Sneak preview – Canvas Page Builder [video]

We’ve been working hard at PootlePress on a major release for WooThemes Canvas users.

Canvas Page Builder is a fork of a popular Page Builder by SiteOrigin. We’ve worked really hard to make this work beautifully for Canvas.

Canvas Page Builder works with widgets. We’ve created a few new widgets that make page building super-fast and also worked hard to make all of the widgets that come with Canvas play nicely.

We’re hoping to launch this next week, so let us know what you think in the comments below!


92 responses to “Sneak preview – Canvas Page Builder [video]”

  1. This is exciting I look forward to it.

  2. looks really good. I’m sure I and my clients will like using that, much more that trying to make columns work. Looking forward to trying it.

    1. Thanks Kelly!

  3. Catriona Avatar

    Wow, this looks amazing. I come from a magazine design background and have been using shortcode colums create that effect but this looks sooo easy. I can’t wait to get my hands on it. Love you guys.

    1. Jamie Marsland Avatar
      Jamie Marsland

      Hi Catriona,

      Thanks πŸ™‚

      We’ve been Canvas Page Builder it internally for a while now and we’ve been blown away by how much easier it makes designing beautiful pages. We think you’re going to love it too!

  4. Chris Good Avatar
    Chris Good

    This looks excellent. Looking forward to getting my hands on it next week.

    1. Jamie Marsland Avatar
      Jamie Marsland

      Thanks Chris,

      You’re going to love it (I hope).

      Just polishing off some more demos this end to show its power πŸ™‚


  5. Chris Avatar

    What makes this Canvas specific? I’ve been using the Page Builder plugin for a while now, and except for the new widget, the demo looked the same as the standard install. Not complaining, just curious.

    I love everything you all have done for canvas, and can’t wait to get more!

    1. Jamie Marsland Avatar
      Jamie Marsland

      Hi Chris,

      There are quite a few things that don’t work with Canvas e.g woo widgets (component widget etc).

      The combination of Canvas + Page Builder is soooo powerful πŸ™‚


  6. Looks really good. How much will it be?

    Brilliant for people like us with a serious Canvas habit!

    1. Jamie Marsland Avatar
      Jamie Marsland

      Thanks Patrick,

      We’re still finalising pricing πŸ™‚


  7. Isabelle Avatar

    Looks good!

    – will it be easy to use for those editors/administrators that update the website?
    – what are the SEO implications of widgets?
    – and is that pootle text widget available already? – looks really handy!


    1. Jamie Marsland Avatar
      Jamie Marsland

      HI Isabelle,

      Here are your answers πŸ™‚

      1) Yes it’s super easy for Editors/Admins to use. It’s a massive step change in ease of use πŸ™‚
      2) There shouldn’t be any SEO implications – it still serves a page
      3) We are going to release the text widget as a free plugin – yes it’s super handy!


  8. Simon Avatar

    No subtitles I cannot hear. I can see the percentages, however can the spaces between the percentage cols can be control? For example I may want the space 10px or 15px?

    1. Jamie Marsland Avatar
      Jamie Marsland

      Hi Simon,

      Sorry about the no subtitles.

      At the moment you can’t control the space between the cols ‘out of the box’. You would need to add some custom css.


  9. Allan Todd Avatar
    Allan Todd

    Great work again chaps, look forward to the release.

    1. Jamie Marsland Avatar
      Jamie Marsland

      Thanks Allan πŸ™‚

  10. Chris Avatar

    This look great! Can’t wait. Thanks

  11. This looks really interesting, a couple of quick questions:

    1) how does the column structure work within Canva’s established responsive thresholds (i.e. does it inherit the woo column functionality here)?

    2) Do the widths automatically adopt the page layout width settings?

    3) Is there a full page width setting like woo has for the header/footer/slider?

    4) Are the rows assigned unique CSS ids so as to allow assign different background-color setting for each row?

    Many thanks!

    1. Hi Drew! How’s it going? πŸ™‚ So…

      1) Yes, the columns work responsively
      2) Yes, that’s exactly how it works
      3) Not in Page Builder but coming soon in another plugin we have coming out
      4) Not in version 1, but we do have it planned for one of the first things after launch

      πŸ™‚ Nick

  12. Hi Jamie,

    A good pagebuilder is much needed. What you’ve produced looks very like Pagebuilder by Site Origin. Ideally your pagebuilder will have all the benefits of Site Origin, IG and Optimize Press – the last one is probably asking a bit too much, but if you could combine the first two that would be great. In particular it is important to be able to have full width background options on the rows as well as being able to configure the row as well as the element eg background colour.. Also it would ideally integrate well with Black Studio Tiny MCE, Shortcodes Ultimate and SEO by Yoast plugins.
    No harm in asking! πŸ™‚

    1. Hi Simon,

      You’re bang on! As mentioned in the post, Canvas Page Builder is based on Site Origin Page Builder. I have used OptimizePress a lot and eventually got tired of how slow it was. The great thing about Page Builder is that it is super fast! OptimizePress has a lot of content modules, but in the end I now find it faster to do it myself (and with better results).

