Developing Your Own Web Page – Choosing the Right Tool For the Job

        So, you are looking into building your own website and are looking for some options.  Perhaps you have seen the advertisements for Wix on YouTube or heard about it on your favorite radio station.  Perhaps one may want something more robust to build an E-commerce site or host their own blog on without learning a lot of HTML, CSS, JavaScript, or some other language to get the job done.  Additionally, one may not be very tech-savvy and are just looking for the best option to build their site and get it up and running.  

        There are a lot of content management systems (CMS) on the market today and according to the website Websitesetup.org, “Almost 60% of the CMS market belongs to WordPress, and nearly 30% of all websites run on WordPress, while other CMS solutions such as Joomla run on 6.6% and Drupal run 4.6% of websites.”  Despite this fact, other solutions have popped up to challenge the market and provide customers with a variety of options, so one doesn’t have to feel compelled to set up a WordPress site unless they are sure it meets all of their needs.  

Image Courtesy of wpbeginner.com

          One of those alternatives is Wix, which promises ease of use to their customers.  I have never personally used Wix, so I will have to do rely on the research from sites such as websitebuilderexpert, wpbeginner, and superwebsitebuilders to gather enough information to provide a brief overview and allow one to make an informed decision. 

          In this article, we will compare the following categories: Cost, Ease of Use, and Design. 

  1. COST:

          Cost can be a major concern when one decides to build their own website, therefore; one will need to evaluate all of the options that both Wix and WordPress offer before making their final decision. 

           According to the wpbeginner site, Wix offers its basic website builder for free, however; there are a couple of things one should keep in mind before choosing to use this option.  First, your site will have Wix related advertisements on your pages.  While this isn’t necessarily a deal breaker, it can get annoying, especially if one is considering adding their own advertisements. 

          Next, one will not have the ability to customize the name of their site, which means the site will be something like the following: username.wix.com/sitename. 

          Finally, Wix does not offer any of the essential addons such as Google Analytics, Favicons, eCommerce tools, or Facebook Adds.  So, if one wants to have access to these features and gain the ability to remove adds and allow for better customization, they will have to upgrade to another Wix premium plan. 

          According to websitebuilderexpert, “The prices in the chart are based on a 1 year plan and start from $7 per month to $30 per month if one agrees to sign up for the month-to-month payment option.  However, if one agrees to sign up for the 1 or 2-year plan, they can save from 25% to 43% per year depending on the package one selects.”

Image Courtesy of websitebuilderexpert.com

          The following charts from websitebuilderexpert explains Wix’s five premium pricing plans.  As one might expect, the more one spends on a plan, the nicer the options become.  

Wix Pricing Plans

Monthly ($/month)

1-Year ($/month)

Savings (%)

2-Years ($/month)

Savings (%)

Connect Domain

$7.00

$5.00

29%

$4.00

43%

Combo

$14.00

$10.00

29%

$9.00

36%

Unlimited

$16.00

$14.00

13%

$11.00

31%

eCommerce

$20.00

$17.00

15%

$15.00

25%

VIP

$30.00

$25.00

17%

$22.00

27%

          What that means for Wix customers is that their price can range from free to $48 per year under the (2-year Connect Domain plan) and up to $360 per year under the month-to-month VIP plan.         

          If one chooses any of the following plans: Combo, Unlimited, eCommerce, and VIP, Wix will throw in a free domain name and provide the customer $300 in advertisement vouchers from Google AdWords, and Facebook Ads for the eCommerce and VIP plans.  This can be very useful for recovering the investment of one’s annual fees. 

Feel free to check out websitebuilderexperts review of Wix for more information. 

          Feeling confused by all of the options Wix has to offer?  Well then, grab the seat tight and hold on as I attempt to explain the options for both WordPress.org and WordPress.com

          The first option we will discuss is WordPress.org, which is where one can download the WordPress application, as well as several free themes and plugins.  This means if one has a sever in their organization or home, they will be able to host their own WordPress site with potentially little cost. 

        However, the cost of building a site can start to rack up when Worpress’s simplistic themes and plugins fail to meet the needs of the design of the site.  According to websitebuilderexpert, “With WordPress, you will have to get your own hosting service which will be about $7 per month ($84 per year).  Further, you will likely need to purchase a theme since WordPress doesn’t come with attractive free themes.  A pre-made WordPress theme costs around $30 – $80 per theme, depending on how reputable the theme developer is (general rule of thumb is, the higher the price, the more reliable it is).”  If one is looking to expand the functionality of their site, they may have to add in additional plugins which may range anywhere from free up to $50 per plugin. 

