Last updated: December 28th, 2013
There are many incredible, absolutely free tools on the web designed for simplifying our routine. When it comes to webmastering these are website building platforms. As for me, these services are the very definition of innovation – they can help you design, manage and publish a website in mere minutes. However, there are still many bloggers preferring traditional methods of launching a website, that implies selecting a hosting provider, installing a CMS, integrating templates and other actions.
This is because many believe that it’s impossible to build a full-fledged, professionally looking website using a website builder. With this thought in mind I’ve written this post comparing an open source CMS WordPress, and two popular website builders: uCoz and Webydo. I’m going to benchmark these services using the following criteria: ease of use, flexibility, price, and technical support. Hope this will help you get a better understanding of what are the benefits and disadvantages of both methods.
WordPress is a clear winner in terms of stats: there are more than 70 million WP-powered websites in the Blogosphere. Yet apart from the obvious advantages, it may have some drawbacks if compared to website builders.
Ease of use. Although WP is rather intuitive, it requires basic coding experience. And in order to make the most out of your WP-powered blog you should be a skilled webmaster. It can take you months to learn all the ins and outs of your website CMS.
Flexibility. Because WP is an open source platform, it has no shortage of extra handy security plugins, themes and other smart tools developed exclusively for WordPress.
Price. You can install WP for free. The rest is up to you – you can opt either for free or paid templates/plugins.
Technical support. Because there are so many websites built on WP, finding a relevant piece of info from the official source can be a challenge. However, this is compensated by the number of free tutorials and step-by-step guides available on the web.
You can design a website with WP here.
uCoz is a SaaS (software as a service) platform that currently serves more than two million active websites in 16 language localizations. It is primarily oriented on HTML-illiterate users who’d like to create their own websites hassle-free.
Ease of use. Because the target audience of the platform are non-techies, its admin panel is maximally simplified and doesn’t require any coding practice. All you need to create, manage and publish a professionally looking website you get in one place – your control panel.
Flexibility. uCoz leaves a lot of room for customization, allowing you to build an exceptional, personalized product. For instance, in terms of templates, you can either select a ready made theme (free or premium), or create your own using their template builder.
Price. You can get their feature-rich package for free (it provides you with everything you need to build a full-fledged website). In case you need more functionality, you may opt for one of their paid plans (starting with $3.09 monthly).
Technical support. Customer support is definitely their strong side. Once you’ve registered on uCoz you’ll be guided through all the stages of designing, managing and publishing your website. There is also a friendly Community Forum and numerous manuals and introductory videos.
You can design a website with uCoz here.
Webydo is a professional web design suite allowing designers to create, manage and publish websites effortlessly. Their patent-pending code generator automatically converts your designs into a valid W3C code liberating you from the burden of a handwritten code.
Ease of use. Their DMS (design management system) and CMS are code-free. They are based on WYSIWYG and drag-and-drop editing principles.
Flexibility. On Webydo you can customize your website with pixel accuracy. While numerous widgets will help you broaden your website functionality.
Price. This platform is free until you decide to move your website to a custom domain. Yearly subscription will cost you $7.90 per month.
Technical support. Webydo slogan is By Designers, for Designers, and they do keep their word: their technical support is excellent.
You can design a website with Webydo here.
I think it’s impossible to agree upon the optimal method of creating a website. It will completely depend on your own experience and your future ambitions. If you’re a professional, don’t hesitate to use WordPress, but if you’re a novice, I highly recommend signing up to one of the popular site builders – they don’t require any programming experience and offer everything you need to design, maintain and publish your website independently in one place.