If you’re a freelancer or entrepreneur looking to create a website for your business, you might be wondering which platform to choose: Wix or WordPress? Both platforms have their advantages, but the best one for you depends on your needs, goals, proficiency with web platforms and preferences.
We have compared Wix and WordPress on some key aspects for you to consider: ease of use, design and customization, SEO and online visibility, blogging, ecommerce, apps and plugins, security, and scalability and flexibility. By the end of this blog post, you will have a clearer idea of which platform suits you the best.
[If you would like to learn more about WordPress, take a look at WordPress: Everything You Need To Know Before You Commit.]
Ease of Use
When it comes to ease of use, Wix takes the lead. Its drag-and-drop interface empowers even the most technically challenged individuals to create dynamic websites without writing a single line of code. Wix provides a visually appealing and intuitive user experience, making it an ideal choice for freelancers and entrepreneurs with limited technical expertise. They also have excellent support channels and great knowledge base to help you with any issues you may come across.
On the other hand, WordPress has a steeper learning curve. However, once you overcome the initial learning phase, WordPress offers exceptional flexibility. With its powerful content management system or CMS and extensive array of plugins and themes, WordPress can become a powerhouse for creating highly customizable websites.
Design & Customization
Wix shines in the design department, offering a vast collection of professionally designed templates catering not only to various industries and audiences, but website categories like eCommerce, service providers, personal, portfolios, forums and more. Using the Wix Editor gives you complete design freedom, combined with the drag-and-drop technology to give you more command over the customization of your website, means that no two sites will ever truly look alike. The Wix ADI (Artificial Design Intelligence) further simplifies the process by automatically generating a customized website based on your preferences. Simply answer a few questions and you’ll get a fully designed site with content and images built in.
WordPress, with its extensive theme directory, provides a seemingly endless selection of design options. From free options to premium themes, you can find a design that aligns perfectly with your brand. One of the drawbacks of using a free WordPress theme though, is that there’s not much support from the theme developer if you encounter problems or have questions – you’ll need to do your own research and look for forums or other sources for answers. Plus, if you install a third-party theme that is free and hasn’t been vetted by WordPress, you may open yourself up to security vulnerabilities, making keeping atop of updates critical. WordPress also allows further customization through plugins. These are software components that enhance the functionality of your site, like ecommerce, contact forms etc. While they save time and are easy to use, they can slow down your site if you have too many installed or they are poorly coded, so you need to do your research and due diligence when choosing them.
SEO & Online Visibility
In the realm of search engine optimization or SEO, both Wix and WordPress offer features to enhance your website’s online visibility. Wix provides an all-in-one solution with built-in SEO tools, ensuring that your website follows SEO best practices. Its user-friendly interface allows you to optimize meta tags, alt tags, and URLs effortlessly. Wix is a strong contender among website builders when it comes to DIY SEO. While it is not as advanced as more complex CMSs like WordPress, it’s excellent for business owners who want to build, maintain and optimize their a website and don’t have the time for or interest in a giant learning curve. Wix also has an excellent and very thorough SEO learning hub chock full of videos and resources for those who want to go the extra miles in their SEO optimization.
WordPress has long been touted as one of the best website building platforms for SEO for good reason – it makes it easy to structure, manage and publish your content in an SEO-friendly way fout of the gates because of how the CMS is designed. Being an open-source platform, WordPress has a seemingly endless selection of SEO plugins, such as Yoast SEO and All in One SEO Pack, but nothing native within the platform like Wix. These plugins empower users to optimize their content by providing an in-depth analysis, keyword suggestions, and XML sitemap generation. These tools give you complete control over every SEO aspect, which should give you a competitive edge in search rankings.
Blogging is one of the main reasons why people use WordPress. This platform started out as a way for people to manage their blog content and the media that goes along with it, and it’s still the best one for creating and managing blogs. WordPress has everything you need to create a successful blog, such as:
- A built-in blog editor that lets you write and format your posts easily.
- A media library that lets you upload and manage your images, videos, audio files and other media.
- A comment system that lets you interact with your readers and moderate their comments.
- A category and tag system that lets you organize your posts and make them easier to find.
- A RSS feed that lets your readers subscribe to your blog and get updates.
- A user role system that lets you assign different permissions and capabilities to different users on your blog.
- A plugin system that lets you add more features and functions to your blog, such as social sharing buttons, related posts, newsletters, polls, quizzes, etc.
Wix also has a blogging feature that lets you create and publish posts on your site. However, it is not as advanced or robust as WordPress. Wix’s blog editor is more limited and less user-friendly than WordPress. Wix’s media library is also more restrictive and less organized than WordPress.
Wix does not have a comment system by default. You need to add a third-party app, like Facebook Comments, or Disqus to enable comments on your blog. While Wix does have a category system, it is limited to 20 categories maximum, and there is no tagging feature like WordPress.
Wix does have RSS feed capabilities for your blog, but it is not very customizable or flexible. There also is no user role system like WordPress. You can only have one admin and one contributor on your blog. There aren’t as many plugins or apps for Wix that can enhance your blog in the way that WordPress does.
