The differences between WordPress and Squarespace, Wix and Weebly

The differences between WordPress and Squarespace, Wix and Weebly

After researching, comparing and gathering information on what you need to know to make a choice between WordPress, Squarespace, Wix or Weebly, I have come to the conclusion that there is no conclusion.

Each of these services has something to offer depending on what you need. For example, if you’re a hobby artist, a free Weebly site (with advertising) may suffice. An artist with little or no computer skill may want a simple drag and drop interface, which is available with all services (drag and drop themes are available for WordPress). A professional artist may want the power WordPress offers.

In all honesty, I find it very difficult to compare Squarespace, Wix or Weebly with WordPress the self-hosted version. WordPress is different, it’s a robust, scalable, open source (free) application that can be whatever you need it to be.

You’ll see how hard it is to compare WordPress with the others in the table below. But first I think it’s important to understand how these proprietary services work.

Where is my backup?

Squarespace, Wix, Weebly and other website services like them are proprietary. Which means you don’t own your website, they do. These companies can choose to close their doors tomorrow and your site goes with it. If you have spent years creating content and a blog following, it can go poof! Don’t think it can happen? Remember when Apple shut down iWeb. Then there was Posterous that left 60,000 clients in the cold.

SquareSpace is the only one of these services that will let you export a XML backup of your content that could be imported into WordPress, but you don’t get everything. It’s not an easy import either as you have to save the export as Livejournal or Typepad which may or may not work when bring into WordPress.

Wix allows you to duplicate your site but it stays on the Wix server, as that is the only place it will work.

Weebly allows you to download a zip backup of your site but has a disclaimer that your blog posts are not part of it because they are in the database, which can not be accessed. They go on to say that your site probably won’t work as expected unless it’s on the Weebly server.

If you’re an avid blogger or just have lots of content and don’t want to go through the hassle of recreating all that content elsewhere, you’re better off using WordPress.com (the hosted version) or Blogger. When you have outgrown these platforms or need extensibility you can easily import into the self hosted version of WordPress.

What about WordPress backups, I can hear you asking. You can export, migrate, save in the cloud, or download to your computer, a complete backup of your WordPress site. You can use this to migrate to another host provider should you ever feel the want or need.

A Fact Based Comparison

Below is a fact based comparison. If you want opinions on how easy each platform is to use you can find lots by doing a simple Google search. These types of comparisons are subjective depending on the author and their bais. You’ve probably figured out by now that I am pro WordPress, but have to say that all the proprietary services mentioned in this article are fairly easy to use.

So just the facts based on the basic entry package of each. All these services provide upgrades that will give more space, ecommerce, etc, which you can check out at their respective sites.

FeatureWixWeeblySquarespaceWordPress
Yearly Plan$9.25 – 24.92$8 – 25$12 – 18Varies $3.95 and up, depending on the hosting company
Monthly Plan$9.25 – 24.92N/A$16 – 26Varies
Bandwidth2GB – UnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimitedVaries
Storage3GB – UnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimitedVaries
Number of Websites1101Varies
Number of PagesUnlimitedUnlimited20Unlimited
Email ServiceGoogle AppsGoogle AppsGoogle Apps, Zoho EmailVaries
Max UploadFile Size15MB (audio)10MB (images)100MB120MB (audio)20MB (images)Varies
HostingGrid HostingCloud HostingCloud HostingGrid, Cloud, Shared, VPS, Dedicated
Domain NameFREE (1 Year Plan)Not IncludedFREE (1 Year Plan)Depends on provider. I recommend to keep them separate.
Drag n’ DropYesYesYesYes, depends on theme
Free Themes100+100+251945 + premium
SupportPhone – 24/7 Email – 24/7 Forums
Knowledge Base
Email – 24/7 Chat – 11am – 9pm Forums
Webcasts
Knowledge Base
Email – 24/7 Chat – 11am – 7pm Forums
Workshops
Knowledge Base
Community Forums, WordCamps, free & paid resources around the world
AnalyticsGoogle AnalyticsWeebly Analytics Google AnalyticsSquarespace Analytics Google AnalyticsGoogle Analytics plus many other plugins to chose from
SEO OptimizedYesYesYesYes
Mobile WebsiteYesYesYesYes, depends on theme
Social SharingYesYesYesYes, plugin or theme supported
Image EditorYesYesYesYes
Form BuilderYesYesYesYes – plugin
Custom HTML/CSSHTML OnlyHTML and CSSHTML and CSSOpen source so all code is accessible
FeatureWIXWEEBLYSQUARESPACEWORDPRESS

