Wix vs. WordPress
For anyone who’s planning on establishing a solid web presence in the near future, the choice of which website software to use could have an ongoing impact on the success of the site. There are countless possibilities when it comes to the technology you use to power your website, and two of the most prominent are WordPress and Wix. I’ll go over both solutions in detail so that you can learn who triumphs in the Wix vs WordPress contest.
About the Two Platforms
WordPress debuted in 2003 as an application to help people start and maintain blogs, but it has grown to become fully capable of running basically any type of site. It’s an open-source package, meaning that users can easily develop plugins and upgrades to expand its functionality, which they have done in droves. There is a hosting company called WordPress.com, but today I’ll be discussing using the free WordPress.org software in conjunction with outside hosting services.
Wix is an Israeli firm founded in 2004 that has benefited from several rounds of investor funding before going public in 2013. It offers its customers a free drag-and-drop web-building interface along with servers to host the pages. There are a number of service levels, including free, with more features supported the higher up the tiers one goes.
Both of these options have their own strengths and weaknesses. Let’s take a look at how they compare with each other in several categories:
Ease of Use
WordPress can be used pretty much right out of the box, but there are a lot of settings to configure, and you might have to install a few extras before it performs the way you want it to. The default editor uses a text window rather than a WYSIWYG layout, so it might seem unfriendly to newcomers although web veterans should have no problems with it. Responsive design, user forums and other peripheral elements can certainly be added, but again, you’ll have to do most of the work yourself.
Wix, on the other hand, makes it simple to get started with a drag-and-drop editor and mobile compatibility enabled from day 1. You won’t have to find a hosting company because Wix provides web hosting service to all its customers.
Now, all of the handy features of the Wix software also exist for WordPress. For instance, the BoldGrid website builder can do pretty much everything the Wix editor can do and more. It’s merely a question of having to manually set up everything you want. I’m gonig to give Wix the nod in the area of being accessible to new website designers.
WordPress can host virtually any kind of website that you want it to, and there are plugins that permit visual builder interfaces, SEO research, social media integration and more. A significant fraction of all websites in the world are powered by WordPress. As new trends emerge in web design and marketing, programmers deploy the appropriate updates to the WP code base, which they can do rapidly because the innards of the system are publicly available and editable by anyone. There are thousands of free and paid themes for you to browse among, so you can select the one that’s just perfect for your site.
The Wix software represents a pretty decent compilation of the tools most users want, but there are only a couple hundred add-ons that you can install, which pales in comparison to the vibrant WordPress ecosystem. Furthermore, there are fewer themes available.
Perhaps worse is the way that Wix ties you into its proprietary system. When you use self-hosted WordPress, you control your own pages, and if you need to find a new host, you can simply export your site and import it elsewhere. Wix doesn’t allow you to migrate without a lot of difficulty. It doesn’t offer any automated functions for doing so, meaning that you’ll have to do a lot of copy-pasting by hand.
The free website hosting by Wix has some very irritating limitations attached to it. First of all, you won’t be able to choose your own domain. Your site will be located on a subdomain of wix.com. Secondly, you’re restricted to 500 MB of storage space and 1 GB of monthly bandwidth. Finally, Wix will actually run ads on your site! All of these things can really put a crimp in your style particularly when your site starts to grow. You can remove most of these negatives – but you’ll have to pay for one of the premium hosting plans.
There are a few limitations and caps on some of the the web hosts that can house your WordPress site, but they’re, in almost all cases, more generous than those enforced by Wix. WordPress is the clear winner in this category.
If you intend to establish a web-based money-making venture, then you’re almost certainly interested in being able to sell your goods and services directly to buyers through your website. This is only possible at Wix if you opt to purchase either eCommerce or VIP hosting, which are the two most costly options. Even if you do decide that it’s worth it to develop your e-store at Wix, you’ll only be able to integrate with a few third-party payment processors. Wix has developed apps to expand the Wix Store, but you have to pay extra for some of them.
WordPress is probably the most popular content management system out there, and so payment firms are proactive in making sure they support it. You have your choice of any of a number of e-commerce plugins for WordPress, and you can basically customize your store to do whatever you want.
Wix’s storefronts aren’t available to its free users, and even those who pay for them might find them too constrictive for their tastes. I feel that WordPress offers a superior e-commerce experience.
Wix’s free web service comes with a ton of handicaps, as we’ve described above, and so the only thing it really has going for it is price. Still, this isn’t a great advantage when you consider that you can obtain WordPress shared hosting for as little as $3.49 a month when you sign up at InMotion Hosting using my links. That’s the price of InMotion’s introductory Launch product. There are no disk space or bandwidth limits, and InMotion won’t clutter your web pages with ads either like Wix does.
Besides its no-cost accounts, Wix allows you to subscribe to one of five plans:
- Connect Domain: $5/mo
- Combo: $10/mo
- Unlimited: $14/mo
- eCommerce: $17/mo
- VIP: $25/mo
Connect Domain is the most comparable to InMotion Launch in price, but when we look at the details, it’s not really comparable at all. It still subjects you to Wix ad placement, and it still limits you to 500 MB storage and 1 GB bandwidth. In fact, the only advantage of Connect Domain over the free plan is that, as its name might imply, you can connect your site to a domain that you own instead of the default wix.com domain. This isn’t really a major selling point in Wix’s favor because this is standard at InMotion.
After perusing the particulars of each level of Wix hosting, I feel that the one that’s closest to InMotion’s Launch plan in terms of what you actually get for your money is Unlimited, which costs $14/mo. That’s around four times the price of InMotion’s offering.
If you have serious web work to complete, then there’s no question that self-hosted WordPress is more cost-effective than Wix.
There’s a straightforward answer to the Wix vs WordPress question. While Wix might have a niche for personal blogs and web pages for the smallest business entities, WordPress shared hosting defeats it utterly for users who want a robust web framework that can do everything they demand of it. As your needs change, you’ll be able to alter and tailor your WP install according to your new requirements.
I truly believe that InMotion Hosting combined with the WordPress CMS represents the best value for my readers. You’ll get 56% off the normal price when you follow my link and open up your InMotion account. For more information regarding this reputable shared web host, check out my comprehensive review of InMotion Hosting. If you want to know more about how to start a blog, take a look at my step-by-step guide.