When you provide web design services, this is a question you'll always get and can't escape, "What do you build on? Why that one? Is it better or worse than the others?" They're not annoying questions, they're just repetitive, but it's something you have to answer every time you deal with a new client. There is an extensive amount of web building platforms in which you can build a website, but usually, a freelance developer or marketing agency has their preference.
From a client's perspective, it's essential to ask your web agency or web developer why they recommend what they do, and how it can grow with your business. It also won’t hurt to do a bit of your own research.
In this article, we’ll look at the pros and cons of using two of the most popular website builders in the world: Wix and WordPress. That way, you can decide which platform to use for developing your website.
Whether you are creating a website for your business or not, you've probably heard of Wix before. They’re impossible to miss because of their marketing efforts. Wix has been around since 2006 and has built a reputation of being an easy drag-and-drop website builder. Wix is used by people that are only looking to create an online blog without paying a penny for hosting or a domain (see Wix free plans). Small businesses that need a simple online presence, or agencies providing websites for clients that need a quick turnaround but have a small budget also enjoy using Wix. Wix can be incredibly easy to use, but it can also be incredibly complicated. It's all a matter of the project at hand and the depth of functionality it requires.
Wix: Latest Updates 2021
PayPal pay later option - With PayPal, customers can choose to buy now and pay later. This allows you to accommodate more customer preferences and, in effect, more customers.
Verify your site with Naver Webmaster Tools - Korea’s most popular search engine, Naver, is an essential tool for many Koreans who search for information and products online. If Korean clients form a large part of your target market, then you shouldn’t miss out on this opportunity. Verify ownership of your custom Wix domain to improve your presence in the Naver search results by adding a meta tag to your site.
More customization options for structured data markups - In one go, you can now add and edit multiple structured data markups on pages of the same type. Build custom markups, use variables, and modify built-in presets.
Seamlessly set your robots meta tags on site pages - Instruct search engines on how to interact with pages on your site with customized robots meta tags. You may apply the tags to individual or multiple pages at once.
Customize the URL of your product pages and blog posts - While sitemaps, 301 redirects, canonicals, and meta tags will be updated automatically, you have the choice to modify the URL structure of product pages and blog posts to suit your needs.
Get notified about store pickups and stock shortages - You’ll receive notifications on your POS device if a customer chooses to pick up their purchase from your store or when one of your products is out of stock.
Apple Pay is now available - Adding Apple Pay to your payment options will let you optimize your store conversions. That’s because Apple Pay is preferred by many since it’s easily activated with a touch or glance.
Charge clients for Premium plans in Recurring Invoices - A recurring invoice automatically renews according to the billing cycle you set. The subscription fee goes to Wix and your share goes directly to your Wix Payments account.
Profit margin tracking - Monitor your profits and predict margins by recording the cost of goods sold for every item in your inventory.
Boost product page SEO by adding a brand name - Include a brand name in the Product object of the Wix Stores to boost your SEO.
Here are a few pros of Wix websites:
Quick Loading Site Speed
Building a website fast is excellent, but it has to load quickly as well, or nobody will want to view your website. One of the good things about Wix is that their websites load fast and, for the most part, perform well. If you'd like to test your website, check out this great tool called GTmetrix.
Like we mentioned earlier, Wix is used by a variety of people. Some are more advanced and skilled than others, while some are beginners just looking to get something live on the internet. The beauty of Wix is that they have a tremendous amount of template offerings that make it incredibly easy for a beginner to have a website up and running in no time.
Drag and Drop
“Drag and drop” has become an incredibly resourceful way to build a website quickly and efficiently. Drag -and-drop web building works just as it sounds. Drag your element to wherever you would like them and drop them on your template; all of the coding is done automatically for you behind the scenes.
An Array of Apps/Plugins
Websites always need to perform certain functions. With Wix, there is a vast app marketplace that contains tons of applications and plugins that you can add to your websites, such as live chat, blogs, client portals, pop-up bars, and more!
All Wix hosting plans include an array of marketing tools for your websites, such as email marketing, content creation, SEO guidance, and an analytics dashboard. All of these are accessible to the site owner when they pay for a hosting plan with Wix.
Here are a few cons of Wix websites:
This is probably the biggest downside to building a website with Wix. Unlike other ways to build websites, when you start with Wix, they have you permanently. This means that if you feel as if you have outgrown what Wix can offer you, you cannot export your code and bring it with you elsewhere. Their justification for this is that they feel as if their technology is exclusive and should not be used elsewhere. So, why is this an issue? Well, it's not, but it can be. If and when you feel like you want to leave Wix, it can be pretty costly to redevelop a whole other site.
Premium Plans Are Only for One Site
This isn't a huge issue, but it is more something to be aware of and note. When you purchase a premium hosting plan with Wix, you are buying that for one site and one site only. This doesn't mean you can build however many sites you want and make them live for free. It will only apply to one website that you have. Still, the plans are transferable, meaning that if you create site X and buy a premium plan to make it live, you can then transfer that plan to site Y, if you are okay with deactivating site X.
