Custom WordPress Development vs Elementor: How to choose one?

by Sreejith Partha

WordPress is one of the most preferred Content Management Systems (CMS) across industries. And, if you’re already here, I won’t throw some fancy WordPress stats at you. Deciding between a good and bad CMS is fairly easy. However, when it’s about choosing between two great options – Custom WordPress Development or Elementor, a lot of things are at play.

In this case, let us look at some of the pros and cons, value propositions, and important factors for decision-making to help you make an informed decision.

What is Elementor?

Custom WordPress Development

Many consider Elementor as one of the neatest looking and easiest-to-use drag-and-drop page builder plugins for WordPress. A user can design and customize the website even without coding knowledge. The ease of use and affordability of Elementor made it a favorite choice for small businesses and freelancers. It was launched in 2016, and currently, over 8.8 million live websites use it. It is available in both – free and paid versions.

The paid version has a few additional features such as a WooCommerce-specific theme builder, theme builder, advanced widgets, and more. A small organization or an entrepreneur can quickly set up great websites optimized for both mobile and desktops.

All this may sound like ‘sweet harmony’ to the ears. However, with every tool, there are some good things and some not-so-good. The tool in itself may be great, but not suitable for your needs. Let’s take a look at the value adds and some of the cons. 

Bonus

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Pros of Elementor:

  1. User-Friendly: Even a non-techy person can make the best use of Elementor with the drag-and-drop options. A user can customize the website without the need to write any code. A user-friendly design helps individuals or small teams that want to do everything together by themselves.
  2. Resourceful: Elementor provides you with pre-designed templates and widgets, saving you a lot of time, money, and resources to get customized solutions. This is especially good for teams or companies with small sites with low budgets and resources. 
  3. Big Design Library: Elementor has a big design library so there’s a lot to experiment with here. Although it doesn’t require you to be tech-savvy, you can also work with the custom CSS  if you want to take the customization game to a new level.

Drawbacks of using Elementor

Slow Site Speeds: This is considered to be one of the major drawbacks of Elementor. Most users complain about slow site speeds. Adding plugins causes site speed issues, requiring a tech-savvy person to sort out this issue.

Update Glitches: New updates may cause major glitches for some users when rolled out. Like any other good product, Elementor does its best to push out new updates/features for the users. However, sometimes these beta features cause more issues than solving them. This is not a drawback for someone with technical insights, but for someone new to Elementor, it is certainly a major drawback. 

Limited Control: Elementor generates a lot of code when compared to the custom WordPress development. It is not a drawback for many, but it does have an impact on the overall website performance and when it’s time to troubleshoot. Enterprises that have started small but add more customization and plugins as they grow may end up needing the expertise to work on the code. 

Scalability Issues: You can add a lot of plugins and themes, but it is not the best option when considering scalability. The companies that are expecting traffic, usage, and functionality, the structure can be difficult to maintain and manage in the long run. 

Custom WordPress Development: What is it?

A company can create beautiful-looking and unique websites with plugins and themes crafted to perfection through Custom WordPress Development It can be as easy as customizing an existing theme on the website or creating a website from scratch. This option gives you the freedom control and flexibility to design exactly what you need. You can cater everything from functionality and features to the customized look and feel to your personalized requirements.

Custom WordPress Development: What is it?
Photo by Andy Holmes on Unsplash

Pros of Custom WordPress Development

  • Complete Customization: As a website owner, you get complete control over how the design and functionality will be for your website. You can craft every single aspect as per your specific business needs and individual preferences. We make a detailed design to fit your specific needs, using Figma or PSD as per your preferences.
  • Good Performance: You can avoid unnecessary plugins and features with Custom WordPress Development. Just this fact alone can contribute greatly to achieving faster and more efficient websites. It also has a good impact on providing users with a good experience and increasing SEO rankings. 
  • Unique Design: Originality is one of the most significant advantages of going with Custom WordPress Development. Since developers design it specifically for you, it will be unique, user-friendly, and always stand out compared to competitors. It has a strong brand representation when compared to several other websites with templatized designs. 
  • Robust Security: Websites are prone to attacks from cyber criminals, and with a Custom WordPress Development you can implement robust security measures. 
  • Excellent Performance: Custom-themed websites when designed right have excellent performance. It’s easy to customize and fast-load times. It is also easy to add new features and updates. 

Cons of Custom WordPress Development

  • Cost & Time: Firstly, Custom WordPress Development may require you to spend more time and resources when compared with the templatized approach. Therefore, the initial cost is slightly on the higher side.
  • Experts Needed: Moreover, experts with experience in designing custom websites are best suited for designing a custom website. Consequently, the site requires a professional level of technical skill, so you need to hire an expert Custom WordPress developer.
  • Developer Support: Furthermore, you may need to rely on developer support, especially when needing maintenance or troubleshooting for the website. Additionally, professionals with experience will navigate the website with ease because it contains custom code, plugins, and themes.

