Our Pick for Best Website Builder: GoDaddy
There is a reason GoDaddy sits at No. 1 overall in our website builder rankings. GoDaddy is one of the most balanced options available on the market in terms of price, features, and simplicity. Despite WordPress.com offering the powerful features of the dynamic WordPress software with the added bonus of built-in web-hosting, using a content management system (CMS) is not an entry-level skill. It takes an experienced user to execute effectively. GoDaddy is suitable for a much wider range of experience levels.
To learn more about GoDaddy, read our in-depth GoDaddy Website Builder Review.
GoDaddy vs. WordPress.com: Ease of Use
As a small business owner, you’re probably on the market for a platform that’s easy to use so you don’t have to spend a lot of frustrating hours designing a website for your business. Read on to see how these two platforms stack up.
Ease of Use: GoDaddy
GoDaddy essentially defines ease of use. Its simple, drag-and-drop website editor allows you to easily add and remove elements and customize content so it is consistent with your brand’s message and personality. GoDaddy is a “What You See Is What You Get” (WYSIWYG) website-building platform, so you can be sure your results will align with your expectations.
One of the few drawbacks of GoDaddy’s format is that your template selection is final. This means if you chose poorly during setup, you’ll have to spend extra time adjusting the wrong template so it suits your needs. This can add a lot of time to what could otherwise be a simple, straightforward process. Be sure to choose your template carefully before you get started.
Ease of Use: WordPress.com
Unlike WordPress.org, which requires customers to purchase their own domain and web-hosting services before installing the software, WordPress.com offers the same software but also includes a built-in domain and web hosting. These services come at a premium, but transform the process of creating your website through WordPress.com into a simpler one-stop solution.
Unlike GoDaddy, WordPress.com is not a simple drag-and-drop website builder. Those who choose to work within WordPress.com without prior experience in CMS software should be prepared to adjust to a new platform. Recent updates have made the website-building software more approachable for entry-level users, but building a site through this platform remains a technical skill that will need to be developed with time and practice.
GoDaddy vs. WordPress.com: Templates and Themes
Creating a beautiful website starts with a beautiful template. A well-designed template can help you make a website that’s not only attractive but also functional.
Templates and Themes: GoDaddy
With simplicity in mind, GoDaddy saves you time browsing its 1,500 template industry categories by asking a few questions about your business and automatically selecting and populating a template based on your responses. If you wish to change this automatic selection, you may still manually select another template before you finalize your choice.
If you’re looking to go a bit more in-depth, you can change the theme of your website. Each template includes around 20 themes which allow you to choose between different layouts for your website’s content. This can help fully customize your template so it is consistent with your brand image.
Templates and Themes: WordPress.com
WordPress.com has thousands of built-in themes to choose from, many available to install directly through your WordPress.com dashboard. Other themes will need to be purchased via a third party and uploaded to your WordPress.com website. With so many selections available you can find one for virtually any industry, matched closely to your company’s existing branding.
Themes and templates can be endlessly changed and modified using WordPress.com.
GoDaddy vs. WordPress.com: Apps and Plug-Ins
Apps and plug-ins can help add functionality to your website, as well as integrate it with your social media and marketing campaigns.
Apps and Plug-Ins: GoDaddy
While GoDaddy does not offer any apps or plug-ins at the time this article is being written, it does have a few useful integrations that you can add to your website in their place. These include the ability to embed videos and livestreams from YouTube and Twitch, as well as playlists via SoundCloud, the ability to take reservations through OpenTable, and real estate listing integration via the multiple listings service (MLS).
You can also add online restaurant ordering with ChowNow, as well as embed Google My Business and Facebook Business reviews.
Apps and Plug-Ins: WordPress.com
There are many thousands of plug-ins available to WordPress.com users through the platform’s plug-in browser. These include nearly every option you can imagine. Most WordPress.com plug-ins come from third-party plug-in marketplaces, which offer a wide variety of options. With so many selections, users should never be unable to find what they’re looking for— albeit, you will have to pay a premium for certain plug-ins or purchase the site’s Business or Ecommerce plan.
GoDaddy vs. WordPress.com: Ecommerce
Choosing a platform that offers ecommerce features can help maximize the use you get out of your website, allowing you to create a digital storefront where you can sell goods and services.
GoDaddy includes an ecommerce plan. With this plan, you will have access to a few basic features that should easily meet the needs of smaller businesses — albeit, they may not be up to par for companies looking for a platform that can scale with their business models. Some of GoDaddy’s ecommerce services include the ability to add and import products, integrations with third-party payment gateways like PayPal, social media marketplace integrations, and the ability to add coupons and discounts.
WordPress.com offers a range of ecommerce features through the platform’s Business and Ecommerce plans. These features are, in fact, limited compared to the endless number of integrations that are possible with full-service ecommerce platforms like Shopify. The primary benefit of WordPress.com is the ability to take payments in-house with the Simple Payments button or third-party gateways like PayPal.
GoDaddy vs. WordPress.com: Pricing
Finding a website-building platform that has the features you need at a cost that you can afford is essential for small business owners.
GoDaddy includes four pricing tiers — Basic, Standard, Premium, and Ecommerce — and all new users are given the opportunity to try the platform for free before they commit to a plan. The Basic plan is a highly affordable option, but many small business owners may choose to opt for the Ecommerce plan — particularly if your business includes retail.
Website Plans – Pricing and Features
WordPress.com offers the same software as WordPress.org, and likewise, this software can be downloaded for free. To take advantage of the platform’s in-house hosting and domain services, users will need to purchase a plan. These start with simple, stripped-down features at a minimum price and scale to fuller service features at a higher price point. Plans include Personal, Premium, Business, and eCommerce.
Website Plans – Pricing and Features
GoDaddy Pros and Cons
- Simple, drag-and-drop technology
- Allows you to build a website in just minutes
- Highly affordable
- Ecommerce capabilities
- Search engine optimization (SEO) wizard ensures your website is found via search engines
- Customization can feel limited at times
- Zero apps and plug-ins
WordPress.com Pros and Cons
- Free option available
- The level of customization available with open-source, CMS can’t be beat
- The ability to use WordPress software with all-in-one domain name and website hosting services
- Access to the software’s extensive suite of integrations and plug-ins
- WordPress.com boasts a vast knowledge bank — from WordPress.org’s documentation to relevant social media groups and blogs, there’s an endless supply of information about building WordPress.com websites
- WordPress.com easily integrates with customer relationship management (CRM) programs like HubSpot and Salesforce, ecommerce tools like Shopify, and more
- Challenging and time consuming for beginners
- Inability to install your own themes and plug-ins without purchasing top-tier plans
- Top-tier plans are expensive, particularly for those accustomed to WordPress being free software
The Bottom Line: GoDaddy vs. WordPress.com
WordPress.com offers a lot of cool features but is designed for more experienced website designers. For users looking to build a functional, high-performance website in an afternoon, GoDaddy’s simple, drag-and-drop technology can help you create a beautiful product that is consistent with your company’s image and branding — without the learning curve of CMS to impede your results.
Are you ready to build a GoDaddy website for your business? Read our how-to guide and start building your GoDaddy website today!
Overall, we’re thoroughly impressed with how easy it is to use the GoDaddy website builder. It is a great choice for new and small businesses that don’t have a lot of time, or money, to spend on web development. Through GoDaddy, you can quickly create a simple, professional-looking website for your business.