If you’re new to the WordPress world or are thinking about becoming a WordPress freelancer, chances are you’ve heard about and considered using WordPress site builders.
But what are WordPress website builders and should you use them for your website? For this question, we reached out to Joseph Wood, a WordPress thought leader, to learn more about the uses and benefits of WordPress website builders.
Learn more about WordPress website builders and use cases as Joseph walks through why and how you should use these user-friendly tools.
How long have you been a WordPress user? In what capacities have you used WordPress?
I’ve been a user for 3 years – building websites, assisting in plugin development, and providing end-user troubleshooting support.
What are WordPress website builders?
WordPress builders allow you to quickly and easily create a website without any code. They provide intuitive, easy-to-use tools that give you the ability to build a modern, responsive website with no fuss.
In your experience, do you prefer using a builder to create a website instead of coding from scratch? What’s the benefit of using a builder? Why?
Builders are nice if you have to deliver something to a client with the expectation that they will cover their own maintenance/upkeep. It’s user-friendly enough that website upkeep is possible within even the most inexperienced user.
In relation, those new to WordPress can easily create a website quickly with a site builder. There is no coding knowledge required, making it easy for the hands-on small business to build and launch their website per their needs.
There is no coding knowledge required, making it easy for the hands-on small business to build and launch their website per their needs.
However, if it’s for a personal project then I prefer coding from scratch for flexibility. As an experienced WordPress developer, sometimes building a layout by hand is faster than trying to use the predefined tools in a builder. But this would not feasible for new users or those looking to push out many sites rapidly.
What types of WordPress website builders are out there? Are there builders for specific industries?
I have not seen any builders targeted at specific industries. In general, you can use just about any type of builder to your liking. They all function more like legos, giving you the basic components to implement your own ideas.
How can you tell if a builder is legit?
Look into the adoption by the WordPress community – specifically weekend coders, hobbyists, and small design agencies. If a builder is flexible and powerful enough for a team with very limited resources, then I think that qualifies as legit. Also, when considering any product today, read through the reviews.
Builders in general make it easy for users to paint with broad strokes.
How user-friendly are builders? Can a beginner create a WordPress site easily with a builder?
I think most of the big-name builders (BoldGrid, Elementor, Divi, WPBakery) are very user-friendly and most users can easily build a site with those tools. Builders in general make it easy for users to paint with broad strokes.
Do builders have support/assistance?
Yes, one of the greatest benefits of WordPress website builders is their support. Most builders allow you to submit questions, contact them via email, and provide a knowledge base where you can search their articles for assistance.
Do builders age well? How sustainable/risky is builder use?
The only major shakeup I have seen with builders during my time in the WordPress world is the introduction of Gutenberg in WP 5.0.
Gutenberg integrated many of the basic features that initially made supplemental builder plugins useful, and I only see its functionality growing as time goes on. This doesn’t affect builders negatively, however. It just throws another player into the ring.
Overall, If you’re building a website for yourself or a client, then I don’t think there is much risk involved with using a builder. WordPress website builder developers usually maintain their product well, ensuring that it’s up-to-date with the latest WordPress version.
We hope this short article on WordPress website builders helps you in your WordPress journey. Let us know your thoughts on builders in the comments! To learn more WordPress Tips & Tricks, check out our WordPress Education Channel.
Joseph was a frontend developer for Web Design Services and currently assists in plugin development and WordPress support for BoldGrid. He’s also an active WordPress community participant.
Joseph Wood | BoldGrid Technical Account Manager