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WordPress vs. Wix.com: Which Is the Best Website Builder?

Businesses face many options when it comes to building, running, and hosting their websites. WordPress and Wix.com — two of the most well-known website builders — look similar, but each has distinct strengths and weaknesses. To help you decide which is right for you, this comparison guide takes an in-depth look at both platforms.

TRUiC TIP: Because an off-the-shelf content management system (CMS) and website builder may not always meet your needs, you might prefer custom development. If you opt to take that approach, check out our guide on How To Get High-Quality Web Design and Development.


Selected Winner: WordPress

While WordPress costs more than Wix.com initially, the features included in its plans make the price worthwhile. WordPress also offers a nearly unlimited range of themes while Wix.com only has a little more than 500.

In addition, WordPress surpasses Wix.com when it comes to plug-ins with WordPress offering more than 55,000 compared to Wix.com’s 200. For business owners planning to sell goods or services on their sites, WordPress makes popular ecommerce plug-ins like WooCommerce and Shopify readily available.

Yet, Wix.com does offer several advantages so you should review both carefully before you make a final decision.

Key Comparison: WordPress vs. Wix.com

To help you more easily determine which website builder will best suit your business, our research focused on the factors that matter most:

Which Characteristics Set Them Apart?

Both WordPress and Wix.com offer solid website-building tools, but they have entirely different methodologies because they started as different solutions that now provide overlapping  functionality. This can easily confuse anyone trying to choose between them so you need to know what sets them apart to help you make an informed decision. 

WordPress

WordPress is an efficient CMS trusted by thousands of businesses worldwide. It requires a certain skill set and level of expertise to know how to make the most of some of its features. But, it’s also very extensive and provides plenty of options from which to choose.

Wix.com

In contrast, Wix.com is more of a web hosting company that also offers an easy-to-use website builder. While you might find it easier to use than WordPress, you won’t get as much variety. You also may find Wix.com’s limitations frustrating as your business grows.

Do They Offer a Good Deal?

The time and money you invest in building your business website can make a huge difference. Because these costs can increase rapidly, carefully evaluate every element in which you must invest before you proceed. Luckily, both WordPress and Wix.com offer strong value so you don’t have to pursue custom development.

WordPress

When using WordPress, you must purchase web hosting separately — a service that costs about $4 per month, on average. WP Engine, a more expensive option, charges $25 per month and up for its hosting plans while Bluehost plans start at $2.95 per month and include a free, customized domain name.

WordPress themes have a one-time fee of between $25 and $299 with the more expensive options usually boasting better reputations. Popular plug-ins also typically cost around $15 to $70 each.

But, in the long run, the benefits of a WordPress site outweigh the initial costs.

Wix.com

Wix.com offers seven premium plans at varying prices. It also offers a free version of its website builder, but sites built with this version must display Wix.com ads.

Committing to an annual plan can reduce your costs here. Wix.com’s Business Unlimited plan supersedes the rest of its plans in terms of value for money and how much you can save. Its Business Basic plan, as the name suggests, restricts you from using some really interesting features like essential add-ons and apps.

Because Wix.com offers a free version of its website builder, it gives business owners a chance to determine exactly what they need and can afford. This makes Wix.com especially valuable to those with limited budgets.

What Features Do They Include?

Two of the most important aspects of your website include its layout and overall design. Both companies offer a distinct set of features to help you create an attractive, intuitive layout and design for your website.

WordPress

WordPress offers a large variety of free, downloadable themes that you can customize further if you have some coding experience. Alternatively, you can use Elementor or a similar plug-in to make coding-free, drag-and-drop design entirely possible.

You also can choose to buy a premium theme for your site, which comes with a one-time fee of between $25 and $299. Free themes come with restricted support whereas premium themes include more features and support options while still remaining much cheaper than custom site development.

While you can download a theme from a variety of sources, it’s much safer to use one created by WordPress. Why? They come optimized for WordPress sites and likely offer compatibility with useful WordPress plug-ins.

To fully appreciate why so many companies prefer this platform, read our WordPress Review. Or, check out our guide on How To Choose a WordPress Theme to simplify the selection process.

Wix.com

Wix.com offers more than 500 themes you can use to build your website — all categorized according to specific types of sites and aesthetic features.

Each theme includes examples so you can see how your site will look if you choose that option. Written in the HTML5 programming language, Wix.com themes also enable further customization.

But, you can’t replace your chosen theme with another one after building your website. This is the biggest disadvantage of choosing Wix.com instead of WordPress. While you can make some modifications to your site’s theme, you can’t completely change it to something else. Those with advanced coding experience, however, can access a premade theme’s code to make edits.

