This is an in-depth comparison of Divi vs Avada vs X Theme – what you’ll learn here is which of the three is the optimal solution for building client websites (or feature-rich websites of your own too).

We’ve really come a long way since WordPress ver. 1.5 when themes were first introduced. For a long time themes were just skins – simple packages that took care of displaying what’s in the database. The most basic WordPress theme used to be, I don’t know, 100kB (that including the 50kB screenshot)?

Now, however, things are different. Very different!

Although I wasn’t expecting any particular package size when I first downloaded Divi, I was still quite surprised to see 25MB of WordPress theme on my desktop. For the record: more than twice the size of WordPress itself. This at least deserves a “wow!”

But, more importantly, what do we get in those huge two-digit megabyte-sized themes exactly?

Let’s find out.

What you’re about to read is an in-depth comparison of three of the most popular mega themes on the market: Divi, Avada, and X.

Note: The focus of this comparison isn’t as much on showcasing the themes from the end user’s perspective, but more from the perspective of someone building WordPress websites for clients. Think freelancers, designers, developers.

So, which of the three mega themes should you choose? Or, should you even bother with them at all? Are you indeed better off learning one of those themes and then using them for every client, rather than building each site from the ground up via other means?

Let’s start with what people say:

What the community thinks of mega themes

To get some real numbers behind mega themes and their position in the market, we did a really quick survey and shared it to a couple of WordPress- and dev-related Facebook groups.

We got 43 117 responses, and while that is not an awful lot, there are still some gems there regarding each theme’s strong and weak aspects, and the survey does present the overall attitude that people building WordPress sites professionally have towards mega themes.

By the way, if you want to chip in, please feel free to do so. The more data there is, the better … especially since we do intend to keep this comparison updated in the future.

The main thing we wanted to find out was how often developers turn to mega themes vs using other means of building a WordPress site. Here’s the distribution:

survey mega themes

Or to say this another way:


(Chart by WordPress Charts and Graphs Lite.)

Just like 32% of our respondents, I should probably admit that my personal belief is that not everyone needs a mega theme. In many cases, you’re better off going with something simple, or a niche theme. And that’s especially true if you’re building a site for yourself, and you know exactly what you need on it, plus, more importantly, what you don’t need.
Don’t get me wrong, though. I still love those “swole” theme heavy-lifters. Divi vs Avada vs X … they are all top-notch, ultra feature rich themes that are pretty much capable of handling any task.

Or are they?

Let’s look into the topic more deeply.

“If you use a mega theme, which one?” (Submit your answer here.)


Chapter #1: The all-you-need-to-knows about each theme

Let’s start with the basics … the prices, the licensing, what you get out the box in Divi vs Avada vs X, etc.:

Divi vs Avada vs X Theme
 Working WordPress theme.  Working WordPress theme.  Working WordPress theme. 
 + Drag-and-drop page builder (Divi Builder) – works on the front-end and in the wp-admin.  + Drag-and-drop page builder (Fusion Builder) – works only in the wp-admin.  + Drag-and-drop page builder (Cornerstone) – works only on the front-end. 
(Extra plugins available on the Dev license.) + A couple of premium plugins bundled in.  + A lot of premium plugins bundled in. 
Personal license $69 / year:

  • – Use it on an unlimited number of sites.
  •  Access to all ElegantThemes’ themes. 
  • – 12 months of support and updates.
Regular License $60 – one-time fee:

  • – Use it on just one site. *
  •  Lifetime updates. 
  • – 6 months of support.
Regular License $64 – one-time fee:

  • – Use it on just one site. *
  •  Lifetime updates. 
  • – 6 months of support.
Developer license $89 / year:

  • – Use it on an unlimited number of sites.
  • – Access to all ElegantThemes’ themes  and plugins .
  • – 12 months of support and updates.
Extended License $2950 – one-time fee:

  • – Use it on just one site. **
  • – Lifetime updates.
  • – 6 months of support.
Extended License $3200 – one-time fee:

