Battle of Website Builders: Wix vs. SiteBuilder
Launching a new website is now easier than ever thanks to do-it-yourself website builders, such as Wix and Web.com. Each of these builders allows its users to build professional and effective websites with minimal time or skill required.
With its well-known Super Bowl ads featuring famous actors and athletes, Wix is certainly the flashier of the two companies.
But do its features, price and ease-of-use stack up favorably against Web.com ? The short answer is yes. Web.com is an effective website builder, but Wix offers a superior product that lives up to the hype. Read on for a detailed comparison of how these two website builders rate in several key areas.
One of the key factors in choosing a website builder is the pricing plans on offer. This is particularly true if you are a small business owner and every purchasing decision can make or break you. Building a website was once a very expensive proposition. However, the emergence of the do-it-yourself website building model has cut the cost of both building and maintaining a website from thousands of dollars to as little as a couple hundred dollars a year.
Web.com offers 3 plans that vary in scope and features. The basic website plan costs $22.95 per month, the website and online marketing plan costs $32.95 per month, and the website, marketing, and store plan costs $39.95 per month. Though Web.com doesn’t offer free plans, its current special gives you the first month for as low as $1.95 (for the basic plan) and $2.95 and $3.95 for the online marketing and store plans, respectively.
Wix offers a very limited Connect Domain plan for users who have already purchased a domain independently for $4.50 per month. For those seeking a plan with a free domain included, they have 4 choices: The Combo plan, for personal use, costs $8.50 per month; the Unlimited plan, for entrepreneurs and freelancers, costs $12.50 per month; the Ecommerce plan, for small businesses, costs $17 per month; and the VIP plan, featuring first priority support, costs $24.50 per month.
For those seeking a simple site for personal use, for a portfolio or for a small business, Web.com’s website builder plans are reasonable if not pricy options. However, if you are looking to open an online store and you require Ecommerce functionality, Wix's Ecommerce plan offers the most reasonable option at just $17 per month.
As you can see, some of Wix’s more advanced plans are more affordable than Web.com’s basic plan. Web.com boasts plenty of strengths and makes an argument with its ease and slew of features, but Wix provides better value for slightly more advanced sites.
Web.com has a good feature offering if you are looking to build a relatively simple site with basic functionality. It offers a free domain name with all of its plans, hundreds of design templates to choose from, and a decent amount of business-driven features on the advanced plans.
Web.com’s Ecommerce plan covers the critical points of creating an Ecommerce website. One exceptional feature is automatic profile listing in local business directories. You also get tools for search-engine submission and stats tracking, as well as assistance with SEO, PPC marketing, and digital marketing, a nice touch since social media is now a critical tool for increasing visibility.
Wix offers all of these features and more. It’s on the cutting edge technologically and is constantly adding new features. Wix app market allows users to add various functions to their site with one click. It features more than 150 apps, some of which are free and some of which are paid. Wix plans come with an SEO Wiz that takes you step-by-step through a plan to increase your site's reach on search engines. Popular apps allow you to add directions to your location on your site, a widget with the weather, the possibility to share playlists, a form to collect contacts from your site and a forum to let visitors to your site interact with you and other users.
Wix app market allows you to add a plethora of features to your site
Perhaps Wix's most impressive feature is its Artificial Design Intelligence (ADI), which it released in 2016. Wix ADI is ideal for those who want to save the time and energy of using a drag-and-drop editor to create their site. It designs your website for you in a matter of minutes by asking a few questions about your site's subject matter and your style preferences. Once ADI has designed your site, you can still jump back on with the drag-and-drop editor and adjust it as you see fit.
Wix ADI can build you a website after having asked just a few key questions
For those seeking to start a personal website or simple business website, Web.com's features may be enough, as they provide for all of the basic needs. However, if you have growth in mind for your website, and you enjoy new features and technology, Wix wins the features war in a landslide.
Ease of Use
Web.com’s drag-and-drop editor is intuitive to use and dare we say, fun. It doesn’t require any knowledge of code or design experience. There have been reports of lags and some buggy performance, which can be a test of patience, though the simplicity of the web builder limits the amount of labor required, and Web.com does a good job of keeping its software up to date.
Web.com offers plenty of options for customization, but not enough to overwhelm, which is in line with its standing as an approachable, novice-friendly service. You can select from a decent-sized library of designs and choose from thousands of images, as well as customize text and play around with design. Overall, Web.com doesn’t provide as many options as others, but that seems to be by choice, as the process is functional and manageable for users from all technical backgrounds.
Wix’s drag-and-drop editor is similarly easy-to-use and it has the added bonus of providing explainers from the wizard that accompanies your use of the tool. Each element of the editor has an explanation and you get more of a feeling of being walked through the process than you do with Web.com’s editor.
Wix drag-and-drop editor includes helpful tips on how to best use the tool
Furthermore, Wix ADI makes the website building process even easier for those who find the drag-and-drop editor difficult to use. Wix offers ADI with all of its plans, free of charge. After you sign up, Wix asks if you want to create a site using the drag-and-drop editor or ADI. After asking you a short series of questions about your site and design preferences, it creates the site for you in minutes. A wizard then guides you through the remaining steps of customizing your site. You lose some of the customization control that a drag-and-drop editor gives you, but if you are looking to save time and energy, it is an ideal solution. Once again, Wix scores a decisive victory in the ease of use category.
Wix is known for its wide variety of templates, with over 400 different designs to choose from in 16 different categories. The templates are professionally designed and visually stunning. Web.com’s templates excel in number, but less so in quality: while its websites are generally clean and professional looking, they lack the distinction of Wix’s templates and boast little that will distinguish the business from competitors.
SiteBuilder has thousands of templates to choose from
Both website builders offer fully customizable templates for businesses, online stores, portfolios, blogs, events, and a number of other site types. The templates are all mobile responsive, allowing users to view a preview of what the site will look like on both desktop and mobile devices.
Wix and Web.com each offer an array of modern templates that you can easily make your own with their drag-and-drop editors. However, with so many attractive templates to choose from, Wix gives you the better chance of finding something that fits you just right.
Web.com offers solid support options with phone and email communications available to all users. Though no live chat options are available, categories such as tech support and SEO have their own dedicated phone lines. In addition, Web.com has an online help center with FAQs, step-by-step instructions, and articles on how to carry out various functions on your website.
Wix's knowledge base is slightly better, offering video tutorials alongside step-by-step instructions. However, Wix does not offer the same level of support availability as SiteBuilder. Wix does not offer live chat or phone support. Users can either submit a support ticket online, or request a callback from the call center, Monday through Thursday, from 6am to 5pm Pacific Standard Time. Wix's premium plans come with premium support, which ensures that tickets you submit are automatically placed in the premium ticket queue to receive a faster reply.
Web.com has better live support options, but Wix has a far superior knowledge base, so this one’s a tie.
Conclusion: Wix Wins Big
Web.com and Wix are two of the leading website builders for good reason, but Wix is in a class of its own. Both offer reasonable pricing plans and allow you to create a professional website in a short amount of time without design or coding skills. Web.com has a variety of templates to choose from and good customer support options, while Wix is easier to use and has more advanced features.
Web.com is a good option if you want to get a simple site off the ground in a hurry, but if you have aspirations for growth, or want a website that distinguishes your business from others, Wix is the better choice. In particular, Wix’s ADI option for creating a website gives it a unique advantage that SiteBuilder can’t match. Therefore, Wix is our preferred choice over SiteBuilder, and is the winner of this battle.