If you want to create an online store or accept payments on your site, you need an ecommerce platform or solution. Wix is better than WordPress for ecommerce because it has a more user-friendly and integrated ecommerce solution – one that most people can get the hang of fast. They have dedicated ecommerce plans that let you create an online store with no coding required. You can simply add products, set prices, manage inventory, create collections, offer discounts, accept payments, calculate taxes and more. It’s great for Canadian retailers – the majority of Webnames’ customers – because it supports Canada’s most popular payment gateways, automates all of our various sales taxes (GST, PST, HST, QST), integrates with Canada Post for shipping, plus other features that streamline things for Canadian small businesses. You can also customize your store’s design, layout, and checkout flow. Wix also has a variety of ecommerce apps that can help you with marketing, customer service, in addition to a POS (point-of-sale) solution that enables Wix ecommerce users to accept in-person payments.
WordPress does not have a native ecommerce solution. You need to install plugins like WooCommerce to create an online store on your site. Most of the WordPress ecommerce plugins are not very easy to use or set up. There are settings to configure, possibilities for incompatibility with certain themes, security risks and oftentimes you will need to install additional plugins or extensions to add more features and functions to your store. WordPress does not have a dedicated ecommerce plan or support either.
Apps & Plugins
Apps and plugins are additional features and functions that you can add to your website to enhance its functionality and performance. They can help you with various aspects of your site, such as SEO, analytics, social media integration, contact forms, ecommerce, etc.
Wix has 500+ apps that you can install on your site from the Wix App Market. A big benefit is that they are all tested, vetted and approved by Wix, so they are guaranteed to work well with your Wix website. However, some apps may require a premium subscription or have limited features compared to their counterparts on other platforms.
WordPress has 60k+ plugins that you can install on your site. They offer almost limitless possibilities for extending and improving your site. The downside is that some plugins may not be updated or maintained by their developers or may conflict with other plugins or themes on your site. You also need to be careful about choosing plugins from trusted sources and updating them, as they may contain malware or vulnerabilities.
Security is a crucial factor that you should consider when choosing a website platform. You want to protect your site from hackers, malware, spam, and other threats that could cause harm to your website or visitors.
Wix is extremely proactive about website safety, the security of its platform and its hosting infrastructure implying a team of engineers and IT security experts monitoring its servers around the clock. A major benefit of Wix is that it takes care of the security of your website for you. Wix is PCI compliant, fulfilling the security requirements set by credit card companies and its websites are HTTPS by default with built in SSL (Secure Socket Layer) encryption to secure the connection between your site and your visitors. Wix also monitors and updates its servers and software regularly to prevent any attacks or breaches. You don’t need to worry about anything related to security when using Wix, plus it backs up your Wix website automatically.
WordPress requires more involvement from you when it comes to security. WordPress is a popular target for hackers and malicious actors, so you need to take some measures to protect your site. You need to choose a reliable and secure web hosting service (like Webnames.ca), install security plugins, update your WordPress core, themes, and plugins regularly, backup your site frequently, and follow other best practices for WordPress security. Also, if you choose to go with WordPress, you will need to install your own SSL certificate to protect your website, on top of the other maintenance mentioned above.
[To learn more about SSL certificates, check out our guide: SSL 101: A Guide to Understanding Website Security.]
If keeping your WordPress updated, backed up and secure sounds like too much work, but you still really would like a WordPress website, you should check out our Managed WordPress Hosting. Not only does your WordPress hosting package come with WordPress pre-installed, but our experts also ensure that your site is kept up-to-date and protected. We take care of making sure your WordPress CMS software, security patches and plugins are the most current versions, plus our plans consist of a WordPress Backup Scheduler and Restore Manager, security scanning, threat detection, malware removal, Litespeed Webserver, migration services and support in both French and English.
While Wix offers a lot of flexibility in terms of design and customization, it also has some limitations. It doesn’t allow you to switch templates once you have chosen one, so you must stick with the same design or start from scratch if you want to change it. Wix also doesn’t give you access or the ability to edit the HTML or CSS code of your website, so you are restricted by the options that Wix provides.
With WordPress you can create your own custom themes or hire a developer to do so. You have access to the code for the themes so that you can customize or build upon them further. Should you want to change the theme to your WordPress site, you don’t have to start from scratch. While there might be some minor reconfigurations and code snippets you need to back up for things like style or analytics, all you have to do is switch the theme on your dashboard to get a new look for your WordPress website.
WordPress does have some drawbacks when it comes to flexibility. Since it requires more technical knowledge than Wix, you may need to learn how to code or hire a developer to achieve the results that you want. WordPress also has a higher risk of breaking or slowing down your site due to poorly coded on incompatible plugins and themes.
Making the Choice Between Wix & WordPress
In the battle between Wix and WordPress, there is no definitive winner, but there are clear advantages for different types of users.
Both platforms have their strengths and weaknesses, making the choice ultimately dependent on your requirements and skill level. Wix comes out ahead with its simplicity by integrating everything from ecommerce to security, its intuitive and easy-to-use website editor and a visually appealing interface, making it an excellent choice for beginners or those seeking a hassle-free website-building experience. On the other hand, WordPress provides standout flexibility, scalability, and control over every aspect of your website, making it the preferred choice for those seeking complete customization and advanced functionality. It’s also worth noting that you cannot export or migrate a Wix website to another webhost (thankfully Wix’s speed and uptime are widely regarded as excellent), whereas with WordPress you can.
Ultimately, the decision between Wix and WordPress boils down to your technical expertise and long-term goals. So, with that in mind, carefully evaluate your needs, explore the features of both platforms, and embark on your journey to build a remarkable online presence.