Having an online presence through a website is a must if you want to succeed in today‘s digital marketplace. However, building a website from scratch requires technical expertise that not everyone has. This is where website builder platforms like Wix and WordPress come in. They allow you to create professional websites without coding knowledge.
Wix is a fully hosted website builder with an easy drag-and-drop interface. WordPress is open-source CMS software that gives you more flexibility and control. Both have their pros and cons.
In this in-depth guide, we will compare Wix and WordPress across key factors to help you determine the right platform for your needs in 2023.
An Introduction to WordPress
WordPress is the world‘s most popular content management system (CMS), powering over 40% of all websites. It is open-source software that can be self-hosted or used through WordPress.com‘s hosted plans.
The main advantage of WordPress is its extreme versatility. It can be used to create any type of website – blogs, ecommerce stores, portfolios, magazines, etc. Thousands of free themes and plugins allow you to customize the design and functionality as per your needs.
Although WordPress has a learning curve, its open-source nature means there is great community support available. The self-hosted open-source WordPress.org is free to use but requires purchasing hosting and a domain separately.
Pros of WordPress:
- Free open-source software
- Works with any web host
- Extremely versatile & customizable
- Huge library of free and paid themes/plugins
- Great for SEO
- Strong community support
Cons of WordPress:
- Steeper learning curve
- Requires dealing with hosts, domains etc.
- More responsibility for security & backups
- Limited ecommerce functionality in free version
An Introduction to Wix
Wix is a fully hosted website builder known for its easy drag-and-drop editor. It allows anyone to create professional websites without coding knowledge.
With Wix, you don‘t need to purchase hosting or domains separately. Everything is taken care of by Wix itself. You get access to hundreds of designer templates, apps and customer support.
The main downside of Wix is the lack of flexibility compared to WordPress. You are limited in how much you can customize templates. Advanced users may feel restricted. But for beginners, Wix provides an easier starting point.
Pros of Wix:
- Extremely easy drag and drop editor
- No need to find hosting or domain
- Hundreds of templates & apps
- Built-in ecommerce functionality
- Excellent customer support
Cons of Wix:
- Limited customizability compared to WordPress
- Must pay for domain and remove ads
- Higher long term cost
- Can feel restrictive for advanced users
Wix vs WordPress: In-Depth Feature Comparison
Now that we‘ve covered the basics of Wix and WordPress, let‘s compare them across some key website-building factors:
Flexibility & Customization
One of WordPress‘ biggest advantages over Wix is its open-source flexibility. You get complete control over customizing your site‘s code, functionality, design etc. Thousands of plugins and themes allow you to add any feature imaginable.
Wix provides drag and drop customization but you can‘t access the underlying code. You‘re limited to only adding and tweaking elements within the Wix editor. This suits beginners but more advanced users may feel restricted.
Ease of Use
Wix is designed to be extremely beginner friendly. Their editor lets you add and customize elements via drag and drop. No coding or design skills required.
WordPress has a steeper learning curve by comparison. Installing WordPress and managing plugins/themes requires technical know-how. But the open-source community provides ample tutorials and support.
Built-in Ecommerce Functionality
Wix provides an intuitive built-in ecommerce solution called Wix Stores. It lets you set up an online store and start selling quickly without addons.
With WordPress, you need to install WooCommerce or another ecommerce plugin first to gain selling capabilities. This gives you more flexibility but requires technical expertise.
Theme & Template Options
Both Wix and WordPress provide hundreds of professionally designed templates to choose from. The difference is customizability.
Wix templates can only be edited via the drag and drop editor. With WordPress, you can modify templates more extensively by editing code and CSS.
WordPress offers more fine-grained SEO customization through plugins like Yoast SEO. Wix also provides good built-in SEO tools but they are less customizable.
With WordPress‘ open nature, developers can optimize sites for search engines exactly how they want. Wix is more limited.
Wix handles security centrally and keeps everything updated. This takes security management off the user‘s plate.
With WordPress, you must stay on top of plugin/theme updates and security yourself. This gives more control but also responsibility.
Both Wix and WordPress make mobile-friendliness easy. Wix uses a mobile-first approach while WordPress makes responsive themes simple.
Either platform will let you create sites that work beautifully on all devices. This category is a tie.
Pricing & Costs
Wix is free to start but you need to pay $4-$24 per month to connect a custom domain and remove Wix ads. Extra features, storage and transaction fees add to the cost.
Self-hosted WordPress is free software but hosting starts around $5 per month. Premium themes and plugins can add to the cost over time.
Which Should You Choose in 2023?
So which is better in 2023 – WordPress or Wix? Here are some guidelines:
Beginners – Choose Wix for its easier learning curve. You can build a quality site even with no experience.
Advanced users – WordPress offers virtually endless customization for experienced users. But expect a steeper learning curve.
Small business sites – Either could work. Wix for quicker setup, WordPress for more flexibility.
Ecommerce – Wix for simpler needs, WordPress + WooCommerce for advanced features and scalability.
Blogs/content sites – Typically WordPress since customization and SEO matter more.
Branding sites – Wix for its high-end templates. Or WordPress for deeper personalization.
Non-profits/community sites – WordPress for member accounts, forums etc.
As you can see, there is no single winner. Evaluate your needs and technical abilities to decide if Wix or WordPress better fits your website project.
For non-technical users who want an easy online presence, Wix is the way to go in 2023. Its drag and drop simplicity makes website building accessible for beginners.
For advanced developers who desire maximum control over their sites, WordPress is still king. The possibilities are endless when you have access to the code base.
Whichever platform you choose, the most important thing is picking the one aligned with your goals, budget and abilities. With the right foundation, you are set up for web design success in the year ahead!