          Additionally, if one does not have their own hosting environment for WordPress.org, they will have to choose a domain name provider for their site which can cost about $10 – $12 dollars a year. 

          According to websitebuilderexpert, “The initial investment for a WordPress website could range from $139 to $200 or higher, depending on how many paid plugins you pick up or if at all.  This does not factor in the cost of hiring a WordPress developer if you want to make customizations to your site, which can range from hundreds of dollars to thousands of dollars.” 

        However, there are other ways one may be able to launch an affordable WordPress site if they have the time to educate themselves on the foundations of WordPress.  If one is pressed for time, then they might want to head over to the following links for more information. 

          Cost of Building a Website or How to set up a WordPress site and check out Elegant Themes estimate for building a professional WordPress website.  However , if one has the time to learn a little bit about putting polish on  a basic WordPress site and wants to save some money while doing it, then I recommend checking out the How to make a WordPress Website 2017 – Elementor Page Builder

          According to wpbeginner, One can start with a basic plan with a WordPress hosting provider like Siteground which will cost around $3.95 a month, if your budget can accommodate it, one should look into a managed WordPress hosting provider like WPEngine which costs around  $29 per month.

          Since there seems to be a lot of confusing information about getting started in WordPress, one might consider looking at the following links from WPBeginner:

Why is WordPress free and what’s the catch?  And  how to choose the best WordPress hosting which will hopefully provide one a better understanding of WordPress and aid in making an informed decision. 

  1. Ease of Use:

          If one decides to build a standard WordPress site, they will quickly discover that WordPress has a much steeper learning curve that Wix.  However, WordPress offers an unprecedented level of flexibility that one simply cannot find in Wix, so there is some level of inherent complexity that one should come to expect with this type of tradeoff. 

          The websitebuilderexpert site believes that in order to produce high quality WordPress sites, one must be an experienced WordPress developer, or be prepared to have one on retainer for making updates to their site.  However, this may not necessarily be the case, unless one is planning on building a very complex site.

          If one simply needs a barebone site that is easy for the non-developer types to build, then the Wix platform might be one’s best option. 

According to superwebsitebuilders, in 2016, Wix released the Wix Artificial Design Intelligence solution (Wix ADI) which makes their website templates  a breeze to setup and use.  Wix works on the concept of What-You-See-Is-What-You-Get or (WYSIWYG).

          What this means is that one can simply drag and drop pictures, videos, slides, or text into the website.  This is a great option for those who do not necessarily have a lot of spare time to learn new technical skills.

Image Courtesy of wpbeginner.com

          On the other hand, since WordPress does not have a visual editor by default, one will discover that the content inserted into the editor will not appear the same as it does when one previews or publishes the site.  In order to increase the functionality of WordPress one must install a separate visual editor. 

 Click the link for more information about drag and drop page builder tools for WordPress.  Some of these tools are available for free, or at very reasonable cost, which will provide one with more flexibility and ease of use.  For additional information, please feel free to check out the wpbeginner link for How to start a WordPress blog or check them out on their YouTube Channel.   

Image Courtesy of wpbeginner.com

Summary

Wix

WordPress

Ease of Use

A very user-friendly, drag & drop website builder. You don’t need to know how to code as Wix is catered to non-technical users.

Steep learning curve (not beginner friendly). It is best if you know how to code and that you are technically savvy, or hire someone who is.

          For more information, please feel free to check out the following site for more information:  Website Builder (Wix) vs WordPress SEO Guide

  1. Design:

          Perhaps one of Wix’s best-selling points is that if one is comfortable using a mouse, they will be able to build almost any type of site without the use of any coding.  While WordPress on the other hand may require a basic knowledge of HTML, CSS, or some other form of web-based code.

          Wix comes with over 500 ready-made templates that one can choose to build their site with.  These HTML5 compliant designs offer the designer the freedom to customize their site almost any way they like.

          If one chooses to further customize their Wix experience, they can install over 200 apps that will add a wide range of functionality to the site.  While there are a lot of free apps, several of apps may require the user to upgrade, or pay monthly fees. 

