Skip to main content
4 answers
Asked Viewed 309 times Translate

What are the differences in using platforms like Wix or Go Daddy website builders versus coding a website in terms of what we see in the end product as the website? Which is the better option and what are the advantages/disadvantages of one method over the other?

+25 Karma if successful
From: You
To: Friend
Subject: Career question for you

4
Pros
4
0

4 answers


Updated Translate

Angel’s Answer

I agree with Ted and Dexter.

I would emphasize on the idea that starting on website builders is the way to go given that those would cover most of the common use cases.

Having said that, I would like to mention 2 use cases that may be fit for a custom development:

- The business is about the website: The website is not only to publish content about the company, but are actually the products and services that the company offers and delivers online. Eg. Google, Facebook, etc. or any other company big or small in which their business model is based on the user experience interacting with the website.
- The design and/or brand is so special and unique: Nowadays, builders offers tons of design options and templates (some of them are free!) that you can configure and fine tune with the colors and images of your brand, but there might be specific cases where you need to start from a "blank canvas" and do a custom design.
1
Pros
1
0
Updated Translate

Ted’s Answer

Tools like Wix and GoDaddy's website builder are optimized for letting non-designers put up a website. They are highly simplified to remove the complexity from web development, so eventually you will outgrow them if you want to customize your site.

The Wordpress platform powers over 25% of the pages on the entire Internet. This means that everything you've ever seen a website do, **it can do**. In my experience Wordpress provides a fairly gentle learning curve up from the layperson who just wants a landing page for their business up through legit, marketable web development skills. I went from starting a free blog on Wordpress.com with no web design skills, to ultimately migrating my site to a self-hosted Wordpress.org site where I could customize the themes and plugins to add new functionality to my site. This taught me a lot about administering content management systems that I later used in my career as a learning designer for online education.

In other words, the tools you mentioned are great if you need a website online tomorrow and you want to just choose a template and fill it in with your content. But if you want to build a website that will grow with you and support whatever you might choose to do in the future, building some skills in Wordpress will really set you off in the right direction for your career.

Ted recommends the following next steps:

Check out Wordpress.com to set up a free blog.
If you have hosting at GoDaddy or something like it, try installing Wordpress open source software on your server and giving it a whirl.
Live happily ever after and be awesome.
1
Pros
1
0
Updated Translate

Dexter’s Answer

Hi Paridhi,

To answer your question directly, it really depends on what you want to do with your website, and who the users of the website are. As Ted answered, Wix and GoDaddy are platforms that have simplified website creation by limiting things. It may totally may meet your needs, and in that case, it'll work great. Anytime you get to a point where it won't do what you want to exactly in the way you want it done, you're going to need to either create your own site or move to another platform, like wordpress.

It sounds like from your tags that this is a decision for a nonprofit. My advice would be to have a nonprofit sign up on catchafire.org for a 1 hr consultation with a web developer, so you can talk through all the needs of the nonprofit and get advice on what platform would work best for you. Personally, with lots of nonprofits, there is a rotating pool of volunteers that will need to work on this website with varying degrees of web development skills. Given this reality, I would stick to using a well understood tool, such as wordpress, Wix, etc instead of coding something totally custom. I've helped way too many nonprofits with a custom website that no one wants to modify, so they have to rebuild the site from scratch after a volunteer leaves the organization.

I wish you the best!

--
Dexter
1
Pros
1
0
Updated Translate

Bradley’s Answer

Hi Great question. So wix and Go daddy or Wordpress are packages that you pay for, they have a user interface and help you build a site by adding functions to buttons, changing text around and doing some pre packaged things for you. You get a theme and depending on how complex that is, it gives you website building blocks like a panel with fancy buttons, a slide show area for pictures and general website parts. They only do what you see, so you pick a theme and can only use their options for what buttons do.

But coding it yourself? Microsoft Visual Studio is free and lets you build web pages. A web page is a text document that uses rules for describing a web page in HTML. That means you have command words that describe a textbox or button or font, then you have words for a label or something else. So you have to come up with the words to make a textbox and give it color, size shape etc. You have full control. You usually download some helper packages that give you nicer controls to work with (textbox/input area/buttons etc) then can call out one of those in the HTML and when the page is loaded in a browser it decodes and processes the commands. If you want to spend money there are things like Telerik or others giving you nice controls, grids. HTML has a more complex language available called Javascript, its part of the ECMA spec for a programming language and is very powerful and complete. So this language runs in the browser and lets you program parts like textboxes or labels and look at data, or send it or read it in from other websites if you run code to do that.

You get a blank slate with the visual studio, doing it yourself; with Wix or others the site is mostly working and ready, you just give names to buttons or text fields and put your pictures in there.

As a programmer I find it very hard to use the Wix or Wordpress concept at times, others may find it easy

If I was doing a simple website with a store? and needed the page to handle credit card transactions? the ask for email page? (which didnt used to exist) and wordpress mostly did whats needed, Sure Id go that route. I dont want to build some credit card page from scratch and have to test and make sure its working

Some pages have to work with database storage, so for now usually you use visual studio to connect to databases and store/get data. If the user is working with database data, sure then VS is better. Optional steps are to help show what VS can do, you can see what Wix and others have

Bradley recommends the following next steps:

Look at Telerik controls
check out the visual studio platform to talk with SQL servers and the ability to execute SQL within C# code
search how to build a shopping cart in asp.net
1
Pros
1
0