Webflow vs WordPress: what to use to get a quality website

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Not sure what to order and what the features of each platform are for your own website?

Both tools are popular for building a website. The difference is in the approach to development and management: WordPress is an open-source content management system (CMS) that you install on your own hosting server, while Webflow is a SaaS application that writes code for you. 

But, there are a lot more differences. In this article, we will compare website platforms in 5 categories: development, design, ease of content management, advanced features, and price.

Principles of website development on Webflow and WordPress

Webflow is a SaaS platform and visual website builder. The platform is focused on designers who create projects with little or no programming.

The peculiarity of Webflow is in the panel for the designer’s work. The designer builds blocks by drag-and-drop, and the system independently writes code to implement the Front-end. In essence, Webflow simply provides a visual tool for creating HTML, CSS and JavaScript for your site.

After completing the site build inside the builder, you can: 

  • Stay on the platform and connect in-house hosting from the developers by paying one of the rates;
  • export the code to another platform and third-party hosting.

So what does WordPress offer?

WordPress — is an open-source CMS, written in the PHP programming language. CMS — is an administration panel, which consists of two parts: the Back-end, which is responsible for data storage on the server, and the Front-end, which is displayed to the visitor in the form of buttons, images, and high-quality edited content.

Creating a website on the platform is no longer as easy as on Webflow. The project will require not only a designer but also a developer. The system does not write the code itself. You have to spend more time and budget to bring the web resource to perfection.

Also, in WordPress, there is not enough internal functionality for a unique project. For design, fields, and buttons use additional plugins: Advanced Custom Fields, Gutenberg, or Elementor. 

Conclusion: in WordPress, you need to create everything practically from scratch, while Webflow provides a platform for one designer. He only needs basic knowledge of HTML and CSS to build a resource and run it on one of the hosts.

You may get the impression that WordPress has already lost. But it’s not that simple.

Website designs

Webflow designer is one of the most flexible. The toolbar allows you to fully control every block on your future site, and think through the user interface and animations. 

The drag-and-drop method at the core of the platform means that the designer will create your website literally from scratch. And site elements work equally fast on any project, whether it’s a blog or a small online store.

Animations without coding are another advantage of Webflow. An experienced designer who knows the platform makes parallax, scrolling, and other types of animations on the site without the knowledge of code. No developer help is needed, which means you can save on project creation time.

Another design experience with WordPress. Depending on the scale of the website, you pay for a team of developers and designers who make the theme for you.

WordPress features plugins for customizing fields. The best of the options is Advanced Custom Fields. The plugin adds customizable fields that are written by the developer: blog inserts, pop-up notifications, and more. Your imagination for your future site is limited only by the knowledge and experience of the developer.

With extensively customizable functionality, a multi-page company blog or an online store with 1,000 or more products is no problem for WordPress. As an example, the BBC America site has more than 45,000 pages. While the capabilities of the engine Webflow are not enough for large-scale sites and will have to port the code to another platform. But, the ease of configuring the design and animation in the designer is really impressive.

The simplicity of management in the CMS

Every site necessarily has content in different formats: product descriptions, notifications in the sidebar, or a post for the corporate blog. Practice shows that in order to configure and edit the materials, the customer will not spend a lot of time and training. And more often they will pass the control to editors, who are also not ready to learn programming languages. We need an accessible and easy-to-learn variant of CMS. Let’s see what WordPress and Webflow have to offer.

WordPress was positioned from the start as a blogging tool. You don’t need to know any code for basic publishing, and you can manage all your content through the WordPress control panel.

Interactive Dashboard requires no knowledge of website development to add an interesting article for your audience or customize cards in your online store.

WordPress gives you the ability to add as many pages to your site as you choose. This results in both simple web resources of a couple of pages and complex business solutions. 

Webflow isn’t far behind in content management. There is no internal CMS in the free package, so you’ll have to pay one of the fees for the site.

You can also easily publish content to pages in the editor. To do this, the tools have both standard fields and customizable (without connecting plugins). 

WordPress has more options for content management thanks to its plugin store. Webflow has powerful built-in tools that are also easy to learn. At the same time, programming knowledge for editing in both cases is not needed.

Advanced features

The platforms offer enough options for the average user. But when it comes to a personal project that must differentiate itself from the competition, plugins and integrations with other applications come into play.

WordPress offers a huge collection of plugins that extend the design and functionality of your website. We’ve already mentioned content and design editors. So let’s focus on the other most popular store add-ons:

Woocommerce – create an online store and customize it for any of your products in a few clicks.

Yoast SEO – a plugin to optimize your content for search engine robots. 

WP-Paginate – sets page numbering in a blog or product category.

Akismet – anti-spam in comments.

Duplicator – a plugin that creates a backup copy of your site.

Webflow provides some of the described in the form of ready-made tools. In-depth SEO and backups are already available with the purchase of one of the designer’s packages.

The downside of Webflow is that it doesn’t have the huge plugin store that competitors offer. All that is available to you: take advantage of the built-in toolkit or integrate code from third-party programs. For example, if you want to add chat to your site, you can integrate a JavaScript snippet from your favorite chat service. A designer is no longer sufficient for such a job.

However, inserting third-party code snippets can often be like workarounds, whereas WordPress plugins are completely native solutions.

In return, Webflow offers integration with more than 100 apps like Zapier and Mailchimp. And the online shopping plugin is replaced with a separate Webflow eCommerce plan.

WordPress and Webflow pricing

Of the two platforms, WordPress wins because it offers a completely free solution from the get-go. The competitor has many paid plans with their own features and limitations.

However, there are many variables in pricing, especially for WordPress. 

A site with more than 100,000 people’s monthly traffic needs powerful hosting, which WordPress doesn’t have. To our clients, we connect virtual hosting for 1 year, the fee for which is included in the company’s service package.

The main project budget – the work of developers and other professionals who create a site from scratch by your order. Depending on your feature and design needs, you will also need to pay for premium ACF or Elementor plugins.

Webflow allows you to sign up and create a website from scratch for free. But, there are a few issues that won’t get the project up and running by paying only for the designer’s work.

The builder offers both regular website plans and e-commerce plans. Conventional plans start at $12 per month with a year’s pay for use outright or $15 with monthly billing.

Those who need an in-house CMS will have to shell out $16 a month. If you decide to create several projects, you will have to buy a CMS for each site separately.

One of the main disadvantages of Webflow, as well as its tariff plans – is the limitations. Constructor as a whole is not suitable for a large project with traffic of over 100,000 people if you bought a Basic plan or CMS. Ecommerce plans have limits on the number of items. More than specified, the resource will not pull and the site does not boast of its stability for the audience.

To cheat Webflow, ordering only the design on the platform and the transfer of the site will not work. To export the code you will need to buy one of the account plans.

Summary: When to use Webflow and when to order a site on WordPress

Both solutions are good. It all depends on how big a project you need, what budget and time you have for website development.

For most individuals and businesses looking to create a website, WordPress is the best choice because it is more flexible and integrates with more tools. 

With Webflow, you create small sites that don’t require a lot of traffic or a hypermarket on shared hosting. If you want a quick and easy site, then feel free to use Webflow designers.

Finally, it’s worth noting that you don’t always have to choose between platforms. With the official Webflow Pages plugin for WordPress, you can create pages for your WP site using Webflow.

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