Back in the old days, the process of building website pages hosted on WordPress was such a hard task to behold. You would not only have to create whatever you wish in the editor’s very limited interface, but you’d also need to know HTML and code to create sophisticated layouts and styles.
Drag-and-drop page builders plugins have made page editing much more simple. This makes it even easier for newbies, even those with no coding experience.
Elementor may be one thing that pops up in your mind regarding those new types of page builders. But with so many of them around, it can be hard to choose which one suits you best. This article will help to find the perfect page builder for you.
For those of you who prefer a more visual experience, here is a video review from Daniel on his YouTube channel Design Break. You can still read our article to get an overview of Elementor.
Elementor in a Nutshell Elementor vs Coding
Before we get into the meat of the story, let’s take a short look first at what Elementor is.
Elementor is a popular WordPress page builder plugin. It is well-known for its intuitive user interface and rich features. Users have unlimited access to many customization and design options. It was created to simplify page building for both experienced web designers and beginners.
Elementor’s drag-and-drop editor is one of its highlights. Users can drag any object onto a workspace or canvas that’s large enough to fit the majority of their screen. You can view your page in the same way potential customers see it with the workspace. Elementor’s rich library of templates, widgets and blocks is another highlight.
The Key Features
Elementor’s basic version has more than enough tools that you will need to build eye-catching pages. It has an advanced settings section that allows you to fine-tune all your content elements to be as pixel-perfect as possible and incorporate custom coding onto your page.
Elementor knows that convenience is king – that’s why there are plenty of helpful features that reflect that statement. You can retrieve older versions of your page by clicking ‘undo’ once and then again. Revision History is your friend. Are you having trouble finding something difficult to find? You can use the Finder feature to help you. You want to make changes to your mobile page? Switch View allows you to make changes right away.
It doesn’t stop there, as Elementor has more tricks up its sleeve with Elementor Pro. You get more useful features like the Theme Builder, which allows you to create full-page WordPress templates, the pop-up builders, and ecommerce widgets in collaboration for WooCommerce.
While Elementor may have lots to offer to individuals of all skill levels, we must not fully ignore a few of its disadvantages. First, the majority of Elementor Pro features cannot be accessed by those who have the plugin free. Second, the dashboard may need to be more responsive sometimes. Lastly, editing refinements might not work exactly as you expected.
Elementor’s core version gives you an adequate number of page design tools you can use free of charge. However, if you want to gain access to additional features that are otherwise limited to Elementor Pro users, you may need to subscribe first to any of its five annual plans.
These range from $49 a year with the Essential plan to $999 with the Agency plan. The best thing about these subscriptions is that you can access any upgraded tool without limitations – the only limitation is the number of activations and website licenses.
We now have a better understanding of Elementor and the potential benefits it offers. Let’s then compare it with other page-builder platforms in this list. There are eight of them, all of which enjoy a huge following and high critical esteem.
These are Divi, WPBakery, Beaver Builder, WordPress’s newest editor Gutenberg, Webflow, the Thrive Architect plugin, Brizy, and Oxygen. Let’s begin with Divi!
Elementor vs Divi
The Divi builder from Elegant Themes is also a very popular page builder plugin. In terms of the amount it offers, it’s on par with Elementor.
Both interfaces are easy to use, yet powerful and feature a variety of design tools. Divi is a WordPress theme, but not a plugin. It also doesn’t offer a free plan and has more useful features like split testing.
Divi’s editing dashboard has a drag-and drop interface. However, if you look at it alongside Elementor, you will notice some differences. While the latter has all the options along the sidebar, Divi has a collapsible floating menu on the bottom of the screen, giving off a more minimalistic appeal.
Customization and Page-Building
While Elementor offers only single-page templates, Divi allows users to use full-website packages. Named by the latter as Layouts, its collection size is much bigger than the former.
Both plugins have the same styling options that don’t always require you to code unless necessary. Both plugins have similar features for theme-building. Divi may have it added in 2019, but Elementor had it available long before that.
The Key Features
Divi is not just a WordPress plugin. It also comes with the Divi theme. This theme has been called the “most popular WordPress theme” over the years.
One noticeable thing Divi has that sets it apart from Elementor and a few others is the split-testing feature. Marketing professionals, in particular, may find this one very useful as they can determine which of the pages’ elements work best in generating better conversion rates.
Unlike Elementor, which gives you plenty of powerful features at just the free version, Divi has no free plan unless it’s a limited 30-day demo trial. However, the two pricing plans offered by Divi are more cost-effective and valuable than each other.
A $89 yearly access plan or a $249 lifetime access tier are available to individuals. Regardless, not only will you be able to use Divi on unlimited websites, but you will also get access to all of the Elegant Themes products, including the Divi theme.
