The era has changed. Many people are now using a page builder plugin to create a unique website with WordPress instead of a theme. You still need a theme, though, as it is a required component in the WordPress system. However, you don’t need to rely on what’s offered by the theme you use. Page builder plugins like Elementor come with a theme builder feature to allow you to create custom templates for header, footer, single post, and so on. No coding skills required as they come with a visual editor. All you need is a little sense of design.
Elementor, like it or not, is the most popular page builder, with over 5 million active installations according to a stat on WordPress.org. As a site development tool, Elementor also has a strong ecosystem. Supported by a vibrant community (end-users and developers). But it doesn’t mean that Elementor is a perfect product. It also has some drawbacks, though.
If you are looking for an Elementor alternative, regardless of the reason, here are 10 of the best alternatives you can try.
Paid Elementor alternatives
1. Divi Builder
Divi Builder is probably the best page builder plugin alternative to Elementor. It actually existed first than Elementor but it previously only available for Divi theme and Extra theme, two premium WordPress themes developed by Elegant Themes. Divi Builder itself is also a product of Elegant Themes. If you use Divi Builder on the Divi theme or Extra theme, you don’t need to install the plugin anymore as Divi Builder is an integral part of the Divi theme and Extra theme. Divi Builder also comes with a visual editor to make it easy for you to create a beautiful page on your WordPress site. Although its editor is arguably different from Elementor’s, the overall features are not too different. Some key features offered by Divi Builder are:
- Visual editor
- Theme builder
- Dynamic content
- Custom fields
- Third-party integrations (Mailchimp, MailerLite, etc.)
- Premade templates
- Custom CSS
Divi Builder is especially a great option for agencies. With a single license, you can use Divi Builder for as many projects as you want. You can get it for $89 per year (or $249 for a one-time purchase option).
2. tagDiv Composer
tagDiv Composer is a page builder developed by tagDiv. It is developed exclusively for two themes developed by tagDiv: Newspaper and Newsmag. tagDiv Composer is especially a great option to create an online magazine, blog, or other newspaper-style websites. It comes with some elements (called shortcodes) to display articles in a grid and list style. Even so, you can also use tagDiv Composer to create a more static website such as a company profile or portfolio site as tagDiv Composer also comes with shortcodes like Image Box, Button, Team Member, Client, and so on. tagDiv Composer only works on pages. tagDiv Composer is available on ThemeForest. You can get it with a one-time purchase at $59.
Cornerstone is one of the best options if you are looking for an affordable paid page builder plugin for your projects. You can get Cornerstone with a time-time purchase option as it is marketed via CodeCanyon. You only need to spend $19 to get the Cornerstone plugin. Cornerstone is optimized for the X theme (a theme developed by Themeco) but you can install and use it on WordPress regardless of the theme you use. Cornerstone comes with elements like Callout, Button, Author, Alert, Search, Protect, and so on.
4. Oxygen Builder
Unlike the first three page builders above, Oxygen Builder is not built or optimized specifically for a certain theme. You can install and use it on any theme to build your site. Oxygen Builder is also a great option for agencies as you are allowed to download and install the Oxygen Builder plugin on unlimited websites with a single license. Another plus point, you can get the plugin with a one-time purchase option so you only need to spend the money upfront. You can use Oxygen Builder whether to create a regular website or an e-commerce website (using WooCommerce). Oxygen Builder supports integration with custom field plugins like ACF and Toolset. It also comes with a header builder to allow you to create a custom header on your WordPress site.
WPBakery is another generic page builder plugin like Oxygen Builder, meaning that it is not built or optimized for a specific WordPress theme. WPBakery itself is a long enough player in the page builder plugin segment. It has been around since 2012. No wonder if it has an established ecosystem, with over 4 million users. Same as Elementor, you can also extend the functionality of WPBakery by installing add-ons. WPBakery can also be integrated with ACF in case you want to add custom fields to your page.
Free Elementor alternatives
Brizy is probably the best alternative to Elementor — other than Divi Builder. This page builder has many things in common with Elementor. From the intuitive, lightweight visual editor to a live editing experience. Brizy is also released as a freemium plugin. The free version even comes with a form builder feature although you can’t connect your form with a third-party tool like you can do with the pro version. You can read the comparison between Brizy and Elementor on this page. While you can use Brizy for free, you can unlock the following features if you use the pro version:
- Dynamic content
- Custom fields
- Header and footer builder
- Third-party integrations (Mailchimp, MailerLite, and so on)
- Popup builder
- Megamenu builder
- Premade templates
- Custom CSS
2. Zion Builder
Zion Builder is a new player. The pro version of it has just been released 4 months ago. Zion Builder is developed by the developer of the KALLYAS theme. Even so, it is not built specifically for the KALLYAS theme. Instead, you can install and use Zion Builder on any WordPress theme. The interface of Zion Builder is pretty similar to Brizy, which has a large canvas area with a live editing experience. The free version of Zion Builder comes with elements like Image Slider, Pricing Box, Progress Bars, Button, Gallery, and so on. At the time of writing (January 13, 2021), the pro version of Zion Builder offers:
- More elements
- More templates
- Dynamic content
- Custom fonts and icons
But soon, you will be able to create a custom header, custom footer, popup, custom WooCommerce pages as these features are being developed.
3. Beaver Builder
Beaver Builder is another page builder plugin that is released as a freemium plugin just like Elementor. Meaning you can use it for free. The free version of Beaver Builder comes with basic elements (called modules) like Photo, Button, Heading, Icon, Text Editor, HTML, and so on. Beaver Builder can be used to create a beautiful page on your WordPress site, regardless of the theme you use.
4. Visual Composer
Visual Composer is also a great tool to create a WordPress-based website without coding. It also has a visual editor where everything is drag and drop, just like Elementor. Visual Composer is a generic page builder plugin that can work seamlessly with any WordPress theme. The pro version even allows you to create a custom header, custom footer, custom single post, and so on. Just like Elementor.
5. Page Builder Sandwich
Another page builder plugin that you can use to create a beautiful page on your WordPress site without dealing with CSS code is Page Builder Sandwich. Not as popular as Elementor, but you can also use Page Builder Sandwich to create a stunning page. You can also add effects like parallax and entrance animation. Page Builder Sandwich is a generic page builder plugin that can work seamlessly with any WordPress theme. Page Builder Sandwich is released as a freemium plugin, meaning that you can use it for free with an option to upgrade to the pro version.
The bottom line
The way people create a WordPress website has shifted these days. Most of them are no longer rely on a theme to create a unique, beautiful website. Instead, they prefer to use a page builder plugin like Elementor which offers more customization options. Often times, the ability to add custom fields is another reason why many WordPress users prefer to use a page builder plugin. This feature allows you to create a complex, dynamic website without coding. Elementor is by far the most popular page builder for WordPress. It has nearly all the features you can expect from a page builder plugin. From an intuitive visual editor, theme builder, custom CSS, the ability to add custom fields, to popup builder.
If you are not into Elementor, regardless of the reason, you can try one of the alternatives we recommended above. Divi Builder is a great alternative if you are looking for a paid option. It has a strong ecosystem just like Elementor. Elegant Themes — the developer of Divi Builder — provides a marketplace where you can get Divi Builder extensions, child themes, and layouts. Brizy and Zion Builder are two great options if you are looking for a free solution. They come with a very intuitive, lightweight editor — as well as useful basic elements.