WordPress makes website creation easy and accessible for all sorts of people - developers and non-developers alike. For example, if you have never learned how to code, you still can create professional-grade layouts using a content builder WordPress plugin. These tools generally give you access to a drag and drop enabled front-end editor where you can insert design elements and modules to create the layout of your choice - no coding necessary. For the general public, this might seem like a godsend - and for the most part, it is - but there are caveats you should be aware of.
As is the case with anything, there are advantages and there are disadvantages. And so for the purpose of this read, we will be going through the pros and cons of page/content builder WordPress plugins, and when to use them.
The target demographic of page builder WordPress plugins not only include people without a coding background, but it also includes users who are total newcomers in the field. As such, users are given a super intuitive user interface where all options are conveniently laid out for maximum ease of use.
You will generally get access to a front-end editor where all your designs are visible in real-time. This makes the designing process a lot more simple as well as engaging.
Mostly all the popular page builders shift with loads of templates so you don’t have to start a design from scratch. All templates are professionally designed and can be tweaked to your likings.
Using simple controls you will be able to change the layout and add and remove design elements and modules from the design. And depending on which plugin you got, you will get access to a diverse collection of powerful content modules to help you create a feature-rich website.
All these without any coding whatsoever!
Every time you add a new content module to your layout, the page builder incorporates a code snippet in reference to it. Now, these code snippets might not be well optimized, consisting of long unnecessary lines of code. This can put extra pressure on your website, ultimately affecting loading time.
Alternatively, you might be using a premium quality content builder known for well-optimized code; but here too, the content modules will be added using shortcode. This increases the load on web servers and affects the loading speed.
In most cases, the fascinating layouts you create with a content builder will disappear or break-down if you deactivate and uninstall the plugin from your site. This can force the user to be locked-in with that particular page builder unless they want to create their website all over again.
The seriousness of the situation rises when the plugin in consideration has just run into a major security vulnerability and you are forced to stay with it until the developer releases a security update.
Web designing isn’t strictly about knowing HTML, CSS, and other coding languages - you still have to know the basics of good design. A page builder enables you to create layouts with knowing how to code, but what type of layouts will you create if you have no idea about good and bad UI?
Creating a good website layout is a complex process. If you want to see users engaged and captivated while surfing your website, you need to implement good design. And for the most part, page builders won’t be able to help you in this aspect.
Taking all the pros and cons into account, it can be said that page builders might not be the best tools for website creation, but these are excellent for layout customization. In fact, these tools offer a seamless means for adding those minor tweaks to your design. As mentioned above, you can use one of the plenty of website templates that come with the page builders as the basis of your layout. However, the better alternative would be using a WordPress theme for crafting the overall aesthetic of your website and then using page builders to customize it as per your taste.