Elementor vs WPBakery
Another one of the widely-used page-building plugins, WPBakery, is also among the first to be released. WPBakery, which was previously known as Visual Composer before the introduction of the website-builder under the same name is now called WPBakery. It offers page creators nearly the same user-friendly and convenient features as Elementor.
Among its stand-outs is the ability to choose between a front-end interface for live site editing and more advanced back-end design editing. WPBakery offers twice the number of widgets than Elementor, which may seem like a large collection.
Some page builders let you view your page as your customers see it while editing. Others offer a more schematic experience. If one WordPress plugin can accommodate both simultaneously, then WPBakery lives up to the challenge. This makes it ideal for not just average web designers but experts as well.
However, there have been concerns over how slow the front-end editor can be compared to the rest. Regardless, you’ll have enough tools to create a good-looking page.
Page-Building and Customization
WPBakery offers over 100 pre-made templates, but this is a far cry from Elementor’s 300+ choices. While the former may lack in abundance, it catches up with an otherwise larger scale of design element offerings in the form of widgets and add-ons, giving it a huge boost ahead of the latter.
Both WPBakery (and Elementor) have the same level and variety of customization tools. However, one may prove too overwhelming for others.
WPBakery is known for its multilingual support, which makes it more accessible to non-English users. The Role Manager function lets you manage who has access to certain sections of the interface.
The plugin’s integrations list and supply of add-ons may not be a big deal for plenty, but we consider it unique enough to stand out among the rest.
WPBakery is similar to Divi but does not offer a free version. However, it does offer two pricing options. Unlike the former, though, both tiers use a one-time payment system, giving you uninterrupted updates regardless of your choice.
The regular version intended for single-site use costs $56, while the extended plan at $299 is intended for one SaaS application.
Elementor vs Beaver Builder
Beaver Builder plugin offers visually fluid drag-and drop page-building capabilities, similar to Elementor or Divi. Beaver Builder, unlike the other plugins, is designed for developers who are skilled in website stability.
With the inclusion of clean coding capabilities, well-documented PHP, CSS, and JS options, and more handy features to help make your page run as smoothly as possible, it’s no wonder why Beaver Builder has amassed a large following among WordPress developers.
Beaver Builder’s editing interface is similar to Divi’s: Your workspace occupies almost the entire screen with only a generously-sized horizontal bar on top. Elementor vs Coding
To add any column, row or module/widget, simply click the + button in the bar. The plugin’s dashboard has been highly praised for its fast, glitch-free, and very customizable capabilities. Pop-up windows are not your style? Drag it to create sidebars. Simple!
Page-Building and Customization
Beaver Builder offers a variety of core design tools. However, its advanced settings don’t have as much energy as Elementor. For one, it doesn’t offer motion effects options or custom CSS for individual pages elements, which Elementor is equipped with.
Despite this, Beaver Builder still manages to make every page highly responsive across all devices. As for templates, the plugin offers two types that are closely similar to Elementor: pages (full templates) and rows (Beaver Builder’s take on blocks).
As we mentioned earlier, one of Beaver Builder’s strongest suits is its ability to conveniently let developers add custom coding. Another of its key features is white-labeling, which is ideal for those who build pages or websites for multiple clients for a living.
As for theme-building, Beaver Builder requires you to purchase and integrate with a separate Beaver Themer extension. Although it may seem cumbersome, this extension is still able to integrate with Elementor’s built in theme builder. Elementor vs Coding
Beaver Builder’s pricing structure is very similar to Elementor’s. It includes yearly subscription plans starting at $99 for the Standard tier and ending at $546 for Ultimate. There’s also a 30-day money back guarantee. The plugin can also be downloaded for free, although it is less flexible than Elementor.
Elementor vs Gutenberg
Gutenberg is WordPress’s newest standard block editor. It has replaced its predecessor, The Classic Editor. Gutenberg’s new standard block editor is much easier than the old version. It requires you to complete tedious and complex processes. Gutenberg was designed with beginners in mind, using drag-and-drop interfaces.
WordPress is relaunching its flagship editor to reflect the popularity of Elementor and other user-friendly page builders. Gutenberg still offers block-building capabilities that make it easy to blog and write.
WordPress’s previous editor required you to write everything you need on a page inside a big, rectangular text field. This process has proven difficult for many as they may need to learn shortcodes to create various shapes, fonts, and layouts. Elementor vs Coding
With Gutenberg, editing has been significantly simplified to accommodate even those with zero coding knowledge. You will see that the interface borrows many of the same features found in most page builders plugins such as the large preview screen and collapsible sidebar widgets.
Customization and Page-Building
Gutenberg is packed with essential design tools, from columns and block patterns to text headings and paragraphs. Still, the range fares less than popular page builders like Elementor, where there are additional choices to explore.
