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best wordpress page builder

4 Best WordPress Page Builders Compared. Which One is Perfect for YOU?

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WordPress Page Builder comparison

If you are designing a WordPress site, then all the terms and options of designing may seem confusing and overwhelming. The simple process is that once you install WordPress, you need to design the look and feel, and customize it as per your needs.

You can install a special theme, a page builder, or both (which is most often the case).  While there are literally thousands of themes to choose from, there are only a handful of builders. The question is, which one suits you best?

In this post we will analyze and compare the 4 best WordPress page builders, so you can choose the perfect one for you.

What is a WordPress page builder?

A WordPress page builder is a tool that lets you drag and drop elements in the frontend or backend of your website to create your website pages. You can create all kinds of website elements with a page builder, including headers, footers, content, sidebars. You can insert media like images and videos, customize your fonts and colors, and even set up the branding of your site.

What is the difference between a theme and a page builder?

A WordPress theme is essentially a completely prebuilt template for the look and design of your website. You can simply install a theme and customize the details according to your needs. You may or may not choose to install a separate builder to customize the theme, you can also work with the default classic or Gutenberg editor of WordPress.

A page builder helps you create each page of your website, step-by-step.

A WordPress theme is the design of a website, and a WordPress builder is the tool you use to create a page within that theme. #WordPress #webdesign #wordpressbuilder Click To Tweet

To explain it even further metaphorically, a theme is like the interior decoration of your home, how it looks. And a page builder consists of the tools you need to set up the interiors, like drills, screwdrivers, paint, etc.

How does a WordPress website builder work?

You can, of course,  install a theme and customize it directly or with a page builder.
Most WordPress builders (at least the ones mentioned in this list) can work with any theme, but they each also have specially designed themes or templates that work best with that specific page builder.

There are 2 ways you can design your WordPress site with themes and page builders:

Theme-led design

1. Choose a theme from any theme marketplace

2. Choose a builder that you are most comfortable with

3. Download the builder from the plugin directory of WordPress and activate it

4. Customize your theme and add pages and posts with the page builder

Note: Remember, you can choose NOT to download any page builder. Simply download the theme and edit it and create new pages and content with the default Gutenberg editor of WordPress. But I would highly recommend to work with a page builder for easy, quick, and efficient layouts.

Builder-led design

1. Choose a builder that you are most comfortable with

2. Download the builder from the plugin directory of WordPress and activate it

Then you have 2 options in Step 3:

3a. Choose a prebuilt template from the directory of the page builder. Import the template in your WordPress site and customize it

3b. Choose a theme from any theme marketplace. Install and activate it. Customize your theme and add pages and posts with the page builder

There are different kinds of WordPress page builders, but in this post we will only discuss the drag-and-drop builders. So essentially the page builders where there are lots of pre-existing elements, you just have to drag and and drop them on your page to create your design.

Most of these builders don't require any coding knowledge. So you can use them even if you're not a graphic designer, and are just developing your own website. However, different builders are suited for different skill levels and some have steep learning curves.

And if you need very specific customization, then you may need to add some code or ask help from a web designer.

Once you set up your WordPress site, simply install the builders, choose your theme, and start designing/ customizing your site!

The 4 best WordPress page builders compared

The 4 most popular and best WordPress page builders are:

  • Elementor
  • Divi
  • Beaver Builder
  • SiteOrigin

Firstly, let us see the similarities in these 4 editors:

  • They are all drag and drop editors
  • You don't need any coding knowledge to use them
  • They are suitable for all purposes, whether for blogging, showcasing portfolios, or ecommerce 
  • They work with almost all website themes

However, they all come with their specific features and pros and cons, which you really need to understand, before you choose one for your website.

1. Elementor

elementor wordpress page builder2

Elementor has been in the market since only 2016, but with 5 million + installs, it is already one of the most popular WordPress page builders. Like most popular builders, it is a live drag-and-drop builder, with a very visual interface. This means that while designing your website, you can see exactly what your site visitors will see.

It integrates very well with other plugins and tools including email marketing software and WooCommerce.

It is one of the best builders for beginners, especially those first trying their hand out at building sites, because unlike any other freemium builder, its free version offers a whole lot of features that other free builders don't offer.

Elementor does not have any themes of its own, only premade layouts. You can, of course, create your whole WordPress theme with this page builder.

