Comparing Weebly with WordPress.com is a tough task
Weebly and WordPress address the needs of two different sets of consumers. They aim at different market segments. Comparing Weebly and WordPress feature-to-feature is not the real comparison.
So, in this review, we concentrate on presenting you information about the situations where Weebly would be a right fit and where WordPress.com would make it a better choice.
Though WordPress.org (self-hosted version) is a whole different ball game, we will briefly touch upon the advantages of WordPress.org
Weebly vs WordPress: The Fun Factor
You will enjoy creating a site with Weebly. If you are new to web design, you are going to have some fun building your site with Weebly, playing with it and tweaking it as you go. We have tons of tutorials here in Weebly Forums that’s enough food for thought.
Whether you brag about your Weebly site or not, you are sure to feel the sense of achievement. Weebly is fun to use. And you keep getting more of it as you discover it’s potential.
With WordPress, you build a site to meet your needs. The fun factor, if any, with WordPress, will soon disappear. WordPress is more business and less fun.
Weebly vs WordPress : Ease of Use & Skill Level
Weebly has a very short learning curve.
You can literally start from knowing nothing and can still have a simple website up and running in about couple of hours. If you spend a couple of days, you will be able to leverage majority of the Weebly Features and can make your site look professional.
WordPress, on the other hand, has a relatively steep learning curve.
Unless you have dealt with CMSs, Blogs etc in the past, you are very likely to find yourself being lost. If you are tech savvy and are familiar with Jargon and Terminology, you may spend a couple of days to get a feel for it and gain enough confidence to try it out for your Business website.
Weebly’s WYSIWYG Editor
Comparing Weebly and WordPress editor interfaces
Weebly offers a WYSIWYG editor and WordPress does not. For some one new, this plays a very significant role in their ability to create a site themselves. The Weebly WYSIWYG interface also makes it quick and easy for maintaining the site.
If your needs can be met with Weebly, and if you are OK with a little glitches now and then, then you should stick with Weebly. Modifying content in Weebly is much faster with its WYSIWYG editor. You can also teach your staff to update content on a Weebly site fairly easily.
To update a WordPress site you need some one who is aware of how things work. WordPress is not some thing that can be taught in an hour. Weebly can be taught in an hour.
Features: Weebly vs WordPress
If Weebly were to offer as many features as WordPress did, then Weebly would be as complex as WordPress is … which defeats the purpose of Weebly.
WordPress offers a vast number of features. Here are the major features offered by WordPress that are not available with Weebly:
User Management, Advanced Traffic Statistics, Akismet Spam Protection, Top notch Reliability, Excellent Documentation and Support, World Class Blogging Platform, Over 30 Drag-And-Drop Sidebar Widgets, Import from several different Platforms, Export entire content in XML, Beautiful themes that work without a glitch, Efficient SEO, Compatible across multiple platforms, On Demand A La Carte Premium Features, Private Blogs, Related Posts, Popular Posts, File management, Page management, Granular settings etc.
While the presence of so many features with WordPress is great for flexibility, it could take quite some time to figure out how to use these features.
Weebly, though with less number of features, is geared more towards people who would like to quickly put up a website without having to learn much.
Reliability, Consistency and Speed: Weebly vs WordPress
WordPress.com is a corporate class CMS and is highly dependable. But Weebly is a bit wobbly and at times seems like a work in progress.
If you are ok with a few hiccups here and there and if you are fine with your site not being available to your visitors at times, then Weebly should be fine for you.
If your site is mission critical and if it must be available all the times, then WordPress would be a better choice. It is worthwhile going through the initial learning curve with WordPress if reliability is high on your list.
Migration, Flexibility & Archival: Weebly vs WordPress
WordPress lets you export your content in XML format and is compatible with many other CMSs. Migration is smooth with WordPress. It also works perfectly for backing up and retrieval of your previous versions. You get complete flexibility with WordPress. If your site has hundreds of posts and pages, WordPress saves you a lot of time and money.
If your site has fewer pages, then you could go with Weebly which lets you backup your content but will have to migrate manually. But Weebly does not offer 301 redirection to external pages, so must be aware of the risk of using a Weebly sub-domain.
WordPress provides redirection service (for a fee) which is very critical if you are moving from a sub-domain to domain any where else. WordPress makes sure that you are not locked in and makes it convenient for migration when your business needs change.
The Help You Need: Weebly vs WordPress
You can find help for WordPress any where in the world. There are several tutorials available to assist you with any thing required. The forums are rich and are full of quality information. Many training institutions offer WordPress courses on a regular basis, should you need to go through a training. With WordPress, you are in safe hands.
With Weebly, you are dependent on Weebly and may be left un-answered lot more often than you imagined.
WordPress.org, a whole different animal
While WordPress.com is maintained for you, WordPress.org is a software distribution you take and manage your self. WordPress.org is several times more powerful and even more times complex to deal with. You host the software on your own server, update the patches, take care of issues all by your self. But you are in total control.
The functionalities you can add to your wordpress.org install are limitless. It also comes with the burden of ensuring that all the pieces work in cohesion without conflict. WeeblyForums.com is built using WordPress.org.