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WordPress Page Builders.

Which one should I use?

WordPress page builders

WordPress does a lot of things well right out of the box. It’s an amazingly versatile platform for the average user and robust enough for the professional developer. However, there are some limitations to WordPress. For instance if you want to create a website with a modern design, you will need to know some HTML and CSS coding. Luckily, there is a solution. This is where the WordPress Page Builders come in. Page Builders provide the flexibility to help you create a modern looking website that will standout. There are three WordPress page builders that I most often come across when taking on new clients with existing websites, SiteOrigin, Elementor, and WPBakery. Each have their pros and cons. I will go through each of them and tell you my thoughts and which one I use most often.

SiteOrigin Vs. Elementor Vs. WPBakery

WPBakery

Cost: $45 single license per year

First off lets look at WPBakery. By far this is the WordPress Page Builder that I come across most often. If you have ever bought a theme or have looked into purchasing a theme there is a good chance that it comes with WPBakery built-in. The company’s website claims that over four million developers use this page builder and it is the number one page builder.

Pros: WPBakery takes a few minutes to understand the layout and how to add and edit blocks it becomes fairly easy to create layouts with.  Users always have the ability to switch back to the classic editor if they choose. The layout is easy move block content around. By hovering over the content block you are able to edit, move, delete, and duplicate that section. Once you are in the block editor there are a series of tabs where are able to customize the look are functionality of the block.

Cons: One of the shortcomings of this plugin is that there is only a paid version. Yes, you can still use it when the license runs out but your site wont be able to update the plug which I have found causes problems with WordPress managing software such as ManageWP. If the plugin isn’t up-to-date then this can cause vulnerability warnings. Another issue I have found is with the expandability. The plugin comes with a great set of standard widgets to use, however, if you are looking for a specific plugin, you might be hard-pressed to find a way to add it using the page builder.

Overall, I think WPBakery is well worth the $45 fee. Provides an easy to use interface with many built-in functions.

Elementor

Cost: $49 for a single license per year or $199 for up to twenty-five license per year.

I must admit, I don’t have too much experience using this page builder. The company also claims that it is the number one WordPress page builder and used by over five million people.

Pros: There are a robust set of built in widgets like image slideshows, headings, and shortcode content blocks that are easy to add the page. Elementor also makes it easy to preview the page before saving and publishing.

Cons: After using it for awhile I found it responds a little slow when running on certain server environments. Often, I would choose to edit a page using Elementor editor and the page would simple site there with a greyed out screen and would not load. This happened using all major browsers and platforms. I also found it a little confusing trying to add new content block and then customize it. It became easier as I went along, however, I felt there was a bigger learning curve compared to other page builders on the market.

SiteOrigin

Cost: $29 single $49 -5 and $99 unlimited

SiteOrigin Page Builder is the one I have used the most and am most comfortable with. Similar to the other two page builders there is a free light version and a premium paid version.

Pros: For the most part the lite version offers enough functionality and expandability for the majority of the work I do. SiteOrigins can be used on both pages and posts along with other special pages such as FAQs. It’s fully responsive making it easy to convert layouts from desktop to mobile and tablet. When a new page is created you have the option to choose to use the page builder or use the standard built-in Text and Visual editors. There is an option to set SiteOrigin and the default editor. Even if you do set it as the default, you can easily switch back and forth depending on the page or post which makes it quite versatile.  Once you choose to use SiteOrigin you can easily start by creating rows and then dividing up the rows into columns to fit your design needs. Adding functionality is done by clicking on the “Add Widget” button and choosing from a wide selection of widgets. If you want to move the widget to a different spot simply click and drag it to the desired location on the page. There are some great add-ons that I would highly recommend installing if you want to get the most out of this page builder.

SiteOrigin Add-ons

  • Looking for some simple animation to add to your site? Use AOS Animation for SiteOrigin Page Builder.
  • Echelon Widgets for SiteOrigin
  • Livemesh SiteOrigin Widgets
  • SiteOrigin Widgets Bundle

Cons: Under certain conditions, the SiteOrigin Button widget fails to load and white screen pops up with an error message. In addition to this error, I have also come across an issue with security when adding a new widget. I get a “White list action” warning message. Depending on the site and server configuration this issue pops up.

The verdict

Which WordPress page builder should I use? Well that’s entirely up to you and your workflow. I found that Elementor to be my least favorite page builder. I found it sluggish and overly complicated.  As for WPBakery. If I have to use this plugin I will. It is easy to use but I find it adds a lots of weight to the website that slows down performance. If I had to choose one page builder I would choose SiteOrigins Page builder. I find it the simplest to use that offers the greatest flexibility in terms of functionality and expandability. A single website license is only $29 but you can get away with the lite version in most situations.

If you have any questions about any of the page builders, leave them in the comments and I will try to answer them. Or if you prefer to have a chat, you can book a time here.

 

WordPress Page Builders
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