WordPress 4.9: Five Improvements for the Casual User

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WordPress users, as you should already know, there’s nothing more important than to keep WordPress updated. More importantly, developers have included dozens of improvements that make WordPress better than ever before. Version 4.9, named after the late Billy Tipton, definitely deserves a look by anyone looking for a good CMS.

There are far too many improvements to list them all in a single blog post, so we decided to focus on five that will be important to casual users. All of them are improvements that will make your WordPress experience more enjoyable overall.

1. Persistent Theme Switches

WordPress users love the fact that there are so many themes to choose from. Unfortunately, switching between themes can do ugly things to existing installations. Developers have made great strides in addressing that problem in version 4.9 with improvements that make for more persistent theme switches. For example, widget and menu placement are more persistent between themes.

2. Better Theme Browsing

WordPress 4.9 offers an enhanced theme browsing feature built into the Customizer. Users can now browse thousands of themes and see what they look without deploying. This new way of browsing themes is a huge improvement over the old way, though users should be aware that browsing still cannot offer a completely accurate view of what a website would look like with a new theme.

3. Work Locking

When more than one person is responsible for the design and maintenance of a WordPress site, one person’s changes can be overwritten by another simply by editing and saving changes. Well, WordPress developers have introduced a work lock feature that prevents a user’s work from being overwritten. This is a great tool even if you are the only one responsible for your website. Locking your work when you’re done prevents you from accidentally breaking it next time you return to design mode.

4. Schedule Design Changes

WordPress implemented a scheduling feature for pages and posts a couple of releases back. Now they have gone one step further by allowing you to schedule design changes. Say you want to implement half-a-dozen changes to spruce up your site for the holiday season. You can make those changes now but not implement them until days or weeks later. Just schedule the date you want the changes to take effect.

5. New Menu Process

Finally, WordPress developers have made great strides toward improving the menu creation process. Menu creation is now smoother, more intuitive, and less confusing. You may still run into menu problems with some themes that are not up to speed, but it will not be the fault of WordPress itself.

There is a lot to love about WordPress 4.9. If you’re already a WordPress user with automatic updates enabled, your installation should be updated any day now. If you are not yet a WordPress user, now is as good a time as any to get started.

Sources:

WordPress.org – https://wordpress.org/news/2017/11/tipton/

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