As the digital realm constantly evolves with fresh tech and tools, the realm of web development remains ever-fluid. Among the array of systems available, WordPress and Webflow stand out as leading contenders, offering users streamlined methods to craft and oversee websites.
Looking into 2024, it becomes pivotal to scrutinize the comparative merits of these platforms. What unique advantages does each offer? And what potential drawbacks demand attention?
WordPress vs Webflow in 2024
- What is WordPress?
- What is Webflow compared to WordPress?
- Ease of Use
- WordPress's User-friendliness
- Themes and Templates
- Extensions and Plugins
- Third-Party Service Integrations
- E-commerce Functionality
- WordPress vs Webflow: Pros and Cons
1. What is WordPress?
WordPress is a popular open-source CMS. It's the most popular way to build a website, powering over the minimum percentage of all the websites on the Internet.
Anybody may construct a website by downloading the free WordPress software from WordPress.org and installing it on their web hosting.
It should be noted that this article focuses on the open-source WordPress software available at WordPress.org. This is distinct from WordPress.com, which is a single service that assists you in using the WordPress.org software.
WordPress started as a blogging platform, but it's since evolved into a full-service CMS that can handle any size, from business websites to portfolios, eCommerce stores, directories, and more.
One of WordPress's strengths is its extensions. To customize the core WordPress program, you may use two types of extensions:
- Themes are in charge of your site's look.
- Plugins – They provide extra functionality to your website
WordPress is heavily reliant on extensions – every WordPress website makes use of several plugins to offer crucial functions.
The following is a philosophical distinction between WordPress and Webflow: The basic WordPress software is a base that you can customize by adding plugins, but Webflow is a full SaaS platform that includes everything.
You may learn more about WordPress by reading our entire post on what WordPress is.
2. What is Webflow compared to WordPress?
Webflow is a SaaS platform that allows you to create a website via the use of a visual drag-and-drop builder. Webflow is generally targeted to designers searching for a low-code or no-code website-building tool, although anybody may use it to construct a website.
Webflow is essentially self-contained as a SaaS product. Although you may add functionality to your site by embedding code, the fundamental Webflow platform is all you need to get started.
When you're through with Webflow, you may either...
- If you have a static site, you may export the code and host it with any hosting provider.
- You must pay Webflow to host your site if you wish to utilize Webflow's CMS for dynamic content.
Next, let's take a high-level look at both tools' features.
WordPress and Webflow provide everything you need to develop a website, while some capabilities may require the use of WordPress plugins. In the table below, these characteristics are denoted by an asterisk:
Of course, there are more detailed feature distinctions, which are discussed further below. But, at a high level, both WordPress and Webflow can perform all that the majority of site owners want.
3. Ease of Use
Both WordPress and Webflow have a benefit over other alternatives in that they make it simple to design a website, even if you don't know anything about coding.
WordPress offers a lower learning curve, especially if you are unfamiliar with HTML and CSS, although non-developers can utilize both.
To give you an idea of how easy each platform is to use, let's walk through the process of creating a website with each.
4. WordPress's User-friendliness
To get your WordPress website up and running, you'll need to get web hosting and install the WordPress software.
Because WordPress is so popular, most web providers provide easy installation tools that allow you to quickly install and configure the WordPress software.
These are various WordPress installation samples from WordPress:
After installing WordPress, you may administer your site from the WordPress dashboard. It appears as follows:
You may customize the look of your site by installing a WordPress theme. Consider themes such as your website's wardrobe. By switching the theme, you may simply modify the design of your site without sacrificing any content:
If you want even more design flexibility, add a plugin that allows for visual, drag-and-drop editing. For example, here's how your site might appear if you used the Elementor plugin to create it:
The WordPress Gutenberg editor may be used to generate content, such as creating a blog entry. The editor employs a block-based approach, which allows for the creation of multi-column designs and the incorporation of features such as buttons:
You may always use your page builder plugin if you want greater design control.
Under the WordPress dashboard, you'll find specialized panels for managing all of your site's content, settings, users, user comments, and so on.
