How To Add A Reusable Block To A WordPress Blog Post Using The Gutenberg Editor

If you have a specific collection/arrangement of text or images that you need to reuse in multiple blog posts, you can save yourself a lot of time by turning them into reusable blocks. No more cut, copy and pasting or reusing older posts in need of a freshening up.

#bloggingtips #blogging #gutenberg #GutenbergEditor

Not only will you be able to name your reusable block, but you can insert them just like you would a regular block.

To create a reusable block, follow the guide below. For the purpose of this demonstration, I’m creating a reusable block for a link to my ‘Entertaining Stories’ magazine on Flipboard.

How to create a reusable block

  • Create a new block and add your text or image to it.
  • Click anywhere in the block you have created and click on the ‘three dots‘ icon in the tool bar that opens.
  • Click on ‘Add to Reusable Blocks‘ in the dropdown menu that opens.
  • Give your reusable block a name so that you can easily locate it the next time you use it.
  • Click the ‘save‘ button to the right of the box where you have just named your block.
  • Your reusable block is now created.

All the reusable blocks you create are stored under the ‘Reusable’ tab in the list of blocks available on the Gutenberg editor. In the image below, I’ve highlighted the new reusable block I’ve created.

  • To add it to a post, select it from the list and place the block where you want it to appear in your post.

As this particular reusable block does not have a lot of text in it, I like to centre the text and give the background of the block a different colour. I think this helps the block to stand out in the post.

Don’t forget to add any pingbacks to your reusable blocks.

What can I use a reusable block for?

Anything you like, but here are a few suggestions.

  • Links to social media sites.
  • Lists of your social media sites.
  • An author bio.
  • An author photo.
  • An author bio and photo.
  • Details of your books and where they can be purchased.
  • Copyright notices.
  • Mailing list subscription links.
  • Links to certain posts on your own blog or those of other blogs.
  • Links to where customers can purchase your goods/services.
  • Link to your ‘about me’ page.
  • Links to notices such as ‘How to apply to become a guest blogger on my blog.’
  • Writing/photography prompt/challenge blog posts.
  • A weekly/monthly feature post.

Can reusable blocks be edited?

Yes. You can edit both the title and the contents of a block by clicking on ‘Manage all Reusable blocks‘ which can be found at the bottom of the list of the reusable blocks you have created.

  • From here, you can edit titles and content. You can also delete blocks.

Warning – if you delete a block you’ve used on previous posts, it will disappear from those posts and display a notice stating that the block is no longer available. So, be careful when deleting reusable blocks.

  • The title of a block can also be edited by clicking on the edit button of a block.
  • Any edits or updates you do to a reusable block are applied everywhere the block is used.
  • You can also convert a reusable block into a regular block by clicking on the three dots in the tool bar of the block and then on ‘Convert to Regular Block.’

I’ve saved myself a lot of time by using reusable blocks on my blog posts. They are simple to use and straightforward to create.

Do you use reusable blocks? If so, what do you use them for? Please tell us by leaving a comment on this post.

#bloggingtips #blogging #gutenberg #GutenbergEditor

Do you have any questions about reusable blocks? Leave them in the comments section.

Click here to join my ‘Blogging Tips’ magazine on Mix.Com.

Click here to join my ‘Blogging Tips’ magazine on Flipboard.

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53 comments

  1. This was a helpful post. I have links to my books at the end of each blog post. I’ve been thinking about changing the prices but that would involve editing every post. Using a reusable block would solve that problem if I’m understanding your post correctly. If I change the prices, the edit would change all the other posts with that block. I appreciate the tip.

  2. I had always wondered why WordPress didn’t have a way to save text so it could be used again, so I was thrilled to discover the reusable blocks feature. I’ve been using it it for my ending call to action (follow me, share, etc) that I use at the end of every post. This gives me some additional ideas. Thanks Hugh, you are so helpful.

  3. The idea of reusable blocks was something I was really interested in. But I couldnt see how they worked.

    How do you get more than one paragraph inside one block? If I try that it always just adds in below. I’ve managed a photo arrangement, although I dislike the lack of control in the layout.

    I basically want to get a reusable block for each of my books with cover and buying links, and hopefully a one sentence summary.

