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Difference between template, theme, framework and WordPress page builder

febrero 2, 2020


This is undoubtedly one of the most wanted items for the community to develop Webempresa .

In my opinion there is much misinformation and too marketing on such a basic issue as well as important as the technology you are going to apply to your web WordPress, not in terms of plugins (also) if not the general functionality of your site through a template, theme, framework or page builder.

If you’re starting on this to create a website with WordPress, and if you already have some knowledge, have spent many hours in front of your web project, and still feel that «something is missing» in this article can discover the difference between template, theme, framework and page builder WordPress

in the second point of this article I will detail my particular professional situation and the tools that I need in each case as «implementers» of WordPress, so have a more direct and concrete notion of what tool to use in every situation.

Read on and find out which tool is best for your project or your customers!

Table of Contents

  • What’s your situation? Four examples of professional situations
  • four examples of professional situations
  • My professional situation Webs simple Webs intermediate Webs Great
  • Webs simple
  • Websites intermediate
  • Webs Great
  • Templates and Themes ThemeForest and other markets themes
  • Themeforest and other markets themes
  • Frameworks Genesis
  • Genesis
  • Page Builders Elementor Divi Visual Composer Beaver Builder
  • Elementor
  • Divi
  • Visual Composer
  • Beaver Builder
  • Conclusions
  • Four examples of professional situations
  • Webs Webs simple
  • intermediate
  • Webs Great
  • and other markets Themeforest themes
  • Genesis
  • Elementor
  • Divi T G_020
  • Visual Composer
  • Beaver Builder

What’s your situation?

Like any good consultant any subject (not just WordPress), there is a word that should be sold on shirts, hats, coffee mugs, etc … and this word is pure gold for anyone who wants to give an answer super- professional any questions: depends .

I know, pica a little, and is very general, but the use of a tool or other for your web project, will depend on the purpose and situation in which you find .

Here we describe some situations among which you may find you. (For each of the situations I propose a kind of tools that I describe in this article, and will develop further down).

Four examples of professional situations Situation 1

: Professional that makes a missing a quality theme

am a professional in my field, but I do not spend webs. As I’m starting, I want to create a simple website, to explain what I do and how to contact me. I need something quick and nice, without much spending money on it.

Situation 2: An event that needs a very cool template for «yesterday». You

marketing coordinator of a medium sized company, and your boss has ordered you to create a website for this week, for a «cocktail» with the city of your city. The web will have an «agenda», a couple of photos, a Google map of the event, and a phone for people to call if interested.

SCENARIO 3: Intranet for a company of 600 employees with a good Framework for WordPress .

you the developer of a rather large company. Your boss has asked you to create in less than 2 months with different functionalities intranet, where employees can interact with each other, write articles, and upload photos and events. All without technical expertise. You know perfectly programmed, any language, but decide to use WordPress and a good Framework, to avoid having to «start from scratch» the whole project.

Situation 4 ; Page Builder as machine building landing pages.

‘re a WordPress implementer. You know the tool as the palm of your hand. Decide to use a premium page builder to create several different themed templates own, and to implement low-cost, within hours, for many customers niche markets.

see, depending on your situation, you’ll need a tool type or another.

Also, depending on your situation, you’ll need a «mix» of such tools as the need to have your project or your customers.

If it’s to make it clearer, the tools we talked about in this article can be ordered from «less complex» to more complex:

My professional situation

want to talk here a little about my professional situation in relation to the tools you use to certain customers, since on the one hand you can be a freelance like me and have customers or on the other hand, you’re in the same situation as one of those customers.

When you take on a project of WordPress, is of the kind, you must first make a estimate of the «size» of the project, which are:

Webs simple

But simple truth, no » simple «as many people tell me time to send a budget (wink wink).

In this type are the websites that they will not require any Custom Post Type (ie, if you only need those who come by default with WordPress), and that conform to the look and structure is given by own template.

Examples of these sites are: web of a single event, web «one page» of a hairdresser, physiotherapist, etc.

Websites intermediate

This group includes the vast majority of my clients. Websites are a slightly larger business, restaurant, hotel, real estate, etc.

Normally these sites do require Custom Post Types (houses, food dishes, rooms, etc) and this is where comes a very important factor of plugins, which should not have the themes. (As explained below).

