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Bubble vs WordPress - Expert In-Depth Comparison

Which is better Bubble or WordPress? In this video we compare Bubble vs WordPress across web development speed, SEO, flexibility and cost. Is Bubble the right platform? What alternatives to Bubble do you recommend? These regular questions during our Bubble coaching calls. Matt describes the difference between Bubble and WordPress drawing on over 15 years of WordPress development experience and over 5 years of Bubble app building.

Bubble vs WordPress. Let's discuss. But first, why should you listen to me?

Introduction to Bubble vs WordPress

Well, I've been building WordPress websites for over 15 years. And before discovering Bubble and making Bubble education, my main thing, I was a WordPress web designer and basically worked on a freelance basis. So I know what is possible to build with WordPress. Now, I also discovered Bubble in 2017, and I've been doing Bubble education for over a year now. And so I've been building side projects with Bubble. I've launched things on side projects, on Product Hunt, and on BetaList. And so I also know what is possible with Bubble. And so often when I have an idea, I will pick between, should I build it with Bubble or should I build it with WordPress?

And this is also a discussion that I have almost every week with the Bubble coaching clients that I talk to, connect with, and tutor all around the world.

Is Bubble the right platform for your idea?

Is Bubble the best tool for building their idea?

And we often weigh that up against the tool like WordPress. So I'm going to compare the two based on these criteria.

Development speed

WordPress

Let's talk about development speed. If you're launching a brochure style website, you can spin it up in WordPress and you can buy a theme, or you can use a page builder like Elementor and you can have an amazing, good looking landing page put together in a matter of hours and it's hosted. You've got your domain connected up. You can add in forms. You can have that simple landing page built very quickly with WordPress.

Bubble.io

With Bubble, there is a template library with Bubble. But personally, I prefer building things from scratch with Bubble. And that's just because when I put elements on the page, when I add in workflows, when I come back to that in a week's time, I want to be sure that I understand exactly what was going on. And I only really get that if I build it myself.

So I'd say if you're building a really simple site, if it's simply to display data, you might find it quicker to develop with WordPress.

SEO (Search Engine Optimization)

Let's move on to SEO. Both Bubble and WordPress have some simple SEO tools built in, such as setting the page title and the meta description. But in my opinion, if your site is dependent on SEO content and there's not a whole lot of additional SaaS features that go into it, then WordPress is also the way to go of SEO. In fact, we run the Planet No Code website on WordPress. We started out with Bubble, and then we realized that when we want to create all of our Bubble tutorials and we want to interlink them, we want a bit of automation in the interlinking, and we want our links to live in the transcripts for each video, we couldn't do that with Bubble. I mean, there'd be ways to do it using find and replace and inserting links in that way. But just adding in simple HTML links to text content in an editor format, WordPress comes out on top.

Impact of speed on SEO

And I would also say with SEO, you are dependent on your web host. At least with WordPress, you get a chance to pick your host. You also get a chance to pick the location that your website is hosted in. So, for example, the Planet NoteCode site, even though we are a company based in the UK, we actually host our website in the US because the majority of traffic to our site, we knew that that would be people learning Bubble in the US. Now we use a quality host and there's content delivery networks involved. So it's not completely dependent on location. We try and make our website fast, whatever you try, and access us and view our content around the world. But yeah, WordPress, you can pick your host. And if your host isn't very quick, you can change web posts and you can change the location of your web post.

Web hosting location and SEO

With Bubble, basically the Bubble stack is built on AWS. And unless you pay top dollar for your Bubble plan, you're stuck with it being hosted on AWS in the US. And now that can mean that it might be a little bit slow in the other side of the world. It also means that there are some things that you can do, basically just how you structure your page, cutting out unnecessary workflows, unnecessary visual elements. But to a certain point, you can't make your Bubble up any quicker. You're stuck because you don't have that freedom over picking your hosting infrastructure. And the page speeds that your website loads, that will have an impact on SEO.

Flexibility

Let's go to point three, which is flexibility. So this is often, I would say, the most important point when I come to discussing WordPress versus Bubble with people considering which platform should I build my idea on? And I would say, and we're assuming they were all no coders. I mean, in the spiel I started this video with about X number of years of WordPress, X number of years of Bubble. I would say the thing that I always bring to the table when I'm picking a platform is that I am not a coder. I know a little bit CSS, the tiniest bit JavaScript just to get me by. But I can't just go out there and create an app without these helpful platforms to do the coded bit for me.