    1. Hi Jemima, that’s a whole new post, but there’s a block called the ‘Group’ block which allows users to group blocks together which you can then convert into one reusable block. I’ve played around with the ‘Group’ block but have not as yet used it on any of my posts.

    1. You have until the end of 2020 to make the switch, Mary. WordPress is withdrawing support for the classic editor after then. Therefore, any bugs or errors with the classic editor won’t get fixed. They have already moved a lot of support over to the Gutenberg editor. It’s one of the reasons why many bloggers have been reporting faults with the classic editor that seem to be taking a long time to fix.

    1. Yes, please do, Debby. They have saved me so much time when it comes to creating new posts and having to edit previous posts. I’ve also seen an increase in traffic to my blog and lots more engagement since I started drafting posts using the Gutenberg editor. More about that in an upcoming post.

  4. This is great, Hugh! I’ve been using re-usable blocks for my Sunday Stills posts (the rules and a heading). I found it very intuitive and easy to use! But I didn’t know that if deleted from a post, it deletes them all–EEEKK! I love your useful list of ideas. Thanks for digging into these little known blog techniques in Gutenberg!

    1. Yes, I learned to my peril that you have to be very careful when deleting any reusable blocks, Terri. It’s the only downside I’ve found with them. However, the benefits of creating and using reusable blocks far outweighs that detail.

      I’m glad you’ve found them so useful. I’ve started using reusable blocks in every single blog post. I’ve saved myself a lot of time doing so.

  5. I wasn’t able to change to Gutenberg for some reason, but I haven’t tried again, so I think I will look at trying again. If I do change over, I’m sure this will be very helpful as always. Thank you

        1. That’s great to hear, Colline. You won’t be one of those who will bet left behind when WordPress withdraw support for the classic editor.

          I’ve no idea why so many bloggers are afraid of trying Gutenberg. There is a long learning curve, but the benefits of using the new editor are amazing. It’s definitely the future of blogging.

  6. Another awesome blogging tip, Hugh. I’m a fan of reusable blocks. They are time savers for sure and help with keeping a consistent, cohesive look. I didn’t know that deleting a reusable block removes it from all other posts. Yikes! Thank you for this insight. Cheers! 🙂

    1. To my own peril, I found out that deleting a reusable block deletes it from any other posts you’ve placed the block on, Natalie. Caused me a bit of a panic, so it’s something I’m careful with now. However, the benefits of using reusable blocks far outweigh any disadvantages. I’m glad you’re already using them and finding them so beneficial. They’ve saved me heaps of time.

  7. Great tip, Hugh. I’m still not using blocks but need to switch. This is a good reminder about that, and a good tip for something I’ll definitely use. Thank you.

    1. You’re welcome, Rob. As I mentioned in an earlier comment, they’re a great idea and, best of all, if you need to edit one, the changes take effect on all blog posts where you have the block. No more having to find and edit blog posts one by one.

  8. i’ve been playing with re-usuable blocks in the last few weeks so I can get consistency in formatting of certain sections of a blog post. For example if I do a review I like to end with a few ‘fast facts’ about the book. Using the re-usable block saves effort in reformatting.

    1. You’re welcome, Irene. Creating and using reusable blocks has saved me a lot of time when it comes to drafting new blog posts. They’re a great idea and, best of all, if you need to edit one, the changes take effect on all blog posts where you have the block. No more having to find and edit blog posts one by one.

  9. Oooh, I’ve never used reusable blocks before but I can imagine this will be very useful for doing my daily April A-Z Challenge next year! Thanks Hugh! 🙂

    1. Yes, reusable blocks are excellent for daily/weekly/monthly challenges, Ruth. No more cutting and pasting or reusing an older post that may look a little dated. What I like about them most of all is that they can be edited and the changes are implemented on all posts where the block has been used. So you haven’t got to edit every single post. They save so much time.

    1. You’re welcome, Kathy. Reusable blocks save so much time if you have certain text/paragraphs/photos/images on all blog posts. They are also very easy to edit.

      There are many more blocks I’ve yet to discover on the Gutenberg editor. Plus, new ones get added monthly.

        1. At the moment the APP is not 100% Gutenberg compatible. What I would suggest is using your web browser instead. Safari, for instance, as Gutenberg will be 100% compatible there.

          WordPress is in the process of making the APP Gutenberg compatible, although there is no date yet as to when they are launching it.

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