Which Has the Best Apps and Plug-Ins?

If you want to expand your site’s features and functionality, you may need to add certain apps and plug-ins.

WordPress

Based on its extensive community, WordPress offers more than 55,000 plug-ins that boast more than 1.2 billion downloads.

Because WordPress is an open-source platform, anyone with coding knowledge can access and modify the underlying code. Experienced coders also can create their own plug-ins and themes for others to buy or use for free. But, this also poses a potential problem because anyone can create a theme or plug-in with bugs or other risks.

Wix.com

Wix.com, which refers to all plug-ins for its platform as apps, isn’t an open-source platform. That means only its development team can create and control apps for Wix.com sites.

Because Wix.com incorporates these apps into its website builder, they have less chance of containing bugs. But, Wix.com only offers about 200 apps — a noticeably smaller number than WordPress.

How Well Do They Support Ecommerce?

Many businesses want to sell products and services on their websites so here’s how these platforms compare in terms of ecommerce functionality.

WordPress

In order to sell goods on a WordPress website, you must first download an ecommerce plug-in. You’ll find several options, but WooCommerce is the most popular. Why? It not only offers free installation and optional features for a fee, but also makes selling online very easy.

To learn more about this powerful ecommerce solution, read our WooCommerce Review. Or, check out our Shopify Review for another popular option.

Compared to Wix.com, WordPress combined with WooCommerce is a better choice for businesses seeking to sell goods online.

Wix.com

You can access ecommerce features with a Wix.com premium plan, but free users must upgrade to a paid plan in order to run an online store. Wix.com’s ecommerce features also seem primitive when compared to Shopify and WooCommerce.

You can find a number of third-party apps to help you sell goods online via a Wix.com site, but they require a premium plan from Wix.com and, as such, higher monthly charges. While Wix.com’s ecommerce features can’t compare to WordPress’ offerings, you may still want to explore our Wix.com Review to better understand why businesses overwhelmingly choose WordPress.

Which Website Builder Is Easier To Use?

While an individual’s experience can influence which platform they find more intuitive, WordPress and Wix.com do have some key differences regarding ease of use.

WordPress

WordPress often earns praise for its flexibility, but only coders and people with advanced technical skills can take advantage of this.

For this reason, WordPress falls short in terms of ease of use because it presents a much steeper learning curve. For example, WordPress lacks a drag-and-drop page builder and instead comes with a visual editor used to write content. This visual editor also doesn’t show any live previews unless you click to preview or publish the content.

In addition, you must buy your site’s web hosting and domain name separately. None of this poses a problem if you have website-building experience and don't mind handling these tasks yourself. But, WordPress isn’t an ideal fit if you prefer a platform that’ll do most of the work for you.

Wix.com

Unlike WordPress, Wix.com combines everything you need to build your website in a single platform. That means you don’t have to purchase web hosting or a domain name separately.

Wix.com also makes it much easier to build a site with a drag-and-drop tool that allows you to add, move, and rearrange content anywhere on a web page. This elevates Wix.com above WordPress in terms of ease of use because you won’t need coding or programming experience to use it effectively.

Overall Impressions

A good website builder can not only help you make the most of a tight budget, but also ensure you end up with a high-quality site. Both WordPress and Wix.com provide the basics for free, but their premium plans deliver more options that, ultimately, can help you create a more professional-looking website.

While nearly anyone can easily build a free WordPress website, these free sites come with limitations. For example, WordPress will add its name to the URL of any website built using its free version. Such sites also must carry WordPress ads while their owners face fewer customization options and insufficient support.

Wix.com also allows you to build a website for free, but it will place its own ads across the entire site and insert its name into your website address. Alternatively, Wix.com’s premium plans offer an all-in-one deal with no developer costs, a free year of domain name registration, advertising vouchers you can use to cover advertising costs on platforms like Facebook, and much more.

If you appreciate convenience and control, but don’t mind learning some technical skills along the way, then WordPress may provide the perfect fit. On the other hand, you might find WordPress difficult to use if you have no website-building experience.

Wix.com is a better option if you want a more intuitive user experience and don’t need complete control as you create your website. Wix.com’s drag-and-drop interface just makes the whole process easier for those with no prior website development experience.

In terms of customer support, WordPress users can seek help with any issues by addressing a public forum and searching for answers within old forum posts. Or, they can submit queries to WordPress’ live chat support and a WordPress Happiness Engineer will respond. Wix.com takes a more conventional approach, offering its users help tickets along with phone, chat, and email support. This means Wix.com delivers more efficient, personal, and direct support.