Today we are reviewing two big players in the website industry – Wix vs WordPress. While one is a well known DIY website builder, the other hosts over 59,5% of all the websites in the world. Which one is best for you?
You may be an aspiring blogger in need of a website where you can showcase your writing prowess. Or you are a business owner looking to create a strong and noticeable online presence in the age of internet-powered sales and commerce. Perhaps you are a photographer wondering how you can create an online portfolio that can celebrate your art.
There may be more than one reason why people would want a space on the world-wide-web. And whether you are a blogger, a business owner, an artist, or simply someone who might find ownership of a webpage to be beneficial, all signs will point you to the direction of building your own website.
You can actually do this in two ways.
If you have the money and/or other sources of financial income, then you can simply go ahead and hire a professional. After all, web developers and similarly experienced enthusiasts are readily available to anyone who reaches out to them. This is probably the most painstaking way to get a website up and running in the shortest possible time, but it does come with a price. And it will most likely be the most expensive route you can take as well.
Thankfully, you do not need to settle with the first option. In fact, a second option is made available to you by the world-wide-web itself. You can try and learn how to build a website from scratch. Then, you can simply go ahead with creating your very own site. While it may sound intimidating, the Internet is chock-full of resources to guide you into making this vision a reality. And with the vast array of online tools and programs waiting to be tapped and used to their full potential, you can even build a website in less than an hour. All you really have to do is show some initiative and willingness.
Among the names that make it to the top content management systems list, Wix and WordPress are undeniably the CMS platforms that are making the rounds today. In case you are wondering, here is a quick overview that best describes these two:
Launched in 2006, Wix is a cloud-based platform known for enabling users to create their own beautiful websites in a speedy manner. It is one of the do-it-yourself (DIY) website builders that promises you effortless website creation even if you have absolutely no coding knowledge or experience.
Meanwhile, WordPress is one of the toughest contenders that you can find in the CMS and website building market these days. It is definitely a popular tool for both bloggers, web developers, and businesses alike, as it powers more than 32% of the websites that you can find on the web. From its creation in 2003, it has remained true to its vision of making website building a more open and democratic activity. In fact, you probably have heard about how the WordPress community embraces and practices open source principles.
It may be also worth noting that WordPress comes in two forms. There is free WordPress.com and then there is WordPress.org.
The latter (WordPress.org) will be discussed in comparison with Wix, in this article.
Wix versus WordPress: Which one is best for you?
Given that both platforms have thousands of clients worldwide and are actively used by several websites, your dilemma of having to choose between the two is understandable. After all, if both of them are so popular and in-demand, then there would be no need to breakdown their strengths and weaknesses.
As with any other website-related decision-making scenario, there will always be some pros and cons to any online tool and program made available by its makers. For Wix and WordPress, here are some of them:
Ease of use
When you come across a Wix-supported website, you will notice how seemingly effortless and seamless it is to edit the pages via the Wix editor. If you examine closer, Wix provides a very user-friendly approach to website building. All you have to do is choose from any of their available templates and use their drag-and-drop editor to move things around.
With its What-You-See-Is-What-You-Get (WYSIWYG) approach, you will not have a hard time exploring and learning Wix’s controls. But this is as far as customization can go with this platform. You can drag and drop buttons, photos, text boxes, and other similar elements, but you will ultimately be limited to what you are provided by Wix. In short, while it may be easy to use, Wix can be quite constrained when it comes to what it can provide you in the customization department.
With WordPress, on the other hand, complex control options are almost endless. This CMS platform’s flexibility when it comes to themes and plugin customization aspects is remarkably popular, which is why it is a great choice for both beginners and pros alike. Whether you want to go with the thousands of free themes in WordPress, or you can step it up a notch and tweak things if you love to take more control over its design and other aspects.
With the new Gutenberg editor, which was released alongside WordPress 5.0, you can now also use the drag-and-drop style editor in WordPress. We’ve also written a comprehensive tutorial of how to use the WordPress Gutenberg editor.
The learning curve and extra-time spent getting accustomed to the platform’s navigation controls may be quite challenging, but it is something that tutorials on the web and other similar resources can always walk you through.
Gauging how a website performs on the basis of the website builder associated with it can be evaluated on several points. For one, Wix only has select options when it comes to compatibility with in-app browsers and other devices. While WordPress takes pride in its flexibility brought about by a large community that shares its open source initiative and perspective. This flexibility, in turn, makes a WordPress-powered site highly compatible with many other platforms online for easier integration.