This type of websites I always do them good Page Builder, a very specific very simple and fast loading template, and plugins.

Great Websites

of these have also done some other, and this group includes intranets, websites that are pure «applications» of some kind and that are climbing, social networks, forums, CRMs, managers project … see, everything is possible in WordPress.

For these sites, the most important thing for me is to have a minimum base quality, in terms of staffing and Page Builder, and go by supplementing it with plugins .

Such sites can also be built on frameworks, although the little use (by type of client I have, and because my knowledge is not so technical level code).

However, if there are very professional developers that if you give a good ride Framework you what you want. (The hard part is to get to know the end customer after use).

will speak now of each of these tools separately, and you’ll see right away that not all to my taste, and I have a favorite .

Templates and Themes

started by templates and themes, if While they are not the same, are very similar (hence put them together in this section).

The biggest difference between the two is that the template is ideally correct, and theme is theoretically incorrect (as I see it).


A template ideally correct , is one that simply comes with an «empty» design without fireworks, very functional and good code base, where you, build everything to your liking .

This template also come with a «child-theme» (template child) which is simpler still, and where you need to apply changes (if need), and never in the template «father».

The basic reason for this is that if you do directly in the template father, when an update of it comes, your changes will be lost (as they will be replaced by the original files each time it is updated).

However, everything you type in the child template (eg style.css or functions.php) will always intact in each update .

There are templates that come with some more advanced options in a control panel well managed (for example I use: Astra Theme Pro). But never without departing from the concept of template «aesthetics» of your website.

other functionality you need for your web, use the template you use, must come from the hand of independent plugins

And now we talk about the themes ….

and other markets Themeforest themes

This section is where I will speak the big difference, or at the least as I see it, the themes and templates.

The themes have evolved a lot (but worse).

In 2009, when I started with WordPress, had themes that were as templates in functionality, and the only thing that was different was that «theme» means «template» in English.

But for about 5 years, the themes have been «evolving» a lot, and becoming true monsters of the marketing within WordPress to be sold like hotcakes, without the quality of them.

is why today, themes differed from templates, giving last them a very simple concept and «pure» what a template, and themes a concept, because they have become something that I see it not enough that «purity» they should have.

market Perhaps the most famous themes for WordPress is Themeforest . In Themeforest you can find everything, good and bad, but mostly «wrong «.

and spoke of «wrong» because the vast majority of top sales themes have features that are completely dependent on the theme itself, and that if in the future want to change your theme, your website will also have to change completely.

What I mean it is, that one theme today comes with everything and more: a slider or two, several custom post types configured on the theme itself, you do fault or not, with a panel of Control with thousands of options, apart from SEO, load optimization, color, with integrated page builders, etc.

There are two things I do not like anything in this regard:

The word that best defines a generic theme today is «whitebait» (leftover items on a site).

Therefore, from here, I invite you to stop using «themes» and gain productivity and scalability using more «pure» accompanied by plugins that meet your particular needs one template.


We now talk about the all-powerful Frameworks (and I reserve the Page Builder for the final).

Without going into much detail or definition of «dictionary», the most important thing to distinguish is that certain skills are needed to take full advantage investment which is a good Framework (are more expensive than the rest, because they bring highly advanced technology).

is, a Framework is a technical tool that facilitates to some extent developers to build real web applications with WordPress, as they would from «zero» would always have the most common problem of any developer: pain head not knowing why «fails» the written code.

addition every good Framework comes with a good support behind, and this is pure honey for a developer to any level that will rectify any doubts you may have and avoid headaches and sleepless nights.

A Framework comes as a zip file, which you install on your WordPress like a template.

to the install, depending on the Framework will have a number of different options, which can add different mode extensions to plugins.

These extensions are completed certain aspects of your needs, you may serve you much and others not. Hence its powerful scalability.

For example, the Framework I’ve worked (Genesis) extensions I’ve always installed the first were the «generating» code, which through a kind of wizard, choose a friendly choices, and you make all in a PHP code that can easily be included in your Child Theme in functions.php.

This, if you’re a developer to master PHP, you will not need, and perhaps other more advanced another extension, which will save much time and effort to the web.


As discussed above, in my opinion the framework more famous and well-known is Genesis (but there are many others of course).

several years I have used Genesis, and even have the license «for life», although I have not touched it for the type of client I have. Genesis is a comprehensive framework, well structured, powerful and professional code.

