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WordPress vs Weebly: Customization Meets Drag-and-Drop

Posted on November 12, 2014 by in Resources | 38 comments

WordPress vs Weebly: Customization Meets Drag-and-Drop

We have many choices in today’s world of publishing platforms. Most platforms attempt to offer a wide variety of publishing features to meet many needs including websites, blogging, and eCommerce.

WordPress is a popular choice for all three of these needs. But another choice is Weebly.

Let’s take a look at what’s involved in getting both platforms off the ground, turn them into a blog, a website, and add eCommerce. We’ll discover their basic features as well as pros and cons along the way.

WordPress

WordPress

 

WordPress is a publishing platform that allows you to build websites, blogs, and online stores. Prices range from free to hundreds of dollars per month depending on your choice of host, themes, plugins, and customizations.

Themes

WordPress themes

 

WordPress has a directory with almost 2800 themes, many of which are free. Beyond that there are many premium theme suppliers that provide themes for everything from blogs to stores to portfolios to schools and everything in between. Many themes are responsive so they work correctly on mobile screens.

Plugins

WordPress plugins

 

Plugins add functionality to your WordPress site. There are over 34,000 plugins in the WordPress plugin directory. They add features such as calendars, project management tools, stats, newsletter, shopping carts, lightboxes, forums, etc. They add functionality to your site.

Blog and Website

WordPress has a powerful set of features for developing your blog. You can write without distractions, save and preview drafts, add SEO, retrieve older versions of a post, choose categories and tags, and much more. It auto-saves as you go so you won’t lose anything you write. To create a website, even one with a blog, set the home page to a static front page instead of the latest blog posts.

eCommerce

WordPress ecommerce

 

You have a lot of options for running an eCommerce store from WordPress. There are over 600 plugins in the directory that provide shopping carts, inventory management systems, etc. There are many themes built specifically for eCommerce, so you can have a site with a storefront if you want. Ecommerce can be added to virtually any theme.

Plans

WordPress hosting plans

 

You have choices when it comes to webhosting plans for WordPress. Depending on the amount of traffic you want to accommodate and whether or not you want to use eCommerce. The typical plan for blogging runs around $10.00 per month and $20 per month for eCommerce. You might need plugins and themes which could cost extra, usually a one-time fee. Prices range from free to several hundred dollars.

Taking WordPress for a Test Drive

To get started with WordPress you have to choose a host, install WordPress, select a theme, and install the necessary plugins.

Publishing

Publishing with wordpress

 

You write your posts and pages from the same editor. Here you have access to all of your text editing and you can add media such as audio, video, and other files.

Publishing with wordpress view post

 

This is what the post looks like using Elegant Theme’s Nexus theme. I can replace the logo with my own.

Design

wordpress design

 

The design of your WordPress site can be modified by adding widgets, plugins, and changing theme elements. There are plenty of themes to choose from. You can also modify the design by changing the background, customizing colors, etc. Many themes allow these changes with WYSIWYG tools so you don’t have to know how to code.

Edit

wordpress editor

 

If you do want to code you can edit CSS, themes, plugins, and widgets with WordPress’s built in editor. You can edit every element of your site including the header, body, footer, etc.

Adding eCommerce

Adding eCommerce to wordpress

 

To add eCommerce to WordPress you will have to make some choices. I installed a plugin called WooCommerce. Once installed I could easily upload product pictures, product descriptions, categories, manage inventory, set tax rates, handle shipping, and more. The plugin added Cart, Checkout, My Account, and Shop to my website’s navigation bar. The plugin is free. There are lots of add-ons that include USPS, UPS, and PayPal. I can also set up a specific page as a landing page.

Thoughts About WordPress

WordPress can easily be a website, blog, and store, all at the same time. It is extremely flexible. There are lots of choices for themes and plugins. The UI is easy to understand and contains lots of advanced features. It feels like a powerhouse when it comes to features and customizations. The vast amount of tools available allow you to make your site anything you want. It’s easy to use and it works as a great platform even if you don’t want to customize the site.

And since you choose the host, you have full control over your WordPress site. This means that you can move your site to a different host if you want. It also means that you are responsible for updates under the hood, security, and backups.

