When building a website for your organization, you’ll need to choose what your site will be built on. Generally speaking, you’ll find yourself choosing between either a website building platform or content management system (CMS), or perhaps in the on-going debate of Wix vs. WordPress.
Both platforms offer their own sets of benefits and drawbacks. For instance, as a website builder, Wix is very user-friendly and makes it simple for even the less tech-savvy build a site, though this presents limitations for what your site can do. WordPress, on the other hand, is known for providing users with greater opportunities for customization, though a bit of a steeper of a learning curve for those new to content management.
In terms of popularity, WordPress wins the contest, as it used by 34.1% of all websites on the Internet. Wix powers a mere fraction of the sites that WordPress does, with only 1.1% using it. But just because WordPress wins the popularity contest, you shouldn’t necessarily rule out Wix as your tool of choice.
In the following, we’ll compare the two platforms, Wix vs. WordPress, so you can make the call on which better suits your business.
Open Source vs. Website Builder
As noted previously, WordPress is an open source content management system, while Wix is a website building platform. Understanding the differences between these two platform types provides significant insight into what each has to offer.
Let’s breakdown the definitions: An open source CMS, for example, is made up of code that can be modified, contributed to, and distributed by anyone at no cost. A website building platform, on the other hand, is much like Saas (software as a service), where users subscribe to an online tool that allows them to create their site without writing a line of code.
The most significant differentiators for these two platform types are ease of use and customization, which we’ll touch on in greater detail below.
Ease of Use: Site Management
Both Wix and WordPress are known for having relatively user-friendly administrative interfaces, although one certainly makes building your own website easy: Wix. With Wix’s visual-based drag-and-drop editor, no code is required for users to add or remove content, move around images, or manipulate the overall layout of the site.
While touted as one of the most user-friendly open source CMSs, WordPress isn’t quite as easy to use as Wix: Although WordPress recently revamped the Gutenberg block-based editor, it’s a bit more advanced than what Wix provides its users. This editor is not visual-based, so you’ll have to view the webpage itself to see how your changes appear.
Customization: Themes & Third-Party Integrations
In addition to adding content, you’ll likely desire to customize your site by choosing a theme, as well as specific features or functionality, that sets your organization apart from the others. The good news is that Wix and WordPress offer themes and third-party integrations to help you get started.
In terms of aesthetics, Wix has over 500+ themes for users to choose from, all free to Wix users. In contrast, however, WordPress boasts a selection of over 1,000 themes, and that doesn’t even include the thousands of themes made available by third-party sources.
Likewise, Wix grants its users access to the App Market, which houses just over 300 apps to serve most basic website needs. If you need integrations that extend beyond creating a simple ecommerce store or adding your Twitter feed to your site though, you may prefer WordPress, which has a growing repository of over 55,000 plugins to choose from.
Building Your Online Store: Ecommerce
If you’re hoping to start an online business, both platforms are capable of supporting your needs. With each platform, however, you’ll have to take a slightly different approach to get your online store up and running. In addition, per the on-going theme, your Wix store will be much simpler to use but not quite as robust as one built using WordPress.
With Wix, you have two options: The first, and likely the most straightforward, option is to purchase a premium ecommerce plan. By doing so, you’ll receive access to a built-in ecommerce store with features. Your second option is to purchase the necessary apps from the App Market, but this often outweighs the cost of simply getting your hands on a premium account.
Unlike Wix, WordPress is not inherently designed for ecommerce but is widely used to power online stores. To build your online store using WordPress, you’ll need to install an ecommerce store plugin, such as WooCommerce or even Shopify. While it’s a bit more complicated to get started with WordPress, you’ll acquire a much more robust system than Wix will provide.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
Particularly if you are building an online store, and you are hoping to acquire organic traffic to your site, you’ll need to ensure that your site is optimized. Thankfully, both Wix and WordPress are well-designed for SEO (search engine optimization) purposes.
For the user who’d like to download as few apps as possible, Wix has it in the books: Some of Wix’s built-in features include the ability to customize meta descriptions, URLs, and alts tags, as well as to add 301 redirects and canonical tags. To further optimize your content, apps like Site Booster are also available.
With WordPress, there are fewer built-in SEO features. That said, they can be easily accessed through the installation of most SEO plugins. While there are many SEO WordPress plugins to choose from, the most popular is Yoast SEO, which provides you with content optimization tools to the aforementioned SEO must-haves mentioned above.
The Cost of Getting Started
Comparing the cost of a website builder and an open source framework is reasonably difficult because the two platforms are so different from one another. Most of this rests on the fact that one is a website builder and the other is open source, making one for-profit and the other community-based.
To dive a bit deeper, Wix, like most website builders, follows a subscription-based business model, where users are charged a monthly fee to continue using and hosting their site. Wix charges between $13 to $39 per month ($156~ to $468~ per year) for a standard site, but charges $23 to $500 per month ($276~ to $6,000~) for ecommerce sites.
While WordPress.com is essentially a website builder, WordPress.org (the CMS) is open source and free to use. You will have to pay for hosting, which can cost as little as a couple of dollars. Moreover, if you have an ecommerce store, you may have to pay for additional plugins or access to features on certain plugins, such as WooCommerce.
While you can build either a Wix or WordPress site yourself, there’s a stronger chance that you may need assistance building a WordPress site. As such, you may need to consider the potential cost of WordPress development when estimating the cost of your site.
What’s the Answer: Wix. vs. WordPress?
Both Wix and WordPress are designed for individuals and organizations with different needs and familiarity with tech. After comparing the two platforms, you likely recognized that Wix is best suited for those who need to quickly launch a simple website without the help of a web developer. In contrast, WordPress is a better fit for those with more unique needs.
If you’ve decided that WordPress is the best choice for you, you may need the help of a WordPress developer to get your site off the ground. Our team at ClikGlobal specializes in offering affordable WordPress development. By bringing together U.S. and offshore team members, we are able to keep costs low, while providing you with the quality you deserve.
Need help choosing between Wix vs. WordPress? Contact us.