Website Builder Software Reviews

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Anyone that has the desire to start a business online will want to know what platform is the best to start with. I want to post my opinions between the two most popular platforms: This is a website builder software review of Wix or WordPress.

I want to discuss some of the options you have with each program and then you decide which platform may be the best for you and your given circumstances. You can start with a cheap website builders program that uses a WYSIWYG editor. This is a “What You See IS What You Get” type editor that lets you type, drag and drop, or select fonts, pictures, etc and place on the page without using or knowing any programming code.

This type of editor lets you build-as-you-go interface that lets even the most unknowledgeable beginner build a complete website.

Of all the different website builder programs to choose from the most popular programs as well as easiest to use are the programs that include the WYSIWYG editor. Wix website builder program uses a drag-and-drop editor. Site Build It also uses a drag-and-drop editor, but also lets you add content with or without code (html code). The last website building platform I want to discuss with you is the WordPress website.

I will use five different categories to compare each program. They are Price, Building the Website, Design and Layout, apps and plugins, and Features.

Price:

The initial cost is always your top consideration in choosing what direction you follow to get the best site for the best price. I like comparing apples to apples to get the real price for anything I buy.

Both the Wix and WordPress platforms build your website in minutes and let you be ready to go live. WordPress you first have to find a hosting company to host your website. Wix, on the other hand already furnishes hosting of your site.

Hosting is where you will find your first and initial costs. Hosting is NOT free, except with WordPress.com, but even this is a sub-domain, which I will explain next.

There are many choices in choosing what company you wish to host your website with. Wix, which is a particular brand of website builder program, offers their own hosting, at several different prices.

Depending on the level of package you submit to, Wix costs will range from a cheap $4.08 a month to over $16.17 a month. Now this is just the basic package prices. If you want more options or choices on your website, the price is dependent on what you add. The more you add to your package, the more costs involved.

Wix calls their added value plans “Apps” that you add to your site that customize your site which allows you to do more things with your site. Each “app” will add to your price, so technically you could wind up with a much more expensive site than the price that I have listed.                     Wix pricing plans

NOTE: This cost does not include any apps that you later choose to use with your Wix site.

WordPress, on the other hand has free versions and then also premium versions that costs a one-time investment. To date there are more than 38,000 free versions of wordpress.

The downside choice of wordpress is that you also have to add in the costs of buying your own domain name and finding a Hosting company to host your site at. Wix also charges you for the domain, but the hosting your site is included in their price breakdown.

A domain name , just like with Wix, is the unique “address” your website will reside at. So, as an example, yoursite.com is a unique address that you purchase from a “domain name seller”, like GoDaddy.com, NameCheap.com, etc. You buy this unique name which is now your address.

Anyone that types this unique address into an Internet browser will be taken to your website.

All these charges are based on a yearly “rental” fee. So considering the initial costs you figure in a yearly price of a domain name, usually around $9.99 a year. Then the hosting which can be as little as $3.99 a month, or like with Site Build It, it costs $29 a month.

To consider the initial cost of a wordpress website these are the costs:

  • Domain name cost per year
  • Hosting costs per month
  • Using a free version of wordpress or a premium version

The premium versions of wordpress have many different themes and different plugins to use to really customize your site.

The premium Versions of WordPress can range in price anywhere from a one-time fee of $3 dollars to over $100. You own the rights to this premium version which you can use for additional sites that you may own, or want to start.

As I said earlier wordpress has over 38,000 free versions to choose from. You can then add more to these sites with what is called “plugins” that really let you cusomize your site. Generally these plugins are free. If they costs a fee, then they usually have a free lighter version of the same plugin.

Conclusion:

So in my opinion, WordPress costs are the least expensive of these two choices. WordPress gives you many more options with more varieties for less costs than Wix.

