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It’s easier than ever to create a website with today’s variety of available landing page builders. They exist so those of us who aren’t web developers don’t have to code website landing pages, blog post layouts, squeeze pages, and lead pages with opt-in forms. Frankly, most of us couldn’t code it even if we wanted to and thank goodness we don’t have to. While it makes sense to know a bit of CSS, JS, and HTML, creating homepages, about, contact or sales pages for a website isn’t the hair-pulling event it use to be because website builders allow creation of stunning web pages and professional-looking websites.
I started tinkering around with WordPress back in 2012; my first attempt creating a WordPress site was without a page builder. Believe me, I thought I was saving money but all I got was a few headaches. Lead pages and homepage designs with today’s’ website page builders are so good that all you need is a little time and patience. Plus the best website builders for small businesses aren’t very expensive although many page builders offer a free or lite version with limited support. In comparison, I’d argue that the cheapest website page builders are the ones I’m writing about because they have tons of features, great support, save time and are significantly cheaper than any Clickfunnel or Leadpages competitor out there.
While a great website is about the content, great content on a website has to be presented in an appealing way. That’s where the best website page builders for small businesses and tight budgets make a difference.
Besides most small businesses and bloggers aren’t in the business to code, they’re online to connect with clients and subscribers. A robust web page maker is easy to use, creates responsive pages, and has useful features; robust page makers don’t have bloat or performance issues. I’ve been around the block a few times; I’ve seen the good, bad and ugly when it comes to small business website design. That’s why the best website page builders I recommend since I use them are Elementor and Thrive Architect. In my opinion, any other doesn’t compare. After building multiple websites, I wouldn’t even look at another page builder because these two have everything: intuitive, responsive, feature-rich and robust support.
So you may wonder, what’s left to compare if Elementor and ThriveTheme are neck-to-neck the best website page builders for WordPress? Well, there are some differences that might help you decide which one will work best on your website. It’s about the benefits of page builder for your needs and niche.
What makes a great website page builder?
#1 Pre-designed webpage templates
Both Elementor and Thrive Architect have a variety of pre-designed templates and layout for a wide variety of uses. Elementor tends to offer templates as single designs that mix and match according to one’s needs. Thrive Architect offers groups of templates according to a style, theme or purpose. While one isn’t necessarily better than the other, if you’re struggling with making all the necessary webpages and prefer to just use a template by modifying it you may like using Thrive Architects predesigned groups of templates -about, homepage, contact, sales landing page, etc- created in a common style. If you a bit more confident about creating what you need then Elementor has some beautiful pre-designed layouts you can easily modify into any style you what. Plus, there’s rarely a need to check on responsiveness for mobile with Elementor templates while I’ve found that I tend to tweak the margins and padding on Thrive Architect webpages I create specifically for mobile.
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#2 Website homepage design for WordPress
Website homepage design is as critical as any subscribe page you create. You might even make your homepage your subscribe page depending on your website. In general, your homepage is the defacto starting point for visitors especially if redirection rules point to your homepage. While that is a typical configuration, good implemented SEO should send the subscriber or customer directly to what they are searching for. If they don’t get there it’s good to have a default dropoff location, i.e your homepage, blog post or subscribe pages.
While Elementor offers some of the best website homepage designs that make you look like a genius web designer I slightly prefer Thrive Architect over Elementor because I like the look of full width easy to read, open homepage design. Thrive tends to create more space between elements and text which be easier to read on mobile. Elementor is a no-brainer but in my opinion, Thrive Architect has a slight overall edge in style.
#3 Web page maker – Leadpage and Clickfunnels alternatives
Sale pages are the lifeblood of any Internet marketer, affiliate marketer or eCommerce small business. Good sales pages for desired products get results. The two biggest sales page builders, Clickfunnels and Leadpages, are pricy. Frankly, I don’t get why people use them, especially if they have a robust WordPress website with a great web page maker like Elementor or Thrive Architect. Elementor and Thrive are perfect Clickfunnels alternatives; they create amazing and professional sales pages without a lot of effort. Plus, Elementor and Thrive integrate easily with email, shopping carts, etc in addition to a rich set of features for customizing a WordPress website without the high $97/mo costs of Clickfunnels or Leadpages. Both Elementor and Thrive offer typical features including drag-n-drop tables, icons, images, code, forms, post layouts, backgrounds, lists, columns and integrations with 3rd party email providers. Using a page builder in WordPress is better than Leadpages or Clickfunnels. Both Elementor and Thrive offer great templates, integration and support; making beautiful, highly converting sale page funnels with these easy to use and easy to at a very reasonable price ($20/mo or less).
