If there is one question I get asked more than any other, it’s ‘Why WordPress?’
The simple answer; because it’s the best.
But, for those who like to know the Hows and Whys of things, here is the long version. Below is my breakdown for why I choose WordPress vs. Wix and Weebly, with as little boring technical jargon as possible.
The Benefits of WordPress
WordPress allows for every page, post and image to be optimized for SEO. And it has tools that check your Readability and SEO scores on every page and blog post you create. Quality of code (below) also impacts your SEO.
Quality of Code:
The quality of code (the symbolic arrangement of data that makes computer programs run) matters, period. For the most part, if you know what you’re doing, the theme you choose will have quality code. For more on this, see the negatives of WordPress.
Ease of Use by Clients:
Rosewood has researched a wide range of WordPress themes and narrowed it down to only those that have full customization options as well as an easy user interface. We want all of our clients to at least have the opportunity to take over their own simple updates on a regular basis if they so choose. We include basic training in our packages. However, our goal is that our websites make our clients so busy that they need to outsource back to us. It’s a win-win!
WordPress is open-source (resources that have been designed to be publicly accessible and editable) and has been since is creation on May 27th, 2003. Since then, developers from around the world have created plugins for basically every functionality you can dream of. Some are free, and some are premium. The only real issue that arises is that you really need to do your homework before committing to a plugin.
APIs (Application Programming Interface)
Here’s where we get a little technical. An API is “a software-to-software interface that enables two applications to exchange data among each other.” (source). Because WordPress is open-source and the platform is world-wide, WordPress has tons of APIs; meaning almost everything integrates with it. From MailChimp to PayPal, to Stripe and Salesforce. Whatever you need, someone has most likely already created the API for it.
The Benefits of Wix & Weebly
Ease of Use:
Wix and Weebly knew they couldn’t compete with WordPress on most levels, so they really went after the simplicity component. Wix and Weebly are so simple, anyone can use them. But what I always say is, just because you have a website, doesn’t mean anyone can find it.
Quick & Simple
You can have a Wix/Weebly site up within a few days by yourself. These sites are best suited for people who just need a website as a passive portfolio. These sites will rarely actively find leads for you.
The Negatives of WordPress
Quality of Code:
Not all websites are built the same, and not even all WordPress sites are built the same. Some themes (which is the core layout design of your website) have terrible code quality and rank poorly in Google. This in turn reflects poorly on your SEO.
That is why it is critical to really know what you’re doing and do your research. Rosewood VA stays up to date with theme developments and updates to see which ones are the best for visual performance as well as code quality. Currently we have narrowed it down ONE SINGLE THEME! But hey, if something better comes along, you bet we’ll know about it first!
New clients are often hesitant when I recommend WordPress because they’ve heard it’s hard to use and requires custom coding knowledge. This USED to be true. WordPress five years ago was no where near as sophisticated as it is now. Like I say, if you know what you’re doing or have someone to get you started in the right direction, WordPress can be wonderful.
Having a website developed by a professional is not cheap. In the same way that having professional photography is not cheap. However, what really matters at the end of the day is your ROI (Return on Investment). You need to determine what that ROI is for your business. If you invested X amount in your website, how many leads/sales through that site are required for you to break even and then start turning a profit? I know that with WordPress you will get there faster than with Wix or Weebly, even with those options being free.
The Negatives of Wix & Weebly
With Wix & Weebly you have almost ZERO SEO. From experience, new clients have come to me with Wix and Weebly sites that they have built themselves. They look okay, but they don’t rank well at all in Google. And that’s even with them contributing to a regular blog. These platforms just don’t have what it takes regarding Keywords and Performance needed for Google/Bing SEO scores. And no one wants to end up twelve pages down in a Google search.
Wix and Weebly, and even the free Blogger version of WordPress, do not have the capacity for integrations with specialized applications. Developers haven’t invested the time and resources to create these integrations. You may get basic functionality, but it can be difficult if you want to set up sales funnels, opt-in-offers, etc.
It is clear from the above list why I recommend WordPress over Wix & Weebly. However, regardless of which platform you choose, it’s more important to do your research when deciding which company to work with. Web design involves trusting a company to not only build a beautiful, engaging website but also to achieve your business goals for that website. Good website design should be beautiful and functional!
Watch for my upcoming blog featuring questions you should be asking your current or potential web developer before entering an agreement. The web design process should be fun! And my goal is to educate and take the stress out of the project, so you can enjoy the journey!
If you’d like to discuss your website needs with us, or for more tips like these you can follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. Don’t forget to sign up for our monthly newsletter as well for more education and inspiration!