Wix Vs WordPress: Fast and Flashy Vs Full Features?
If you’ve heard of Wix, it’s probably through their massive advertising campaigns that include A-list movie stars, pyrotechnics and million-dollar budgets. You will have an idea of their platform as fast, fun and flashy. In a way, they’re quite like the Apple of web builders. The one for the cool kids.
WordPress, on the other hand would be more like Windows. A popular platform, albeit one that favours nerds and coders who can do amazing things with it. Well, while there is a small element of truth to these ideas, we’ll see that they don’t always hold up. Hopefully, our complete breakdown below will help you see which solution is the best for your website, without any technical jargon, or explosive marketing tactics.
Ease of Use
Wix is actually one of the easiest website builders you can find. Their editor is completely drag and drop, and super intuitive, especially for complete beginners. If you want to add more functionalities, you also have their App Market that lets you install features in one click.
WordPress is also known for its extensions and plugins, but they’re not always that easy to install or implement. Similarly, the whole software requires a tiny bit of technical knowledge, or at least the ability to follow some tutorials. And when things go wrong (not if), finding the fix can also become a bit of an issue.
Winner: clearly, Wix wins this one – the whole platform is designed with user-friendliness in mind!
Designs & Flexibility
Wix comes with around 300 free templates. They are slick, modern, and segmented into categories (photographers, restaurants, blogs etc…). One downside is that they’re not responsive, so you may need to re-arrange the elements to make your site look nice on phones. You can’t use code to tweak them yourself, but if you know how to do that, you should probably look at…
…WordPress – because if you know CSS and HTML – or if you don’t mind spending a few hours working out how to modify your template’s code – you can get exactly the website you want. Plus, you will find tons of responsive templates online. They usually cost between $30 & $60 (have a quick look on Themeforest), and most of them are responsive.
Winner: Kind of a draw. If you want full control and are willing to tweak CSS and HTML code, WordPress. However once again, Wix is much better for complete beginners and you will still be able to customize your designs.
You might have noticed Wix’s dedicated online store section. It’s very nice and all, and you can indeed sell your wares through a variety of payment options. However, there are a few downsides that make it better suited to small businesses.
For instance, you can’t import and export your product info, so you’ll have to add it by hand. Conversion tracking and customer logins aren’t supported, and the shipping and tax options are quite limited.
With WordPress, you’ll have none of these problems. That’s provided you use a third party plugin of course, because otherwise there’s nothing out of the box. We really like the WooCommerce plugin, and it should give you a good idea of what you can do with your online store: a lot, and pretty much everything with a bit of custom code. The plus is that it’s free, but you do have to pay for extra features such as Authorize.net CC payment gateways for instance.
Winner: for a small store, you’ll be ok with Wix. But if you are ambitious about your ecommerce or just want a full-feature solution, WordPress + Woocommerce is hard to beat.
This is another area where Wix does well compared with other best website builders. You can change the page title, alt attributes, have a great choice of headings and more. The only complaints we have are that images are named automatically when you upload them.
Wix automatically gives them cryptic names (such as d4cccb26731e9~mv2.png) which could hurt image-based SEO websites like photography blogs. Also, you can customize blog posts URL, but not the whole thing so you sometimes end up with links like “wixsite.com/mysite/single-post/My-Blog-Post”.
For WordPress, you have a few options out of the box, but we highly recommend adding a plugin for full SEO capabilities. Yoast SEO, for instance, is free and a very powerful tool, and Google Analyticator can also help with your Google Analytics integration. Have a look at the table below to see where that can get you compared with Wix.