Speed also defines performance. And when it comes to websites, the speed by which a website loads and displays is something that can make or break its traffic volume. For Wix-hosted websites, page loading times are typically slower and are defined by their standard SSL. WordPress, on the other hand, enables you to create fast-loading websites that can even be enhanced with the use of several best practices and in combination with a reliable hosting site.
In the same manner, maintenance is also crucial to performance. There are undeniably several upsides to the exclusive and central control that Wix hosting provides. It gives you peace of mind especially when it comes to management of internal issues and bugs, as Wix does all of these on your behalf. But this may be a double-edged sword. Handing this much control to Wix can also render you helpless as you stand and wait for them to resolve your website’s concerns. The same worry can arise in case you need to create a backup of your website as, in the status quo, there are no automatic means available in Wix to do so.
For WordPress, the large community of open source developers gives you the assurance that you can get help and support from almost anyone and everywhere. Ongoing maintenance on your WordPress-powered site is always targeted at resolving bugs and issues. These fixes are covered by updates, ensuring optimal site performance every time you hit the update button. And to give you even more control and peace of mind, WordPress also provides you with an option to export and backup your site and its contents, so that your hard work will not go to waste.
Every product of web development comes with a certain value. For both Wix and WordPress platforms, there are several pricing plans available so you can better assess which one suits your goals and budget.
While Wix has a free website builder option, this may be the least appealing path for you to take. As it is for free, this alternative only provides you with a basic version of the platform. This means that you will have to get used to Wix-branded advertisements not just on the top of your website, but at the bottom part as well. If you want a clean and appealing website, this one may not live up to your and users’ aesthetic standards. Additionally, you will also have to settle with a subdomain provided by the Wix free and basic builder. So your plans on having a custom domain name cannot be accommodated as well.
The quick fix to this one is to get the paid version of the platform. Signing up for monthly payment plans gives you a range of $7 to $30 per month. The one-year plan starts at $5 to $25 package prices. While the two-year plan is from $4 to $22.
Pricing for WordPress comes in at a more flexible rate as the software in itself is free. You only have to pay for a web hosting provider and a domain name, both of which you can already get for as low as $2.75 monthly (as that offered by Bluehost). As for the themes and plugins, WordPress has several free ones which you can customize and modify to your content.
SEO (Search Engine Optimization)
Optimizing your website such that it shows up high within the ranks of the search engine results pages (SERPs) is definitely a given goal for anyone who wants an online presence. After all, you are creating a website to attract visitors, so you need as many points for ranking in the SERPs as you can get when you set up your site and its pages. When it comes to some aspects that can affect SEO, Wix does not come with an upper hand. For one, the page loading times of Wix sites are usually is slow, giving a huge impact on SEO in terms of speed and user experience. It also comes with a plain and basic HTML blogging tool, which lists your content chronologically. That being said, this chronological ordering of your blog posts makes it hard for you to customize the URL of your pages. And if you are familiar with effective SEO tactics, you would be aware that URL structures are also meant to be SEO-friendly.
WordPress, on the other hand, can enable you to create an SEO-friendly site with its features. Built-in and easy to generate XML sitemaps and social sharing, along with fast page loading time are some of the features that make WordPress a superior platform for your SEO-related goals. It is also mobile friendly and allows for URL structures to be modified for more optimized web pages.
The verdict: which platform is best for you?
With a quick round-up of the pros and cons of each website builder, we can see which platform stands out.
In terms of ease of use, Wix’s drag and drop feature creates an enticing tool, especially for beginners. However, when it comes to customization and performance, WordPress takes the spotlight. Thousands of themes and plugins allow for WordPress-powered sites to be fully customized. The same features also make WordPress-created sites to be functional and highly compatible with several other platforms.
As for speed, backup, and site maintenance, WordPress also claims the top spot with its fast-loading pages, easy to backup and export content, as well as its large community of developers.
WordPress also proves to give more financial leeway to website owners as it is compatible with more affordable web hosting companies like Bluehost which offers both hosting and domain solutions starting at a relatively low monthly price.
Finally, WordPress also gains points when it comes to SEO strengths. Because of its numerous features, WordPress enables websites to load fast, generate XML sitemaps and modify URL structures. All of which contribute to a more optimized website.
Ultimately, if you are okay with basic website building features and you prioritize fast and easy website creation, then Wix may be the suitable website-building option for you. But if you want to build a website in less than an hour using a flexible, SEO-friendly, and highly customizable platform, then joining thousands of users and other Fortune 500 companies in the WordPress community is the best solution for you.