Interface: You can drag and drop the widgets you want from the left-hand side of the screen, and customize them as per your needs.

Premade templates: Elementor includes a minimum of 30 premade templates that you can simply customize as per your needs. You can also build your entire theme on Elementor.

Limitations: Elementor offers a ton of features like integration with other apps, which makes customization super easy. But this also makes the site heavy and slow.

Free or paid: Elementor has both versions. The free version has 30+ existing templates that you can simply click on and add to your site. It also has 40+ widgets.

The paid version has 10x more, i.e., 300+ templates, along with 90+ widgets and 60+ website kits.

Who is the Elementor builder best for?

Anyone who wants to design a WordPress website. It's fairly easy to get done, but it takes a little bit of trial and error to get the hang of things and become faster at creating the design you want.

If you have never designed a website before, and want to dip your toes in it, Elementor is a great way to get started.

ELEMENTOR BUILDER

Top Features:

  • Lots of integrations are available with other apps
  • Suitable for any skill level
  • The free version offers lots of features

Price: Starts at $49 annually

No. of sites: One

The next level of pricing is $199 for 25 websites. (So as a small business owner, unless you're a serial entrepreneur), the basic plan of $49 should work fine!

Refund policy: Full refund within 30 days

(or start with the free version)

2. Divi

divi wordpress builder

Divi is one of the most popular visual drag-and-drop editors, with a very intuitive, clean interface. It is a unique builder because it lets you create your page both visually (like Elementor and Beaver), and from the backend (like SiteOrigin). Unlike the other 3 builders mentioned in this post, though, it does not have a free version. But it has not worked against the builder in any way, as it has already crossed 8 million installs since its launch in 2013.

Divi has both a theme and a builder. These are the differences between the two:

The Divi theme

  • It works like any other theme of WordPress, where you can create pages and posts according to the theme template.
  • The Divi theme includes the Divi builder by default. So if you want to make changes to the theme, it will do so with the Divi builder.

The Divi builder

  • It is just a builder plugin like Elementor or Beaver, which can work with any theme. 
  • You can use the Divi builder to create any theme you like, including headers, footers, etc.

There is another theme called The Ultimate Magazine WordPress theme which has the Divi builder inbuilt. Divi also comes with its own email option plugin (Bloom), which you can integrate with your email marketing software and social media sharing tool (Monarch).

Interface: It doesn't really have a popup builder, only a menu at the bottom that you can expand and get the options in a popup. You can, however, make the menu fixed as a sidebar, like in Elementor.

Divi popup widgets

Premade templates: Divi comes with 40+ website elements (widgets), and 800+ premade layouts. The premade layout packs also include templates for individual page layouts, like Contact Us, About Us, Blog, etc. If you are not happy with any of these, you can also go to their marketplace and buy different packs for headers, footers, blogs, etc.

Limitations: The biggest disadvantage of using Divi is that once you use this builder, if you want to uninstall it and switch to a different one, it is super complicated, and definitely needs hours of work by a technical web designer. If you don't want that, then once you use Divi, you are locked in for life with this builder.

The good news is that there are constantly new layout packs and customization options being added, so unless there is a big problem with your site, you may never need to switch to a different page builder.

Free or paid: The Divi builder only has a premium version. You can choose from a premade layout within the builder. If you want to install a separate WordPress theme, and customize it with Divi, then that theme cost is separate. To keep costs low, you can also install a free theme and edit it with the paid Divi builder.

Note: The price you pay is not just for the builder, but all the plugins and themes from Elegant Themes, the company that has created Divi.

Who is the Divi builder best for?

Divi can be used by all WordPress users, and the builder adapts to the skill level of the designer. If you are a beginner, you can simply download the builder, choose a prebuilt layout, do some basic customizations, and launch your site.

If you have more experience, you can design the site from scratch by dragging and dropping elements, or using CSS. You can also install a theme and edit it freely with the page builder.

Divi is such a popular builder that it even has its own big communities where people share their experiences and help each other out. For example, on Facebook.

Divi Community

DIVI BUILDER

Top Features:

  • Both frontend and backend editors
  • Extremely fast
  • Inbuilt email option and social sharing plugins

Price: $89 annually or $249 for lifetime access

No. of sites: Unlimited

Refund policy: Full refund within 30 days

3. Beaver Builder

beaver wordpress builder

Beaver Builder is one of the oldest WordPress page builders, but still one of the most popular. It is a very lightweight builder, and has minimum bugs, which means it is very stable and reliable.

