In the past, building a website was a somewhat tasking technical undertaking. Code was laboriously written, and only trained programmers could set up even the simplest types of websites.
Today, quite a handful of website builders can be used by individuals who have never done any form of coding in their lives and without formal training.
Building a website has not only become more manageable, but it has also become less expensive. Intending website owners face the challenge of picking a platform that will suit their needs. Among the available website builders, WordPress, Wix, and Squarespace are the most prominent ones. These software platforms have various advantages and disadvantages, and it can be challenging to choose the perfect one for you.
Squarespace was launched in 2004 and has remained relevant to today. It is hyped as the ‘all-in-one platform’ that gives you the tools to create a website easily. They also offer to host the site for a monthly fee.
One of the standout qualities of Squarespace is the quality of the templates. The quality of the design is better than what you will get with Wix. The platform also makes it easy to edit websites. There is a straightforward onboarding tour that will be very helpful. There is also a well-stocked developer’s version, which offers expanded possibilities for builders who understand coding. There are eCommerce friendly plans too.
However, just like in Wix, you don’t fully own the website you create through Squarespace. You can export parts of your content elsewhere when you decide that Squarespace is not for you, but you can’t transfer the entire site. Again, Squarespace is not plugin friendly. Unless you are using the website as a simple portfolio builder, I would recommend avoiding this website.
Also, forget to customize a unique mobile experience. Even the most literate of website developers straight up reject working on Squarespace since it won’t work with anything beyond simple HTML & CSS coding.
Our Recommendation: Abort immediately
What starts as a pretty layout quickly becomes the biggest headache. Don’t register for Squarespace. Skip jail, pass go, collect $200, and get started immediately on WordPress. For DIY, try Wix.
Wix was launched in 2005 and has remained a relevant website builder to date. It sells itself as the platform with everything you need to create your website and lives up to the expectations in most instances.
There are several positive things about Wix, including the ease of joining the platform. It is free to join and start building websites, although the domain name and hosting is available at a cost, like most platforms. You sign up as a new user and can select from several themes to customize and start using.
If you don’t want any customization, you can easily replace the original content with yours, and everything is set. It features a front end style editor that lets you see whatever changes you are making in real-time. The side menu has a lot of options, making the platform very manageable. Another pro is that the platform allows you to customize for desktop and mobile. This can become a bit difficult to manage as sections can quickly become rearranged, and every tweak can alter the layout.
One of the most significant downsides to Wix is that it doesn’t give you everything you need for free. For a start, you can’t connect your domain to your site on the free plan. If you decide to keep using the free plan, you will find several Wix ads, which can be annoying, and your site will have Wix’s domain attached to your own—harforddesigns.wix.com.
Every unique feature also comes at a monthly fee, and customizing with plugins is a total no-go. To sum it up, you don’t get to set your own rules here.
Our Recommendation: Ok to use for a limited time
If you are just starting out and need a quick, easy website, Wix will serve you fine. Once business starts booming, however, jump ship and swim over to WordPress where a website designer can build out a custom layout for you and install features that will keep your website performing at it’s highest level.
WordPress: The Best
Without mincing words, we can say that WordPress is currently the best platform for building websites. People may have different opinions, but we have good, honest reasons for projecting it as the best of them all.
Why WordPress Is Better Than Others
As the best CMS platform, WordPress allows you to create and manage different types of content, including pages, posts, products, portfolio items, images, events, and any other thing you may want to put on a standard website. Although it started as more of a blogging tool, WordPress has grown to become the most popular website builder, running close to 36% of all websites in the world. There is nothing you can’t achieve with the platform.
Unlike Wix and Squarespace, WordPress is free software. Once you pay for a hosting plan with any provider (SiteGround, GoDaddy, etc.), you can download WordPress from its main website and install it on your server. You can do so many things for free using WordPress. There are unique themes you can pay for, but the free ones are also superb. Overall, it is quite inexpensive, even if you decide to purchase or subscribe to plugins.
Another beautiful thing about WordPress is you genuinely own the website you build with the platform. You get to set the rules and rhythm here and also run your website. If you decide to change your hosting provider, it is simple and straightforward. The WordPress community is also huge when compared to the other options. From forums to slack channels to Facebook groups, you can find help quickly.
Our Recommendation: Begin right away!
WordPress is reliable and professional. It offers you everything you need, and the primary platform is absolutely free. If you decide to go for any paid features, they are mostly inexpensive, and a website designer or developer should be able to work their memberships onto your website and into your project costs. WordPress is a robust platform, and you can rest assured that it will be here tomorrow.