      The free Pootle Text widget is based on Black Studio Tiny MCE so you’re bang on there too. Ours adds in the WooThemes shortcodes and WooCommerce shortcodes and we would certainly consider add Shortcodes Ulimate too.

      Anyway, glad we’re on the right track!


  13. How about RWD support?

    Also, if I end up creating a page layout that I want to use again can I save it as a template or otherwise reuse it?

    1. Hey Joe,
      Yes, it is fully responsive (if you want it to be that is!). And yes – you can save Page Layouts as templates or choose a existing page to base a new page layout on. Saves a LOT of time!

  14. Look awesome Jamie. Your taking canvas to the next level. Keep up the great work on all your plugins.


    1. Hey thanks Aron!

  15. Paul Adkins Avatar
    Paul Adkins

    Exciting. Can hardly wait.

    1. Hey Paul – it’s going to be awesome! Ahhmmm, I mean ‘spiffing!’ πŸ˜‰

  16. Sounds wonderful! Looking forward to it’s release. You guys are putting out some great stuff. Keep it up! πŸ™‚

  17. Shane Avatar

    This looks AWESOME! I’ve been dabbling with different pieces of similar software and most are too complex or too limited. I’m excited about this one!

    1. Hi Shane – the key thing about this for us is 2 things 1) working perfectly with Canvas 2) speed!

  18. James Avatar

    I like the results. The lack of any preview in the Page Builder (all the slots just show the widget type) is a bit of a problem, as illustrated by the demo (you had to go in to edit mode to determine which had the picture).

    I might use it, but I can’t help but think that a slightly more WYSIWYG way of working with Canvas column layout might be a better solution than resorting to using Widgets.

    1. Hi James, I don’t think we’re saying that the back-end Page Builder approach is perfection. Front-end editors are a better idea, but at the moment most stuff from being really slow and glitchy. Overall we think this is the best next step for the immediate future. Totally take the point about previewing & this is something that others have mentioned too, so we will probably have a look into that in future versions.

      The key thing for us in using Widgets was to take advantage of the way Canvas currently works. Column layouts is certainly a useful feature, but when you start using features like the woo component slider widgets give you a huge amount of flexibility in Canvas.

  19. I love Canvas and use it for all my sites. I’ve been waiting eagerly for something like this to come along and make page building easier.

    I just have one question. Other page builders can slow down load times. How are page load time affected here?


    1. Hi Dave, one of our key principles in doing this plugin was page load times. I don’t think there is any impact here. ; )

  20. Two of my favorite WordPress tools, Canvas and Site Origin’s Page Builder. Cool.

  21. Wow, this looks awesome! I can’t wait to get it. The text editor also looks great. Column shortcodes stink, can’t wait to switch to this.

    Same question/concern as Isabelle re SEO implications. I stopped using Pagebuilder by Site Origin because I feared possible negative SEO implications. I had no data to support that though, so I’m glad to see you think it won’t negatively effect SEO.

    1. Hi Jeff, all it does is output widgets on the page. You still have to think about the content you are adding and making sure that is added right (e.g. text is marked up with the right heading tags etc) but logically I don’t see what the SEO problems could be. SEO is effected by poor page loading times and in it’s history Site Origin’s Page Builder had some issues, but these have been resolved.

      So our view currently is that there will be no impact on SEO.

  22. Very interesting! Will it have the Widget Deleted – Undo feature? Without that, I’d be terrified to let my clients do their own updates/edits!

    I’m testing another builder that does not have an undo feature. Scary.

    1. Hi Lana, yes it has the Widget Deleted – Undo feature – as you say – a scary feature not to have! ; )

  23. Just echoing a lot of what has already been said – GREAT STUFF!
    Looks awesome and will make rich layouts so much easier.

    A couple of points from watching the video:
    – Text widget should change from ‘Pootle Text Widget’ since it does so much more
    – Maybe something for a future version, so me small clue as to what the container is holding so you don’t need to open it to remember. Maybe a very small thumbnail for images and the first 15 characters for text.

    Also just a +1 for a full width container.
    Congratulations guys!

    1. Thanks Paul. How about ‘Pootle Advanced Text Widget’? ; )

      Great idea about the preview. We’ll think on that. Looks like a feature for the next update…

  24. Gedaly Avatar

    This is very exciting!

    You’ve got so many canvas plugins now (and more coming)… is there any chance you’ll sell an all access pass to all of them? I’m sure I’d have use for them all at some point, so I’d rather pay a flat rate and get them all rather than spend more every time I need a new feature.

