In this guide, we’ll see Weebly vs WordPress fight and talk about six distinct points to determine which website building platform is a great fit for your business in 2020 and beyond.
This guide is not only a text-based comparison but also a real practical guide to convince your clients and boss.
I’ll cover the following points:
- Limitations of the platform
- Ease of use
- eCommerce functionality
I’ll begin with general definitions and then dive deeper into our comparison.
What is WordPress?
WordPress is a free, open-source content management system that lets you create a website effortlessly. In a nutshell, it’s the core engine on which your website runs.
Note: In this article WordPress actually means WordPress.org since WordPress.com is a subscription-based business model and WordPress.org is non-for-profit open-source software.
Most people underestimate free things because they’re made to earn money, but that’s not the case with WordPress.
Many big companies use WordPress for running their websites, especially the blog section.
For example, Facebook Newsroom runs on WordPress.
And one of the wealthiest companies, Microsoft News, also utilizes the powerful CMS—WordPress.
Besides this, Time is powered by WordPress.
It proves WordPress is a matured CMS that can be used to build any website a human being can think of.
What is Weebly?
Weebly is a website builder tool that enables you to build a blog, business website, or even an eCommerce online store.
Weebly declares itself as a website builder and nothing more. You cannot read, modify, and delete any files due to being closed source.
According to Builtwith, more than 1.6 million websites are using Weebly for basic functionalities.
It’s worth mentioning that Buitwith has limited data due to its limited server capability; otherwise, Google has indexed billions of websites compromising 100,000,000 gigabytes in size.
That’s why Weebly’s official website shows more than 50 million websites are using the platform.
Let’s take a look at the websites running on Weebly. The first is Douksnow’s eCommerce website.
And another creative website utilizes Weebly for a portfolio.
Most of the examples I found online consist of simple Weebly websites—not impressive.
When Should You Use WordPress?
Undoubtedly, WordPress is the best CMS in the world, not because WordPress empowers 35% of the websites, but also it’s influential to create any kind of website you can imagine.
The 6 points will help you to decide on WordPress:
- Long term vision. If you’re running either a small business or an enterprise-level company, in that case, you should consider using WordPress since real businesses run on a long term vision. You can use powerful REST API and advanced features of WordPress that can come in handy at any stage of your business.
- Freedom. Being open-source in nature, you have complete freedom over its source code, SEO, and performance.
- Data ownership. When you are on WordPress, you own 100% percent of your data. Otherwise, on Weebly, your data can be deleted at any time without your permission as written on their terms and conditions.
- Custom website. WordPress allows you to create a custom website from scratch — any website with it, ranging from blog to eCommerce to complex travel engine.
- Backups. With WordPress, you can easily make backups on third parties services like Google Drive or Dropbox, if in any case, your website gets hacked or your hosting is banned for irrespective of the reasons.
- Pricing. WordPress is exceptionally budget-friendly. You can smoothly start your website from $3 a month compared to Weebly, which begins its paid from $5 a month and enjoys all the benefits of WordPress.
When Should You Use Weebly?
Weebly website builder is an excellent fit for small businesses or bloggers who don’t mind having limitations, customizations, and features.
The 4 points will help you to decide on Weebly:
- Short term vision. If you have a short-term vision for creating a website, Weebly would be the best fit for your business needs. Moreover, you can quickly test your Minimum Viable Product (MVP) ideas without purchasing an expensive theme or hosting.
- No maintenance. The most significant advantage of using Weebly is that you do not require any kind of maintenance; you don’t need to worry about vulnerabilities and require to keep an eye on your store 24/7. An experienced Weebly team manages everything from the hardware to the software side.
- Unlimited storage. You have unlimited storage on Weebly in the Pro plan. You can upload unlimited products, images, and blog posts in your account as compared to Wix allows limited storage.
- No down-time. On Weebly, you don’t face any kind of downtime because all of the assets are stored on Weebly’s highly-managed servers.
What are the limitations of WordPress? 5/5
WordPress itself doesn’t have any kind of limitations because of its open-source nature. WordPress started in 2013, and in the last 17 years, WordPress has become a mature platform.
Thousands of Github contributors left no stone unturned to make WordPress better CMS than any other CMS in the world. That’s why WordPress has unlimited possibilities to create any kind of website since you have complete authority over your database, front-end, and back-end.
Still didn’t understand?
You can download the source files of WordPress and are free to modify any file provided you know HTML, CSS, JS, and PHP without taking permission.