Wix offers free websites. Unfortunately, you will have Wix branding on your website and in your domain, so they kind of force you to upgrade your site. This isn't so much a bad thing as it will give your brand a much more professional look, but for those that are looking to build a free website, be prepared to advertise for Wix!
If you have had a conversation about building a website, you have more than likely heard of WordPress. According to Kinsta, WordPress powers 35% of all websites! That’s an impressive feat considering that WordPress started only as a content management system (CMS). Initially released in 2003, WordPress can be incredibly simple and easy to use/navigate. However, the more involved you need it to get, the more technical and challenging it will be! WordPress is another excellent solution for building small business websites, blogging, or even putting up eCommerce businesses. Compared to Wix, WordPress requires a bit more knowledge and a technical understanding of web development.
WordPress: Latest Updates 2021
WordPress regularly releases updates for safety and maintenance. Its most recent update, WordPress 5.9, is still under development. However, according to their website, WordPress 5.9 will introduce a new generation of themes and fresh design tools. For example, you will be allowed to change the way your header looks without switching themes. Design tools like adding filters to images and fine-tuning border radius on buttons will also give more room for creative expression. List View will also be available for simpler navigation whether you are editing a new post or just your header. WordPress 5.9 will be released on January 25, 2022.
Here are a few pros of WordPress websites:
WordPress websites don't cost much if you plan on making them yourself. WordPress is FREE to install on a computer and can connect with any hosting provider you choose. Designing a WordPress website or blog is relatively cheap when you compare it to hiring a web developer or website design agency to build a custom site for you.
An exciting report from Statista highlights that 52.2% of all website traffic was conducted via mobile. With that being said, it is incredibly crucial that your website is optimized for mobile viewing, and nobody is more mobile-friendly than WordPress. Almost all of WordPress's themes and designs are fully responsive, so you will be able to reap the benefit from a mobile-friendly website! Plus, WordPress allows you to preview how your site looks on a mobile phone or tablet, so that you can make adjustments when necessary.
WordPress websites come readily built with everything that you would want in an SEO optimized website. You can easily change and edit all SEO components on each page of your website. There are an incredible amount of plugins available to you for SEO on WordPress websites.
It is pretty standard in business that you will work with a continually changing group of people—some of those people being web designers or web development agencies. The beautiful thing about WordPress is that it is an open-source platform, so it will not be a difficult transition from one designer to the other; rather, it is extremely easy to switch designers.
Here are a few cons of WordPress websites:
For people who have no prior web design/development experience, WordPress can be a bit tricky to navigate and maintain. Like we mentioned earlier, it can be simple to use or incredibly complex. However, even with it being simple, you should still have some form of web designing experience, or you could find yourself easily lost.
As mentioned before, WordPress powers nearly half of the internet's websites. Because of that, it attracts much attention. And not just proper attention, the attention of hackers and cybercriminals. Also, because they have so many plugins readily available that have been created and developed by different people, you're not always sure or not if harmful code may have slipped in or not. Nonetheless, they’re constantly working on improving security in their updates.
Cost of Plug-Ins
WordPress has so many readily available plugins that are fantastic tools for websites. With that comes a price to pay when adding them, and usually, you end up having a bunch of plugins that are becoming increasingly costly. So, the cheap cost it takes to create a WordPress site could be made up for with the number of plugins that you add.
Conclusion: Wix vs. WordPress compared
To wrap things up, let’s take a quick glance at how Wix and WordPress compare according to cost, navigation, design, and SEO.
Wix has a free option but you can’t have a custom domain name and you can’t remove ads. Personal use plans start at $14 a month while business plans start $18 a month.
WordPress is an open-source CMS but you’ll need to pay for hosting, a custom domain name, a WordPress theme, and additional plug-ins. So, if you plan to get your WordPress site live, you’ll incur one-time fees of up to $200 plus recurring fees of $10-40 monthly.
Navigation & Use
Wix is known for its visual drag-and-drop web-building features. You’ll see every edit as soon as you make it. So, it’s perfect for beginners and it also has templates for you to build on
WordPress has an easy-to-use editor but you’ll need to save changes and look at the website to see how it looks. Knowing a bit of HTML is also preferable if you want to avoid headaches.
Design & Customization
Wix has over 800 templates for free plan users to choose from. But these designs might feel limiting to advanced users.
WordPress has 200 available themes but 5,000 third-party themes are approved for use. You can also customize your own theme endlessly. Premium themes start at $29.
Wix has the Site Booster app for SEO, which is available for Unlimited plan users but costs $3.44 monthly for free and Combo plan users.
Yoast is the SEO plugin that dominates WordPress and is used by 5 million websites. It has a free but very limited version but Yoast Premium costs $69.
Building a website, whether you're doing it by yourself or outsourcing it to a digital marketing agency, is no easy task. It requires a ton of work, creative thinking, strategic planning, and smart people. While there are many ways to build a website, Wix and WordPress are two of the most commonly used methods. We don't recommend one over the other because there are several factors involved in making a decision, including your level of expertise and the kind of website you need. There are also certain situations and certain clients that fit a particular CMS (content management system) more than the other. If you are building by yourself, give them both a try and assess which one you like more!
If you need help designing and developing a website, contact our new business team, and we'll be happy to help you build a website that works for your business.