The competition among website builders is a tough one - there are plenty of platforms, promising you an easy, efficient way to make a website.
And if you're looking for a simple page-building solution, WordPress vs Weebly is one of the biggest decisions you'd have to make. After all, they are both massively versatile and powerful platforms, running millions of websites.
But they're also a fair bit different - so in this post, we'll look at the differences between WordPress and Weebly, and help you choose the best option to built your website with.
So, let's compare WordPress vs Weebly and see which one's the best.
So what is WordPress?
WordPress is the biggest open-source content management system, powering around 1/3 of the world's websites.
And with WordPress.com, it turns into an easy-to-use website builder, combining open-source freedom and very simple content management, suitable even for the complete beginners.
The all-in-one WordPress.com services allows anyone to launch a fully functional site in under 5 minutes. Hosting, website builder, and a domain name are all included, and you only need to set up one account for all of this.
In contrast, WordPress.org, the open-source platform is free - but you have to purchase hosting and domain name beforehand, as well as have some experience in website development to get a full-fledged website up and going.
If you're interested in that, we have a big WordPress tutorial for beginners, that will help you to get started.
But in this post, we'll focus on WordPress.com, and see how the features of this powerful platform compare to the Weebly website builder.
And if you're interested, we have an entire post going in-depth about the differences between WordPress.com and WordPress.org.
What is Weebly?
Weebly is a simple and straightforward website builder. And it's precisely the user-friendliness and flexibility that made Weebly as popular as it is now.
One of the key features is definitely the drag-and-drop functionality, that makes building a website a very simple, highly-visual process.
And since fairly recently, Weebly has started focusing more and more onto eCommerce, and there are plenty of plans and features, aimed specifically at businesses, looking to sell online.
However, you can use it to create any type of website - sky's the limit.
Comparing the Two Giants: WordPress vs Weebly
WordPress and Weebly are very different. But at the end of the day, they're platforms meant for one and the same end goal - creating websites.
So let's see how good they are at that - and how much would it cost you.
WordPress is cheaper for small websites
Weebly has a free plan. WordPress.com offers a free plan, too.
However, the free plans come with deal-breaking limitations, such as the advertising of the platform present on your website, and only being able to host your website on your subdomain (i.e. yourwebsite.weebly.com or yourwebsite.wordpress.com).
So if you're serious about your website, go for a premium plan.
And speaking of those, Weebly has 6 plans starting at $5/month. However, it has some restrictions such as storage limitations and Weebly banner still present.
The true unlimited Weebly package starts at $12/month, and completely removes Weebly ads, as well as allows to sell online,
However, if you want all features for eCommerce, I would recommend the Business plan for $25/month. It will get you shipping discounts and all features needed to operate an online store: payment options, tax calculator, eCommerce statistics, etc.
Now, let's talk about WordPress. The open-source platform itself is free, but it requires a domain and a hosting account to fully work.
WordPress.com, however, has a free option which allows to get your website up and running in minutes. But there's limited storage (3GB) and WordPress ads are displayed as well.
Cheapest premium WordPress plan starts at $3/month but is quite limited: you can only choose a domain name with .blog TLD extension and storage is limited to 6GB.
For businesses, I would recommend a Business plan for $25/month so you can get some of the eCommerce features and unlimited storage. Also, more customization options. However, the ideal plan for growing eCommerce sites is the eCommerce plan for $45/month. This way, you'll be able to accept payments from over 60 countries and integrate top shipping carriers.
All in all, if you want a fully functional eCommerce site, Weebly is cheaper. However, for a small informational website, a portfolio, or a blog - WordPress is a better option.
WordPress can be more flexible
WordPress is very highly customizable. There are countless of themes, plugins, and integrations available - and they can be found all across the web. However, to unlock the full potential of WordPress, you either have to use the open-source platform or open your wallet very wide.
You will be able to import a custom theme and every plugin you can find on the internet only if you are paying for Business and eCommerce plans. So that's not cheap - starting at $25/month.
But even with less expensive plans, WordPress.com is quite flexible. You'll have access to a bunch of plugins and customizable themes to make a website stand out.
By comparison, Weebly has a more closed environment, and that means less flexibility. The drag-and-drop function allows dropping design elements basically anywhere on the website, but you'll still be limited to the themes offered by Weebly itself.
Luckily, the themes are beautiful. You can find both minimalist and modern templates, and also the ones designed for video backgrounds.
And though coding is not entirely off-limits and there are ways to alter HTML and CSS, Weebly does reserve certain programming “no-fly zones.” You'll be able to use the pre-vetted apps on Weebly, but not upload your own.
So overall, WordPress has much more potential to be a fully customizable platform. If that's what you're after - go for it.
Weebly is so much easier to use
The learning curve for Weebly is basically non-existent. Everything is customizable through the drag-and-drop editor, so building a new website, uploading content, or altering existing theme is as easy as updating your social media profiles.
And certainly much easier than updating your Facebook privacy settings.
Compared to Weebly's suburbs, WordPress is the wild, wild West.
First of all, it does not have a drag-and-drop editor. Also, it's a bit tricky to use. For example, WordPress offers quite a lot of features alone but if you want to customize fully, you'll need to install plugins and each of them is handled differently. They have their own documentation, limitations, and quirks.
But once you learn how to use WordPress, you'll start liking it. After all, it offers more customization options, so once you master it, website development will be your oyster.
As for the conclusion, it is important to notice the massive difference between Weebly vs WordPress respective learning curves. it's up for you to choose, whether you enjoy smooth sailing or the Wild West. Yee-haw.
Maintenance is taken care off by both Weebly and WordPress
Much like a house in a neighborhood with a housing association, Weebly takes care of all of the back-end site development for users, including maintenance. You won't have to worry about updates, hosting, apps not working or potential site crashes.
For that, you lose quite a bit of flexibility, yet all you need to take care of is the content.
WordPress.com offers the same maintenance features. Yet, it's not responsible for each third-party app you use. Alternatively, Weebly manages all the apps you find on their platform, so the support team can take direct actions.
On the other hand, WordPress.com also has a great support team, so they won't leave you hanging either.
But when it comes to WordPress CMS, you're completely on your own.
Although WordPress.org takes care of security updates, hosting and all back-end maintenance is your problem. So unless you are experienced, I would better start off with Weebly or WordPress.com.
WordPress vs Weebly: Same Goal, Different Experience
Overall, both WordPress and Weebly are very good platforms. They both help you achieve the same end goal - only in very different ways.
WordPress.com is a customizable platform for building unique sites. Weebly is a user-friendly website builder focusing on eCommerce.
- WordPress.com - choose this, if you want to create a beautiful portfolio, a blog, or informational site on the most powerful CMS around. It's a fairly cheap option, too.
- Weebly - if your goal is a successful eCommerce website, or you want a very simple editing experience with amazing themes, this is an option for you.
All in all, there's no winner here. The decision will be based solely on your goals and skill level.
Which of these do you use? Share your experiences in the comment section down below!