If you’re a blogger who wants to design and code a beautiful site from scratch, raise your hands. Nobody? That’s what I thought.
Many bloggers don’t actually have the necessary skills for creating attractive pages, without resorting to help. And, even if you do have the skills, can you afford the time needed to do the page?
Coding from scratch is very time consuming, and I don’t really know many people who can do that.
However, that is where a page builder plugin comes in. Using them, anyone can build a beautiful page with as much as a drag and drop functionality. Yep, you read that right. Click, hold and drag, and you’ll get an amazing web page with nothing more required.
If you think that that’s something you could use, read on, as we take a look at some of the best WordPress page builders. Regardless of whether you just want a landing page, or a blog welcome page, or anything else, there are plugins, both free and premium, that can help you with this.
The team at ThemeFuse have done a nice job and launched Unyson– the Drag & Drop WordPress framework that let developers create powerful WordPress themes.
Unyson is a free, open source framework and will always be so. It that can be used to build your own WordPress themes and sell them on Envato or other marketplaces. So, it is a powerful tool that comes with the following built-in extensions:
- Mega Menu
- Blog Posts
It allows you to easily customize websites and add new extensions as plugins or include them in the website. The key idea of Unyson framework is that all extensions are integrated and fully compatible with each other.
It’s a major problem when you have to install different plugins to create a functional site. Often, these plugins lead to compatibility, update and support issues, being very hard to find their solutions. Unyson’s purpose is to create standards and unite more functionality in one single useful solid tool.
Unyson’s special thing is that you can contribute and develop your ideas within a growing community. It’s a place where nobody else will decide the future of our business except for us, developers.
By far the best WordPress page builder, Beaver Builder is a premium drag and drop page builder. It comes with a built-in tool that will get you familiar with the interface, and it is incredibly fast.
The live drag and drop interface is great. When you drag elements from the sidebar on the right and drop them on your page, you get to see all the changes as you do them. Editing the properties of any element on the page is as easy as clicking on it.
You also get a few basic, as well as advanced modules, that will let you add almost anything you can think of. Backgrounds, buttons, content blocks, carousel, sliders, you name it – it’s there. And, the most important thing is that Beaver Builder is very easy, even for beginners. You can check out a few easy tutorials that will help you learn it faster.
Another excellent WordPress page builder that relies on drag and drop. The main goal with Elementor is speed, and that is obvious from the moment you start using it – speed and responsiveness are amazing. It is, like Beaver Builder, a live builder, which means that you can track your changes as you edit. Creating sections is easy, and you can select the number of columns for each section.
You then get to choose which widgets from the left panel you want and drag them to your section. There are plenty of widgets, and the ones that are most commonly used as website elements are all there. You can choose from basic text and image widgets to advanced ones such as sliders, icons, accordions, social media, tabs etc. There are individual settings for every widget. You can also add widgets that are created by other WordPress plugins.
But, what happens if you don’t want to build your own layout? In that case, there are plenty of ready-to-use templates. Just pick one and insert it into your pages. You can also click any item on those pages, and edit them or replace them completely with your own content.
Another drag and drop page builder, Divi is incredibly easy to use. It is also very fast and has over 20 templates and layouts for various websites.
You even get the option of creating and saving your own layouts for Divi. There is also the option of exporting a layout from one installation of Divi, into another. Tons of elements are included as well, and you can drag and drop them anywhere in your layout.
Themify Builder is already a part of your theme if you’re using a WordPress theme which is made by Themify. However, if your theme isn’t, you can just get the Themify Builder plugin.
The builder is very simple and highly intuitive. There are a couple of modules that are ready to use, and you can add them to your posts or pages. Most of them might require that you install separate WordPress plugins, so that’s something to keep in mind.
The builder will also let you edit your pages from both the live site, as well as the admin area. With the live editor, you will get to see how your changes affect the site, in real time. Along with that, there are also layouts that are pretty easy to use, and you can quickly apply them to your page.
If you want something that is free, and it being in the WordPress repository is a bonus, PageBuilder is great for you. It has all the important basic modules, and there are also a few page templates. The user interface is also decent, which is a great bonus.
Another great benefit is that it’s not driven by shortcode, which means that if the plugin gets deactivated for any reason, your content won’t look weird and funny. True, it lacks some customization and options when you compare it to other builders on the list. And, it isn’t particularly fancy. However, it is a very reliable choice, it’s free, and will get the job done. If you’re looking for something simple that gets the job done without a lot of distractions, it’s the one for you.
Many people’s first-page builder, Visual Composer is pretty much a mixed bag. Sure, it does have a lot of use for a lot of people. However, the biggest reason why people use it that much is that it was one of the first on the market. For a one-time price of $34, it isn’t expensive either. Over the years, plenty of features were added, which is pretty nice. There is a pretty good number of modules, and there are design customizations that apply across all plugins, on all pages, in the settings.
There are also mobile views, so you can adjust your page within the builder, without having to reach for your phone. It is driven by shortcode, though, which means that if your plugin is disabled, you get a lot of shortcodes to your page. If you decide to leave the plugin, you would have to weed those out.
The only potential reason you might have to do that would be site loading time. It might slow the site down, a lot. However, if you’re already set up, and the speed is good, there’s no reason not to use it, especially considering its features and flexibility.
One more in the list of competitively priced front-end builders, MotoPress sacrifices elements for that price. You will have to pay for add-ons if you want to use some common elements, such as contact forms or pricing tables. However, all the basic elements for any page are there, such as grids, sliders, buttons, or other basic things.
If you also opt for a MotoPress theme, the builder will work with that pretty nicely and lets you fully customize your theme. However, the front-end editor isn’t really fluid, especially when put next to some of the other competitors on the list. When you play around with it for a while, you will undoubtedly experience a few small glitches. However, it does come at half of their price as well. And, if you have a bit of patience, it is perfectly usable.
So, which one do you go for? All the aforementioned page builders are excellent. If you use Visual Composer and don’t mind the fact that it is shortcode driven, you can just keep on using it.
If you enjoy Divi, stick with that as well, it is also great, and there’s little to no reason to switch. If a simple, free builder is what you need, and you don’t need a lot of advanced functionality, PageBuilder by Site Origin is the right tool for you.
If speed is important, go for Elementor. And, if you can afford to spend some cash on the best there is, and want a plugin that comes with a lot of options, and a great design, Beaver Builder is the go-to option. You will not regret it.