Comparative Analysis: Custom Development vs. Elementor

Customization

Custom WordPress Development

  • Tailor-made for maximum customization.
  • Ideal for implementing new ideas and themes.

Elementor

  • Offers customization with plugins and pre-designed elements.
  • Minor customizations may affect site speed due to a large code base.

Cost

Custom WordPress Development

  • Requires expert skills; higher initial cost.
  • Long-term benefits for startups and large companies.

Elementor

  • More affordable, with a free version available.
  • Paid version offers additional customization options.

User Experience

Custom WordPress Development

  • Professional, ready-to-use final design.
  • Adheres to company branding for optimal user experience.

Elementor

  • Requires ongoing work by entrepreneurs or small teams.
  • Expert support is recommended for perfecting user experience elements.

Performance

Custom WordPress Development

  • High performance with optimized site speed.

Elementor

  • Potential for slower performance due to heavy plugin use.

Maintenance

Custom WordPress Development

  • Needs expert intervention for maintenance.

Elementor

  • Can be managed by the owner but expert support is beneficial.

Scalability

Custom WordPress Development

  • Easily scalable according to needs.

Elementor

  • Scalability can become challenging over time.

Security

Custom WordPress Development

Robust security measures can be implemented during development.

Elementor

Vulnerable to hackers targeting popular plugins; regular updates and expert oversight are needed.

Support and Community Resources

Aspect  Custom WordPress Development Elementor
Support Easy to get professional support from the developer community and website development experts. 

Easy to get maintenance contractors for continuous support. 

Tailored support for specific issues on the site.
Support for plugins and assistance with troubleshooting

A good community to support and advise the peers’. 

Regular updates to support the users in keeping the website up to date. 
Community Resources Limited but expert-level support from the community, especially for popular plugins.

Network and forums to reach out for professional advice in case of complicated issues.

WordPress development best practices and documentation available for professionals 
Several online resources are available.

A network of Elementor experts can be accessed by the community 

Several webinars and meetups for shared learning. 
Knowledge Sharing Knowledge shared in meetups and conferences

Steep learning curve for newcomers. Needs time and experience to hone the skills.The steep
Good UI ( user interface) making learning easier for users

Active community that regularly shares tips, how-to’s, and practical suggestions

Making the Decision: Factors to Consider

Now that we’ve seen some of the pros and cons of each, the decision-making will get fairly easy. However, if you need to make a decision, here are some things that you need to consider to make the right choice. 

Goal: One of the first things to consider is your website development goal. Is it for a hobby where you will share your learnings? Or, is it for a business that you want to set up a rugged website that is user-friendly, customized, and fast? As you weigh in on your goal, consider the best-suited option by looking at the pros and cons of each.

Budget: If you are low on budget, it is best to go with Elementor. With the functionality and flexibility to design the existing template according to your personal preference, you can quickly get up and running with your website. However, if you have a good budget and a larger expansion in the future, then it is best to consider Custom WordPress Development. Think about building a strong foundation for the future, custom development will help you do just that. 

Team: Does your team have expertise in website design? Can they get the right aesthetics, color combinations, fonts, graphics, etc? If not, it is best to get expert support to help you in your journey. Although Elementor is easy to get started on, there is still a learning steep learning curve if you are looking to create a professional website. This will take time. So take a call based on your team’s expertise, availability, and company goals. 

Scale: No doubt, every business wants to scale in the future. When you have more traffic on the website, the users expect a great experience. Whether it is the site speed, SEO, navigation, or color combination, every slightest nuance can impact the user experience. So if you plan to scale, go with the expert Custom WordPress Development team that has done this work in the past and knows the ins and outs of website development. 

Considering the above-mentioned factors will help you make the right decision. Whether you want to do it by yourself, or your team, or you hire an expert team, ensure that you have a clear vision of what you want to accomplish now and in the future. 

Practical Logix: Experienced Web Development Partner

Practical Logix has years of experience in developing websites. Both the needs – Customer WordPress Development and Elementor requirements can be expertly catered by our team. We are renowned for tailoring our approach to every customer’s unique needs. So whether you are an entrepreneur, a startup, or a large organization, you can be sure of our expertise to help you in your journey. 

For Custom WordPress Development, we excel in creating beautiful and visually stunning websites. We take time to get to the core of our customers’ brand identity, and business goals, and then translate that into a website that is both highly functional and user-centric. 

We are also experts in using Elementor for website development. We understand the user-centric themes, and the perfect balance to deliver a website that stands out from the competition. We have worked with several small and medium businesses to implement Elementor for their website. 

Our commitment to staying up to date with the latest trends and technologies in web development ensures that our customers always receive the most modern, scalable, and secure website. Schedule a call with our website development team to learn more about how we can cater to the best experience for you and your users.

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