Gutenberg may not have theme-building capabilities, but its block-based traits make it compatible with multiple WordPress themes – it does not fully override your theme styles and settings. You can also add custom CSS elements to give your site a personal touch.
The Key Features
Gutenberg, unlike Elementor which is a page builder that has a front-end interface and Gutenberg, is primarily a backend block editor. You won’t be able to create a fully unique site with an equally unique theme, but you can still rearrange design elements within any themed page, given that it’s compatible across multiple WordPress themes.
With Gutenberg, you get to embed uploaded files and posts from many sources to your page, from social media sites like Twitter and Tumblr to media-sharing sites such as YouTube and Soundcloud.
Gutenberg is WordPress’ default editor. This means that you can use all its features absolutely free! There is not one paid plan included in this list like all the other editors. Elementor vs Coding
Elementor vs Webflow
Unlike Elementor and the rest of our page builder plugins in this list, Webflow is a standalone website-building service that lets you create full-scale designs that work across multiple devices. It offers the same capabilities as Squarespace and other popular website builders.
Webflow is designed to be a one-stop solution, and a time-saver as its team does most website administration duties on your behalf, like web hosting. While WordPress itself may rely on plugins to create eye-catching sites, Webflow has everything rolled into one platform.
We must tell you firsthand that, as Webflow offers a wide range of users a fun and flexible way to build a website, it is not for the faint of heart, especially those who are new to web design. Webflow’s editing interface should be richer with essential tools for website building.
It may be a turn-off for most individuals with entry-level skills, but any average professional will most likely enjoy what it can offer. The platform’s interface can also be as straightforward as it gets.
Page-Building and Customization
With Webflow, you can either opt to start from the ground up or choose from its collection of 500+ website templates, with about 100 of them offered for free. It spans multiple categories ranging from portfolios to full-on blog themes. Webflow is different from Elementor which allows you to change the entire page’s template in one go. Instead, you will need to create a new website for those changes.
You have many options for web design and can integrate with third-party platforms.
Webflow is poised to compete with WordPress in the CMS field. With that being said, while one is not yet on the same level as the other, its blogging and SEO capabilities are still impressive enough that they may be worth trying.
Webflow’s extensive database of knowledge through Webflow University and the blog, as well as its excellent customer assistance team, is a testament that proves how much it deeply cares for its users. Elementor vs Coding
Webflow offers a free starter plan for those who wish to learn how to design a website. There are many subscription options available. You can choose from the basic Site plan starting at $12/month, team-based Workspace plans starting at $19/month and e-commerce plans starting at $29/month. There is also a custom Enterprise plan.
Elementor vs Thrive Architect
While some WordPress page builders primarily accommodate either designers (as with Elementor), web developers (like Beaver Builder), or both at the same time, there are a few that are geared towards mostly marketing professionals and businesses, and Thrive Architect happens to be one of them.
This plugin provides them with top-notch features that are guaranteed to make impressive sales turnouts on top of the essential page-building tools they should already be familiar with. While both platforms offer the same level of design and customization capabilities, Thrive Architect makes it a more suitable choice for creating high-converting landing pages and other similar market-optimized websites.
Thrive’s editing dashboard is similar to Elementor. It has a front-end interface that allows you to see what your customers will get. The former does this by having a large workspace and one feature-rich sidebar. The latter has two.
In addition, two taskbars similarly surround the space, with one for the page structure and the other for multi-device previews. While Thrive tried its best to fit all the basic tools in one dashboard, it has been criticized for being slightly clunky.
Page-Building and Customization
Both Thrive and Elementor offer the same caliber of excellent widgets and template selections. Still, considering the latter’s concentration on the marketing niche, the range may not be as flexible as the former. Regardless, its library of landing page templates surely looks more deserving for marketers and businesses alike.
Thrive’s customization is also at a comparable level. An apparent silver lining, though, has to be its top-performing in-line text editor and a more diverse range of global elements.
As far as marketing-focused features are concerned, Elementor is surely miles behind what Thrive is committed to offering. To begin, it comes with a list of Smart Landing Pages designed for a more optimized conversion turnout. Elementor vs Coding
Thrive Architect believes better conversion rates lead to the flourishing of sales. It can integrate seamlessly with specialty applications such as split testing, testimonial collections, automation, and more.
If you work in marketing and are looking for more efficient ways to convert leads into sales, you may get the entire Thrive Suite alongside Thrive Architect for only $299/year. Otherwise, the plugin itself is priced at $97 annually.
Elementor vs Brizy
Though two years younger than Elementor (2016), Brizy has been slowly climbing to the top and gaining critical acclaim for its simple and intuitive functions. The interface itself is on the same par as Elementor – the only key difference that sets each other apart is the ecosystem.
