WordPress 5.5 was released earlier this week, and it has a bunch of new and exciting features to improve the performance of your WordPress sites and make them more visually appealing and easy-to-use. The update named Eckstine has introduced changes to boost your site’s speed, security, and visibility.
Without further ado, let’s dive in and discover what WordPress 5.5 has to offer:-
WordPress has finally introduced Lazy Loading in its latest update, which will have a massive impact on your site’s speed. It is a native feature and will be automatically updated after you install the newest version.
Lazy Loading means that the website will only load those images and videos that can be seen by the viewer on the screen while postponing the loading of other images. This has a significant impact on the site’s speed and boosts performance. Faster sites mean more traffic, ad revenue, and satisfied customers.
Auto-Update of Themes and Plugins
WordPress has taken a big step towards securing websites by patching the vulnerabilities generated by older versions of themes and plugins. With WordPress 5.5, you can go to the Plugins menu and enable auto-updates for any plugin you have installed on your website. Auto-updates can also be enabled for the theme of your website under the Appearance=> Themes page.
Earlier, you had to install a third-party plugin for enabling auto-updates, but with this feature, WordPress has taken a big step towards keeping your website secure.
Default XML Sitemaps
An XML Sitemap is a file that contains information about all the pages on your website. It is a complete layout of your site with incoming and outbound links, images, and other information. A Sitemap helps search engines like Google to discover your site and index its pages.
WordPress 5.5 will automatically publish a Sitemap for your website. This will help in boosting your search results and increase visibility and discovery of your site. The default WordPress sitemap may not be as SEO-specific and detailed as the one provided by Yoast or other plugins.
Easier Manual Updates
Many site owners use a large number of plugins or prefer to update their plugin and themes manually. Earlier, their only option was to use an FTP client to upload the file, set to change after WordPress 5.5. Under Plugins => Add New, you can upload the updated version of your plugin directly like any other zip file.
This can also be done for themes under Appearance => Themes. After uploading, you’ll get the option to “replace with an updated version,” making manual updates easier.
Changes to Block Editor
The Block Editor in WordPress is where you spend most of your time creating and editing content for your website. WordPress 5.5. Has introduced multiple changes in the Block Editor to enhance your work ethic and accessibility in making changes.
Some of these changes are:-
- Integrated Block Directory
Block Directory is a collection of different plugins that help you add specific features to your blog.WordPress 5.5 comes with an Integrated Block Editor, which will give you suggestions. If you want to add a specific feature to your site, but don’t have a block downloaded on your site, the suggestions will help you to find the correct plug-in.
- UI Changes
A significant change in the WordPress Block Editor is the appearance and design. Borders and Highlighting have been improved, and the + sign to add a new block has been given a prominent look. You can also easily navigate the blocks and drag and drop their handles to rearrange the blocks easily.
- Block Patterns
The Block Editor already had reusable blocks and the option to save frequently used blocks. WordPress 5.5 improves on this idea and introduces Block Patterns. These are commonly used blocks with pre-configured settings that can be added instantly. This will allow you to quickly edit posts and maintain a consistency of style across the website.
Older Bowsers no longer supported
Internet Explorer versions 6 to 9 will not be supported by WordPress 5.5, this means less code and a faster performing site.
WordPress 5.5 is a major update that tackles many issues related to security and website performance. It will help your site be faster, more visible in search, and safer while increasing your productivity and editing capacity. Lazy Loading, Auto-Updates, and an Improved Block Editor are great changes. Update to WordPress 5.5 today and let us know about your favorite features and experiences with the update. Don’t forget to follow and subscribe to WP Uber.