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Can you run a Wordpress website without Wordpress?

Those who are running a website using WordPress are not all overjoyed with the developments WordPress is implementing. Especially not Gutenberg. Who wants blocks? we all wonder since their own “Kill Gutenberg”-plugin is the best downloaded and used plugin in the plugin directory. 

I am an experienced blogger, I blog ever since blogging was invented. And I learned several editing experiences over the years, moving from platform to platform to finally embrace WordPress. But when WordPress started with a jetpack and implementing all unnecessary stuff I decided to become less of a fan. For after all it is my website, and since I host my website myself, I want total freedom about who is in control over what.  (read also: Can you run a WordPress website without Jetpack? )

I dreaded Gutenberg and all the blocks being thrown my way. But with the rumor going around that the “Kill the Gutenberg”-plugin is being discontinued I kind of felt I was stuck and had to learn a new editing experience as the WordPress team keeps calling it.

I brought it up in a conversation with my web developer, and he told me he was running his WordPress websites without Gutenberg. And I was dying to find out how. He introduced me to Press, which basically is WordPress without the blocks.

I was reluctant. I have a lot of plugins and modifications on my website, and my Dutch website has shop and payment gateways. How would going back to the classic WordPress influence my website’s looks, and speed, and how complicated would it be to switch?

This week I switched to ClassicPress

This week I also found out that Akismet is asking a lot of money from websites that run things like

  • donation button
  • shops
  • affiliate links

And although I did not receive their notification to start paying for my spam protection yet, for me it was like one drop too much in the whole WordPress bucket.

So, I switched that plugin for Antispam Bee, which seems to work just fine. And contacted my web developer to ask him how much influence changing to ClassicPress would have on my website.

My worries were:

  • would my plugins still work?
  • how would it influence the appearance of my website?
  • and my shop?
  • and would my payment gateways still work?
  • What would it do for website performance?

He did a quick assessment for me. He also installed the ClassicPress plugin in my plugin directory and told me I was all set to go. But I was hesitant. I am not so good at all this HTML stuff and website problems, that is why I am happy to have him. So I decided to ask him to help me. And he did.

And you know what? After 15 minutes both my website were up and running with ClassisPress. 

On the front end, it looks like nothing has changed, and on my end, in the dashboard, I am looking at the well-known “WordPress” dashboard in all its glorious functionality.

So what did my web developer do for me?

Basically, what Arnan from AJdG Solutions did was

  • look at my plugins and their compatibility, downgrading them where necessary so they would work with ClassicPress.
  • Installed Commerce, ClassicPress’ answer to Woocommerce
  • Checked my shop settings and made sure it was business as usual.
  • Check my theme for compatibility
  • and as a bonus, he cleaned up my database, which held some very old stuff from plugins that you remove but that do not remove themselves completely.

He told me he’s made a special offer for those that want to change to ClassisPress and say goodbye to Gutenberg, You can now have your assessment done for a special price.

Change to ClassicPress click this link to go to the website AJdG Solutions
and plan your assessment.

Or better, make your life a little easier and let him do the work for you. 

I highly recommend it.


What are the differences I noticed thus far using ClassisPress? 

  • When you add a link, it does not automatically make that link a text, so you have to type the text, select it and add the link, which is a little step back in time
  • my dashboard is a lot faster
  • glitches I experienced with tags not selecting at a certain height of my sidebar f.e. are gone, but also the “save draft” button seems to respond better
  • for ClassicPress privacy is a big thing, as is safety, so I had to scan my ToS and Privacy policy page, that seems to be mandatory otherwise you are stuck with a red notification dot under “setting”, but that was covered in 2 mouse clicks
  • the closing op unclosed tags seems to be working fine again, I had some glitches there where somehow in the newer version of WordPress my editor would add a lot of rubbish brackets to photos and edited text and that seems to be cleared up as well

So far I am happy!