Weebly

Weebly

 

Weebly is a publishing platform with a WYSIWYG interface that’s simple and intuitive. You can create a website, blog, or store. Prices range from free to $25 per month depending on the features you want. Let’s look at those features.

Themes

Weebly themes

 

There are over 100 themes for blogs, businesses, creatives, non-profits, and storefronts. You have control over pretty much everything in the theme. You can change the fonts, header, background, and colors, and you can move and adjust all of the design elements. You can also adjust the CSS and HTML.

Build with Drag and Drop

Weebly drag and drop

 

All of the elements to build your site are dragged and dropped onto a WYSIWYG interface. You drag all of the elements that build yours posts: text, links, video, audio, etc. If you want to add a video, you simply drag the video player to the location in your post you want it to appear. You can drag more than one text box and then move the boxes around to arrange them in a different order.

Mobile Apps

Weebly mobile

 

Mobile apps run on iOS and Android. You can completely manage your Weebly site from the app.

Blog and Website

Weebly blog and website

 

The ability to blog is an important function for a platform these days. With Weebly, you can get a blog running quickly and easily. You can use one of the built in themes or you can use drag and drop to move components where you want them. The blog itself is actually a page. If you prefer to just have a website, don’t create a blog page. I wasn’t able to get it to do both or have a static front page and a blog.

eCommerce

Weebly ecommerce

 

If a platform is weak in eCommerce it won’t be of much use for many of the functions that bloggers and website owners look for in a modern CMS. Weebly has a platform built for eCommerce. The Business package include a shopping cart and shipping and inventory management. It has a website builder that includes templates and storefronts. You can sell digital products (requires upgrade), physical products, and services. You have shipping options and tax control. Your visitors can do filtered product searches. Payment options include credit cards, PayPal, Stripe, Authorize.net, and others. You can even import your store from other eCommerce platforms like Etsy and Shopify. You can offer your visitors discounts with coupon codes, too.

Plans

Weebly plans

 

The free plan is, well, free. You can create up to five pages. You can use drag and drop to modify your layout. You can sell up to 5 products with the integrated Weebly shopping cart. It has a 3% transaction fee.

The next step up is the Starter plan. This one is $4 per month. With this package you can create 10 pages. It allows you to remove the Weebly branding and connect your own domain. It has stats and premium support. You can customize the footer, remove the Weebly link, and have your own favicon. You can sell up to 10 products with the integrated Weebly shopping cart. It also has a 3% transaction fee.

The next is the Pro plan. This one is $8 per month. You can create unlimited pages. This one includes professional multimedia features, a site search, and password protection. It also adds a header slideshow, and HD video and audio players. This one lets you build a membership site, but you’re limited to 20 members. You can sell up to 25 products with the integrated Weebly shopping cart. It has a 3% transaction fee.

The Business plan is $25 per month. You can create an unlimited number of pages. It has unlimited members for your membership site with membership registration. It includes integrated eCommerce with an unlimited number of products, 0% transaction fee, and the shopping cart is on your own domain (so it doesn’t scream Weebly at your customers). This one allows you to sell digital goods, gives you inventory management, a shipping and tax calculator, and coupon codes. To run an online business, this is $25 well spent.

Taking Weebly for a Test Drive

I signed up for the free account to get my feet wet. It asked if I wanted a website, blog, or store. I chose blog. It then gave me lots of themes to choose from. Some of the themes had a color scheme that I could choose. Some of the color schemes changed the header, background, fonts, and highlights. Others just changed the fonts and highlights.

Next I could choose a domain name. I could create one with Weebly in the title for free, register a new domain, or connect to one I already owned.

Taking Weebly for a Test Drive

 

My next choices were to plan my site or build my site. I chose to build.

weebly creating a post

 

Here is the writing interface. I could create a page for the website or a post for the blog. The blog itself is a page.

weebly writing interface

 

Once I chose to create a blog post it gave me the WYSIWYG editor. I created a post by dragging a text box to the writing area. There are several font choices such as bold, italic, underline, size, color, link, alignment, and bullets.