  • – Use it on just one site. **
  • – Lifetime updates.
  • – 6 months of support.
One-time payment $249:

  • – Use it on an unlimited number of sites.
  • – Access to all ElegantThemes’ themes  and plugins .
  •  Lifetime support and updates. 
* In Envato’s own words: Use, by you or one client, in a single end product which end users are not charged for.
** In Envato’s own words: Use, by you or one client, in a single end product which end users can be charged for.
I’m no lawyer, and please don’t treat this as anything other than my own personal opinion, but the way I read the Avada and X licensing is that if you want to build any sort of a website that involves the visitor paying for access (for instance, a membership site), you need the Extended License.
divi chat
As you can see, the pricing models are a bit different with all three themes, and there’s no clear winner among them when it comes to affordability. It’s all in the details and the number of sites you usually go through every year.

  • If you’re building one site a month, after one year, each theme is going to cost you: Divi – $89, Avada – $720, X – $768.
  • If you just need a theme for a single site, keeping it updated for 5 years is going to cost you: Divi – $249, Avada – $60, X – $64.
  • Getting support in the 7th month after the initial purchase: Divi – either $69 or $89, Avada – $78, X – $83.50.

No one is the cheapest here. All three are either cheaper or more expensive depending on the number of sites you’re building or the support you need.

If you want to build multiple sites with Divi, your standard license allows you to do it, so you don’t need to ask anyone for permission before embarking on a new project.

When building consecutive sites with Avada or X, you can add more licenses through the themes’ listing pages on ThemeForest (you need to be logged in to see the alternative pricing sidebar).

At the end of the day, though, my personal opinion is that the more sites you build, the more affordable Divi becomes. In fact, we could argue that it becomes the cheapest solution as soon as you want to build your second site with it.


Chapter #2: Support and updates

When it comes to Avada and X, support works quite the same in both … that’s due to them being ThemeForest products. Divi is the wildcard here, operating through their own distribution channel.

Note. It’s hard to compare the quality of the support itself accurately, and point out the best supported theme here. For that, we’d probably need to hit each support team dozens of times with various issues, and then rank the responses/solutions on some scale. But even if we had done this, it wouldn’t have given you any guarantee that your particular issue is going to be solved by any of the support teams. So let’s not get into that, and instead focus on other aspects of the overall support experience. Particularly:

One of the key things when building WordPress sites for clients is how fast they can get help in case any trouble arises later down the road (read: after the site is done and online).

Here are the options with each theme:

  • Divi: If you’re the one on the Developer license, and not the client, then you also have to be the person communicating with the support team. In most cases this isn’t a problem at all – the client is always going to contact you first 99% of the time, but for more savvy clients this basically prevents them from getting support from the theme developer directly.
  • Avada and X: Since each consecutive site means another license, you get more freedom regarding who actually buys those licenses. You can do it on your client’s behalf, or you can let them buy the theme by themselves, and thus then be able to receive support directly. This has its downsides too, unfortunately. Mainly, the default license gives you only 6 months of support. After that, you need to buy your way into support again.

When it comes to updates, you get the usual with all three themes – that is: every once in a while you will see a prompt in your wp-admin, and you’ll also get emails letting you know that new updates are available.

My experience with X, for example, got me used to seeing new update packages rolled out every other week or so.

Additionally, Avada has something called the Avada Patcher. It sits in the main section of Avada in the wp-admin and delivers small bug-patching updates that don’t require a whole theme update. This is a very good idea, I have to admit, and it keeps your site problem-free round the clock.

Avada Patcher

Here are the update rules with each theme:

Updates for as long as you’re subscribed.Lifetime updates regardless of your license.Lifetime updates regardless of your license.

Chapter #3: Ease of setup (for a basic site)

Honestly speaking, all three of our contenders do exceptionally well in this department.

Basically, all you do is get the theme package, put it in the standard wp-content/themes directory, and you’re done.

Due to Avada’s and X’s licensing, their installation does involve one more step, though. Right after you click the Activate button, you’re going to be asked to validate your copy of the theme. This will allow you to download/unlock all the extensions and bundled-in plugins. You technically can run both themes without the validation, but you’re missing out on the extra features.