Hosting your website is also something a site owner must contend with. WordPress.com, as promised earlier, is a free platform for your wordpress website. However, you can not operate a ecommerce site from WordPress.com. WordPress.com is also like other sites that allow you to operate a free website in that it uses the wordpress.com extension to your domain name. So for example, your domain name is Kentoys.com, then the wordpress.com domain name for this website is Kentoys.com.wordpress.com.

Another thing to remember is that you are building a business. Every dollar you spend to start and operate your business is  “tax deductable”. Your initial costs may look expensive at first, but also remember the cost of building and starting a new brick and mortar store. You must borrow thousands of dollars to build your store, then thousands more to stock inventory in, then thousands more to pay for employees, taxes, insurance, etc, etc.

Building The Website

The learning curve involved in building a website for the average person is something that is high on everyone’s lists. How hard is it to build a website without any knowledge of coding or using templates?

WordPress and Wix both offer new users the chance to build their website without knowing any programming codes. Each use a version of the WYSIWYG editors.

With Wix you decide on the level you want to start with, from $8.25 a month to $16.17 a month (this price does not include any added apps that enhance your site).

You can drag and drop items anywhere on your site, rearrange things on your pages, write content, and add media in a user friendly environment. Most users love this feature of Wix that allows the user to really custom build a website and not worry about knowing any code.

With WordPress, it uses a visual editor to write your content and theme customizer which allows you to edit your theme properties in a WYSIWYG environment. So by default the editor does not allow a drag and drop feature.

There is a slight learning curve to be able to use wordpress efficiently with the many more features it has at your disposal, like menus, categories, tags, etc. A slightly confusing website builder at first, however you have much more control, versatility and power with this program.                              Wix website builder

Conclusion:

Wix is a winner hands down with the ease of using the drag-and-drop editor to build a website. However, the simplicity prevents the user from having total control of some features and may not be able to have certain necessities without spending more money for additional apps.

Even though Wix is the easier of the two builder programs for newbies to learn, have you ever seen a website built in less than 30 seconds? Yes, it can be done! See how to build a website in less than 30 seconds.

Design, Layout and Topography

Because you are building your brand and you want to be somewhat different than your competitors, the design and layout will have powerful effects on your success. Not only do you want the color scheme to add visual pleasantries, you also want a user friendly environment.

There are advantages and disadvantages to each approach whether it is by Wix or by WordPress. It will be ultimately up to the individual website builder to decide what works best with their situation and budget constraints.

Wix:
Wix comes with more than 500+ pre-made templates to choose from. These templates are all based in the new “responsive” mandate set by Google and all written in HTML5 coding. With these advanced features, you are able to build many variable customized sites with ease.

Each design are in categories for your ease of use: ecommerce, arts and crafts, hobbies, sports, etc.

The disadvantage to this “template based approach” is that once you decide on the exact template you want to use – that is it. You are now stuck with that choice whether you like it or not.

WordPress:
You have the choice between thousands of different free and premium (paid) themes. These themes can range from small, personal sites to full-fledged ecommerce sites.

Each theme normally come with a certain amount of customization options regardless to which theme you picked. You are also free to further customize them using your own child themes and plugins.

You can download free themes from WordPress.org directory. For paid themes, you also have a wide choice in vendors, like MyThemeShop, Studiopress, themeforest.net, Themelab, etc.

You can even hire your own designer/developer from Fiverr.com, Elance.com, etc to totally design your very own customized website for your company.

Conclusion:

If it is versatility that you want, WordPress is by far the best choice over Wix because of the larger range of themes available to you. WordPress users can also switch themes or customize them as much as they want without any restrictions.

Apps and Plugins

Just as it is with Microsoft “windows”, both Wix and WordPress have third party vendors that design different programs to add to your existing site to “enhance” or add valuable features. With Wix these features are called “apps” and with WordPress these features are called “plugins”.

Wix:
Wix has over 200 apps that you can add to your site. These apps offer a wide range of features like adding contact forms, gallery, comments, email list and so on.