The only limitation with WordPress lies with the hosting you choose. It depends on the features, pricing, and performance of the hosting for its limitations.
Many hosting companies provide limited space, bandwidth, and nodes, but you can transfer your website from the limited-featured hosting provider to the one that offers unlimited or better features.
Take the example of Kinsta that provinces 60GB of space for $400 a month. For the same price on another hosting, you can get up to 500GB of space.
If you’re a developer, you’ll not find any limitations associated with WordPress.
But if you’re a novice, you might need plugins to help you achieve your end goals.
What are the limitations of Weebly? 3/5
The first limitation of Weebly is its closed source nature. It implies you can’t see, modify, and distribute the source code of Weebly.
Moreover, you cannot create a custom website from scratch with your HTML, CSS, and JS, as it’s the case with WordPress. But you can buy templates from third-party developers that customize your theme as per your requirement.
Likewise, you can make changes on the front-end with the real-time editor on Weebly, but you have limited control over the back-end side.
Big companies and developers love FTP access to their websites, but it’s not permissible to access it on Weekly. You cannot do bulk tasks to make your life easier.
Have a look at what oldcrow74 has said about it on Weebly Forum.
To stop the gap, you can install apps on your Weebly website.
But it’s disappointing that Weekly has only 362 apps.
You’ll be shocked to know that WordPress provides a whopping 58,000+ plugins—aka apps— that are enough to fulfill your requirements for building any kind of website.
If you don’t like one plugin, you can always go to the competitor, but it’s not the case with Weebly.
How is the support of WordPress? 5/5
WordPress has one of the largest open source communities in the world that help you find a solution from any simple to a complex problem.
Google has 33 million web pages that have the word WordPress in their titles.
Alone WordPress Support has more than 15 million pages indicating you can find solutions to almost any problem, literally.
Among 4 billion videos on Youtube, more than 25 million videos are related to WordPress. You can learn so much in a week than you’ll learn on Weebly.
WordPress aside, your hosting company plays a virtual role as well to provide you with exceptional support if you’re unable to solve your own.
You shouldn’t fall trap for the hosting companies that are ranking for the top results on Google. The webmasters get a massive commission for selling the hosting companies.
For example, Hostgator offers $65 per sign up. You’ll find the low-quality web hosting companies being promoted online.
It’s highly recommended to avoid any hosting company owned by Endurance International Group (EIG) since all are inferior in quality and support.
Have a doubt? Hostgator is a proud part of EIG.
Don’t forget to check the reviews on social media like Twitter and Facebook with Search Box. You’ll find honest opinions—funny too 😀
Besides, Bluehost has a bad rating as well.
The list goes on and on.
You should look for the good characteristics of a hosting:
- It must have a good reputation on Trustpilot and must respond to the negative reviews.
- Check honest reviews on social media.
- Take a 30 days trial before you put your hard-earned money.
- Create a fake problem and see how fast they respond.
- Check the uptime and downtime with free monitor tools.
- Check how fast it loads.
How is the support of Weebly? 3/5
Weebly offers support in five different ways:
- Knowledge base articles
- Phone support
- Live Chat for Pro and higher plans.
- Email ticketing system via Email
- Community form
Only the customers living in the USA have the phone and live chat support only.
If you’re living outside of the USA, you have access to email support only—slow response.
It’s not only the worst part. Weebly doesn’t provide 24/7 hours support. You might have stuck to an issue that should be solved urgently; you have to wait until the support agents come to office.
It’s embarrassing for Weebly that has millions of paid subscribers yet they provide limited support. Its main competitor Wix has 24 hours support.
Due to the poor Weebly support, you’ll find shocking stories related to providing poor support.
I also observed Weebly isn’t responding to negative reviews on Trustpilot at all. Good companies respond to each of the negative reviews to save their reputation.
What is the pricing structure of WordPress? 4/5
WordPress itself is 100% free. You can install WordPress on your computer for free. You can even run a website on it by creating a server on your computer.
Well then, the cost totally depends on the hosting provider you choose.
You can select a hosting provider that fits your budget and provides critical features to run your business—for instance, secure, fast loading speed, and good customer service, unlike Hostgator and Bluehost..d. Your online presence depends on it. You might be thinking about how it can damage your business. Here are the ways how:[/caption]
- A slow website gets a lower ranking on Google.