Fortunately, learning how to utilize Webflow is simple because it is quite straightforward. Simply sign up for a Webflow account to get started with a website.
After you sign up, Webflow will send you a quick survey to help adapt the experience to your specific needs. Then it starts a tutorial to help you understand key concepts like containers and design.
Once you've mastered the fundamentals, you may start your website project. You may either start from scratch or use a pre-made template:
You may then design your site using Webflow's intuitive, drag-and-drop builder.
You may enable Webflow's CMS feature if you wish to use dynamic material on your site, such as blog postings.
While learning how to use Webflow, you may begin by adding your blog post content to a simplified editor. Although you can easily include photos and videos, the blog content editor isn't quite as versatile as WordPress's block editor:
You have two choices for launching your Webflow website:
- You may pay Webflow to host it. If you have a dynamic site that requires the Webflow CMS, you must select this option (e.g. a blog or eCommerce store).
- You may export your site's static code and host it wherever you choose.
5. Themes and Templates
Both WordPress and Webflow allow you to apply pre-made designs to your site to help you construct a great-looking website without having to develop it from start.
WordPress refers to these as themes, whilst Webflow refers to them as templates.
WordPress is the more popular web builder. WordPress is the clear victor if you want the most freedom in terms of picking a ready-made design for your website. To compare, look at the numbers below.
6. Extensions and Plugins
While both WordPress and Webflow provide all of the tools necessary to create a website, you may wish to extend your site with capabilities that go beyond those provided by the core platform.
Most website builders, albeit the nomenclature varies, offer this through extensions. These additions are known as "plugins," "apps," or "extensions."
You receive a vast library of plugins with WordPress that you can use to add functionality to your site. The official WordPress.org directory, for example, has around 55,000 free plugins. Many paid plugins are also available from various markets or individual developers.
Again, WordPress thinks that you would use these plugins to improve your site's functionality, such as enhancing SEO or making your site mobile-friendly.
Webflow does not have official plugins like WordPress, thus you cannot install extensions that function directly in the Webflow interface.
It doesn't mean you can't add new features to your site. Webflow may be expanded by including code snippets from other providers.
These code snippet connections, on the other hand, frequently feel like workarounds, whereas WordPress plugins are native solutions.
7. Third-Party Service Integrations
To get the most out of your website, it should be able to link with other technologies you're utilizing, such as your customer relationship manager (CRM), email marketing provider, and so on.
WordPress excels at connectors because there are plugins for almost any integration conceivable.
Do you want to include HubSpot in your WordPress site? You can link your WordPress site to HubSpot using the specialized HubSpot WordPress plugin, as well as access the HubSpot CRM and other critical tasks without leaving your WordPress dashboard.
If you want more complex integrations, tools such as WP Webhooks and Uncanny Automator let you create custom automation rules to connect to other services.
Overall, one of the advantages of WordPress is the simplicity with which it can be integrated with other technologies.
When it comes to integrations, Webflow isn't quite as strong. You can combine your Webflow site with other tools, but there aren't nearly as many native integrations, so you'll have to rely on code embeds and separate interfaces in many cases.
For example, if you want to integrate a HubSpot lead generation form, you must first create the form in HubSpot and then upload it to Webflow using the HubSpot embed code.
The same is true for any additional services you choose to integrate.
8. E-commerce Functionality
WordPress and Webflow may both assist you in the creation of an e-commerce store.
With a plugin, you may add complete e-commerce capability to WordPress. By far the most popular WordPress eCommerce plugin is Woo Commerce. Nevertheless, Woo Commerce is the most popular option to create an e-commerce business in general, even surpassing specialized e-commerce platforms.
As long as you pay for the e-commerce plan, Webflow's e-commerce capabilities are embedded into the main Webflow service.
Now, let's speak about how much it will cost you to have access to all of the features listed above.
WordPress has the potential to be the less expensive of the two systems. That is, if you're seeking the cheapest option to create a website, WordPress outperforms Webflow.