Most of these apps are for free. However some may have a monthly premium price with a variable liter version for a cheaper price. Generally the apps will furnish the site owners the features they must have for their websites.

WordPress:
There is over 38,000 plugins written for wordpress alone. Not to mention the premium varieties which would greatly increase this number of plugins available.

As the saying goes, if you can think of something, there is a plugin for it that will make it happen.

No matter what it is, you can do just about anything you like with WordPress. There are plenty of plugins both free and paid which you can utilize on your site immediately.

Conclusion:

WordPress beats Wix hands down in this arena. Pricewise these plugins have more features and less costs versus anything that is available to Wix.

Features

What are you wanting to build your website for? I would say the most popular type of website is the ecommerce type of website. Since ecommerce is the most widely used platform, lets compare “apples to apples”.

Wix:
Wix has a very nice ecommerce plan offered with their paid plan. There is no ecommerce site for free, however. Using the Wixstores, you only have the choice between Paypal and Authorize.net as your merchant account vendor.

Another thing to consider, there are a few third party apps that you can use for selling things online, but those apps would cost you even more money with their monthly fees. Not to mention you have limited payment gateways and limited functionality.

WordPress:
Wordpress has several plugins to choose from to build your online store and sell anything you want. Each plugin has their own addon plugin which will enhance any payment gateway you want.

There are hundreds of dedicated ecommerce themes available that have many plugins already installed for your ecommerce stores. Merchant account, vendors, inventory control, etc.

Conclusion:

If you are looking for a platform that has potential for growth, enhance usability and freedom of choices, then WordPress by far exceeds any expectations of any site owners.

In Summary:

Given that both platforms discussed have a user-friendly website builder program by way of wysiwyg website builder software, WordPress offers so much more than Wix because of:

  • More choices in third party plugins
  • More advanced options in appearance, usability, and expandability
  • More software being written for wordpress than for Wix
  • Wix is not free, where as wordpress is

*** These two platforms deliver an outstanding value for anyone that is interested in starting their own website, whether it is a business or an individual. Wix offers you a turn-key website, with or without all the bells and whistles; but they do not teach you how to maintain your website, or how to add new content, how to use keywords, and all the other many necessary aspects of running your own website as a business.

WordPress is also limited in what you can learn without a tutor or hiring a coach to learn the necessary routines of operating your website. It does offer several free lessons from YouTube.com, WCSchools.com, and wpbeginner.com. These websites have many tutorial lessons and videos showing the user exactly how to do something and why.

To get the most from wordpress instead of teaching yourself the hard way the best choice is to join a program that already has free lessons for you to learn from. This program gives you free lessons, two free wordpress websites and access to their community of experienced entrepreneurs that help and support you through all your learning phases.

The only program that I know of that offers you all this, for FREE, is Wealthy Affiliate. This program is an organization that the two owners, Carson and Kyle, started about eleven years ago and has grown to over 200,000 members. Wealthy affiliate has two memberships available, free and premium. The free membership gives you access to the whole community to answer your questions, two free websites, free hosting, and 20 or so lessons that teach enough about operating a business from a website to help you start earning revenue from this website!

The premium is a paid membership but it benefits the member by giving you unlimited amount of websites, free hosting, hundreds of more detailed lessons, access to the owners themselves for any advise, solving problems, etc. comparing the two levels of memberships is like comparing a Ford Focus to a Ford Lincoln Continental. My advise, as always, go with where the value is, which is their premium level membership.

I hope you learned something from this article. I learned a lot after my initial research because I was looking for the best website builder program that didn’t rely on any programming code. I found it…

I have started a thread on another forum that asks a question: What is your favorite wordpress theme, and why? You will find it very interesting on all of the different opinions, ideas and suggestions on what WordPress Themes are the best. I invite you to click the link above to see the answers.

I look forward to reading your comments or suggestions and welcome you to share this with someone you know.

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