Control user access by role

You can control user access to frontend and admin Page Builder functionality on the User access tab in Settings > Page Builder.

NOTE: For Page Builder Version 1.9 and earlier, see the article on controlling access by setting editing capability.

Here's a screenshot of the User access tab, with a description below.

If you have Beaver Themer installed, there's an additional Theme Builder editing access listing in the Admin section:

Access areas and default access

Each of the four WordPress user roles -- Administrator, Editor, Author, Contributor -- can independently be granted or denied access to two Page Builder areas in the front end and two areas in the admin area, as described below.


Area Description Default access
Unrestricted editing Full access to all Page Builder editing features. Administrator, Editor, Author, Contributor
Global rows and modules editing Full access to opening global rows and modules from a Page Builder editing page Administrator, Editor, Author, Contributor


Area Description Default access
Builder admin The Builder tab is displayed on the Builder admin menu, with full access there. Administrator
Template data exporter The tool for theme authors to export their templates. (Note this is different from exporting Page Builder layout templates.) See the article on theme author templates in the Related Articles. None

Restricted access examples

Here are more details about each of these four Page Builder areas and how user roles are limited when denied access.

Unrestricted and restricted editing (frontend)

With unrestricted editing access in Page Builder, WordPress roles are still limited by the capabilities assigned to each role. For example, even if Contributors have unrestricted editing in Page Builder, their default WordPress capabilities do not give them access to the Media Library. so whether in the WordPress text editor or in a Page Builder Photo module, they cannot upload photos or get an image from the Media Library. However, they can use the Photo module and use a URL to an image. For a list of the default WordPress capabilities assigned to each role, see the WordPress codex.

When Page Builder editing is restricted for any role, the user will see only the Wrench icon, as shown in the following screenshot. Notice also that the Content panel and Tools menu are hidden. There are no drag handles on the rows and columns.

To reinforce the uniformity across roles of restrictions on editing here are some common tasks in Page Builder showing whether roles with restricted Page Builder editing can accomplish them.

Page Builder task Administrator Editor Author Contributor
Access the Tools menu no no no no
Access the content panel no no no no
Edit and save existing (nonglobal) rows and modules yes yes yes (Posts only) yes (Posts only)
Edit and save existing columns no no no no
Resize rows and columns with drag handles or settings no no no no
Move rows, columns, noand modules around in the layout no no no no
Delete rows, columns, and modules no no no no
Save nonglobal rows and modules yes yes yes yes
Use saved rows and modules no no no no
Save layout templates no no no
Publish, save, and discard edited pages. yes yes Submit for review, save, discard

In addition, users whose frontend access is restricted will not see the Builder menu in the WordPress admin panel.

What does this mean? Essentially every role is limited to editing row and module content in existing layouts. They cannot alter the layout, delete rows or modules, or create new pages in Page Builder. In nearly all cases, you'll need at least one role who has unrestricted editing capability.

Ability to edit global rows and modules (frontend)

By default, all user roles can save, edit and delete rows and modules globally -- in Page Builder layout, in the Content panel, and from the Builder menu.

To any role whose access to editing global rows and modules is restricted, the following restrictions apply:

  • If a global row or module appears in a layout, it displays a lock icon in the toolbar, as shown in the following screenshot.
  • The user can still save standard rows and modules can't save them globally because the Global checkbox is missing, as you can see in this screenshot.
  • Users with unrestricted editing access can drag a global row or module from the Content panel into the layout, but the global row or module will display the lock and can't be deleted. The only option would be to delete the column or row in which it appears.

Note: Enabling a user role in this field depends on unrestricted frontend access for that user role. See the User access hierarchy section below.

Builder admin (admin)

By default, only Administrators can access the Builder menu in the WordPress admin panel.

Having access means the following:

  • You can see the Builder menu in the WordPress admin panel
  • You can edit and save templates, rows, and modules

Note: Enabling a user role in this field depends on unrestricted frontend access for that user role. See the User access hierarchy section below.

Theme Builder editing (admin)

If you have Beaver Themer installed, you'll see an additional category on the User access tab for Theme Builder editing. By default, only Administrators have access. Having access means you can create, edit, and save Theme Builder layouts. If access is restricted through this setting, users may still see the Theme Builder submenu item, but if they click a submenu item they'll see a message that they're not allowed to edit.

User access hierarchy

There is a user access hierarchy to these frontend and admin areas, as follows:

  • Users who get global row and module editing access require unrestricted editing access.
  • Users who get Builder admin access must have unrestricted editing access.
  • Users who get Theme Builder editing access must have unrestricted editing access and Builder admin access.

Restricted access to either unrestricted frontend editing or the Builder admin removes the Builder menu from the WordPress admin panel, and enabling access at a lower level (Builder admin or Theme layout editing) will not add it back.