once you’ve purchased the plugin, you can access your licence key inside of your Thrive Themes account. See image below.
Once you’ve activated the software inside your WordPress dashboard, you can then start to create your custom page layouts and designs.
To get started you simply create a post or page in the same way as you would normally. You have to give the page a title first, then hit the save drafts button.
Once the page is saved, you can simply click on the “Edit Using Thrive Content Builder” button to get started. See image below.
A new tab will load displaying the front of the page, so the actual page complete with the design tools and elements on the right hand side, as shown in the image at the start of this review.
The price for a single site license is just $67, which gives you unlimited updates and 1 year of unlimited support.
The price of an unlimited site license will set you back $97, which will give you unlimited updates again, and 1 year of unlimited support. You can use this license on as many sites that you own.
There’s also an Agency license which will allow you to use Content Builder on your own sites and clients site. Once again complete with full set of features and unlimited updates and support for 1 year.
The Agency license will set you back $49 per month (paid annually), and will give you access to all of the Thrive products, including Thrive themes and plugins, and future releases of products too.
Like I said at the beginning of this review, I love WordPress and I love creating great content with WordPress. This plugin makes me love WordPress and creating great content even more.
With the Thrive Content Builder I can see what’s really happening directly on any page or post that I’m working on. I can see all of the elements and arrange my content to look just how I want it to look. There are no limitations to how I now create content rich pages, posts, sales pages or my email landing pages.
All of the essential features you would expect to find in WordPress editor are there, plus a ton of other amazing features as covered above.
Creating product reviews is also a great use for this plugin, especially with the product review template included.
This is a marvel of a plugin from the Thrive team, and if anyone want’s to be able to create great looking pages without having to learn HTML or CSS or any other code, this is for you!
I absolutely do recommend trying out the Thrive Content Builder plugin, you’ll enjoy using it and enjoy creating more beautiful, well organised content rich pages and posts for your WordPress site. Definitely a tool worth having in your online business toolbox in 2016 and beyond!
I’m one happy Thrive customer to say that much.
Here’s a quick video showing how the plugin can be used to build a landing page. The video is a good few years old now, but the plugin hasn’t changed much, apart from that it’s had lots of awesome updates added to it.