- Poor for customers and abound your website
- Your sales struggle
Did you know? One second could cost Amazon $1.6 billion in sales.
It’s critical in the modern age to make your website incredibly faster as the people have really become impatient.
What is the pricing structure of Weebly? 4/5
Weebly has an affordable pricing structure and offers four premium plans:
Connect $5/month: Connect is the first plan offered for just $5 a month. It comes with a lot of limitations. For example, you are limited to 500 MB storage, and connect to a custom domain. Besides this, Weebly advertisements are visible and give an unprofessional look to your customers that may never buy from you as your site might look spammy.
Pro $12/month: Pro plans remove annoying Weebly advertisements. Customers get unlimited storage that is a missing element in many hosting providers and website builders like Wix that provides a maximum of 50GB of storage space. Of course, you can add a custom domain, get a free SSL certificate, accept payments directly, or connect to any third-party payment gateway. Moreover, you can also sell your products. It’s the plan that comes with the phone and live chat—only for the USA customers.
Business $25/month: The Business plan has everything that the Pro plan provides. The additional features include inventory management, automatic tax calculator, coupon codes, pop notifications, and advanced eCommerce status checks. If you’re not sure what to select, always go with Pro; once you feel the sales momentum, shift your plan from Pro to Business.
Business Plus $38/month: This is the top-notched plan from Weebly. It offers advanced features like abandoned cart emails meaning your customers get emails when they don’t buy from your online store. Another great feature is real-time shipping, enabling you to trade based on the weight, destination, and carrier accurately.
How easy is it to use WordPress? 3/5
WordPress has a longer learning curve because it is not a real-time editor like Weebly.
You need to understand how a website works—purchasing a domain and connecting manually to the hosting provider if the domain is associated with another registrar.
Everything is performed automatically if you buy a managed WordPress hosting that includes WordPress installations.
Even if you don’t purchase a managed WordPress hosting, you can install WordPress within 5 minutes since hosting companies have WordPress one-click installation apps.
The good news is that you can easily use YouTube to find out how you can install WordPress on your hosting without external support.
The best part?
There are more than 7000 free courses on Udemy for WordPress.
Once WordPress is installed, you can install themes and plugins to get started.
You can use real-time WordPress website builders to create stunning websites easily.
How easy is it to use Weebly? 4/5
Weebly is just a website builder, and nothing more than it, it’s remarkably user friendly.
When you create a new account on Weebly, you’re asked a few questions to get started.
Pay special attention to the options since it enables you to sell digital products and physical products.
If you know how to use Microsoft Word, you can also use the Weebly website editor. You can click any text or image and modify it smoothly.
Still, you need to learn how to use Weebly especially when you don’t have any knowledge about SEO, UX and UI.
How is WordPress in terms of eCommerce functionality? 5/5
Initially, WordPress was created for blog purposes, but as time went by, eCommerce’s importance raised, indubitably, WordPress contributors didn’t turn a blind eye.
WordPress has the greatest weapon of REST API that enables WordPress to interact with any applications by sending and receiving data as JSON objects.
It allows you to control WordPress’s aspect with the REST API and manipulate data from third-party software.
It’s worth mentioning that WordPress’s REST API is not limited to it.
If you want to run an eCommerce online store, WooCommerce provides its own robust REST API features that Weebly doesn’t provide.
Didn’t get the advantage of the REST API?
Let’s go over an example.
You’re running an eCommerce website that has 1000 products. Instead of updating prices one by one from the WordPress Dashboard, you can connect to Google Sheet and update instantly.
Similarly, you may need a website like Uber that gets data from Google Maps. You can use Google Map API to interact with WordPress to build a website.
Google provides more than 300 APIs that anyone can use on their websites or mobile apps; additionally, $300 of free usage is granted to the users monthly.
You can quickly scale your business to the next level with WordPress.
The best part? You can connect WooCommerce with Zapier.
It means you can automate a lot of things without even learning a single line of code.
For example, you can save new WooCommerce orders to Google Sheets rows.
Moreover, WordPress is the best when it comes to eCommerce SEO since you have plenty of plugins to use.
The best plugin is SEO Yoast for WooCommerce that doesn’t only optimize your products for Google but also Pinterest and Facebook.
Besides, you can automate the title and meta description to show the unique content for each product.
Further, you can also automate the alt tags for images with the help of a simple plugin.
Want to take one step further? You can utilize Classif AI Plugin to automate your caption and alt text.
