One of the most common questions I get asked for website building is – What platform should I use to build my website? There are so many options available to us in today’s time from Wix to Squarespace, Weebly, WordPress etc. that it often gets overwhelming.
So how do you pick the right platform?
There are two types of platforms when it comes to building a website.
- Self-Hosted: A platform like WordPress that can be installed on your hosting website. If you are not aware of website hosting, click here to read more about it.
- Website Builder / Hosted Website: A hosted website is a one-stop solution where you can drag and drop and build your own website with ease. Unlike a self-hosted platform, they have been designed for newbies that have little to no website design experience.
Both hosted and self-hosted websites have their pros and cons however I personally prefer to use WordPress and here is why.
- Customization, Designing, and Layout: One of the most common features people look for when it comes to website designing is – Customization and Website Design. Hosted platforms like Wix and Squarespace offer you with a variety of themes and pre-designed templates that can make your website look pretty. However, they aren’t very customizable and there are chances of your website looking like others using the same theme. You can also run into the issue of having to “upgrade” in case you want certain features on the website.
WordPress on the other hand has thousands of free and paid themes available to choose from. You can spend time browsing through all the options you have to find a theme that works best for you and your brand and install it on your self-hosted platform. It not only gives you more options than Wix, with easy-to-customize layouts, but you can also make your website stand out from others.
Installing can be a bit of a challenge but if you are not that tech-savvy, you can hire a developer to help you do it. It’s a one-time cost.
- Easy to Use: If you are building a website for your business, you want to make sure that the platform is easy to use for adding content. WordPress allows you to control everything from a Control Panel where you can add multiple users in case you a hiring help with their own log-in credentials and decide what and how much access they have to the website.
- Growth and Expansion: Not all websites have the option to expand and add heavy content on them. Wix comes with restrictions on how much space you have to upload your data like – images, videos, mp3s, and other files and also on how much bandwidth your website gets based on the plan you choose. Besides space, Wix also has a limited number of plug-ins to assist you in growing and handling your website.
However, with WordPress self-hosted on your website, you will not run into space and bandwidth issues. It also comes with 26,000 plug-ins available to help you as you grow your business. You don’t want to slow down your website by adding too many plug-ins, but there are options to choose from if you want.
- Search Engine Optimization: Wix is a terrible choice when it comes to SEO because of the technology being used. WordPress on the other hand is a dream to work with. Even if you are a newbie and have no idea how SEO works, you can install and use the number of great SEO plug-ins that the platform has to offer to optimize your content.
- Costs and Add-Ons: Even though Wix has a “free” website feature, it also has hidden costs associated with it that adds on as you build your website. Example – The free website does not offer you the option to connect your domain and comes with Ads on your website that you cannot control. To connect your domain and get rid of the ads, you need to upgrade which costs $10/month. However, that only gives you 3GB of storage. So, if you have a website with heavy images and videos, you’ll have to upgrade further to $14/month; this keeps adding more and more costs to your website.
WordPress also has costs associated with it just like any other platform, but the costs outweigh the benefits you get.
There no such thing as a “free” website, and if that is what you are looking for with Wix, then you’ll end up disappointing yourself.
WordPress may be a little tricky to set up in the start but the long-term benefits of having a website on the platform far outweigh the benefits of using Wix.