#4 Mobile website builder
It’s not news that mobile traffic is skyrocketing; that is here to stay. So any web page creator, or WordPress theme, should support and be able to deliver professional responsive web pages for smaller screen mobile devices. Elementor does that a bit better than Thrive Architect. I rarely have to tweak an Elementor page just for a mobile device. I do have to modify margins and padding on custom made Thrive Architect web pages I create but not on web pages created from Thrive’s variety of pre-designed templates. Still, both builders can create stunning overlays of text, icons and images. Thrive Architect provides an easy way of overlaying images and multiples layers of color which have produced some of my best web pages.
#5 Email provider integration
To fully integrate an email provider with Elementor you’ll need Elementor Pro; the free version won’t do that. You can try some 3rd party plugins but I’ve found that to be not as robust. While Elementor Pro allows for creating email forms from their pre-designed templates, I don’t find these forms to be as straightforward to change as the forms with Thrive. I do like the Elementor predesigned email forms; they are quite stunning and better than anything I could make with Elementor on my own. In comparison, Thrive uses 2 separate products that integrate together. Thrive Architect is the page builder but Thrive Leads is the form builder. This separation of function could be confusing to some however there are benefits with that. The features in Thrive Leads are easier to use than the forms created with Elementor. Plus, support for both Architect and Leads is heavily moderated and if the question is better answered one group they do work to get it addressed. My experience with Thrive is good; my wait for answers to a question is quicker than any other WordPress support I’ve paid for, including Elementor. Thrive support answers request with hours; the only other support I have that does that is my support though A2Hosting, my web host provider, and my support with my email provider(s).
#6 Website landing pages
Both Thrive and Elementor have a great selection of predesigned website landing pages that can be modified by simply replacing the default images with new ones, modifying text and color. I generally go further than that adding in additional sections either I create or using page builder section templates. Section templates are smaller versions of a website landing page template; for example, I’ll add in an email section template or a final call-to-action section at the bottom of a website landing page to encourage engagement with the reader.
#7 Blog post layout
Blog post layout pages are mostly ignored by many but there are instances where a good blog post layout page comes in pretty handy. I always create one based on my featured images, and those images are always created to one selected social media size. Some of the websites I’ve built use Pinterest pins (600 x 900 or 735 x 1102 pixels) as featured images and some like WPBloggerTools use the standard OG image (1200×628 pixels) which happens to be perfect for posting to Facebook. If you’ve read my article on creating a free Instagram Bio page with WordPress, a blog post layout using Instagram (1080 x1080pixel) feature images is perfect for that; otherwise, as I mentioned in that article a FooGallery or Gutenberg gallery of clickable Instagram images works just as well.
#8 Awesome and responsive support
I’m pretty sure whether other website designers, bloggers, and entrepreneurs are like me when it comes to getting support for their website. Because when things go wrong it can’t happen in an instant. Depending on the issue and without responsive support, the situation may be irritating or devastating. My website is a major part of my online business and presence; robust support is essential. Both Thrive and Elementor provide excellent support. Thrive is a bit quicker; most of my tickets with Thrive are handled within hours, even on the weekends. Elementor takes about 24 hours to respond. I’ve experienced much worse and wouldn’t go back to any of the previous ones I’ve tried.
The biggest difference between Thrive and Elementor
Elementor is purely a robust, full-featured website page builder with great support that any non-techie can use. Elementor comes with a free lite version, email support through WordPress forum. The paid version has the best support and many additional features most website owners want, like email integration, portfolios, post layouts, forms and more.
Thrive Architect is also an amazing full-featured website page builder with responsive support, but Thrive goes beyond your typical page builder. Thrive Architect is offered through ThriveThemes which is a suite of products that cover a wide variety of website needs, from email lead generation, A/b Headline optimization testing to course creation, deadline timers, quizzes, form builders and more.
Depending on whether you just want an amazing webpage builder or you need additional features beyond a robust website builder, you’ll find what you need in Elementor and Thrive.
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