If you’re getting ready to build a new website or update/enhance your old one, you’re probably looking at your options and trying to decide in which direction to proceed. Do you move forward with website builders like Squarespace or Wix, or do you go to the ever-popular WordPress, a Content Management System (CMS)? It depends on several factors, including ease of use, cost, and how much control you want over your website and its design. Here we’ve offered a head-to-head comparison to help you decipher the differences between all three, which will assist you in making the right choice for your needs.

Is it easy to use?

Let’s look at the difference between the three regarding ease of use, especially for beginners in website building.

  • Squarespace – You won’t need coding knowledge for this website builder. That’s a relief for most users! In addition, it uses a section-based drag-and-drop editor, which isn’t super complicated but might be more challenging to use than the competition. However, Squarespace has been around for a while and has worked on making the platform more user-friendly.
  • Wix – This is the newest of the three and the easiest to use, particularly for beginners. No coding knowledge is needed; it is purely drag-and-drop (not by section, as with Squarespace). That means you can put anything where you wish it to be, which means you also have lots of creative freedom with Wix.
  • WordPress – You don’t need coding knowledge to use WordPress, but it can be helpful if you know some basics. Unlike the other two, its editor is not drag-and-drop but block-based. This style makes editing more challenging, though you can also add a plug-in that will let you do drag-and-drop.

Flexibility of design

Which of these three, Squarespace, Wix, or WordPress, will you have the most creative control?

  • Squarespace – Squarespace has more than 100 templates, which isn’t as many as the other two, but they’re super attractive, and the customizability of each is easy and fun. In addition, it’s effortless to switch between themes whenever you want. Squarespace is also very mobile-responsive regarding design, which means sites built with Squarespace look just as good on your phone as they do on your computer.
  • Wix – This website builder has nearly 1,000 templates in 16 categories and across many industries, but the problem is that once you’ve committed and published your site, you can’t switch themes later. It is, however, highly customizable and mobile-responsive as well. But if you want to change your look down the road, you’ll have to publish an entirely new website, which costs you lots of time and money.
  • WordPress – WordPress has hundreds of thousands of themes from which to choose, and you can customize them however you’d like with the help of plug-ins. However, they are just not as impressive as the themes on Wix and Squarespace, and choosing tends to be overwhelming due to the sheer number available.

So, how about the cost?

While it’s impossible to pin down an exact cost since everyone’s website needs are different, you should know a few things about the value you’re getting with each of the three.

  • Squarespace – Squarespace does not have a free plan but does offer a 14-day free trial so that you can try out their service. After that, you’ll need to upgrade to one of their core premium plans. These cost anywhere from about $20-$50 per month. If you are selling online, you’ll need one of their top-tier plans (Basic or Advanced).
  • Wix – Wix has a free plan, but it will not work for everyone. You’ll have to upgrade if you want your own domain or need eCommerce features. Pricing is slightly higher than its competitors, including Squarespace, so it’s not ideal for those on a budget. But you get many options, and the company has worked to improve some of its tools and features lately.
  • WordPress – WordPress doesn’t cost a cent to use, making it a great value. You will, however, pay for other things, such as website hosting. However, that can be reasonably inexpensive at just a few dollars monthly. As far as themes go, you might not be excited by the available basic ones, and you may opt for a premium theme. Premium themes will cost you a few hundred dollars upfront. There will be an additional cost for some plug-ins as well.

The winner?

Each category seemingly has a different winner, so your choice will largely depend on your budget, design goals, and desire to keep it all as easy as possible. Of course, we can take care of the hard stuff. One of our Watershed9 website-building experts would be happy to consult with you about your options – including Squarespace, Wix, and WordPress – and help you determine which would work best for your business type, budget, and your overall goals for your site. For a no-obligation consultation, contact us at 604-337-1449 to schedule an appointment.