As you can see it is very difficult to compare WordPress with the other services. All these services can provide you with a basic portfolio site, a blog or ecommerce, including WordPress. But only one is unlimited in its functions and can be as small or as BIG as required.

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Should Artist’s Add Online Collections to Their CV

Should Artist’s Add Online Collections to Their CV?

Definition: An online collection would be a website that your work has been juried into.

Not a free-upload-your-images and be apart of your 1000’s of artists portfolios.

Read the full article on why artists should add online collections to their CV.

Weigh in, leave your opinion. Have you ever submitted to an online collection. If so and you were accepted how did you promote that? Is it on your CV?

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Grant Writing Example and Tips

Kim Bruce (that’s me) was awarded an A.F.A. (Alberta Foundation for the Arts) Art Production Grant. I learned a lot going through the writing process and wanted to share those tips.

My biggest wish when putting the proposal together was to be able to read another similar grant proposal to see how it all goes together.

I never got my wish but I did receive some great tips from other artists which were a tremendous help.

I decided to post my actual grant proposal to my fine art website as I think it would help others to have a visual reference.

The tips and proposal are posted on my blog at https://henigmanbruce.com/art-management/kim-bruce-awarded-afa-grant/

Feel free to share.

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10 Posts for your Facebook Page

I have had a Facebook Page for Artbiz for sometime now and have often pondered the redundancy of just using those pages to re-post what I had already written on my blogs.

Think of your Facebook page as a mini blog to share thoughts and ideas that are too short to warrant a full-blown blog post but are important none the less.

  1. Post images of new work.
  2. Need help resourcing something? Post the question to your wall.
  3. Great exhibit coming to town, share.
  4. Taking a workshop or course, let people know. Add the link.
  5. Talk about and share links to artists you admire.
  6. One of your followers posts something of value, share it by re-posting it to your wall.
  7. One of your followers has a special interest and you stumbled upon a related website. Share the link.
  8. If you allow followers to post to your wall and they ask you a question make sure you answer it.
  9. You found a great deal on artists materials. Share it.
  10. Take a picture of what you are working on today. Post the finished piece tomorrow.

It is all about building relationships and engaging your audience. And believe it or not it is not all about you. For every one post that is about you have at least 10 or 12 that are about something or someone else.

If you can think of anything else please add a comment.

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Kim Bruce Art Blog

Maybe you knew but maybe you don’t; I have a blog at henigmanbruce.com my fine art site.

It seems that most of what I write about here at Artbiz is on WordPress and how you as an artist can use it for your website.

Over at KimBruce.ca I talk about my art but I have also have a category called “Art Management” which really doesn’t fit into my mission here at Artbiz. So I decided that I would expand myself and you by writing about the in’s and out’s of being an exhibiting artist.

AND if you subscribe to my feed (Delivered by Mail Chimp)  either here or there you will get posts from both sites combined into one email, once a week. You only have to subscribe at one of the sites to get both. No mailbox clutter from me!

In honour of this tie in I decided to give my fine art site a fresh look.

Head on over to my fine art site and let me know what you think.


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Warning: Bad Galleries

Here at Artbiz I work with a lot of artists, pretty much all artists, all the time. Sometimes we get to talking about our unique world and share  experiences.  Over  time I have conversed with a few artists that relayed stories about bad experiences with galleries.

Thank  goodness it has only been a few and I wonder how many other artists out there just figure this is the way it is; this is how the gallery system works.  Thinking  that representation by a bad gallery is better than no representation at all.