Divi, on the other hand, just works right out the box.

Okay, but that’s just the basic, bare-bones install… What comes next is configuring all the options and making the site usable.

Fun fact. Click below to see what the bare-bones installs of Divi vs Avada vs X look like. Warning: nearly nothing at all going on there.


Basic site setup with Avada

You can get started in one of three ways when building a site with Avada:

  1. From scratch – start working on a blank site and get it to the state you like.
  2. Use one of the available demos as your starting point – Avada comes with a lot of those, and there’s high chance you’ll find something that’s going to be right for you, especially if you’re working on a niche website. You can see them all here. For instance, if you need a particular layout for your client’s site, you can pick the demo that’s the closest to that, and then adjust the rest.

Avada demos

  1. Import your Fusion Builder content that you’ve prepared before (probably when building a previous Avada site) – this can include custom saved containers, columns, elements or full page templates.

The next step is always going into the Avada / Theme Options panel. This is the sidebar of that panel:

Avada theme options sidebar

Quite a lot of stuff there, as you can see.

To say it simply, you can tweak pretty much any aspect of the website you’re working on down to the nearest pixel.

Best part, it’s all really clear – customizable either through input boxes, toggles, or value sliders. Example for menu settings:

Avada menu settings

Also, at the very top, you get a search field that lets you display all the individual settings containing the keyword you’ve input. For example, if you’re struggling to find a particular sidebar-related setting, just input “sidebar”, and you’ll see every setting that involves the sidebar in any way whatsoever.

Avada settings search

All those theme options are global – affecting every page or post. However, apart from that, each page and post also get their own option panels that let you overwrite the global settings.

Fusion options local

This gives you very good customization possibilities on a page by page basis. This means that you’re much less likely to come across a particular theme characteristic that you won’t be able to change without going into the source code. Plus, it’s also extremely handy when building any sort of a landing pages, or non-standard pages that look and behave nothing like the rest of the site.

What’s also important for all sorts of non-standard builds is that Avada has its own hooks, actions and filters. This means that you don’t need to modify the theme’s code even in extreme cases. Those work just like any other hooks in WordPress, and can be used in your child themes and helper plugins.

Just one potential downside that I need to point out:

Avada pretty much seems to ignore the WordPress Customizer altogether. There are no theme-specific settings in the Customizer. And even more so, when you assign a header image or a background color, it’s shown nowhere.

You can basically build a whole site with Avada and not once enter the Customizer.

Basic site setup with Divi

Getting started with Divi is somewhat similar to how things work with Avada, but there are slight differences:

  • You get to start from scratch – if you want to – adjusting the Divi theme either through its own settings or use a child theme.
  • Alternatively, you can make use of some of the predefined layouts that come with the theme, or import other layouts (either your own, or from the web – ElegantThemes themselves make something available every once in a while too).

Divi layouts

Either way, no matter the path you choose, you’ll very soon find your way into one of Divi’s theme options panels. There are three of those:

  • Theme Options – this is where you get to set all the main parameters of the theme (color scheme, various API keys, logo, favicon, etc.), navigation, basic layout settings, SEO, and code integrations (GA, etc.).

Divi theme options

  • Theme Customizer – this basically fires up the WordPress Customizer and lets you tweak the looks of various elements, such as the header, footer, typography, button styles, and loads of other things. This part is better than Avada’s, purely because you get to see the results of what you’re doing in real time.

Divi theme customizer

  • Module Customizer – this fires up the Customizer again, but this time the settings you see relate to the individual elements of the Divi theme. For instance, you can tweak what the images look like, galleries, portfolio elements, accordions, counters, and more.

Divi module customizer

Leaving all those tuneup features aside, most of your work with Divi is actually going to be done in individual pages and posts.

The impression that Divi continues to make on me is that the general theme settings are meant to give your website a consistent feel, while the individual pages is where all the fun actually is.