    1. Jamie Marsland Avatar
      Jamie Marsland

      Hi Gedaly,

      Thanks – it’s something that we’re thinking about – but we’re not 100% certain when πŸ™‚


  25. Simon Kelly Avatar
    Simon Kelly

    That’s exciting, looking great! I’ve been using Advanced Custom Fields to make page basic page builders for my clients, but that takes a lot more work and isn’t as flexible as what you are building here. I can see this being very useful to build quick wireframes and concepts for my clients. Looking forward to taking it for a spin.

    1. Thanks Simon – exactly!

  26. Really interesting to see how you did this. I don’t think I would be really to stop using visual composer but i like the dynamic column widths by drag and drop. Well done though, if i weren’t already using visual composer this would be an absolute no brainer to start using.

    1. Hi Jeremy, understand why you like visual composer… have you got it to work with Canvas widgets (for example, Woo Component, business slider widget)?? Interested to know…

  27. Wow! I’m learning as I go and building my own site. Really looking forward to this as it looks like it will be a huge leap forward. (Especially for someone whose coding skills are at the rudimentary end of basic!)

    1. Jamie Marsland Avatar
      Jamie Marsland

      Thanks Kate πŸ™‚

  28. Antony Avatar

    Looks great. can’t wait to try it.

  29. Kristy M. Avatar
    Kristy M.

    Excellent! As someone who knows an intermediate amount of HTML and CSS, I still find it time consuming and sometimes frustrating to poke around code written by others, trying to get elements placed and styled “just so”. Canvas is already great, but this should make it even better. I’m curious too though, about what effect using a plugin like this may have on the underlying page code as parsed by search engines (?).

    1. Jamie Marsland Avatar
      Jamie Marsland

      Thanks Kirsty,

      WordPress outputs HTML which then browsers download and present. This means that everything search engines see is the final output (HTML).

      Using a Page Builder has no effect on SEO as Google just sees the finished HTML πŸ™‚

  30. This plugin looks amazing.

    I agree that canvas users need a full width row solution. Whether that is background and or centered columns. Once that option is available we’ll excellent flexibility.

    Another idea. The ability to create landing pages with the flexibility of page builder and the ability to hide specific elements like navigation, footers, logos or whatever you want to hide.

    That would be a home run.

    I know you have a hide element plugin but it would be too confusing to have to combine both plugins.

    Think the ultimate page builder that includes layout/content and control over what is visible and in specific grid structure.

    And icing on the cake would be the ability to define column wrapper backgrounds by background color or image.

  31. Jamie Marsland Avatar
    Jamie Marsland

    Hey Matt,

    Thanks for all the great ideas πŸ™‚

    The full width row solution is 100% on our roadmap as we want that too!


  32. Jamie Marsland Avatar
    Jamie Marsland

    Hi Everyone,

    Here’s a little taster. I built this page in 10 mins using Canvas Page Builder this morning…it’s such a creative way to build websites πŸ™‚


  33. You can’t release this plugin fast enough!

    1. Jamie Marsland Avatar
      Jamie Marsland

      Thanks Matt πŸ™‚

  34. Jamie Marsland Avatar
    Jamie Marsland

    Hi Everyone,

    Here’s another example. This time a fairly complex Magazine Grid

    What’s nice about this is you can easily segregate your posts by category into different sections on a page. This would have taken hours previously, but was only 30mins work with Page Builder πŸ™‚

  35. With this plugin will we be able to modify the home page layout of Canvas?

    1. Jamie Marsland Avatar
      Jamie Marsland

      Hi Matt,

      Yes it will πŸ™‚


  36. Hi Jamie & Nick

    Wow I love the idea of this plugin can’t wait to buy this

    I find canvas a little frustrating at times with layouts this should sort things straight out

    Will it work with some of the other woothemes like the one pager ?

    How much will it cost?


    1. Jamie Marsland Avatar
      Jamie Marsland

      Hi Wayne,

      The Page Builder has been built specifically to work with Canvas. Part of the thinking behind that is that actually once you start using it you realise you don’t really need other themes πŸ™‚

      We already putting together a one pager demo using Canvas + Page Builder and it’s super cool!


  37. Nikol Avatar

    This is VERY exciting!

    1. Jamie Marsland Avatar
      Jamie Marsland

      Thanks Nikol πŸ™‚

  38. Jamie Marsland Avatar
    Jamie Marsland

    Hi Everyone,

    Here’s another nice page built today with Page Builder

    Only took 15mins πŸ™‚


  39. Really looking forward to using this!

    1. Jamie Marsland Avatar
      Jamie Marsland

      Thanks Jules πŸ™‚

  40. Wayne Tierney Avatar
    Wayne Tierney


    Will it be ready today itching to use it


    1. Thanks for all your great feedback Wayne ; )

  41. Konstantin Avatar

    Yes! I want it so much! πŸ™‚
    Will there be a possibility to add custom background for a new layout. Like in landing pages? That would be very strong feature with your page elements hider!
    When the release date? πŸ™‚

    1. Jamie Marsland Avatar
      Jamie Marsland

      Hi Konstantin,

      100% agree and custom backgrounds is on our development roadmap to be released soon πŸ™‚

      We’re also adding some other cool stuff in there!


