A website is often the first impression a person will have of a brand, company or individual. While 20 percent of all web presence is built on the WordPress platform, newcomer Weebly has begun to make a dent in the market. Weebly is a website builder that features an easy drag-and-drop interface that allows for quick site creation. WordPress is a content management system (CMS) that has a learning curve but is far more powerful. A comparison of Weebly vs WordPress follows below.
Weeby is a great tool for those who need a website quickly or do not have technical skills. While this is an advantage, the platform does have its drawbacks. Its features include:
- Drag and drop. — This approach uses photo, text, media, dividers and columns to create a web page. The user needs only to drag the image onto the site and click it to edit.
- Hosting. — Weebly is a managed service, which means secure and fast cloud hosting is included with each account. Managed hosting is beneficial for those who either do not know how to host a website or simply do not want to be bothered with it. The downside to this is the user does not have much control over the site and if it expands beyond what Weebly can provide, the user will have to manually migrate it elsewhere. This can prove to be very time-consuming and frustrating.
- Blogging. — Blogging is an integral part of many websites, and Weebly provides this service through its drag-and-drop interface. Much like managed hosting, the user is at a disadvantage by not having easy access to the content except through the editor. While the platform does reasonably well in the search engines, it does not place as well as WordPress, and the user will have to work harder to attain a top spot.
- Ecommerce. — Weebly allows users to build a sophisticated online store for products and services. This offers a quick and easy way for a small business to get a store up and running, but it brings a higher monthly fee that may strain small budgets.
- Pricing. — For many users, the question of platforms comes down to price. Weebly offers plans that range from free to $25 per month for ecommerce. The free tier requires the use of a Weebly subdomain while the next level allows for a custom domain and support. The pro plan extends features to include search, multimedia and password protection.
WordPress has been around for over a decade and provides the most robust platform for building and managing a website. It not only works well right out of the box, it becomes a powerful machine through the use of plugins and shortcodes. While it has more of a learning curve than Weebly, it pays off in terms of control and scalability.
- Content management. — WordPress started out as simple blogging platform that has developed into a powerful CMS. Rather than using elements as building blocks, WordPress utilizes pages and posts to contain text, quotes and media. While WordPress displays as a blog by default, it can easily be changed to look like a standard website.
- More hosting options. — A large advantage to using WordPress is the ability to self-host. For a small upfront cost, WordPress can be up and running in 10 minutes. As a site grows and gains more traffic, it can be easily moved to another server. Most web hosts support WordPress with an average cost of $5 per month.
- Robust blogging features. — Even though WordPress has expanded into a CMS, it still provides one of the most complete blogging experiences on the Internet. Users are able to easily create blog posts with content, tags and categories and always have full control over everything on the site.
- SEO love. — WordPress was designed for SEO, and users will find their sites indexed quickly through the use of customizable URL structures. There are also several plugins that help users fine-tune SEO for the best possible ranking to get a step up on competitors.
- Ecommerce done right. — WordPress offers a vast array of plugins to instantly turn any site into an online store with attractive product pages, sales tools and a wide choice of payment options. With most web hosting being relatively low in cost, it is less expensive to build a store on WordPress than Weebly.
- Overall lower cost. — While WordPress and Weebly have roughly the same startup costs, a self-hosted WordPress site will cost less than Weebly over the long term. With web hosting more affordable than ever, there is a plan for every budget and need, making WordPress the clear winner.
For those just starting out with a web presence, comparing Weebly vs WordPress may seem daunting. Following the guidelines above will aid in making the right choice. We recommend WordPress for starting out as it provides you the best options as a beginner and well into the future. Learn how to make a website with our DIY guide.