For instance, when working on a given page, you can begin by selecting a predefined layout for it. Each individual page can utilize a different layout, which lets you create pages for all sorts of different purposes within the same website.

Divi page layouts

Also, when experimenting with different layouts / demos, it seems that Divi’s are less clunky and don’t need as much tuneup afterwards – vs Avada’s or X’s. This also makes it the easier-to-use solution overall, especially if you want to start with a ready-made layout.

Basic site setup with X

Finally, we have the X theme. It prides itself on being 100% front-end, and this does show in the way it encourages you to start working on your website.

First, you can choose from a handful of demo content packages. X has a big set of what’s called “standard demos” plus a couple of “extended demos.” The former focus on just basic filler content put into one of X’s design stacks (more on them in a minute). The latter are more niche – demos for an agency, restaurant, etc.

X demos

Those extended demos are clearly much more impressive. Here’s the restaurant one:

X demo restaurant

Then, there are the design stacks, which serve as a sort of packages of settings and styles to make your website look more uniform. Each is rather different, both in terms of layouts and the overall vibe:

Integrity stackRenew stackEthos stackIcon stack
X Integrity demo
X Renew demo
X Ethos demo
X Icon demo

So the way to get started with X would be this (note; just my personal approach):

  • Look into the available demos and see if there’s anything there that you particularly like. If so, go with that demo content and adjust the specifics as needed.
  • If not, go into the Customizer and pick the design stack that’s the closest to the visual style that you’re after. Go through the sections in the Customizer and adjust everything as needed. Essentially, build your pages individually.

X customizer settings

It’s worth pointing out that the Customizer is X’s only themes options panel, so to speak. There aren’t other significant options anywhere else in the dashboard.

When it comes to the overall number of customization options available, it’s much less than what Avada offers. Somewhat closer to Divi’s approach.

When you’re done with the Customizer, proceed to the individual pages. This is where you’re going to spend most of your time with X. Similarly to Divi, the pages can look very different from one another, and you can build them on top of a handful of pre-defined templates.

X page templates

X has more of a developer-friendly structure with those templates, but it also means that not everything is as clear when you’re just getting started with the theme.

For instance, with X, you can’t just select a block to span across the whole screen (full-width background, for example). You need to first select the correct page template (“Blank – No Container”) to make it work. Fairly straightforward when you already get a grip on how it works, but has its learning curve.

In the end, when it comes to the ease of basic site setup with Divi vs Avada vs X, my ranking is this:

Avada is only last on this list due to the lack of any front-end editing interface. Customization-wise, though, it offers the most. And I know I’m biased. For you, the sheer number of options might be the most important factor (so Avada would be #1 for you), and that’s perfectly understandable.

Chapter #4: Plugins and extensions

In terms of plugin compatibility, basically, if you have a favorite plugin that does something specific, you’re most likely going to be able to use it with either of the mega themes on this list.

One notable mention … all three have built-in tweaks to work with WooCommerce.

  • Divi has a whole shop module, which you can include in any page.
  • Avada comes with a couple of content demos for WooCommerce and offers an overall great design integration with WooCommerce and its elements.
  • X has specific content demos featuring WooCommerce for all four design stacks.

When it comes to custom add-ons and extensions, all of our three mega themes have something to offer.

If you buy the Developer License with Divi, you can use any of the Elegant Themes’ plugins, and they all integrate well with the theme.

Avada gives you the Fusion Core and Fusion Builder (both required to even make Avada work), and also two additional premium solutions: LayerSlider and Slider Revolution.

With all that being said, though, the unquestionable king in this department is X. As part of the regular license, you get more than $1000 worth of premium plugins. Some worthy mentions: ACF Pro, ConvertPlug, Envira Gallery, LayerSlider, Slider Revolution, Typekit, Visual Composer, and a handful of others.

X extra plugins

What’s also worth pointing out is that one of the strengths of X is that it gives you a couple of alternative extensions for each feature/functionality. For example, if you want to put the site’s content in a grid, you can choose from The Grid and Essential Grid. If you need a slider, you get Soliloquy, Slider Revolution, and LayerSlider.