Here is what the post looks like:

weebly published post

 

There is no preview, but since it’s WYSIWYG it isn’t needed. Everything on the screen is editable. I could click on every element and change it, move it, or delete it. I could edit the post itself just by clicking on the text I wanted to edit. There are several types of elements I could add and they’re categorized under: Basic, Structure, Media, and More.

  • Basic: includes title, text, image, gallery, slideshow, map, read more break, and embed code.
  • Structure: includes divider, spacer, button, and search box.
  • Media: includes HD video, audio, document, YouTube, Flash, and file.
  • More: includes block quote, poll, social icons, contact form, RSVP form, survey, feed reader, bookings, forums, and Google AdSense.

There are also post options: Publish, Comments, Categories, Secret Draft Link, and Advanced.

  • Publish: includes immediately and scheduled time.
  • Comments: includes open, closed, and requires approval.
  • Categories: allows you to choose a category that you’ve already created or create a new one. You can add more than one by using commas.
  • Secret Draft Link: is an unpublished link for the post that only you can access.
  • Advanced: includes SEO title and SEO description.

You can add media by dragging and dropping.

Since I chose a name that was actually available as a .com, every time I posted a new post or updated an old one I got a pop up that reminded me of that fact and it tried to get me to buy it.

Even my blog posts were WYSIWYG.

weebly post on mobile

 

What I thought was exceptionally cool was I could view the site as mobile directly from my desktop. I could even navigate the site on the screen just like it was on my phone.

Design

weebly desgin

 

Now I’ve decided I want to change the theme. I clicked Design at the top and Design Options appeared on the left sidebar. My choices were:

  • Change Theme
  • Change Fonts
  • Search Box on/off
  • Social Icons on/off
  • Phone Number on/off
  • Edit HTML/CSS

I clicked on Change Theme and I got a screen full of theme choices.

Edit

weebly editor

 

I went back and selected Edit HTML/CSS and I got the Code Editor where I could edit the headers, footer, files, etc. I could even add a new page layout and files.

Adding eCommerce

weebly adding ecommerce

 

I decided I want to turn my site into a store. I clicked on Store and got a Store Dashboard where I could add several eCommerce elements to my site:

  • Store Page
  • Products
  • Store Information
  • Accept Payments

By clicking Add on Store Page it took me back to the Page editor where I could choose what kind of page I wanted to add. I could add:

  • Standard Page
  • Blog Page
  • Store Page
  • External Link

weebly store

 

I selected Store Page and got a fully editable WYSIWYG store front that included a button to start adding products.

weebly add product

 

I clicked to add a product and got a screen to upload an image, write a description, give it a name, set the price, track my inventory, and so on. This is an easy and inexpensive way to create an online store. The site still shows the blog and shows the Store as a page.

Thoughts About Weebly

Weebly is easy to use and intuitive. I did everything here just by clicking on the buttons to see what they do. I like the WYSIWYG interface. Everything feels simple enough and it has a lot of features. You can get an online store up and running fast without a large learning curve. For a storefront it’s not even that expensive. What Weebly does it does well, but it doesn’t have the specialized customization that you get with WordPress. It doesn’t have plugins and the vast support structure that WordPress enjoys is not here for Weebly.

Since the Weebly site is hosted on Weebly’s servers, I can’t move to another host without moving to another platform. It also means I don’t have to deal with updates under the hood, security, or backups.

Which One Should I Choose?

Choosing between the two platforms comes down to what you want to do with your site. It depends on how much control you want and how much you’re willing to pay. It also depends on how much responsibility you’ve comfortable with.

Both platforms are easy to learn and use. Weebly is what-you-see-is-what-you-get while WordPress has a backend framework that looks nothing like the frontend. Weebly is a little more intuitive, but it’s also more restrictive.

  • You just want to get a simple site or store up fast? Weebly is a good choice.
  • You want to add features to your website such as a calendar, project management tools, photo gallery, membership, lightbox, coursework, forum, etc.? Go with WordPress.
  • If you just want to start a site and not worry about adding anything other than what’s built in, then Weebly is a good way to go.
  • If you want to choose who your host is, grow your website into anything you can imagine, then WordPress is the best choice.