Any web that is believed based on a technology with Genesis, will be a true beast brown as to possibilities.

The question here is: do you need a «beast brown» for your project?

Page Builders

And finally you talk about which is my favorite, for my type of work and customers: Page Builders, and specifically (below) Beaver Builder .

What I like about the Page Builders is that they allow you to create a website with a very personalized and adaptable , design for almost any average customer.

Yes, it can also be used Page Builders in very large websites, but not all Page Builders have the same flexibility or stability.

There is something that characterizes the Page Builders, and that is, to the contrary that templates, themes and frameworks, they are installed as a plugin.

Once installed, you’ll have a number of options, well configured and «learned» will allow you to build almost any kind of web within hours (not weeks).

Add that to the Framework as a good, good Page Builder has a professional support behind , as well as continuous updates and stability.

To do so often requires purchasing a license normally paid each year to receive such updates and support.

is why when a Page Builder is «integrated» into a theme, is unlicensed, so you will not have support, or a more limited support what will you have to give the developer of the theme itself in particular with the knowledge that he or she may have about the Page Builder involved.

Finally, tell you that the Page Builders can be supplemented with templates «pure» we talked about above, so do you have the best of both worlds on your website!

Here I quote the most famous Page Builders, my opinion about them, and of course, you talk a little more the apple of my eye (Beaver Builder).


Elementor is a very good Page Builder. It is powerful, flexible, professional and widely used by many users (if not the most).

I have not come to try everything, because Beaver Builder covers by far all needs. I have compared to Elementor.

But if someday Elementor reaches the height of Beaver Builder as my way to work, I will not hesitate to give it a try.


Divi is another Page Builder (which also has something like a framework), and is well, it is functional and a lot of support and tutorials, but at the least I finished not «love».

I’ve used it at times, and all good, but I see too limited for basic needs look for in a Page Builder.

My Divi like to use me, especially when I want to build a simple page, with a design already established by Divi, that appeals to the customer and then he or she learns to use self mism @.

Visual Composer

To my way of thinking, and in my experience, visual Composer is the primo «I pijillo and which give it all done,» we all have, and do not deserve what you have.

is, Visual Composer has a tremendous marketing, and is integrated into many themes (especially Themeforest), and yet, for me it is a very bad Page Builder.

I will not say here how bad you see this Page Builder, what if that works well for many people, and I’m glad, but from my point of view I do not like, and soil «flee» project requiring this Page Builder.

Beaver Builder

for last this Page Builder because it is the tool that gives me eating for about 4 years.

A Beaver Builder treat him like my own son, and I love to use it for all my projects (large and small).

The reason that I like Beaver Builder is a tool that combines the «technical» and «visual» in an almost perfect way, as to my needs. It also has some extensions that make it even more powerful:

Beaver Beaver Themer Themer allows you to automate what «appears in the frontend» of your website.

To put it simply, Beaver Themer is a «page builder» within a «page builder», and he can build templates that then you will use to your liking with Beaver Builder, and show some content equally in all parts of your website where these templates are used.

not want me roll up a lot here on Beaver Themer, but it’s worth that you take a look, if you do not know and you’re using Beaver Builder.

Ultimate Addons for Beaver Builder and Power Pack for

Builder Beaver Two extensions for Beaver Builder, which come with pre-set designs, and easily modifiable and adaptable to any part of your web made with the Page Builder.

can be defined as a «template» for different modules of your Beaver Builder.

In my opinion is a last, very useful and a return on investment very high in quality and time creating websites.


see, between templates, themes, frameworks and page builders much difference.

Depending on the project you have, you will have a series of simple or more complex needs, and one of those four tools will adapt very well to what we pursue.

Although there are some themes that do worthwhile, usually a theme has too many elements you will not be missing, and that directly affect any big change you want to make your web long term.

My recommendation is that you use a basic template, well coded and load quickly, with quality Page Builder, to create and modify your web easily and without headaches.

However if your project is very large, my recommendation is that you consider what you offer frameworks like Genesis, as they are designed for this type of web, although they will require more technical knowledge on your part.

I hope you enjoyed this article and you really find the tool that best suits your goals.

A hug and see you in the next article!

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