Also, there’s white labeling. X is the only theme here that gives you an official white label extension. With it, you can adjust most of the dashboard’s appearance before handing the site over to a client.

In the end, in the extensions department, the ranking between Divi vs Avada vs X is:

Chapter #5: Designs and layouts

In my opinion, there’s no clear winner when looking into what’s possible with each theme design-wise.

All three do exceptionally well when it comes to the designs and layouts that are either delivered with the theme itself, or can be built through their drag-and-drop builders.

Basically, what it all comes down to is your individual taste, both in terms of the interface and the amount of stuff you can change/adjust:

  • If you want to see the results of your work in real time, you’re going to choose Divi or X.
  • If the sheer number of options is what’s important then go with Avada.

(Avada is particularly good for taking control of what your website looks like on mobile – you can adjust the mobile breakpoints, plus exclude certain elements from appearing on mobile altogether.)

If you’re looking for the main components to adjust the design of each theme:

  • In Avada, everything is in the theme’s own options panel (wp-admin / Avada / Theme Options).
  • In Divi, you will find things in both a custom options panel (wp-admin / Divi) and in the Customizer.
  • In X, everything is in the Customizer.

Next, the drag-and-drop content builders.

In Avada, you can only build pages in the wp-admin (no front-end editor).
In Divi, you can work both in the wp-admin and on the front-end, and you can switch between one and the other.
In X, everything happens on the front-end.
In terms of the elements and content blocks available in each builder (things like buttons, lists, galleries, ribbons, etc.), all three themes seem to offer roughly the same stuff. In other words, you probably won’t stumble upon anything that’s missing.

Example from Avada:


content modules

Again, I wouldn’t say that either of the themes is the leader here when it comes to the quality of the designs that are possible. They all have slightly different ways of getting you from A to B, but you can reach pretty much the same destination with either one.

That being said, if I were to rank the drag-and-drop builders individually, I would have to give it to:

Chapter #6: Learning curve

So the question is: After getting your hands on either of these mega themes for the first time, how fast can you end up with a quality business website?

Also, how soon can you call yourself expert?

Here’s the deal:

The trick with mega themes is that the initial learning curve is very gentle … but then it gets steep.

The thing is, if you want to launch a standard, simple website (with some cool layouts, landing pages, and even nice integrated features through add-ons and plugins), then you can basically do it right away with no problem.

You just install the theme of your choice, go through the intro guides, and you can pretty much begin your work without worrying that you’re going to mess anything up.

However, as soon as you want to do something that the theme doesn’t allow you to do in an obvious way, this is when the steep learning curve begins.

I’m not saying that either of these themes is confusing or built in a weird way, but just the sheer number of features and possibilities means that those themes are basically serious software products of their own. And truly mastering either one will take you just about the same amount of time as mastering WordPress itself.

Just look at the size of the things – something I mentioned at the beginning of this article. WordPress by itself is now around 8-9MB. Divi? 25MB. Avada? 22MB. X? 10MB.

Mega themes are software. Serious software. They’re not “simple skins” anymore that you just put on top of WordPress.

So in short, if you want to build something complex with either of them, it’s going to take time. That being said, all of Avada, Divi and X do a lot in terms of educating their users. You get knowledge bases, videos, tutorials, etc.

In my opinion, the theme that does this best is Avada. They have a really extensive knowledge base, in-depth documentation, and professionally made video tutorials. Those will all help you understand the platform and teach you how to use it for any kind of project.

Apart from that, you also get a huge list of actions and filters. None of the other mega themes featured here even come close to the scope available in Avada. This makes it a potentially better choice for custom development projects and more complicated content sites.

Moving onto X, they too have some actions and filters for you, but just not as many. X also offers an extensive knowledge base with everything you’d expect. Another cool point is that the docs don’t only cover the platform itself, but also the plugins that come integrated with the theme. Plus, there’s also the support center forum.