I like WordPress because you can go beyond the basics. You can build pretty much anything with it. It just might take a little more effort to make it work the way you want.

How about you?  Have you tried both platforms? Which do you prefer? I’d like to hear about your experience in the comments below!

Article thumbnail by shockfactor.de / shutterstock.com

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38 Comments

  1. This wasn’t a fair comparison. Weebly.com is more akin to WordPress.com.

    I would say this:

    If you just want to start a site and not worry about adding anything other than what’s built in, then WordPress.com is a good way to go.

    If in the future you decide you need more, you can always transfer your existing WordPress.com site to a self hosted WorPress site.

    • They are certainly different, but they are still worth comparing in my opinion. For someone starting out, it’s a choice they are often faced with, and we wanted to highlight the similarities and differences of the two systems to help make that choice easier.

      • Nick, I completely agree with you here on this one. I was faced with this very dilemma about 8 months ago. I was just starting out and I had dreams and aspirations of becoming my own designer/developer. Now I had never built a website from start to finish before and even though I may have messed around with a couple pages for my own purpose, it certainly wasn’t for a client who was sure to ask for a certain functionality or style that could not be compromised with. I decided to go with WordPress even though I knew the learning curve would be steeper. I couldn’t be happier either. 8 months later I built two different websites from start to finish for two different clients one site is http://www.skystruk.com and my own agency site at http://www.mediaozone.com.

        Mind you I literally had zero programming experience whatsoever. Sure the first site took me a little longer. Probably two months longer in total but I never built one in my life and to finish with an ecommerce site that has the quality of skystruk. I couldn’t imagine obtaining the same results for my first website ever with something like Weebly. In fact I know it would not have ever been possible unless I started learning to code a weebly site which who knows how many months that would have ended up taking and a very angry client. Perhaps it would have resulted in failure.

    • Not really – you can’t sell anything from a wordpress.com site – so I agree with the author that weebly v. self-hosted wordpress is a fair comparison. I point people towards Weebly if they just want a simple setup and forget web presence.

      • I have made several websites with weebly, Most of my pages ranked in First page of Google !!, Weebly is awesome

        • I’ve been told that wordpress is more SEO friendly than weebly. Is that true?

    • Whether it’s “fair” or not, it’s certainly a valid comparison. We’ve had a couple of clients – just in the last few weeks – considering both platforms (Weebly/Wordpress) and comparing features and trade-offs.

      I think the article is on-point.

    • That is 100% correct

  2. Thanks for this, it’s very helpful and we can point our customers here! 😉

    In recent experience, Weebly CAN be fabulous for getting started quickly, but once your site or business starts to grow, it’s harder to make site-wide updates.

    They don’t support things like sidebars and widgets (so you have repeated elements, which are a pain to edit when there are more than a couple). It’s harder to have a menu that doesn’t match our page structure exactly (which, arguably, can be a good thing) and there are no tools to manage redirects for when you DO move that page around and it breaks google search.

    There’s also no “export” feature, so if you want to move to another platform, you’ll have to painstakingly copy and paste everything over to WordPress.

    Take a look at Squarespace if you want drag and drop, but with an ability to transition platforms without lots of copy/pasting. Take a look at Shopify if you want to do serious eCommerce.

    I look at Weebly sort of like one of those Sunglass carts in the mall – quick to set up, easy to operate, but not especially deep or personalizable.

    • Well Anca I do see this plugin:

      https://wordpress.org/plugins/weebly-importer/

      It still does not do everything you need in am importer though for weebly.

      I say better stick with WordPress.com than weebly due to the export abilities wordpress.com has.

  3. Thanks Brenda, great article.

    I use both Weebly and WordPress. I use a Weebly website for the school I work at. They have a nice campus edition that you can manage your teachers so they can have their own websites. Teachers then have the ability to manage their students websites all from a central management console. The learning curve is slim to non for them. The platform is however weak on the plugin side of things as you mentioned. You also end up paying more for a Weebly site.

    On the other hand I use WordPress for my side business making websites. I prefer it because like you said you can go beyond the basics.

    Keep up the good writing!

    • How is it that with Weebly you pay more? I used that argument with a friend and from research, I heard the opposite, unless you use WordPress.com.

  4. I’ve used Weebly. One of my clients uses it, because he likes to mess around with his own site. I think it’s less of a steep learning curve. I don’t have a problem with WordPress but I’ve seen some less techy types be confused by the interface.

    That said, my client has been frustrated by some of the things he can’t do in Weebly and I keep saying, “You know, you can do that in WordPress. . . ”

    One thing that works well with Weebly is changing the theme or template. You change it and “poof!” the whole site is changed. This does not happen with some WordPress themes, if you choose one with a custom home page or some kind of sitebuilder stuff going on in the back end (like Divi — imagine tricking out your site using Divi’s page builder for most or all of the pages, and then switching to a non-Elegant Themes theme. What would happen to the content built in the page builder?

    I think no matter what you do, the more complicated options are going to make it harder to change later. They are both good options but the control freak in my votes for WordPress every time.

  5. I agree with Nick’s approach, it helps to compare the two different platforms. When you compare them and figure out what your needs are then you can make the decision. The set up of Weebly is doable but the upgrade and a possible migration of Weebly looks complex.

    I was considering Weebly for a Google Domain project but after looking at the demo of Weebly, I don’t think it is as flexible and user friendly as WordPress. You get used to the features of WordPress as well as the ultimate design element especially if you use the Divi Theme.

  6. This is so timely! I was just discussing this with a client today. I built her site 2+ years ago with ET Boutique theme and the eshop plugin. Now that eshop no longer supports ET themes, I have been hesitant to update her theme and it is becoming out of date. The client is very comfortable with Weebly and wants me to redo her site on that platform. I was unsure how far we could go with the number of products and features in their various plans, so this article is very helpful today. Thanks!

  7. Thanks for writing this article…in fact, I was considering writing something exactly like this for a client I currently have.

    Comparing the two platforms based on needs is absolutely a valid situation. But it can be equally important to make the same comparison because your client may be asking themselves, “why am I paying this guy $x when I see these Weebly TV commercials that tell me I can do it myself?”

    As techies, and web designers, the choice may be obvious to us. But for a layman client who doesn’t know why they’re paying for something they might be able to get for free, this article is pure gold.

  8. Hi Nick

    I see Weebly for the first time, can i host it on my server or it works really only on a paid basis with my domain through the Weebly Web Server? If so I go 100% with WP. Thank you

  9. I have experience with both platforms and I think the article does make a fair comparison. I inherited a Weebly site and the person maintaining it was very uncomfortable with technology. Weebly was in her comfort zone mainly because of the WYSIWIG. She could see exactly what she was doing and how it would look.

    A self-hosted WordPress site was my choice for my personal use. I enjoy the flexibility and the myriad of options in plugins as well as the choices in themes. It is a very robust support community.

    At work, we just had two sites designed based on Drupal. Not that intuitive but it works quite well and is pretty powerful once you know your way around. We are having two more sites designed based on WordPress. I am anxious to compare the user experience when the new sites are up and running.

    It should be interesting.

  10. It would be great see more comparison with other platforms like BC.

  11. I also use both platforms. I use the Weebly Designer Platform, and to be honest, was not aware of the “Storefront” option. This article has prompted me to look into that! For those few clients who want a simple to use, simplistic webste, I set them up on Weebly. 98% of my clients are on WordPress. Besides, there are more opportunities to upgrade the client with added functionality, plugins, etc., such as posting to social networks all at once when publishing a Wordpess post. Weebly is better for “Personal” sites while WP is better for small to large businesses.

  12. Hello,

    I operate more than 20 websites in France regarding Wealth Management.
    I started with Weebly 2 years ago even if I knew the existance of WordPress.
    When I see my first website made with weebly (http://www.cedrepatrimoine.fr), I am a bit ashame ! The design is totaly ‘dépassé’.
    But Weebly was not bad in SEO. This website is first on Google for “gestion de patrimoine” which is an incredible performance.
    Weebly self host is fine. Not better not bader compare to other hosts like OVH or PlanetHoster regarding quite eavy websites (those made with Divi templates and all its gadgets).
    Once I reached weebly 10 websites included in my package, I had to look for another solution.

    From that time, I developped websites with WordPress Divi ElegantThemes.
    They look amazing, captivating for internautes like http://scpi-online.com.
    I like the ‘LEGO’ Divi builder and all the possibilites using plugins.

    For the next websites, I should definitively use WordPress DIVI elegantthemes.

    See you soon.

  13. I’m a WP proponent and would likely not steer clients away from it. However, if you want credibility, weebly, web.com, wix and the rest ought to be included in the discussion with a potential client. That credibility may even suffer if he/she fails with the above unless you’re prepared to pick up the pieces.

    One aspect (among many) in this process is finding out if the client has any clue what they might do in the future. Let’s not forget that the question of “how many sites/domains do you expect to have” needs to be asked up front. The answer to that may take you down a different leg in the flow chart.

  14. How does Weebly do with ranking in Google and the other search engines? If this was mentioned in the article/comments, I missed it. I just found out about Weebly yesterday, so this is timely. I’m a WordPress fan, but having another good option would be great.

  15. I really liked this article and the in depth comparisons of both WordPress and Weebly platforms. I think the more people understand the differences between tools/platforms the better they are to determine what business works great for them. For example Weebly having a little less design features for the non-coder and WordPress having many more features with WordPress Plugins and Custom Themes already built, just a larger learning curve for someone who just wants to get something up very simple. Each platform takes time to learn, but the more you learn that WordPress extends way beyond Weebly capabilities you will have a stronger advantage.

  16. I use Weebly for our restaurant (www.thecreekcafe.com) and it works great. We need a web presence, but we are in a small town of 8,000. Only a few people would visit us because they saw our website. The main need is to post our menus and hours. For this limited purpose, Weebly works great. However, I use self-hosted WordPress for my accounting website (www.reachcg.com) because I need a full-featured CMS. I use plugins for a customer portal, web phone contact, and I couldn’t live without the flexibility of the best theme ever, Divi, from the guys here at Elegant Themes.

    Another example… I just added a plugin to track Google analytics on every page on my accounting site. I could do that with Weebly by posting the tracking code on every page, but I did that in WordPress with a simple plugin that integrates with Google and ties in the code for me.

  17. Great article! Personally, I think WordPress wins over Weebly any day. There’s just simply a lot more options and features that you can enjoy, as well as easier integration with e-commerce platforms like http://www.ecwid.com/wordpress. But really great in-depth comparison you have here!

  18. wordrpress I would say is for the more experienced user and those who have time for trial and error and learning. No doubt that its a wonderful platform but its not for everyone.

    Weebly however is amazing for both the experienced user and the inexperienced ones. easy to use, easy to manage, affordable.

    If you struggle with time and creativity or even have issues with the design aspect, find an affordable weebly designer.

    itsjustdesign.com for instance, offers easy, affordable, modern designs .

    Also companies like divtag, who offer tons of free resources and amazing affordable themes.

  19. Whoa! Not for me!!!
    I am a full time artist (painter) and need to update my own web site to be responsive. My old table-based site was just made with Kompozer which I did myself has worked fine for years and makes money!

    I’ve been pulling my frigg’n hair out for more than 30 hours trying to get WordPress to even create my first index page how I want it! Downloaded a couple of expensive templates in the process. Yesterday I spent 3 more hours trying to get one simple image placed onto that page where I wanted it.

    Gave up. Phoned my internet provider and had him remove all evidence of WP and themes from my site. I hate it! This is 2015. It’s like working with dos again!

    Took a quick trial with Weebly and was working on my 2nd page in 30 minutes!

    I’m not a stupid person nor technically ignorant just because I’m an artist. In fact I have an industrial electronics degree, an electrical C licence, was a technical supervisor for a large cable company, wrote a book on spectrum analysis and have maintained a complete microwave repeater system.

    I get it that WordPress must be good for some people. But it’s not a tool for people that learn and work visually like me.

    The best web authoring tool IMHO is more about matching the system with the user.

    • Couldn’t agree more. I’m old enough to remember the late 80’s when Postscript was created by Adobe as a page description language that enabled “desktop publishers” to use apps like Pagemaker, Indesign, Word etc, to design a page onscreen, and then print it out on paper. Now it’s 30 years later, and I still have to learn and debug HTML, CSS, and Javascript just to make a page appear on the web? WordPress is horrible. The user Interface is appalling, it requires endless plug-ins and updates, some of which may or may not be compatible. It’s also still very much a blogging application, not a true web design program. Worst of all, it gets VERY expensive when you have to call a WordPress geek every time you want to move an element one inch to the left. Weebly isn’t quite as powerful as WordPress, but it’s much cheaper, easier, and faster to use for 90% of the websites that you will be asked to build. Obviously this theme site is for WordPress users, people who have invested a lot of time and frustration learning it. However, the latest 2015 versions of Weebly consistently win “Best Website Builder’ awards every time. It’s a joy to use, and nobody has ever said that about WordPress!

  20. I am trying to build a site on Weebly and WP. I already have a 1/4 of my web site completed on Weebly and am still trying to figure out what the hec I need to do on WP. The WP site looks like crap, but the Weebly one is beautiful. Yes, I love what you can do with WP. They have so many designs available. But….like Barry Tate said, “I’ve been pulling my frigg’n hair out”, it is like that with WP!!!! Unless you are comfortable with coding, and have a sense on how to put what where with WP and the time to fool around learning about all the WP jargon, then go for it! I do not have that time. Expense: Really, you think WP is cheaper. NO IT IS NOT!!!! Yes, you can get a basic theme for free, but it is just that, basic! If you want to add this and that, you have to purchase a program. Also, it’s expensive to buy the theme you want, and in most cases, you have to pay that yearly and you can only use that theme once.

    For a beginner, who does not want to spend a lot of money at first, and wants to see if his/her web site or blog will be received well, try Weebly. If you start making money, and your blog becomes successful, you can always hire someone to do a WP site the way you want it. I believe in starting out small, make money, invest that money into a site that you have always dreamed of. If I become successful with my blog/web site, well…I will go with WP, but I will hire someone to design it.

  21. I think Roger and Barry hit the nail on the head – WP is like working with DOS again.

    My company decided to have its HTML coded site rebuilt in WP. As geologists who find themselves in remote locations we handed the job to a major UK website designer. Their promise was that a) they would get the site in WP looking identical to the HTML site, and then b) we would change concepts. Over £6000 later and several months of hearing comments such as, ‘the WP plug-in does not quite do what you want and we have to write code’, we gave up and wrote off the loss.

    Weebly has limitations – but it is a joy to use. As more and more people take control of their own website and move away from expensive agencies, Weebly will be sure to grow in functionality and surpass WP.

    • Fully agree, peoples who use WP don’t really know what they doing. Most of them is choosing it couse it seems to be easy option on the start, everybody are using it so it need to be good. Those everybody make decision based on same lack of knowledge. Than several months later after struggle to have their site FULLY WORKING they either give up or change the platform. Plus all those mistakes, updates, no management over plugins and themes quality… Weebly isnt perfect but you can have fantastic working modern looking website in days time.

  22. I normally don’t comment.. But I found myself here today trying to figure out what I really want to use. I do have a background in computer support and have been playing around/dabbling in web design for some time now, and I have to say that I believe I agree with Barry and these last few comments. I have been messing around with WP for a little while now and find tons of issues trying to learn and use it. Now a lot could be on me, but honestly I don’t really think so. I’ll agree that it is a powerful platform and has many uses. I also believe that all of its options make it even harder to use.

    Big deal there are thousands of plugins and themes. How many are really needed and how many do you have to go through or how much research to figure out which ones are any good and actually work for you. Then how many are actually free? What I have found is countless hours trying to find things with little support and tons of affiliate posts. Before you know it, you’ve spent a few hundred dollars and countless hours getting nowhere.

    I really like E.T. I have purchased their themes and love all that they put into it. But I have to be honest. It was DIVI that led me to Weebly. I’m trying to put together a site for a friend and really thought DIVI was going to be the way to go. I started playing with it and ran into issues with elements and figured out some ways to fix some of them with some code, but couldn’t quite figure out some other aspects and I couldn’t find an answer online in a reasonable amount of time. Like these last few posts have said, I started playing with Weebly and within a few minutes had some pretty cool looking stuff

    As far as price. I’d say Weeby seems very reasonable. I have to agree completely with Pamala; start making money first. I think if you outgrow Weebly, you’ll have plenty of money to do what you need to do later.