So flexibility comes into this because if your idea, for example, you want to build a membership website just like Planet No Code, and you can find a WordPress plugin that does exactly what you want it to do. Maybe there are some add-ons, some additional plug-ins that you can add into it. If it does exactly what you want, then that's going to be really quick. You don't have to build your individual membership areas. You don't have to set up every field. You might not even have to style everything because the plugin does all of that for you. But the moment that you want to add in a feature that isn't included in the core plug-in, that can't be added in with add-on plug-ins, then you're going to have to either get lucky with OpenAI using or ChatGPT and get that service, the AI to generate your plugin. I've tried that. It's a bit hit or miss how reliable and how well that works. Or you're going to end up having to hire a WordPress, PHP, or JavaScript developer.

I should also say whenever I approach projects, simply because of how it works in the past, I'm always looking to do it the most cheaply and the cheapest way that I can do it. And so hiring a WordPress developer or a WordPress plugin developer is never something that I've seriously considered because I've just thought, Oh, I can't. That's something too expensive for me.

But if you were to build the membership site in Bubble and you were to add in all of the fields, all the membership pairs to sign your pages, and then say you wanted to add in some gamification like a badge system. Now, many WordPress membership plugins include a badge system, but let's say the one that you picked doesn't have a badge system, and you now have decided this is an essential part of my app. Well, at least with Bubble, you get the flexibility that you can add in badges. You've built the app this far, and basically anything you can pretty much think of, you'll be able to find a way to add it in to Bubble because the whole platform is built around bringing together design, workflows, plug-ins, and database.

So in a nutshell, if you can build it with WordPress and you're confident that every box and your criteria is ticked, you might well find that that is quicker. But if you think, even just think that down the line, you might need the flexibility to custom create a new feature for your app, then I would say Bubble is the way to go. And you might well start off on WordPress and end up swapping to Bubble, or you might like us start off on Bubble and end up swapping to WordPress. And that was because for us, we found a membership plugin that did exactly what we wanted, and we really wanted to go to town to make our SEO strong, and we can only really get that with WordPress.

Cost - Bubble vs WordPress

Lastly, cost. So your basic Bubble plan is free. I mean, you can start building Bubble apps. You can experiment with 90% of the features for free. You don't even need to pay for hosting. And then when you come to launch app, you're looking at $32 a month.

Now, with WordPress, there's much more flexibility, much more range. You can find free hosts. I'd never trust them. You can host a WordPress website for just a few pounds a month or a few dollars a month. You could choose that. And that could be just the appropriate place for you to start. With WordPress, you've also got to think of other costs, such as plug-in licenses. The quality plug-ins for WordPress cost a lot more than some of the best plug-ins you find in the Bubble directory. So think about your yearly cost with those.

Also think about how quickly it scales. I think you get a lot of mileage out of the Bubble startup plan, which is $32 a month. You might well find with WordPress that if you get a lot of traffic or you get a lot of users, you might find that your website gradually slows down and you can upgrade it and you can upgrade your hosting. Now, having said that, there is a flip side, which is that you can buy additional capacity for your Bubble app. You certainly see how it scales. We're going up the pricing tiers. You would hope that you'd get a performance boost as you go up the pricing tiers.

But with WordPress, you can chop and change. You can shop around, you can pick a different web host, and you can even chat to the web host and ask, How can I further optimize my WordPress app and my WordPress website, and they can help you out with that.

Summary

So that's an overview. And that is all of the things that I share with people when I get asked the question, Bubble versus WordPress, or which should I pick, Bubble or WordPress for building my idea.

Now, if you have any questions, if you've got an idea and you're still not sure which one you should build it on Bubble or WordPress, you can reach out. You can leave a comment if you're watching this on YouTube, if you're on our website, you can ask a question, you can even open a live chat.

And if you want to build with Bubble, then you just check out our website because we have got hundreds of Bubble tutorial videos. And just by becoming a member, you can unlock all of those videos and get access to our fantastic resources that will go from very beginner all the way through up to advanced with your Bubble app.

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