      1. Konstantin Avatar

        Jamie, thank you so much! =)
        Your site is awesome! =)

  42. Jamie Marsland Avatar
    Jamie Marsland

    Hi Everyone,

    Page Builder is coming out tomorrow – Wednesday 11th June.

    In the meantime check out this really really cool video of Page Builder in action


  43. What is the main difference between the new Page Builder extension you are releasing and the original Page Builder from Site Origin?


    1. Hi Pt,

      What is the main difference between Canvas Page Builder and the original Page Builder from Site Origin?

      Well, it is similar because we forked it. The main difference are four-fold:

      1. We have been using it with Canvas for over 6 months with hundreds of customers using it with Canvas. We fixed lots of bugs before the initial beta release and have been fixing further issues that customers have been having with Canvas. This means it is a much smoother experience for Canvas users.

      2. It comes with full email support which you do not get with Site Origin. This means that problems are resolved quickly without wasting time.

      3. We have added new features. Both in the current version 1.1.2 and also in the upcoming release of Canvas Page Builder 2. These include row styling features, Page Builder widget settings in the Canvas Theme settings and a better post loop widget. Version 2 includes many usability improvements as well as some cool features like parallax and video backgrounds for rows.

      4. It works seamlessly with our other Canvas Extensions like Page Customizer –

      Hope this helps!


  44. Hello,

    I bought this just now. I’m excited but a few notes so far;
    1) When I purchased Page Builder, their was a tick box to create an account with PootlePress. But when I log-in it doesn’t work, press ‘forgot password’ and I find “There is no user registered with that email address.”
    2) Where is the documentation? I notice in this forum there are some videos to watch, well, ok, but I had to search for that, should have been in my welcome email. Also, I do prefer written documentation to videos.
    Will provide more feedback soon, I plan to build a website today, hopefully in a few hours.

    1. Hi Craig,

      Glad your excited. After the amazing feedback we received yesterday, so are we.
      1) I have checked and it seems like you have an account with us under this email address. Any more problems email
      2) there are some very simple written instructions in the readme file inside the plugin zip file. As a company we mainly do video screencast tutorials, we find this most useful for must customers. We also offer email support for paying customers via We really, really invest time in our email support, so if the videos do not work for you, I suggest you email us and we’d be glad to help. We also focus extremely hard on making products simple to use, so sometimes the instructions and videos are simple because the products are simple.
      Thanks! Nick

  45. More feedback, OK, I’m officially confused about where to start. I download the Zip of Page Builder and I don’t know if this is a Canvas extension or if this is a plug-in.
    I really need some documentation.

    1. Hi Craig, see my reply on your other comment. The video on the product page here is also worth a watch:

      1. OK, I’m making progress, thanks. I think being able to adjust the size of columns via wysiwyg is awesome. Probably worth the price alone considering I can use this on multiple sites. Thank you for the support contact, that is probably the main criteria I use to judge web-dev products; support. Soon I will post the website I’ve made, hopefully in a few hours….

        1. Can’t wait to see it Craig!

          1. It’s still a work in progress, but I’m pretty happy with what you can do with Page Builder. I’ll be sending you a few email support questions soon, but I want to keep ploughing through it first so I have a list of questions and don’t bug you every 5 minutes;

        2. Looks great Craig! Glad you’re getting on with it!


  46. Hi Jamie and Nick

    Just want to say a big massive thank you for the new Canvas Page Builder
    and the Page Element Hider

    I seem to have lots of issues with formatting on Canvas but these two plugins have saved me so much time

    Thanks again Jamie and Nick

    Took me twenty to thirty minutes to sort this single page group website

    I am so impress I have purchased all the other plugins now

    Keep up the great work

    1. Thanks Wayne – all hard work is worth it for comments like this πŸ™‚

  47. Hi guys, looking forward to giving this a go. I bought Velocity Page and felt it lacked what I wanted. Tell me please on a totally different subject… what pop up plugin are you using for your cheat sheet?

    1. Hi Toby, interesting about Velocity Page… the plugin we use for optin boxes is called Optin Monster…

  48. Canvas is one of those websites that make me think “why didn’t i think of that”?
    It seems so simple, so obvious.
    I also think that about a Jackson Pollock painting!
    Like just throw some paint around a canvas!

    I just realised something.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *