Hi guys thanks for reaching out through my website. Lots of people get stuck in deciding which of the main website platforms would be best suited to their needs so I thought it would be useful to create a short video explaining the pros and cons of each so you can decide which would suit you and your business most.
There is a lot of conflicting information and different opinions and it’s difficult for businesses who are new to the technology to make the right choice. I hope I can shed some light on what would be right for you.
So let’s start with Wix.
Wix is a free program that is created so people have the power to build their own sites without investing in a web designer, you don’t need to know any code. You can create a blog, website or online shop using a drag and drop system that is really easy to use and they offer free templates. I would only recommend using Wix if you have a small budget and can’t afford an expert yet. It’s not a software I work with for several reasons but if you want to get a quick online presence it may work well for you. You can pay a little more to get your own website name but the software is very basic with little flexibility and control.
The second program worth thinking about is Squarespace.
Squarespace can be used for blogs, websites and shops with there being an additional cost for the shop functionality. It is similar to Wix but there is an annual fee of around £150. There are some businesses that may benefit from it because Squarespace is really easy to use. Similar to Wix they’ve pinpointed the core web design principles so non-tech people have no problem managing their own site. Because the software is easy to use they have had to limit flexibility which means there isn’t much room for customisation.
In comparison to Wix I believe Squarespace templates are more beautiful so you have a good chance of creating something that looks professional. Squarespace beats Wix in it’s flexibility and you have more control over the SEO. When I say SEO I mean search engine optimisation which is basically where you rank on google and other search engines.
Also, with Squarespace and Wix you don’t own your website. If you want to move the site or download the web files for whatever reason, this is not possible. It’s almost like renting. Also, with both squarespace and Wix you can only use the themes supplied which are very limiting and difficult for you to control.
Your third option is Shopify.
Shopify is built for shops, you don’t want to go with shopify unless you are selling something. That means everything about it is thoughtfully designed to lead to a sale and you don’t have to worry about setting up the cart or checkout pages like you would with WordPress and some other platforms.
Shopify is easy to design and has thousands of themes to choose from and because they’re designed to get you selling right away, once your products are loaded you really only have to lay out your home page using pre-made sections and you’re ready to go. Again, similar to Wix and Squarespace, because it is so easy to use they have had to limit customisation. To add extra functionality you have to purchase apps, when racked up this can become quite expensive.
Because the hosting of the site and shop payments are taken care of by Shopify, they take security and legal issues very seriously. You can get started quite quickly and you don’t need to know any coding.
As a summary it can become expensive, very difficult to make customisations and you don’t own the keys to your website.
The platform I mainly use is WordPress.
In recent years WordPress has improved drastically and there are tons of great features. It is really powerful, and really the sky’s the limit.
Firstly the actual software is free. You’ll need to pay for hosting fees and your domain name and possibly a theme but these are inexpensive in the long run. These things do vary in price but are less than the costs of the other platforms. Other costs may include upfront costs for plugins and additional add-on software. As examples a plugin may be needed if you want a custom booking system or shop functionality.
WordPress is very customisable. The possibilities are almost limitless. You can sell products, add booking capabilities, forums, customer areas, sale funnels – you can just about do it all. Even if you just need something basic for now, you should think of the possibilities for your business in the future.
About a third of websites use WordPress. That means it’s really easy to find help or tutorials. Plus other digital services like MailChimp or PayPal are all compatible with the software.
What’s cool is that you own your site, you have the keys. You can duplicate your site, keep a copy on your computer, move it to another host provider, take it off line for a year and then make it public again. With WordPress, you’re the owner of all the code that goes into making your site.
Search engine optimisation. There’s a lot to cover as to why WordPress is the best for SEO. It allows microdata which, among other things, allows you to tag your business to a certain location to help you come up in a local search. The other is the ability to properly format your page and URL structure so content is easily understood by search bots. Just trust me when I say WordPress is way better for SEO.
It is a little tricky to learn how to use at first and less intuitive than the other platforms. But the reality is anything new has a learning curve. Also, if you choose to have a website designed using this software I will provide step by step tutorials and support. Because the software is constantly being improved and updated, you do need to monitor this and keep the website up to date too. There are always notification emails to prompt these updates when they happen.
So there you have it
I hope I have been able to clarify any confusion there may be. If you want some more information on the steps you need to take to get started with each of these you can download the document under this video. Please if you have any more questions or need some more advice get in touch and I’ll be happy to answer them. Good luck!