There are five basic services that work well for small business DIY websites. Nowadays Squarespace, Wix, and Weebley are the best known because they advertise heavily. Although they are the most recognized, there are two more that fly under the radar, namely WordPress.com, WordPress.org.
What You Need To Know About DIY Website Technology
By comparison Squarespace, Wix, and Weebly are “WYSIWYG” services, “What You See Is What You Get”. WordPress.com WordPress.org are “Template” services where you build a website from premade templates. Squarespace, Wix, and Weebly are fully paid for services. WordPress.com is “Freemium”, and WordPress.org is sibling to WordPress.com. WordPress.org requires your website has its own website hosting service, commonly called “self-hosted WordPress”.
WYSIWYG DIY Website Builders
With a WYSIWYG DIY website builder, you actually watch it develop as you build it on screen. You use a set of drag and drop tools letting placing design elements across the browser screen where you want them.
But you don’t have to start from scratch with the WYSIWYG builders. They often have premade templates that get you started, you just customize them to your taste.
If you want to try your hand at code,services like Squarespace give you options to do backend development. Download a few Linux files, type a few commands, and off you go. At that point, however, you’re well beyond the typical DIY framework.
Most DIY website services offer you the simplicity of drag and drop website building. But they often limit you to services offered within their own framework. So, if you choose to build your site with Squarespace, you’ll be working with whatever tools Squarespace offers you. To do things like mailers, forms, shopping carts, and payment processing, Squarespace tools are your only option.
A DIY Website May Be Simple, But Also Limiting
Likewise, you’ll have to circumvent the WYSIWYG editor if you want more than what the premade blocks offer you. In many cases this isn’t a limitation and shouldn’t cause you concern that your missing out on current technology. DIY Webstie builders do a good job with access to tools needed to make a functioning small business website. They wouldn’t be around if they didn’t.
In many cases the fact that there is no access to the backend attracts users to services like Squarespace. Most small business DIY website builders don’t need, nor want to deal with the server backends of their website. They just want it to work.
DIY website environment’s allow you to concentrate on other business aspects of your site. But at some point,even with all the tools, you still can’t integrate technology you might want.
Template DIY Website Builders: WordPress
Another way to build a DIY website is with a template service. By comparison, templates in a template based service are more rigid in making changes to their appearance. Once you choose the template and apply it to your website. You have no way to move design elements to different areas easily. Generally you can change fonts, colors, basic layout options easily. WordPress also has simple custom CSS access. CSS is a simple, powerful way to change the look of any website.
WordPress Power With Similar DIY Website Builders
Whereas WordPress.com exclusively operates on WordPress.com servers similar to the WYSIWYG services, WordPress.org operates on self-hosted servers. Because self-hosted websites using WordPress are free, and on open servers away from the brick and mortar of WordPress, you have complete control of every aspect of the system.
What that control means is you can integrate literally any service into wordpress, and there are millions of developers working to enhance WordPress’ power and flexibility. While this may sound daunting and out of the scope of a DIY website, it isn’t necessarily so.
Opting for the top tier of WordPress.com, you get virtually the same access to every tool available to WordPress.org, without the need to manage your own hosting server. The catch? It’s more expensive. However, you still can get the power of self-hosted wordpress in a DIY environment by working with implementers and consultants like BuildingWebsitesPlus. We can help guide you to a very successful site using self-hosted WordPress.
At this point you may be wondering why even bother with WordPress. To be sure, many small business owners don’t. But, if configured correctly, a self-hosted WordPress site can be more efficient, and offer more value than any other system. First, there are ways to make self-hosted WordPress a WYSIWYG environment. Second, that means you get all the flexibility of the WYSIWYG services plus the additional, and considerably more powerful, tools that self-hosted WordPress offers.