WordPress is currently the most popular blogging platform on the internet, with over 60 million websites using it at last count. WordPress is also a very popular content management system (CMS) that lets you publish, edit, modify and maintain a website. Several of the top websites on the internet and countless smaller ones use the WordPress CMS system – for example, the Udemy blog itself, uses WordPress. Many people automatically turn to WordPress whenever they want to build a high-quality website, for personal or business needs. However, there are several other website building tools out there that let you do as much as, if not more than, WordPress. Wix is one such toolset that claims to let you build “stunning” websites for free. It also claims to offer everything you need to manage and create your presence on the web. Is Wix really as good as it claims? Can it match or do better than WordPress? And more importantly, which is the right platform for you?
You’re going to be investing hours of your time and your hard earned money into making your website, so it won’t do you any good if you rush into making your decision and have to do everything again later because you chose the wrong toolkit. WordPress and Wix have their own advantages and disadvantages which we’ll be looking at in this article. With the information, we hope that you’ll be able to choose the framework that best fits your needs. Both of these need at least a little technical expertise, however. If you’re a new to website development, we recommend that you take this course to understand the fundamentals of website design, before you actually jump in to create it. A good and well thought out design will carry you a long way. Once you know clearly know what you want, it’s that much easier to get your website up and running. This course in fact shows you how to create your own website – in just 6 hours.
Now let’s start comparing these two website building tools. Both of them have their strong points, as we mentioned earlier. However, WordPress has been around for much longer than Wix, and it has grown exponentially since it was introduced. It is much, much bigger than Wix. Does that make it better? Let’s take a look at what WordPress has to offer you compared to Wix.
The Range of Plug-ins, Themes and Support
WordPress was introduced way back in 2003. It was designed to be an open source platform- anyone can contribute to and build on what WordPress had to offer. In the course of a decade, the WordPress community has developed more than 26,000 plugins that have been downloaded hundreds of millions of times. At the moment, there are more than 60 million websites that use WordPress. WordPress has a very large variety of themes, from the ordinary to the extraordinary. Some of their premium themes have everything you could ever wish for – transition effects, animation, social media widgets and, most importantly, search engine friendliness. This course shows you how to spruce up the SEO for your WordPress based website.
WordPress does have several premium themes that don’t have any bugs and are as fast as you’d like. However, you have to shell out a lot of money for them- anywhere from $50 to $100 for a one time download.
One minor irritant, if you will, with WordPress is the periodic updates. The WordPress team constantly updates the WordPress platform – at least a few times a year – to keep it secure and up-to-date. Every time the platform is updated, your website and all the themes and plugins on it need to be updated too. All this has to be done manually, so it can be a major headache in the long run, especially if you’re technically challenged. Sometimes, some developers don’t release updates for their plugins and themes. If you’re unlucky enough to have used these on your website, you have to replace them to prevent problems. The premium content does get updated regularly, of course.
However, just because WordPress has more content to offer than Wix, that doesn’t mean it’s better. Because WordPress is open source, it makes it difficult to categorize or rate the content. Some of the themes and plugins have major bugs, while others are big and become unresponsive on mobile devices. The vast amount of content on offer also makes it difficult to decide what to use for your website, especially if it all boils down to technical stuff.
Wix, on the other hand, isn’t open source. This means that a private team has created all the plugins they have to offer. This is both an advantage and a disadvantage. Most of their content is great and well integrated into their website building tools. Since it’s a single controlled environment, they maintain a high quality. Very few bugs get through. Also Wix does not need you to update anything manually. The support team regularly releases updates that are installed on their own.
Choose WordPress if you’re looking for variety and a wide range of plug and play options that meet even the most obscure needs. Choose Wix if you don’t need many options and want to cut down on the manual updating work.
Ease of Use
We’ve established that WordPress has a lot of content to offer. But all this content means that handling WordPress can be a mite tricky. The GUI is not all that intuitive. The good thing is that since WordPress is so popular, there are many courses that can teach you exactly what you need to know for your special situation. For example, this course can give you a quick introduction to WordPress essentials, in just an hour. That’s an hour well spent!
Wix, on the other hand, is designed to be as easy to use as possible. The tool can be used by both newbies and experienced website developers. Wix lets you drag and drop important parts of your website, like shopping cart icons and comment sections, where you want them. It’s also very easy to see how your finished website will look like with Wix. Wix also has the advantage of having a very nice support team and community. If you subscribe to their VIP option (for an appropriate fee), you get to talk to a techie on the phone whenever you need to. If you don’t, you can just take a look at their in-depth tutorials and how-to videos.
WordPress doesn’t have any VIP support because of its open source nature. It does have a huge amount of tutorials and videos contributed by hundreds of users, however. You will always be able to find someone or some course to help address your specific need. For example if you’re looking to set up a specialty website say to showcase your Wedding Photography skills, this course can show you exactly how to do it. Better still, if you want to create an ecommerce website and make some money, you can learn how to do it in WordPress with this course – in just 90 minutes.
It’s possible to hire WordPress developers to do it all for you if you’re pressed for time. WordPress needs a regular upkeep, as we mentioned, so you might have to continue paying a developer to maintain your website. If you’re determined to set up WordPress yourself, this course can show you how to build a WordPress site from scratch, no coding required.
So how much money do you need to build a website with WordPress? First, you’ll need to buy a good theme, which can cost anything from $50 to $100. Thumb rule, the more money you pay, the better the theme is going to be. The premium themes are also the ones that are updated regularly. There are a few good themes out there, but you may have to search. You would also need a couple of plugins (widgets, social media access and the like), which can cost from $15 to $50 each. If you want a dedicated domain name, you’ll have to shell out extra for the domain name and the hosting. Or you could go with their free plan which gets you a <yourname>.wordpress.com site.
Wix is just as costly as WordPress, depending on the plan you choose. It has a free plan, but it doesn’t have much to offer, as you would expect. Some of the basic plans cost about $50 dollars a year, but that’s not going to be enough if you need a website for your business. You will probably want the VIP plan, which costs about $300 per year.
While a little investment is necessary to build a good website, you can save a lot of money if you use the basic WordPress themes and design it on your own. To learn how to build your own website and get the most out of WordPress you can take this course.
Dynamic vs Static Content
WordPress is based on the the “blog” format. It assumes that your content is going to be dynamic and you would want to post articles regularly. Many of the plugins and themes are based on that. Wix is more suitable for static content. You can put up a certain amount of content and just be done with it. So if you want an interactive site or blog, that you update regularly, WordPress is the better choice (in fact this course shows you just how to create a killer blog with WordPress!) If you want just a basic page that you update once and forget, go for Wix.
While Wix has several things going for it, it just isn’t as good as WordPress at the moment. Several users have complained on forums that Wix isn’t very responsive sometimes, especially on mobile devices. It’s also not as search-engine friendly as WordPress either. Wix is also limited by its design- there are only so many things you can do with it. Once you choose a template, you have to stick with it. WordPress is far more flexible in the terms of what you can do with it.
WordPress is the superior option if you want a cutting-edge, content-rich website that can match even the best-looking website out there. You can go for Wix if you don’t have a lot of time to spare and just need a good, professional- looking website that requires little to no effort to run.