Interface: You design using rows, columns, and widgets (called modules, in Beaver). The page builder and styling elements open up in a popup style. It doesn't have a sidebar by default, but you can turn the menu into a sidebar one if you want.

Premade templates: The Beaver Builder has 2 kinds of premade templates: landing pages and content pages (like an About Us page). The number of templates, however, are not as many as Elementor or Divi, and they are more generic. There aren't specific templates for all kinds of content.

Limitations: It doesn't provide as much customization and flexibility as Elementor or Divi. But on the other hand, that's what makes it lightweight, which makes your website fast, one of the most important criteria for SEO-friendliness.

Free or paid: Beaver Builder has a free version, but it gives very limited choices, like only 6 modules. The paid one on the other hand, gives access to 30 modules and 56 page templates. You can also build a full theme with the separate addon of Beaver Themer.

Who is the Beaver builder best for?

If you want to design a basic website without all the extra fuss, then Beaver may be a good choice. You can design a simple, efficient, high-speed site, but it does not have as many options for customization as the other builders.

BEAVER BUILDER

Top Features:

  • Bug-free, lightweight, stable
  • Suitable for any skill level
  • Free version available

Price: $99 for the 1st year. Renews with a 40% discount.

No. of sites: Unlimited

Refund policy: Full refund within 30 days

4. SiteOrigin

siteorigin wordpress builder

The most unique feature of Page Builder by Siteorigin is that it is a completely free builder but still offers very advanced options. It has some prebuilt layouts and theme options, but like the other builders, can be used to edit or customize any WordPress theme.

Interface: It is a drag-and-drop builder, but works best as a backend editor. It does have a Live Editor version, but the interface is not as intuitive or easy to use as Elementor or Divi. So it is not the perfect beginner-level builder, though beginners prefer it because it's free.

Premade templates: SiteOrigin has a few premade layouts, 3 free themes, and 17 paid themes.

Limitations: The Live Editor gives you popup options and doesn't let you interact directly with the content, and doesn't have inline editing. So you have to do edits and keep previewing your work every time. The number of premade layouts is also very limited.

Free or paid: SiteOrigin is predominantly a free WordPress builder. It does have an add-on bundle for $29 which gives you more widgets, the ability to add parallax scrolling or animation, and premium support.  But even without these, you can have a perfectly designed WordPress site.

Who is the SiteOrigin builder best for?

You should choose SiteOrigin if you are looking for a page builder that lets you create a good website and customize it up to very deep levels. And if you have loads of time to spend on this project! Because unless you have preexisting knowledge about web design, the learning curve of this builder is steep, and you are working mostly on the backend. But hey, it's free!

PAGE BUILDER BY SITEORIGIN

Top Features:

  • Lots of features at no cost
  • Suitable for advanced skill levels

Price: Free

No. of sites: Unlimited

Refund policy: Full refund within 30 days

Comparison Table

Elementor

Visual frontend editor

90+ widgets, 60+ layout packs

Theme not available

$49-$199 per year for unlimited sites

Skill level: Beginner

Free version available (extensive options)

Divi

Visual frontend editor

40+ elements, 100+ layout packs

Divi theme available

$89 per year or $249 for lifetime access, for one site

Skill level: Beginner

No free version

Beaver Builder

Visual frontend editor

30 elements, 56 templates

Theme not available

$49 for Year 1, renews at 40% discount. Unlimited sites

Skill level: Intermediate

Free version available (limited options)

SiteOrigin

Backend editor

Limited widgets & templates

20 themes available

Free

Skill level: Advanced

Completely free

Conclusion & the perfect choice

All the WordPress builders mentioned above have their pros and cons. Which one you choose really depends on your needs and skill level.

If you are an absolute beginner at designing WordPress sites, you might be better off choosing a builder like Divi or Elementor, selecting a premade layout, and just customizing it according to your needs.

If you are more advanced and comfortable creating your site on the backend without looking at the frontend, so without a live visual editor, then SiteOrigin is a good option to go with. The good news is that it's free!

What other factors would you base your decision about the page builder on? How have you chosen the perfect one for you? Would love to hear your comments!

 

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