Quite often we hear about WordPress alternatives, but it's hard to be sold on a website builder that goes up against WordPress.
The Duda responsive Website Builder is another option in the growing field of content management systems and site builders, especially as developers are looking for quicker tools to help out clients.
Duda seems to do a good job of keeping costs low, but they also have impressive features for both average users and resellers. With all "off-the-shelf" website builders like WIX and Duda, you open yourself up to faster development and lower costs.
However, you're also stuck with platforms that generally limit the amount of customization possible.
But sometimes that's exactly what a developer or regular webmaster needs. So, let's take a look at Duda as a WordPress alternative and make a decision as to whether or not it's worth a shot.
Duda Website Builder Features
- ECommerce functionality with every single pricing plan, even the free one.
- Drag and drop editor for fast production.
- Fairly modern templates that snap into place on mobile devices.
- Complete control over design with things like font styles, navigation styles and an area for CSS/HTML.
- Pre-built rows for organizing content without any problems.
- Run a complete blog with multiple authors and fully customizable posts.
- Integrate with systems like WordPress, Facebook, OpenTable, Yelp, Google Maps and more.
- Duda has complete SEO support with items like sitemaps, robots.txt, meta descriptions and 301 redirects.
- The image management area optimizes every image you upload, which is awesome for SEO and making your site run smooth.
Advanced ECommerce Features
We all know and love plugins like WooCommerce and EDD. However, some developers require a more streamlined system. Sometimes I look at these streamlined platforms and roll my eyes at how watered down they are. However, Duda looks to have a solid eCommerce plan with support for quite a few products. The only problem is that they don't have unlimited products, which is concerning considering you can do that with WordPress, Shopify and most reputable eCommerce solutions.
Anyway, here's a taste of the eCommerce features in Duda:
- Sell and deliver both physical and digital products.
- Create product pages and emails to be sent out to customers.
- Choose from over 30 payment gateways.
- Set minimum or maximum purchase limits.
- Use product categories.
- Create coupons and low stock notifications.
- Generate shipping rates and customer tracking codes.
Duda Website Builder At a Glance
With WordPress, you have to go out and find templates. Then you must pay for them. That said, premium WordPress developers are the best, and with a little research, you can find anything you need.
As for Duda, they provide templates right in the website builder. I counted 88 templates, which is a great quantity to start with. Not only that, but they look wonderful and are organized into industry categories like restaurants, one pagers, portfolios, popular, blogs and stores. You grab the templates you want right from the beginning.
After that you can always swap out your template and not worry about losing any content (like you would with WordPress.)
Create a Beautiful Small Store Within Seconds
This is one of the coolest parts about Duda. I enjoy a good WooCommerce website, but this is much easier to setup, especially for a smaller blog or company website store. It's even more basic than "off-the-shelf" solutions like Shopify. Basically, it walks you through the process of adding products, verifying geo-settings, configuring shipping, getting paid and placing a text order.
You don't have to do much in terms of design, since the shop is dropped right into the template. Yes the paid eCommerce solutions are limited to up to 2,500 products, but you can't beat the user-friendliness.
Lots of Widgets and Sections
From click to call buttons to restaurant menus, coupons and business hours, the Duda widgets stand out because of their ease of use and quantity. Basically, it only takes a second to install one of these on the drag and drop interface. And it definitely seems like the Duda creators thought long and hard about what business websites actually want.
The sections are also pretty nice. This feature can be found in some WordPress builders or templates, but it's not as fluid or common as you might think. These are prebuilt sections with no design requirements. For example, you could easily insert a contact form or a complete footer with a map, social media buttons and text.
Prebuilt Website Rules (That Replace Many WordPress Plugins)
The Duda rules come in as the most surprising bonus. When you navigate to the rules you notice how most of these features require plugins in a system like WordPress. However, Duda has them all included. For example, they have things like email subscribe pop-ups, notification bars, geotargeting, lunch specials and unique pages for when certain users land on your page.
Duda Website Builder Pricing and Support
Mobile-only websites are provided in both free and premium plans. This review isn't covering that aspect of Duda since the responsive website builder pretty much covers everything as a WordPress alternative.
However, we can explore the responsive website and reseller plans, both of which might be utilized by regular WordPress users or developers. Keep in mind that 30-day free trials (no credit card required) are available for both regular users and resellers.
Duda Responsive Websites
- Free - No charge for a responsive website with Duda ads included. You also get things like personalization tools, simple analytics, Amazon Cloud web hosting, tracking, a Duda domain (mywebsite.dudaone.com) and support from the Duda community. In addition, you receive simple eCommerce functionality, such as a 10 product store, PayPal and Stripe support, two product categories, order management and customer management.
- Business Plus - Starting at $14.25 per month (or $299 for life access) you get a responsive website, no ads, all features from the previous plan, advanced analytics and tracking, a custom domain, email support, a secure connection, site backup, Chrome push notifications, developer mode and multilingual support. The eCommerce offerings are the same as the free plan.
- Business + Ecommerce - Starting at $22.50 per month you receive everything from the previous plan plus the option to make a full-fledged eCommerce shop. Select between support for 100 or 2,500 products. Choose from over 30 payment providers, unlimited categories and Facebook product reviews.
Duda Reseller Programs
If you'd like to start your own development business using Duda, the pricing is rather appealing:
The DudaPro reseller program begins at $249 per year.
It gives you a full suite of wonderful website building tools, along with discounts on all responsive website templates. It's all white label and ready to go for your business.
Is Duda the Right Website Builder for You?
Would I recommend Duda as a legitimate WordPress alternative? Yes. I like it for resellers since you can most likely save time and money with the clear-cut interface. I also enjoy it for beginners to the website design game. Basically, you're not trying to learn anything about hosting, coding or advanced web design through Duda. It's all done for you.
I feel the templates are much nicer than that of WIX and Weebly, and the widgets, sections and rules make it reminiscent of the customization you can find with WordPress.
If you have any questions about Duda as a WordPress alternative, let us know in the comments below.