In an ever more digital age, many start-ups and family-run businesses alike utilise Wix to create their first websites. While there are certainly merits to Wix, no operation; whether it be an expanding retail business or an extensive blogging site, neither can realistically operate well in the long-term on Wix. Ultimately, the best option for a slick, responsive and worthwhile website is partnering with a web designer who uses WordPress.
What are WordPress and Wix?
WordPress (specifically wordpress.org and never wordpress.com) is an open-source content management system. Around 40% of websites are powered by WordPress, making it the most popular way to create a website. Originally favoured by bloggers, the countless updates and plug-ins released since the establishment of WordPress have made the programme a one-stop shop for designing any type of website; from eCommerce stores to social networks. Wix.com is a cloud-based website builder that also provides web hosting and design services. Wix is easily accessible for those without extensive technical knowledge but, as such, is a more basic package.
How does Wix operate and how does it differ from WordPress?
Wix is renowned for its ease-of-use and is ideal for self-run, small scale websites. There is no software to install and the editing process is as easy as drag-and-drop. These features make Wix ideal for portfolio-style websites. However, websites created on Wix are known to begin struggling and slowing down considerably if the site grows to have too many pages. Although Wix allows users to create a basic eCommerce platform, a store can significantly slow down the website. This can lead to frustrated customers struggling to navigate the website and can also damage SEO. Also, Wix websites only accommodate one sub-level, making it much harder to organise and navigate through larger catalogues of products.
How do Wix and WordPress compare in terms of SEO and using plug-ins?
Another feature of Wix which damages a site’s SEO is the random and unchangeable names Wix will attribute to images. This is especially damaging to image-based websites, as the most stunning or inspirational images are given names such as “e5ddec7841f5~mv6.png”. This would not be an issue on WordPress. For reasons such as this one, most industry insiders would recommend SEO plug-ins for Wix but this is far from an easy solution, due to the approach Wix takes to plug-ins.
Plug-ins are incredibly vital on both Wix and WordPress to mould your website into exactly what you are envisioning. Although Wix does have a marketplace with over 300 options, overusing these can quickly damage the speed of your website. Where WordPress differs is that its open-source structure has always been utilised by user-made plug-ins. It is conceivable that someone could hit a brick wall while using Wix as they discover that their specific job could only be achieved by a non-existent plug-in. This would never be an issue on WordPress. If a specific plug-in to suit your needs did not exist, then a developer could make one for you. There is however an existing catalogue of thousands of WordPress plugins. Many of these are extremely successful and popular services in their own rights.
How much support do they offer?
Despite these problems, many point to the benefits of the extensive support Wix offers via their customer service phone lines, live chat feature, and the numerous forums, compared to the complete lack of support that WordPress offers. However, these support services offered by Wix fall short of the personalised approach an agency can offer. For many who lack the technical expertise to operate WordPress independently, a good agency can make all the difference.
How are they priced?
Although WordPress is initially free, there are additional unavoidable costs to bear. Securing a domain name and hosting the website are fees that can vary greatly depending on several factors but will be recurring either monthly or yearly. Using pre-made themes, certain plugins and extra security will also all undoubtedly incur costs. The Wix free service is very basic so you may have to consider one of the supplementary paid plans. Wix has 4 “Website Plans” which range from £3.50 to £19.00 a month as well as 3 “Business & eCommerce Plans” which range from £13.00 to £22.00 a month. These plans all offer different levels of customer support, storage space, and the amount of video time the website can host. Additionally, the cheaper options, as well as the free option ,will fill your website with Wix ads, the unattractive indirect cost of using the free Wix service.
While Wix is a good program to create basic websites or learn the ropes of web designing, WordPress is the premier destination for any ambitious website. These improved features do however come at the cost of requiring more technical knowledge. This issue of course disappears by utilising an agency.
It is clear in our minds, that to create a quality website that will consistently meet your visitors’ expectations, WordPress is the best option.