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WordPress 5.7 Will Feature Updated Admin Colors via @martinibuster

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WordPress announced a WordPress 5.7 milestone in updating the admin color palette. The new palette produces higher contrast and is easier to read. It represents a step forward in making the WordPress admin backend more accessible.

WordPress 5.7

The newest version of WordPress (version 5.7) is scheduled to be released on March 9, 2021. One of the goals for version 5.7 of WordPress was to update the admin color palette. The color palette are the official colors available for anything that is in the WordPress admin area.

There has not been an update of the color scheme, currently consisting of 199 colors, since the current palette was created.

This update will affect everything that is seen within the admin panel, including plugin and theme notifications that are seen within the admin area of WordPress.

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Accessibility and Simplification of Admin Area

The two goals for updating the color palette was to simplify the process of choosing colors for developers as well as to make the admin area more accessible.

This new version has a higher contrast between light and dark colors, which should make it easier to read the admin area for publishers who are color blind.

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This update affects all users. The difference between the old version and the new version makes it easier for all users who have access to the WordPress backend.

WordPress managed to reduce the number of colors in the current color scheme from 199 colors to only 99.

Easier to Read Admin Area

The difference in contrast and readability between the old version and the new version is subtle, as it should be.

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Many people may not notice it even though they might find the admin area a more pleasant experience without knowing why.

The change is not immediately apparent but a side by side comparison does reveal that there is indeed a difference.

Screenshot of updated WordPress admin color palette

Screenshot of updated WordPress admin color palette

Progress Continues on WordPress 5.7

There is still more work to be done between now and the March release of WordPress 5.7. They still have to create a color palette using CSS custom properties and a naming scheme that makes sense.

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According to WordPress.org:

“So far the general approach to this, that has generated the most discussion and agreement, is to create a base colour palette and then apply those colours to properties named after their usage.

This would give us the flexibility to utilise the dynamic nature of CSS custom properties to change the value of properties based on certain criteria, and without the danger of the name becoming misleading or incorrect.

The other big consideration is that there are a number of alternative admin colour schemes already available, all of which should be able to take advantage of the use of custom properties once implemented.

Therefore we need to keep the number of custom properties created concise and how we implement them needs to easily extendable.

As well as this we do also need to consider fallbacks for browsers that do not support CSS Custom Properties and this could impact how we name or implement them.”

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WordPress.org Deserves Acknowledgement

Some organizations believe it’s best to get a job done regardless of whether it is ready or not. That’s why some software and platforms are introduced to users in a buggy state.

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But that’s not how WordPress.org works. As can be seen with the rethink of the admin color palette, the WordPress team discusses and works on each part with the goal of creating something that works when delivered.

The Make WordPress development team has made great progress so far. There are good things coming in the next version of WordPress, 5.7.

Citations

Read the Official Announcement:
Introducing CSS Custom Properties to the WordPress Admin

Check out the interactive before and after sliders:
Admin Color Branch Comparison

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Inspect the Full Color Palette:
WordPress Color Palette

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NEWS

Google December Product Reviews Update Affects More Than English Language Sites? via @sejournal, @martinibuster

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Google’s Product Reviews update was announced to be rolling out to the English language. No mention was made as to if or when it would roll out to other languages. Mueller answered a question as to whether it is rolling out to other languages.

Google December 2021 Product Reviews Update

On December 1, 2021, Google announced on Twitter that a Product Review update would be rolling out that would focus on English language web pages.

The focus of the update was for improving the quality of reviews shown in Google search, specifically targeting review sites.

A Googler tweeted a description of the kinds of sites that would be targeted for demotion in the search rankings:

“Mainly relevant to sites that post articles reviewing products.

Think of sites like “best TVs under $200″.com.

Goal is to improve the quality and usefulness of reviews we show users.”

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Google also published a blog post with more guidance on the product review update that introduced two new best practices that Google’s algorithm would be looking for.

The first best practice was a requirement of evidence that a product was actually handled and reviewed.

The second best practice was to provide links to more than one place that a user could purchase the product.

The Twitter announcement stated that it was rolling out to English language websites. The blog post did not mention what languages it was rolling out to nor did the blog post specify that the product review update was limited to the English language.

Google’s Mueller Thinking About Product Reviews Update

Screenshot of Google's John Mueller trying to recall if December Product Review Update affects more than the English language

Screenshot of Google's John Mueller trying to recall if December Product Review Update affects more than the English language

Product Review Update Targets More Languages?

The person asking the question was rightly under the impression that the product review update only affected English language search results.

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But he asserted that he was seeing search volatility in the German language that appears to be related to Google’s December 2021 Product Review Update.

This is his question:

“I was seeing some movements in German search as well.

So I was wondering if there could also be an effect on websites in other languages by this product reviews update… because we had lots of movement and volatility in the last weeks.

…My question is, is it possible that the product reviews update affects other sites as well?”

John Mueller answered:

“I don’t know… like other languages?

My assumption was this was global and and across all languages.

But I don’t know what we announced in the blog post specifically.

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But usually we try to push the engineering team to make a decision on that so that we can document it properly in the blog post.

I don’t know if that happened with the product reviews update. I don’t recall the complete blog post.

But it’s… from my point of view it seems like something that we could be doing in multiple languages and wouldn’t be tied to English.

And even if it were English initially, it feels like something that is relevant across the board, and we should try to find ways to roll that out to other languages over time as well.

So I’m not particularly surprised that you see changes in Germany.

But I also don’t know what we actually announced with regards to the locations and languages that are involved.”

Does Product Reviews Update Affect More Languages?

While the tweeted announcement specified that the product reviews update was limited to the English language the official blog post did not mention any such limitations.

Google’s John Mueller offered his opinion that the product reviews update is something that Google could do in multiple languages.

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One must wonder if the tweet was meant to communicate that the update was rolling out first in English and subsequently to other languages.

It’s unclear if the product reviews update was rolled out globally to more languages. Hopefully Google will clarify this soon.

Citations

Google Blog Post About Product Reviews Update

Product reviews update and your site

Google’s New Product Reviews Guidelines

Write high quality product reviews

John Mueller Discusses If Product Reviews Update Is Global

Watch Mueller answer the question at the 14:00 Minute Mark

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