    Please don’t get me wrong here. I think both have their place. But I personally would not recommend WordPress for someone that doesn’t know what they are doing, unless they have plenty of time on their hands.

  23. Weebly has terrible code. Ask any website developer, when Google crawls a site for SEO Weebly has so much code, errors etc for every page that you don’t tend to rank. After 7 months with weebly I have had to go to developers for support to fix all my sites broken links, bad codes etc so Google could crawl my site and give me page rank. I found out from Google that my site had no security which I had paid for in the higher plan. You want to be found online for Organic Search? Weebly won’t help you.

  24. It all depends on what kind of website you looking to build. Advanced bloging and ecommerce stores with a lot of stock should use WP, small portfolios and info websites shouldn’t couse they don’t need it. Theres no sense to build website on platform thats bigger and more complicated than necessary. Weebly provide great solution for online “visit cards” and small ecommerce shops. You can find some Premium Weebly Themes at http://modernwebthemes.com to improve user experiance, templates provided by Weebly don’t look to good

  25. Weebly is very buggy. Although I like the look of my site, the blog posts are nearly impossible to update because of a problem that apparently can’t get fixed.

  26. I love both Weebly and self-hosted WordPress. I often choose Weebly over WordPress for web design, but if you’re looking to blog (like myself) then WordPress is by far the better option. The blogging platform for Weebly is quite bad.

  27. I disagree with your analysis for a few reasons. Weebly is a lot more powerful than described, once you start using it. I suspect you haven’t spent much time on that platform other than a test run. I like it for small business owners and I have used WordPress, Blogger, and a host of other platforms over the years. You said “You want to add features to your website such as a calendar, project management tools, photo gallery, membership, lightbox, coursework, forum, etc.? Go with WordPress.”

    Weebly has photo gallery tools built in, slide shows, lightbox photo features build in, app tools, etc. plus an “embed code” feature that lets you add code from any outside source to create anything you need. I have added calendars, mailing list signups, weather apps, etc. Most small business owners, who are my main clientele, are not going to be spending much time managing a lot of features. They want something that is easy to update. I even tell them with social media not to set up and link to it if they aren’t going to have someone actively updating it. Nothing is more frustrating going to a Facebook page and finding no new content in the past several months or longer.

    Weebly has three advantages. It is much easier for a technophobe small business owner to update and use. When I first used it, it was for a contest I was entering where I had to create a story, post photos from all over town, and relate it to the contest theme. I wrote the store and set up the whole website in less than 8 hrs and I had never used it before. Most of that time was actually spent editing and changing my mind on design, content, etc. The platform itself was so easy.

    Weebly gets better SEO than WordPress on Google. If you are a new business, an established one not getting good SEO, or one that never had a website before, I highly recommend starting out on Weebly. If you build it on Weebly first and switch to WordPress, you will still retain that SEO (as long as you code your redirects properly).

    Weebly has much less issues with downtime due to update issues with WordPress and hacking. I have never had a site down yet with Weebly or Blogger. Have had several times with WordPress, and it wasn’t my host..it was issues on WordPress’s end.

    Regarding the SEO issue, I have developed sites that I purposely did not add SEO code or design to be particularly SEO friendly using Weebly, and still got #1 locally and on the first page nationally on Google. Of course that changes as they frequently update their matrixing and indexing methodologies, but I held position for 3 years until the last change. The ones where I actually built in SEO, I have been able to get clients to the first page (in many cases #1) when their prior webmasters were unable to for years.

    WordPress for sure has the advantage in overall flexibility and I would recommend it for larger businesses. It also has a lot more choices available, but Weebly is adding new features, templates, etc. all the time. I also agree that Weebly’s blogging feature is not that great. I do set up blogs as “news” sections for clients to make sure they are constantly putting new dynamic information up, but if your main function is blogging, I would go with WordPress.

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