Yet, there are other cost variations, particularly with WordPress. Let's go over the specifics.
WordPress's fundamental open-source software is completely free. But, you will need your web hosting to run the WordPress software, which will be costly.
Hosting for a low-traffic site may be found for $4-$10 per month. For example, one of our preferred WordPress hosting, Site Ground, starts at $8 per month (depending on the current promotion).
Such pricing, however, is impractical for a high-traffic site (100,000+ monthly visits), as most low-cost servers would be unable to sustain performance. You'll need to invest at least $25 per month for a high-traffic site.
The only inescapable expense of having a WordPress site is the cost of web hosting (and domain name). But, depending on your feature and design requirements, you may choose to purchase a premium WordPress theme and/or premium plugins.
Webflow allows you to sign up for free and develop your website without using a credit card. When you wish to make your website live and visible to others, you'll need to join a premium plan.
Webflow provides two kinds of plans:
- Site plans — A site plan is required for any site that you wish to host on Webflow's service.
- It should be noted that you are not required to use Webflow's hosting solution for static sites.
Workspace plans are required if you have more than two online projects. Several individuals can collaborate on a project with you using the premium workspace plans.
If you intend to host your websites on Webflow and use the Webflow CMS, you will require a site plan for each website.
If you're just going to use Webflow to construct and design websites that will be hosted elsewhere and/or handed off to customers, you'll need a workspace plan.
In some cases, you may be required to pay for both a site plan and a workspace plan.
Site Planning for Webflow
Webflow provides both standard and eCommerce site plans. Regular site plans begin at no cost and can cost up to $39 per month with annual billing:
Nevertheless, if you want to create a blog or other content-driven site, you'll need to pay at least $23 a month for the CMS plan.
Apart from the service, you might be interested in a premium Webflow template. They are normally priced between $49 and $79, while some are priced cheaper or more.
Proposals for Webflow Workspaces
You can have up to two website projects with the free Webflow Workspaces plan, but you can't export code or move them to other Webflow accounts.
9. WordPress vs Webflow: Pros and Cons
Let's evaluate the benefits and downsides of each platform to round up our WordPress vs Webflow comparison.
- WordPress is a free and open-source platform.
- Unless you're already familiar with HTML and CSS, WordPress has a flatter learning curve than Webflow.
- Because WordPress powers more than a minimum percentage of all websites on the Internet, finding WordPress learning materials is simple.
- The extensive plugin library allows you to effortlessly add functionality to your site without the need for workaround code embeds.
- On a deeper level, WordPress connects with additional third-party technologies.
- If you're on a tight budget, creating a site with WordPress may be less expensive.
- Designers adore Webflow's visual editor because it is so powerful.
- Webflow has everything you need to develop a basic site in the core package; no plugins are required.
- For paying clients, Webflow provides direct customer assistance.
- Webflow's out-of-the-box speed optimization is superior. WordPress sites may be made to load incredibly quickly, but this needs some manual effort.
- Because WordPress is self-hosted software, you will be in charge of its upkeep and security, including upgrades.
- WordPress sites might appear more difficult due to the need for plugins to offer crucial functions.
- WordPress does not provide direct customer assistance (but community support is readily available).
- To personalize your website, you will need substantial coding skills – or be ready to pay a WordPress developer to build it for you.
- While Webflow's editor is versatile, it might be intimidating if you are unfamiliar with basic HTML and CSS principles.
- Webflow, unlike WordPress, does not have a large plugin catalog. While this simplifies things, it also limits them.
- Webflow does not have as many third-party integrations as WordPress. There aren't as many integrations as there are for WordPress.
- Webflow can be more costly.
If you're still on the fence about your platform choice, explore our other comparisons for a better understanding.
WordPress and Webflow are both useful tools for building a website. WordPress is an excellent option for individuals who are comfortable with coding and have the time to customize their websites. Webflow may be more suited for individuals seeking a simpler, more visible approach. It will be interesting to observe how these two platforms evolve in 2024 as technology develops and web design trends change.