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Are Page Builders Worth Using on a Website?

Ahh, the great ol’ debate! When it comes to building a website, developers have an important decision to make before they begin building a site: should a page builder be used? In this post, we’ll take a look at some use cases as well as pros and cons for using a page builder.

Know Your Use Case

When determining how to build a website, it’s crucial to have a solid understanding of how the website will be used, who it will be used by, and how changes will be made to it over time. For example, if you’re developing a website for a business that has their own marketing team or content writers that want to be able to put together new pages on their website over time, then a page builder would likely be the way to go.

An example of a content section in the edit view of a page builder.

On the other hand, if website speed and performance is the #1 focus of the website and the business would prefer to pay someone for monthly website maintenance services, then you may want to steer away from page builders in favor of a more custom solution.

Using “Hybrid” Page Builders

An alternative approach is to develop a “hybrid” page builder solution which combines custom code output with semi-drag-and-drop functionality. In this case, sections on the website are custom-coded based on specific types of content and each section can be re-arranged or re-ordered in the page layout, but content editors don’t exactly have the liberty to place whatever modules they want on the page.

An example of a content section in the back-end edit screen of the Vantage website.
When clicking on the content section, the website editor is provided with text fields to fill out the content.

Benefits of Using a Page Builder

Rapid Development

Utilizing a page builder usually means the website development process will be faster, leading to shorter turnaround times. Web designers and developers can simply build each content section or block that will be used on the site and then start piecing pages together one-by-one using their already-developed library of components.

Visual Editing for Clients

Additionally, as mentioned before, if a content team needs to quickly put together a landing page for a new marketing campaign and don’t want to have to go through a web developer to build the new page, they can simply log in to the website’s back-end and use the developer’s pre-built page templates & layouts.

When editing content with a page builder, the editing interface is also an exact visual representation of what the page will look like on the front-end, so content editors will know exactly how their new page will appear before they even publish it.

Disadvantages of Using a Page Builder

On the other hand, page builders can have their disadvantages as well.

Website Performance & Code “Bloat”

While page builders are great for putting together pages quickly, they tend to fall short on site speed & performance. That’s not to say some page builders can’t be fast and performant, but often times they come with a lot of front-end code “bloat” or too many modules than what is actually needed for the project, leading to heavy back-ends and too many options to configure and maintain.

Is all of this code really needed just to output an H1 tag on the page?

Too Many Options & Settings

With all of the different configuration options, settings & page modules that a page builder provides, this can cause “information overload” and make websites more difficult to maintain over time, especially if additional plugins or add-ons are installed to extend the capabilities of the page builder even further.

At Vantage, we are fully aware of the pros and cons of using a page builder and can custom-tailor your website based on the needs of your business while still maintaining a clean back-end and fast load times. Request a quote today to find out if our services are right for you!

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