          Additionally, Wix offers its paying customers the option to setup e-commerce sites as long as they are willing to use PayPal or Authorize.net for their transactions.

Image Courtesy of websitebuilderexpert.com

          Wix has design options for almost any type of site imaginable and divides these options into easy to comprehend categories.

          Another advantage about using Wix is that their sites are updated automatically and comes with hosting included. 

          One disadvantage of Wix is that once one chooses the template, they are locked into that template for the life time of their site.

Image Courtesy of websitebuilderexpert.com

        While Wix is updated automatically and comes with included hosting, WordPress users must find a web host themselves and update their software manually.

Image Courtesy of websitebuilderexpert.com

          Unlike Wix, it is highly recommended that one should have at least a basic understanding of HTML and other web markup languages when they choose to build a WordPress site.  Without these skills, it will be more difficult for the developer to build and maintain a WordPress site.  Additionally, WordPress developers will have to find their own hosting solutions, and in most cases, there will have to update their websites manually. 

          Some may also argue that WordPress sites are insecure because they have been prone to hacking and defacing security events.  While this is somewhat true, there are several factors that one must take into consideration before condemning the platform.  For one thing, since there are so many WordPress sites in the world, the WordPress developers are able to find potential vulnerabilities and release updates to the software fairly rapidly.  Additionally, a good WordPress host will have security baked into their hosting environment, and if one is still concerned about security then there are hundreds of applications that can shore up your site and even make a backups.  Of course, this all requires more effort to maintain than a Wix site.

          With all of that being said, one might wonder why anyone would choose a WordPress web solution.  There really is no right answer to this question; however, one might consider the following reasons to consider launching a WordPress site. 

Image Courtesy of wpbeginner.com

          While WordPress literally comes with thousands of free themes, and plugins, there are hundreds more paid options available, all of which are vetted and reviewed by the WordPress community.  This means that a WordPress site simply has more design options available for the designer to utilize.  If a business owner wants to create a site, they can hire a developer or pay for high quality plugins and apps to design the site. 

          A few of the more popular plugins and themes are: ThemeLab, StudioPress, Headway Themes, and Themify.  However, one of the most user friendly tools available for the budget conscious is Elementor which has both free and paid options available.  It is tools like these which help simplify the WordPress creation process and offer a solid alternative to Wix

          Additionally, the flexibility of WordPress sites allow designers to build more functionally sound eCommerce sites.  WordPress comes with several free plugins one can use to build their online store.  These plugins come with additional add-ins that allow one to setup almost any payment gateway they desire.  Therefore, if one is willing to put forth a little time and effort, they will be able to greater long term benefits from using WordPress to build their site. 

 Bluehost

Powering over 2 million websites, Bluehost offers the ultimate WordPress platform. Tuned for WordPress, we offer WordPress-centric dashboards and tools along with 1-click installation, a FREE domain name, email, FTP, and more. Easily scalable and backed by legendary 24/7 support by in-house WordPress experts.

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   DreamHost

DreamHost has been committed to WordPress and its community for over 10 years. Our hosting platforms are optimized for WordPress and our team actively contributes to the WordPress community. At DreamHost, you take total control of your server or let our team of experts handle everything for you. DreamHost offers choice, performance and value for new users and experts alike.

Forum threads about DreamHost »

SiteGround

SiteGround has tools that make managing WordPress sites easy: one-click install, managed updates, WP-Cli, WordPress staging and git integration. We have a very fast support team with advanced WordPress expertise available 24/7. We provide latest speed technologies that make WordPress load faster: NGINX-based caching, SSD-drives, PHP 7, CDN, HTTP/2. We proactively protect the WordPress sites from hacks.

Additional Resources to Explore:

https://www.websitebuilderexpert.com/wix-vs-wordpress/

http://www.wpbeginner.com/opinion/wix-vs-wordpress-which-one-is-better-pros-and-cons/

https://superbwebsitebuilders.com/wix-vs-wordpress/

https://www.elegantthemes.com/blog/tips-tricks/how-to-convert-wix-to-wordpress-a-complete-guide-to-all-your-options

http://www.wpbeginner.com/

https://www.wix.com/

https://wordpress.com/create-website/

https://www.drupal.org/

https://www.joomla.org/

https://www.siteground.com/

https://websitesetup.org/popular-cms/

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VwHZRUki_2o