Compare Wix’s and WordPress’ SEO capabilities
|Page Title||Customizable for all pages||Customizable via plugin|
|Meta description||Customizable for all pages||Customizable via plugin|
|Customize URLs||Customizable for all pages||Customizable via plugin|
|Headings||Complete customization||Complete customization|
|Images alt attributes||Customizable||Customizable|
|301 Redirects||Available||Managed externally (e.g. via hosting provider)|
|SSL encryption||Available in all plans||Need to configure it externally|
|Search engine instructions||Available for pages but not blog posts||Available|
|Add Google Analytics||See instructions||Added via plugin or manually|
|Add Google Search Console||See instructions||Added via plugin or manually|
|Conclusion||Really good for SEO||As good as it can get if plugins are added|
Winner: with the right plugins, WordPress offers a tiny bit more. However, Wix is still really good for most projects.
Wix’s blog options are good, letting you create categories, tags, post scheduling and featuring related posts. One cool option is that you can choose an alternative title for mobile readers (in case it’s too long and looks weird on small screens). The layout editor is less impressive than the website editor, and the posting features are decent but limited.
You can add images, galleries, videos, GIFs and dividers, but for anything else, you’ll have to use HTML, which can be a bit daunting for beginners. While we couldn’t recommend Wix for hardcore bloggers, it’s still certainly easier to use and customize than a WordPress blog.
WordPress, has always been mainly focused on blogging options and that’s why it has all the features you need out of the box such as tags, categories, RSS, etc… Of course, the way your blog looks will be linked to your theme, which means that certain features could break unless you tweak them manually. Here again, a bit of technical knowledge can go a long way in helping you get the powerful blog you need.
Wix offers phone support and has good forums. You can also find Wix articles and tutorials that are particularly helpful for beginners. For the very technical questions, you might expect a bit of back and forth, but they will get to the right answer eventually.
Quite simply, WordPress does not have any official support. You can find what you need on the community forums, but expect the answers to be hit and miss and sometimes buried in tons of comments.
Winner: Wix. No official support from WordPress.
Apps & Plugins
Wix has got an App Market where you can find, amongst 250 free and paid apps, tons of ways to expand your industry-specific website. This is excellent news for things like hotel booking systems, photographer image galleries or business invoicing for instance. It’s worth noting that some of these apps are created by Wix themselves, others by unofficial developers.
WordPress is actually known for their plugins. We’ve mentioned WooCommerce earlier, but it’s just one of the thousands and thousands of ways in which you can completely transform your website to fit your needs. Just like with Wix, some plugins are free and some can cost a small fortune. Once again, you might need a tiny bit of technical knowledge to update / install them.
Winner: It’s a draw! WordPress has the largest number of options, but Wix’s apps are actually great, especially for industry-specific features.
With Wix, the prices are clear and paid monthly, yearly or bi-yearly. There are 5 plans that include an increasing number of features:
- Connect Domain ($5/month)
- Combo ($10/month)
- Unlimited ($14/month)
- eCommerce ($17/month)
- VIP ($24/month)
Note, only the eCommerce and VIP plans support online stores. Also: Wix are pushing their Unlimited plan, but the Combo plan is more than enough for most projects.
WordPress is technically free. However, you need to pay for the web hosting – roughly $6.50 a month for a decent service. But prices can quickly add up if you buy a premium theme ($40 – $60), paid plugins, and most expensive of all, a developer’s time for custom tweaks.
Winner: Another close call. Unless you need to hire a developer for your WordPress website, in which case the expense will shoot through the roof. But keep in mind that using Wix could save you a lot of time during which you could find focus on more important tasks.
The perfect website builder, it goes without saying, depends on the website you need. If you want a powerful solution that will scale over the years, you should probably go for WordPress. Moreover, if you need complex features straight away, it’s really your only option for creating powerful blogging, directories, multilingual sites, complex databases and FTP access.
However, Wix much better suited to smaller, informative websites. By that we mean anything that describes your industry, what you do and how to get in touch. The business-focused apps also makes it particularly good solution for Hotels, Restaurants and Event-based services such as photography or wedding companies.
And it’s also much better for complete beginners, offering drag and drop tools and good dedicated support, small details that can really save you a lot of time and headaches in the long term.