I’m not saying that this is true of all galleries and most galleries are run by good upstanding business people who know that without art and artists there would not be any galleries. But as in all businesses there are a few shall I say “@#$%^ jerks” that do their utmost to make the whole bushel stink.

Here are some things to look out for and what may make you want to seriously  reconsider accepting representation from a gallery that fits into any one of these scenarios.

1. Not being told in a timely fashion that work has been sold or not being told at all unless you ask

Having representation  means that you have to rely on the gallery to inform you about sales. If it comes to having to go to the gallery to check your inventory then perhaps it is time to leave. And what do you do if the gallery is in a different city? Perhaps have someone you know in that city drop in to see your work, if you are lucky enough to have a friend there.

2. Experiencing all sorts of excuses and continually not being paid unless you squeak your wheels.
You know a piece has been sold and your agreement states when the payments will be issued and you wait and wait and there is still no cheque. What do you do? Give the benefit of the doubt? Approach the gallery and suggest that perhaps the cheque got lost in the mail? Ask the gallery if there is a problem and that you’re willing to discuss.? If you are getting all sorts of excuses then maybe say you will  be in the area and will pick the cheque up. If this freaks the gallery out pick up your inventory while you are there. If your gallery is in a different city you could ask for confirmation that the cheque has been issued and request to know when it was mailed.  Or try saying that you will send a courier to pick it up. If you still don’t receive it  squeak on. What bugs me most about hearing this is that what happens to Peter when he is robbed to pay Paul. Stinks!

3. Having emails and telephone messages go unanswered to the point of frustration
If you have the necessary business and people skills to deal with this then kudos to you, most artists are introverts and shy and art schools don’t have business courses; take one.

4. Your inventory has gone missing or not listed on inventory sheets provided by the gallery
You have no way of knowing unless you go and check. Again what do you do if you don’t live in the same city as the gallery? I suggest that you ask for an updated inventory list at least once a year BUT first and foremost get a signed copy of the inventory when the work is delivered to the gallery that is signed and dated by both parties. Then there is no disputing that the gallery did not receive the work. If you live out-of-town then send an inventory list with the shipment and request a signed copy be sent back to you.

5. Cheques arriving without paperwork so you don’t know which piece sold…
then finding out that it was a totally different piece than what the gallery told you but had a similar name. This is just plain bad record keeping by the gallery. What do you do with that? You can’t run their business for them and why would you want to. All I can suggest is to keep good records your self have that signed and dated inventory list and ask for clarification.

6. Cheques arriving but made out for the wrong amount usually less and never for more than the actual amount; OR framing cost is not included; OR the name on cheque is spelled wrong to make it harder to cash. All these scenarios suggest to me that the gallery is just trying to delay payment. Maybe it is an honest mistake if it happens once but if it is standard procedure; ask yourself how stupid does the gallery think you are?

7. Going to your gallery and finding your piece on the wall selling for more money than what was  agreed upon
Who is pocketing the difference I wonder? At the very least point this out to them, maybe it was an honest mistake. You will be telling them that you are aware  but what does your gut tell you?

And why do artists put up with it? Because we want to sell our art and these galleries think that there is an endless supply of artists who are willing to put up with it. I am saddened to hear these horror stories about these scum buckets, bottom feeder galleries. The only advice that I can dispense is talk to the other artists at the gallery and ask lots questions.  Fore warned is not always forearmed and you still have to deal with the stresses of that a lack of professionalism and I dare say incompetence can bring.

When I Googled to find articles that relate to this subject so I could offer up some expert advice to artists on how to deal with or spot these disreputable galleries; the pickings were slim. Maybe that is a good sign, that this is not the norm and most galleries and dealers are actually good business people. OR maybe artists aren’t banding together to share these experiences and are giving the galleries too much power.

Anyway here are two articles from artbusiness.com written by Alan Bamberger an art consultant and much more. I find his writing very frank with a lot of tough love and appreciate his perspective.

Art Dealers from Hell Part I

Art Dealers from Hell Part II

If  you know of any other resources that could help artists out with “bad galleries” please let me know.

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