When it comes to Divi, their documentation seems to be the most reader-friendly and geared to help casual users, perhaps more than developers. It’s organized neatly, and each entry (didn’t check all of them) features a hands-on tutorial video.

I wasn’t able to find any documentation on Divi-specific actions and filters.

Anyway, if I were to rank just the docs:

In all honesty, though, the learning curve is somewhat similar across all three themes, so I can’t declare a clear winner in this department. Each platform does things differently, and each one is easy to use in their own way.

Final conclusion: which mega theme to choose – Divi vs Avada vs X

I really hate it when people end their comparisons without providing any conclusion whatsoever. So let me risk a recommendation, even though it might not sit well with everybody. But that’s cool. Feel free to let me know what you think in the comments.

My recommendation is this:

 Where do you see yourself on the following scale? 


  • I value the sheer number of settings, tweaks, customizations and options available.
  • I don’t care about front-end editing all that much.
  • I want to be able to modify the theme’s core functionality (fairly) easily.
Click Here to Reveal

🔧 + 🎨

  • I’m somewhere in the middle.
Click Here to Reveal


  • I like to build sites on the front-end.
  • I rely on plugins to get specific features.
  • I don’t care that much about tinkering with some core theme features.
Click Here to Reveal
What do you think? Do you favor any of the themes featured here over the others? Or maybe there’s another player in this game that should be added to the mix … Divi vs Avada vs X vs ____?

* This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links and then purchase the product, we’ll receive a small fee. No worries though, you’ll still pay the standard amount so there’s no cost on your part.


Karol K

Creates content, manages CodeinWP's team of writers and makes sure that every piece of content you see on this blog looks great! / Author of "WordPress Complete" / Professional yerba mate drinker / @carlosinho
  • Emilio Gagliardi

    Divi has changed the way I build websites.The ability to create library objects of modules, sections, and entire pages makes Divi development efficient and fast. You do mention Layouts, but their true power isn’t communicated. You can import and export everything from a text module to an entire landing page with images and custom CSS (the .json files can be quite large as a result). Another feature that Divi holds is that every module, column, row, and page can contain custom CSS that overrides the Theme settings, which allows you to apply very precise control over the UI. In just two clicks, you can access everything about an element’s presentation. The front-end builder is amazing. You get very intuitive control over everything in the Layout – mouse control of padding is super cool.
    I love the back-end page builder because it provides an extremely powerful conceptual presentation of the page structure that makes it easy to maintain and adjust. In the image below ( ), each module has a label associated with it that you can change. When you’re done developing a row, you can collapse it, to reduce clutter (see animated .gif ).
    Another feature of the builder is the ability to preview (in desktop/tablet/phone) each module, row, or page to view your changes without having to Preview the entire page. Perhaps the other builders have these features. I haven’t needed anything else.

    • Krzysztof Radzikowski

      did you see code that divi oouput – its a piece of junk and terrible to optimization for sites that get real traffic … all WP based on front builder roduce crapy code but divi is the ugliest of these 3 and maybe more … Sure for sites that get few visits per day its may be ok but with traffic divi start to show its weakness …

      • Emilio Gagliardi

        Troll if you like, Divi works great for me and my clients.

      • You see, the funny thing is, the majority doesn’t care… The people using it are totally fine with it because they don’t know code and that’s why they use Divi. Me too. I couldn’t care less about code or speed. I want ease of use. I buy traffic and am not depending on SEO, which in my opinion is sooooo yesterday. Well, that’s not totally true, but the point is, I can see from your comment you are a coder. I am a user. That is a difference (and I am not saying being a coder is bad, don’t get me wrong on that).

        • NicTesla

          Its never wise to speak for the majority. As for not caring about speed because you buy traffic, if you are buying traffic from Google, thats a mistake that costs you more money than necessary for that same traffic.

      • Tamhas

        Hi! Do you think it makes a difference that usually only the home, about, contact etc.pages use the divi builder feature? Rest of stuff would use the standard editor … so even for real traffic sites, most of the pages people see don’t have that code. Or am I wrong?