The possibilities are unlimited.
How is Weebly in terms of eCommerce functionality? 3/5
In 2018, Square purchased Weebly for $356 million and introduced eCommerce functionality to Weebly, helping people to create online stores.
The Business plan starting from $25 a month provides the following eCommerce functionalities:
- Shopping Cart
- Accept Payments through Square
- Accept Payments through 3rd Party Providers
- Inventory Management
- Automatic Tax Calculator
- Coupon Codes
- Shipping Calculator
- Good Shipping Discounts
Weebly provides only 11 eCommerce apps for Spike Sales. The number is embracing as compared to WordPress, which has 980 plugins only for WooCommerce.
Moreover, Weebly provides only 27 variables of REST API—not mature enough to complete with WordPress REST API and WooCommerce REST API.
The worst part for most people might be that Weebly still isn’t integrated with Zapier.
If you want to run a big eCommerce online store, it’s highly recommended to avoid Weebly at all costs.
How is Weebly in terms of SEO? 2/5
Since Weebly is not open source, it comes with limitations, especially for SEO.
SEO specialists don’t love to work with a site that doesn’t offer you complete control over the website. They love to manipulate robots.txt and .htaccess for bulk changes.
At the time of writing—November 2020— Weebly doesn’t allow you to edit robots.txt directly.
Robots.txt is a handy file for SEO that aids:
- Blocking SEO tools bots. You can block Ahrefs, SEMrush, and Moz bot to hide your content from your competitors.
- Indexing higher quality pages only.
- Linking to sitemaps for images, videos, and posts.
- Save the crawl budget for faster indexing and ranking on Google.
According to Backlinko, a website with fewer but quality pages tend to rank higher. A case study was conducted on a website when low-quality pages—zombie pages— were deleted, the traffic increased by 48%.
Furthermore, Weebly doesn’t allow editing htaccess as well. That is a critical file to optimize your website for speed, canonicalization, blocking spambots and SEO bots, and permalink modifications.
It doesn’t mean Weebly knows nothing about SEO; they offer SEO basics for each page for better SEO performance.
Additionally, Weebly provides only 11 SEO apps for your website.
How is WordPress in terms of SEO? 5/5
WordPress is known as the king of SEO due to its open-source nature and 3000+ SEO plugins.
Ahrefs, an SEO company, conducted a study on WordPress SEO and Wix SEO.
It was found that 46% of WordPress sites receive some monthly search traffic compared to 1.4% of Wix sites.
Weebly doesn’t have this kind of study, but Weebly will have the same result as Wix since both platforms have the same audience, but Wix is the leader.
By November 2020, WordPress exactly has 3840 plugins solely for SEO—Weebly total has 362 apps and 11 apps for SEO.
Also, we discussed SEO automation in the eCommerce functionality section of WordPress. WordPress can automatically write titles and meta descriptions for posts and products; besides, accurate alt texts for images.
WordPress enables you to use Amazon AWS for several purposes, from CDN to S3 storage to machine learning technologies for SEO and other purposes.
The most significant advantage of using WordPress for your website is outstanding support for Schema, making your website stand out from the crowd.
You can use free Schema plugins to add rich snippets, aka schema, to your website easily.
Of course, you can execute Schema on your Weebly website, but you need to do it manually—extremely time-consuming. Moreover, Weebly doesn’t support schema at the moment.
Better than Weebly and WordPress?
What if I tell you something better than Shopify and WordPress?
The biggest issue with all the above platforms is that they all require time and effort.
You need to watch hours and hours of Youtube videos until you make a professional-looking website.
To solve the issue, our US-made company provides:
- 100% Custom Website
- Ultra-fast unlimited hosting
All for a budget-friendly price starting from $49/month. You don’t need to spend $10,000+ to build your dream custom website.
We’re like Wix, but we’re better than Wix since we do 100% of the work. You just enjoy and give real-time feedback.
Not impressed yet?
Both platforms are perfect for different audiences. You must choose WordPress if you love having a website that provides you with complete control, a long term vision for your business, and want freedom in terms of data and control. Only go for Weebly when you have a short term vision for your website, hate to maintain your website for patches, and limited SEO.
In a nutshell, WordPress is for serious business owners and bloggers, and Weebly is for beginners who hate to take risks. WordPress is the future due to its open-source nature, and you can create backups and save it for the next 100 years. But Weebly can shut down, and you’ll be forced to leave the platform.