While Elementor allows you to import third-party add-ons, in Brizy, you can only make use of its default content elements. The cloud service allows you to sync your work across all domains, WordPress and not, despite this limitation.
While Brizy has the all-familiar drag-and-drop features, its editing dashboard is praised by many for having one of the most user-friendly interfaces, even beating out all other page builders on this list. Elementor vs Coding
One of the primary reasons why it attracts web designers of all skill levels so easily is its super lightweight design. Compared to other dashboards, particularly from Thrive Architect, Divi, and even Elementor, it doesn’t feel very bulky; instead, it’s welcoming.
Page-Building and Customization
As with most WordPress page builders, Brizy supplies its users with plenty of design and customization options. It doesn’t offer as many widgets than Elementor, but it does have a few WooCommerce e-commerce elements.
Brizy is packed with templates, including tons of blocks and full-page layouts. These are more varied than Elementor and can be used for free.
One standout feature Brizy has that Elementor doesn’t is its integrated mega menu builder. Although Brizy does not support third-party addons, it is still a great feature to be able to create large-scale web menus.
Besides the WordPress plugin, Brizy offers the Brizy Cloud service, which provides hosting and other useful website tools. It is a totally different platform so you won’t have the ability to use WordPress. Instead, you will be given a custom domain.
You can also download the WordPress plugin version Brizy free of charge, similar to Elementor. For those who are specialized in website and page-building, pricing subscriptions are available. These include Agency, Personal, and Freelancer plans.
You can choose to pay annually ($49 to $199), or to pay a one-time fee ($149 – $399). Brizy Cloud also offers a wide range of time-based subscriptions. Elementor vs Coding
Elementor vs Oxygen
Oxygen, a WordPress theme that can be used with drag-and-drop plugins like the Divi builder, is similar to the Divi builder. You have complete control over how your pages look with any element you choose. It can even override any saved themes.
Oxygen has a wealth of marketing tools and stunning professional-looking templates to choose from. It is designed for freelancers and developers who are experts, as well as web agencies that are small and large. Although it might seem ideal for newbies in web design, it could be a weak suit.
Oxygen’s user interface has a lot of tools and features that you can use immediately. The number may be concerningly overwhelming, especially for beginners. For those who know the basics of web development, there are many functions that can be used.
As Elementor’s dashboard looks suitable for designers and average users, Oxygen’s version is mainly driven by the purpose of making page building more convenient, powerful, and worthwhile for those with firsthand experience.
Page-Building and Customization
We appreciate the ease of Oxygen’s customization capabilities. Coding pros, in particular, may surely enjoy the plugin’s easy-to-manage CSS editing capabilities – they wouldn’t have to worry much about going into the style sheets of any theme for long! Elementor vs Coding
Each set is made up of all Oxygen’s templates. Its widget library may not be as large and spectacular as Elementor’s, but luckily, its public API tool makes integrations with third-party apps simpler.
The Key Features
The loading speed of most pages that are built using Oxygen is significantly faster than the ones made through Elementor and similar WordPress page builders by a slightly improved margin.
Apart from the API, Oxygen can also seamlessly integrate with a diverse range of industries and platforms, including specialty apps like Airbnb, social media, SEO plugins, payment gateways, and more.
Oxygen doesn’t offer a free plan due to its professional and advanced nature. Instead, it offers one-time fees on two of its current pricing plan offerings. You will pay $129 for the Basic plan, and $349 for the Ultimate plan.
Our Final Thoughts Elementor vs Coding
If you’re a web development expert, whether you work in the field for a living or you’re a power user for leisure, we recommend that you choose between Oxygen, Beaver Builder, and WPBakery, as each of those comes prepared with more accommodating coding capabilities.
If you specialize in website design, either as a freelancer or as part of a team, both Brizy, and Webflow have all the right tools you would need. Brizy, in particular, has one of the most user-friendly interfaces out there, but if third-party add-on support is what you’re looking for in one, then it might be best if you find something else.
Gutenberg is a good choice if you don’t have a lot of experience with web design and are comfortable using your existing theme. However, most page builders in this list provide the same feature. Gutenberg is also the only plugin that’s completely free, which may make it a good choice if you have a limited budget.
While there are some page builders that offer templates for landing pages, none compares to the number of templates Thrive Architect offers. It integrates with many marketing tools including split testing and sales funnels. Divi is the only builder that can compete in a similar capacity to Divi.
Oxygen or Divi are the best options if you want to get both a WordPress plugin and a WordPress template simultaneously. If you are a web designer who is looking for more templates and themes, the latter might be the best option.
Lastly, if you want to stay sure with some of the most trusted, easy-to-use, and leading WordPress page builders, look no further than Divi and Elementor. If a feature-laden free version of the plugin is what you’re more interested in, then Elementor is ready to supply you with that.