Static sites vs dynamic Sites
A static site is pre-rendered, cached, and served by a group of servers around the world to help load the content as quick as possible. Every user will see the exact same content on a static website.
A dynamic site uses a server side language (like PHP) to generate the content on page load in real time. Usually they’re connected to a Content Management System (CMS) such as WordPress, and use a database to store information.
In general static sites are faster than dynamic sites, but it depends on the type of website you’re making. This website is made using WordPress and PHP… and it loads pretty fast right?
What is a “page builder”?
A page builder is a service like Wix. It gives you the ability to drag elements around your browser window and place them wherever you want. You’re building a website without writing a single line of HTML or CSS.
Squarespace, GoDaddy, and Weebly are also page builders. Usually the term “no code” is synonymous with “page builder”.
There’s a ton of these services nowadays (thanks to the introduction of CSS Grid), and they all produce incredibly bad, un-semantic, messy, and bloated websites that load terribly slow.
WordPress is not a page builder
Okay, so now we have some prerequisites out of the way… WordPress is most definitely not a page builder. WordPress is a Content Management System (CMS) and is supposed to make your life easier when making a website.
This website you’re reading this article on is made with WordPress, and it does not have any of the characteristics a typical page builder service spits out.
Inspect the code for yourself. It’s completely semantic, not bloated, and loads very fast. So, if you ever see someone say WordPress is a “page builder” and produces “bloated and un-semantic code” they have no idea what they’re talking about.
WordPress has tons of plugins, and it’s great. Elementor is one of those plugins, and it’s a page builder plugin for WordPress.
Awesome! That doesn’t make WordPress a page builder service. It means there’s a page builder plugin a company made and uploaded to the plugin directory on WordPress.
You don’t need to use Elementor to make a WordPress site.
This site is made with 2 plugins: Advanced Custom Fields, and Custom Post Type UI. That’s it!