Once you decide you want a website, it doesn’t take much digging to stumble upon the names “Weebly” and “WordPress.” These are two of the most well-known names in website building.
In a Nutshell: Feature Comparison Chart & What the Experts Suggest
Rather than rattling off the differences between Weebly and WordPress in mind-numbing, paragraph form, this chart lists the feature highlights, followed by our expert recommendation.
|Good For:||Very Basic Projects:||Virtually Anything:|
|Ease of Use:|
|eCommerce:||With many of the best WordPress hosting services:|
|Disclaimer: This chart compares Weebly, the fully-hosted, one-stop shop for drag-and-drop site building, and WordPress, the open-source software that can be installed to customize content for a site that is hosted by a web host. Please note that, for the purposes of this discussion, WordPress.com, the free, fully-hosted, online platform, is comparable to Weebly.com.|
Our Recommendation: Use a host that offers plans specifically catering to WordPress users.
Overall, our experts would tell you to go with WordPress. You get more customization options, a great support community, and plenty of affordable hosting plans to choose from.
Explained: When to Use Weebly vs. When to Use WordPress
So then the real question is not “Which one is better?” but “Which one is best for me?” Like anything else, it depends on your needs and expectations of your site. Generally, Weebly is effective for simple online projects, but for beyond that, WordPress is the better alternative.
Weebly is Good for Basic Projects
Weebly is a fine option for building a very basic, simple site. For example, if you just want to throw your resume and portfolio up on the Web for potential employers or clients to peruse, sure, Weebly can help you get that job done quickly and inexpensively. God speed.
Weebly’s major selling points are that it’s cheap (“free”), quick, and easy. The caveat to that is that while there is a free plan, your capabilities are very limited with their most basic plan. For example, they offer eCommerce options with the free plan, but you’re limited to five products, and your shopping cart is at a Weebly subdomain.
WordPress is Better for Dynamic Websites and Online Stores
Now, if you want to build a dynamic website with multiple pages and customized drop-down menus and mobile optimization and all the plugins your heart can dream up, WordPress is the better choice. If you want to build an online store with more than six products, with online shopping carts and PayPal integration, WordPress reigns supreme. If you want to build a membership-oriented site, WordPress trumps Weebly. Overall, WordPress wins.
Example: Creating an Online Store with Weebly vs. WordPress
Both Weebly and WordPress advertise full customization and eCommerce capabilities, but let’s compare the two with a single scenario. Say you want an online store with these requirements:
- Ability to display 20-30 products
- Online shopping cart for customer check-out
- Options for shipping and promo codes
Let’s compare the costs of making this eMarketplace a reality with Weebly versus WordPress.
Cost with Weebly: $25/Month + 3% Transaction Fees
With Weebly’s free plan, your store is maxed out at five products. You’d have to pay for the $12/month plan to sell more than 25 items. In order for your patrons to check out at your domain, you must upgrade to the most premium, “Business Plan,” which is $25 per month. Many of the eCommerce features you may want for an eMarketplace (e.g., shipping and tax calculation, inventory management, coupon codes) can only be had with Weebly’s most expensive plan.
Cost with a WordPress Host: Avg. $3-7/Month for Shared Hosting + eCommerce Functions
Given that same scenario with one of the best web hosts for eCommerce site building, you could install WordPress for free with one click (some plans include WordPress pre-installed), take advantage of free online store builders, choose a shopping cart, and integrate with PayPal. WordPress doesn’t charge additional transaction fees, so you only pay for the hosting service, any premium template costs, and PayPal’s seller fee (approximately 2.9% + $0.30 per transaction).
Our Experts’ Final Recommendation: WordPress
The bottom line is that we would recommend opting for a great value web host with WordPress-specific plans and easy, 1-click installs of the software. Weebly is great for creating really basic websites. You’re live in minutes, but you sort of get what you pay for, which is nothing.
WordPress-friendly hosts like eHost, on the other hand, allow you to install WordPress in a single click through an easy-to-navigate hosting control panel, and the cost is literally dollars per month. Do yourself a favor and spring for the couple bucks. The added functionality and professionalism that you’ll see reflected in your site will make it worth it.