Elementor vs Gutenberg


We at Exemplifi build and manage high-quality websites hosted on various platforms, including WordPress, Drupal, Webflow, and many more. We came across many page builder tools for WordPress and narrowed them down to two of the best: Elementor and Gutenberg. In this article, we will look into some of the key features, similarities, differences, and effects of the two tools on web pages to help you choose the appropriate tool for your requirements.


Elementor is a third-party page builder plugin used to build websites in WordPress. It uses a combination of both jQuery and Vue.js for rendering front-end and back-end panels. Elementor remains the leading page-builder platform, powering more than 7% of the internet owing to its drag-and-drop page-building feature structured around the widget system, making it easily accessible to a large population. In addition to drag-and-drop blocks, Elementor also contains options for code editors, thereby providing a mix of both. Being a third-party page builder, Elementor operated independently from the core.


Gutenberg is WordPress's native page builder tool, which is built primarily using ReactJS. It facilitates page building with the drag-and-drop approach of blocks. Gutenberg was released in 2018 and is relatively new compared to Elementor. Being the default page builder, Gutenberg is deeply integrated into Wordpress’ core.

Let’s look into some of the key features and characteristics of the tools that affect your budget and web pages, starting with their pricing.


Elementor offers a “free” version that contains a big list of features like hover animation, headings, a template library, etc. It also offers a pro version under three pricing plans that contain additional features like a popup builder, a login widget, a CTA widget, and more.

1 pro website for USD 59 per year

25 pro websites for USD 199 per year

1000 pro websites for $399 per year

Gutenberg is a native WordPress plugin that is available for “free” along with WordPress.

Impact on page performance:

Page load time

Creating complex pages with numerous widgets and animations in Elementor can increase your page load time because each element added requires additional CSS and JavaScript files to load. In cases where complex designs are created, the number of Document Object Model elements will be high, which in turn increases the page rendering time.

While Gutenberg is integrated into the WordPress core, it does not add any additional layers of code unless many third-party plugins are used. Blocks like “latest posts,” which retrieve content dynamically, can add to the page load time.

User interface

Elementor uses widgets and is a grid-based visual editor that can be used to insert elements anywhere while designing an entire page. It provides advanced responsive editing tools, allowing users to switch between different devices like desktop, mobile, and tablet. Elementor is known for its better styling options like margin, padding, color, shadow, and much more.

Whereas Gutenberg uses blocks and is a content-centric editor that can be used to insert blocks in different areas of the pages. For responsive designs, basic responsive controls are provided, relying mostly on the theme's responsiveness. Gutenberg offers basic styling options like color settings, typography, alignments, and more.

Compatibility with other plugins

Although Elementor is a third-party page builder, it works well with popular third-party plugins like Yoast SEO, W3 Total Cache, WPForms, and WooCommerce widgets that adhere to WordPress coding standards. In addition to that, Elementor also works well with plugins that are specifically developed to extend Elementor’s functionality. Compatibility issues can arise when plugins with overlapping functionality are used or a plugin with conflicting JavaScript is used, as Elementor relies heavily on JavaScript.

Similar to Elementor, Gutenberg has better compatibility with popular third-party plugins and a considerable user base. Along with the rise of Gutenberg in 2018, many plugins to extend its functionality were developed that worked well with it. The themes that are being developed lately are made to have better compatibility with the native page builder, Gutenberg. Older plugins and plugins with JavaScript conflicts may give rise to compatibility issues.

Suitability based on requirements:

Till now, we have discussed some of the key things about Elementor and Gutenberg. Both have benefits and meet certain requirements of the users. Narrowing down the best tool is difficult considering their different use cases. So here are the requirements that each tool meets, which could help you choose the one that best suits you and your web pages.

  • If you want to create visually appealing web pages with advanced layouts, animations, and interactive elements, Elementor is for you. If you want to write articles or blog posts, Gutenberg is suitable for structuring and formatting with text blocks.
  • Both offer a free version, but Elementor contains limited features in the free version, while Gutenberg is completely free. So your budget is another thing to consider before narrowing it down to one.
  • If you want a standard website that loads quickly, Gutenberg can prove helpful, as it is a native WordPress tool and does not require any additional layers of code. Whereas Elementor is a third-party tool, it leads to increased loading time with the use of complex elements.
  • Both tools facilitate page building with simple drag-and-drop features. Elementor provides widgets and allows the building of web pages with complex designs. Gutenberg provides blocks that facilitate simple and standard web pages.
  • When it comes to compatibility, both Elementor and Gutenberg are compatible with third-party plugins with a considerable user base and plugins that extend the functionality of the two tools.


This article compares Elementor and Gutenberg for WordPress website development. Elementor, a feature-rich, third-party plugin offering both free and paid versions, is ideal for complex designs but can slow down websites. Gutenberg, WordPress's free native tool, is better for simpler, text-focused layouts with minimal impact on performance. Both have user-friendly interfaces and are compatible with various plugins. Choosing one of the two is dependent on the specific website design and functionality needs.

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