Which platform is right for YOUR business?
I was there too once upon a time, and I understand that choosing the right website platform for your business is… tricky business? Anyway… As someone that works with all platforms, I’m here to give you my unbiased opinion to help you decide which one is right for you in this detailed platform breakdown. (And just so you know that I’m truly just trying to help, no referral links.)
In this post, I will be comparing WordPress, Showit, Wix, and Squarespace. I’ll also let you know which type business I personally think would benefit most from each platform.
Pros of WordPress:
- If you’re pretty tech savvy or can hire a website expert, WordPress is the cheapest option because you can self host. For more information on self hosting check out this blog post.
- You don’t NEED a designer to customize your site. WordPress controls 60% of the market when it comes to website platforms so there is an endless supply of templates to keep your site unique.
- Thousands of options for plug-ins. If you can think it, there’s probably a plug-in for it.
- WordPress has built in SEO.
- WordPress is built for blogging, so it’s great for updates. It’s easy to make timely updates and engage with your website visitors.
Cons of WordPress:
- WordPress isn’t as easy to customize on it’s own, but like many other sites, it offers page builders like Elementor and Divi.
- You need to update and maintain your site. This isn’t hard or time consuming, but would be a nuisance for someone that isn’t tech savvy or a smaller business where website maintenance isn’t in the budget.
- WordPress and their plug-ins have frequent upgrades which is great except that sometimes when your plug-ins get updated, it breaks something else. This is why it’s important to do a backup of your site and update your plug-ins one at a time to make sure everything works.
- The choices in features are so robust that you can easily get lost in adding so much to your site, that you impact your website speed which will turn your visitors off.
WordPress is free to download and use, but you’ll need a good hosting plan for security and speed. I’ve seen hosting plans start as cheap as $3 a month. Check out my blog post to learn more about how WordPress hosting works.
What business is WordPress best for?
WordPress is best for businesses or people that are looking for endless customization and business growth. It is not for someone that either doesn’t have time to learn about the platform or have the resources to have a designer handle the tech stuff.
Pros of Showit:
Cons of Showit:
Pros of Squarespace:
- Squarespace is very easy to set up. You don’t need to know any code to build a website that works for you.
- Great support team and community. There are a lot of people that use Squarespace so it will be easy to find the answers you’re looking for in the community.
- Extensive library or tutorials on their website. If you can’t find what you’re looking for on their site, there are also tons of designers that create free tutorials on Youtube.
- Squarespace is an all-in-one platform. You get e-commerce, scheduling, track your analytics, marketing, social, and SEO tools.
Cons of Squarespace:
- Every Squarespace website starts with one of their templates which makes it difficult to make something unique without either knowing code or hiring a designer that does. However… you also have the option of purchasing a template. These are a great option if you can’t afford a custom designer, but want a more unique site.
- You use Squarespace hosting which means you’re locked into their price point. It’s not the cheapest, but not the priciest by far.
- If you decide to switch platforms later on, you’ll have to rebuild your site, because the Squarespace templates do not transfer.
Personal plans start at $12 a month, $18 for Businesss, $26 for Basic Commerce, and $40 for Advanced Commerce.
What business is Squarespace best for?
Squarespace is best for small businesses and business owners that need to get a site up and running fast. If you don’t mind working from a template or require alot of customization this would be great for you. Although, you don’t have total design freedom over a Squarespace site, adding a bit of CSS can make all the difference in your design and there are plenty of talented web designers that can help.
Pros of Wix:
- Wix is very easy to set up. You don’t need to know any code to build a website that works for you.
- Drag and drop website builder very that is very simple to use.
- Over 500 templates to choose from to start.
- Wix has a mobile editing feature allowing you to optimize your website for mobile devices.
- All-in-one platform. You can add an online store, booking system, member area, and blog. Then use the SEO tols and integrated marketing to drive traffic to your site.
Cons of Wix:
- If your business is successful and begins picking up speed, the pages load slowly.
- There are no unlimited plans.
- Their SEO tools are more difficult to use than other platforms.
- Wix is in the same boat as Squarespace when it comes to migrating your site elsewhere. Be prepared to make a new website, because their templates do not transfer.
Personal plans start at $14 a month, $18 for entrepreneurs and freelancers, $23 for complete online branding, and $39 a month for VIP.
What business is Wix best for?
Wix is best if you’re just starting out and exploring the possibility of a business as a side hustle. If you are looking to grow your business in the future, then WIX probably isn’t for you.
So which platform would I recommend?
Someone that needs an all-in-one platform up and fast? Squarespace, hands down. I think Squarespace sites are so simple to navigate and I love the all-in-one platform. Squarespace makes it really easy for a busy body entrepreneur to manage their site all in one place.
For someone who needs lots of customizations and a variety of features? WordPress is the way to go. I see a lot of people recommend Showit, because of the endless design possibilities, but those are just as achievable in WordPress using Elementor or Divi without code. The platform is also much more responsive and mobile friendly, and so much more affordable.
I am a web designer so it makes sense that I would use WordPress. I like being able to customize my websites exactly how I want, but I definitely have a different recommendation for each one of my clients based on their wants, resources, and business needs.
Check out my website templates
I focus on creating designs that are simple for users to navigate and easy for my clients to maintain. My goal is to make your website creation or redesign a smooth and positive experience and ensuring that you will be able to manage your own website after launch. I’ve been creating templates designed for online business owners. They are perfect for new businesses or for those that aren’t ready for the price tag that comes with custom web design and branding.
I’ll be adding more designs and platforms as I finish passion projects between clients so if you can’t find something you love now, just subscribe to the blog to get notified when I release something new.
Ready to upgrade to something more customized to your unique small business needs? Check out my services for affordable custom website design for your small business.
Get my free website workbook
Before we dive into building and optimizing your business website, let’s take a moment to identify your goals. Recognizing how you want your website to function and what you’d like to get out of your website will help you make important decisions later on. Additionally, it’s a great place to refer back to as you continue to progress.