This week it’s going to be a tough job, comparing Beaver Builder and Divi 3. There seems to be a loyal crowd for each of these page builders. Even though I tried, I couldn’t find a truly objective comparison, one that compares the features that are actually most important to the basic user.
Beaver Builder and Divi 3 – Overview
Beaver Builder is a frontend page builder that has been around since 2014. Divi 3 is the theme and page builder by Elegant Themes. The first Divi included a backend page builder and was first launched at the end of 2013. Divi is shortcode based, while Beaver Builder is not. While Divi is oriented towards newbies, Beaver Builder is oriented towards more advanced WordPress users.
- Basic layout control: Beaver Builder
- Basic modules: Divi 3
- Templates: Beaver Builder
- Theme Lock and Flexibility: Beaver Builder
- Popularity: Tie
- Redo-Undo: Divi 3
- Responsive edit: Divi 3
- Theme design: Tie
- Blog design: Divi 3
Divi with 4 wins, Beaver Builder with 3 wins.
Basic Layout Control
The first thing I like to experiment with, just to get a handle of things, is customizing and playing with the layout of the page. I add rows, modules, change the colors of columns and also tinker with the paddings and margins of the various parts of the page.
Divi 3 – With Divi, I have to say that I’ve had a hard time understanding how to do things. I set out to create some colorful columns, nothing too advanced. I just couldn’t do it. I know this can make me look like an amateur but I don’t care. For the life of me, I still have no idea how to do a simple red background color for a single column in Divi. You seem to only be able to set the color for the entire row. I also didn’t like it when I clicked on the module and a window popped up, covering almost my entire screen. The margin and padding was easy enough to handle, even though to change the width of the columns I had to open the row settings.
Beaver Builder – Thank god, it’s not me! On Beaver Builder, I intuitively managed to get the hang of setting the background color for a single column. You go to the column settings, choose the background color and that’s it. With Beaver Builder it was much easier to simply drag the column to change its width, something I couldn’t do per column in Divi.
Winner: Beaver Builder. This is a big win. Even though it seems Elegant Themes places a lot of effort into building a well thought of interface, it seems that there are some small problems that will make it harder for inexperienced users to get the grasp of.
After playing with the layout, I like to go straight to the most basic modules, the ones that I use over and over again throughout my design process. While having a module like bar counters can come in handy from time to time, the basic modules are what make or break a page builder. For me, these modules include the headline (called Blurb in Divi), button, image and text editor.
Divi 3 – Divi’s inline text editing is the big thing. I have to say, it is a really nice feature. Using the Blurb module was really fun. The Text module didn’t always allow me to increase the font size, which was strange. I didn’t really go for the image module because it was too difficult changing the image size. The button module, on the other hand, was really nice and easy to use. Adding the modules is really fast, with no lagging time.
Beaver Builder – When adding the various modules, I did experience some lag time, which when you are designing a full page can be a real hassle. The modules themselves seemed much more basic than Divi’s. The Beaver button had fewer design options and looked less designed with its default design.
Winner: Divi 3. While Beaver Builder presented modules which were really straightforward and simple, Divi allowed for a more flexible design and the modules reacted instantly when I added them or make changes to customize them.
I like to use the pre-made templates when I am testing out page builders, because I figure who better to display the page builder’s abilities than the people behind it.
Divi 3 – There are currently 33 templates pre-built into Divi. These are well divided into different types of pages, from blog masonry to portfolio homepage. The Divi templates come without images, which is a bit of a drag. Basically, you’re getting a framework of a page, and not really a pre-designed template. One of the biggest challenges when using templates is to combine text and images and other elements in a way that connects and makes sense.
Beaver Builder – Here, we get templates that include the images built in. This is very important when you want to get inspiration from the template, to kickstart your design.
Winner: Beaver Builder. The Beaver Builder templates live up to their promise better, and let you get a complete page design quickly.
Theme Lock and Flexibility
Theme lock is not something that you intuitively think about when considering a page builder, but you should. Even if you only use the page builder for a few months, you want to be able to delete it and not lose all the content you created.
Divi 3 – Because Divi is based on shortcodes, when you close the plugin you are bound to lose all the content you have created. Moreover, Divi is bound to the theme. I haven’t delved deep into this, but I’m pretty sure you need an Elegant Themes theme in order to get the Divi Builder.
Beaver Builder – This page builder is amazing because even if you deactivate it, you still have all your content intact. It also works with many themes, so you are not bound solely to the Beaver Builder theme.
Winner: Beaver Builder. More flexible and less theme lock.
Both Beaver Builder and Divi were launched in 2014, more or less. This allows for a nice comparison of their popularity. You must take into account that while Beaver Builder has a lite and free version, Divi is premium all the way. This makes Divi’s success even more impressive.
Divi 3 – Elegant Themes boast to having over 385,000 customers. This is an impressive figure in any scale. There is also a large community of designers that has formed around Divi.
Beaver Builder – The free version of Beaver Builder has passed the 200K mark some time ago. This is one of the fastest growing plugins out there, and with 111 five star reviews, it seems to be liked by its user base.
Winner: Tie. Both plugins are highly popular and liked.
When you are designing a page, one important feature is the ability to undo your changes, and go back and forth between versions.
Divi 3 – Divi’s redo-undo feature works amazingly well. When I was struggling with columns control earlier, I found it really handy to simply press CMD+Z and undo something.
Beaver Builder – Sadly, this is a feature not yet available on Beaver Builder.
I have made it my habit to always customize the pages I am using to mobile devices. This came after I handed off some projects I thought were mobile responsive, and I got bad feedback that this or that didn’t work on mobile.
Divi 3 – Divi’s mobile responsive tools are impressive. You can set different sizes for mobile for almost any module.
Beaver Builder – While Beaver Builder also has a few mobile responsive options, these are not fully developed yet, in my opinion.
While a page builder is meant to help you edit the parts of the site below the header and above the footer, there is a growing need from users to let the page builder design the entire website, top to bottom.
Divi 3 – While the page builder doesn’t have a menu module, Divi’s customizer does have a header editor, that lets you quite easily design the header menu of the website. Change the logo and menu height, control the font size and line height, and create a customized header right from the customizer. Divi also has
Beaver Builder – Here you do get a module to create a horizontal menu. There’s an addon called Beaver Tunnels that lets you go outside the simple page design and embed Beaver Builder in other areas of the site.
One of the primary uses of WordPress sites is creating a blog. The page builder offers new possibilities to design the posts blog page without coding.
Divi 3 – Divi’s Blog module is really amazing. It lets you control things like the size of the headline and post expert fonts with a scale.
Beaver Builder – The Beaver Builder posts module was more basic, and didn’t really allow you to design the look of the posts easily.
Who is better?
This comparison you’ve just read might seem confusing, because on some areas Divi won, while on others Beaver Builder won. If what you are looking for is to create basic and simple websites, that look fine – nothing spectacular, then Beaver Builder is the way to go. SEO marketers, webmasters – to you I would recommend using Beaver Builder because it is a much more straightforward and easy to use plugin. Very intuitive and very fun to use, so you’ll be able to create a lot of landing pages or websites fast.
If, on the other hand, you want to create sites with an emphasis on the page design, sites with a more premium look, then I would go for Divi. Their modules are more advanced, more flexible and allow for more elaborate creations.
If you are still confused, hit me with questions on the comments and I’ll try to help you choose the best page builder.