      • TunaFish

        The thing you have to keep in mind is that in the real world you have clients with all sorts of budgets and requirements. Clients should also remember that you basically get what you pay for. For clients that have a $100 budget and a 48 hour deadline to build a site, would you as a developer invest your time and expertise to design and code a site from scratch?

    • Karol K.

      The ease of use is something I appreciate dearly, so what you’re saying really resonates with me. However, @KrzysztofRadzikowski has a point here too. The quality of the output code is also hugely important. Have you asked around to confirm that your clients aren’t experiencing any performance or SEO difficulties?

      • Karol: how do I access the “list of 10 Tools We Use “?…I signed up weeks ago, and have not received the list or any info at all about it.

        • Karol K.

          Please see the comment by Sabina Ionescu in response to your other comment.

    • Justin L

      Nice article. It’s great to see a review that’s truly unbiased, and only presents comparisons that then leaves it up to the reader to make their own conclusions. As a developer though, I do have to echo the sentiment that these big boxed editors do have a huge impact on site speed. It’d be nice to see a comparison that benchmarks each editor based on a common basic site design that looks at things like total number of http requests, load speed, caching scores etc.

      Also to address some of the comments here saying your average user doesn’t care about the impact it has on speed, that’s just silly. Page speed is a huge contributing factor to a sites bounce rate. It impacts the end-users experience (How fun is it staring at a loading icon for 10-20 seconds waiting for the content you want to load). It also consumes server resources, which most hosts will bust your balls about or even suspend your site the second you cross their threshold. And while the person who built the site may not initially care about how long it takes to load, they WILL care when the site they built isn’t generating quality traffic (which also means it negatively impacts revenue generated by the site). And on a site with heavy daily traffic, performance problems scale exponentially. Sure you can leverage plugins like W3total cache, but that’s just a band-aid approach really.

      And whilst in this day and age, Seo is somewhat of an aside, well structured and semantic HTML is still very much important.

      • Sabina Ionescu

        Thanks for your comment Justin! The comparison focused on speed sounds like a really cool idea, we will look into it. Cheers!

  • I’ve used them all, but made the move to Divi as my go-to WP page builder – mainly for ease of use for both my team and our clients, but also the flexibility in creating unique pages.

  • Brian Rice

    Avada 5 has some nice new features– you can save elements and sections in a library for use elsewhere, something I really like about Divi. I tried X a while back and found it’s backend / cornerstone confusing. I didn’t give it much of a go, maybe I’ll give it another shot.

    I usually use Divi for simple jobs and Avada for more complicated projects. Avada is a bit bloated, but you can now turn off many features you don’t use. They really seem to know what customers want in the next version. I haven’t used Divi as long but Elegant themes seems to be getting a second wind.

    • Karol K.

      I have to admit that Cornerstone perhaps isn’t the most straightforward thing when you first encounter it, but it does make a lot of sense once you give it a minute to learn where everything is.

  • I have tried emailing the Karol@ address as well as the support address, with no reply…When I initially signed up for your email list, it was because on your blog page there’s a banner that says “Get the list of 10 Tools We use”…I subscribed weeks ago. How do I go about getting that list now?

  • There is also one more thing. To fully load X of Avada you need more than basic knowledge. Let’s say client wants to import demo 1 from X theme or Avada on cheapest GoDaddy plan – FAIL. You have to change default values via .user.ini file.
    Divi will more likely import library without hesitation, sometimes it’s not working when upload_max_filesize is set to 2 megabytes.

    On the other hand, Divi is one of the easiest to learn, it’s not depending on third party plugins (that’s a pro and con) and it’s quite update proof.
    With both Avada and X theme, you might encounter problems with updates compatibility (not with WP, but between plugin and theme core).
    Not to mention other mega themes, that have modified versions of plugins (not sure, but I think Jupiter has custom Visual Composer spin off).

    In my opinion Divi is the way to go for basic (and a little bit custom) sites with fancy designs. When it comes to much more custom solutions, none of theme will do the job.

    PS. Yes, I’m Divi fanboy and am making money with it, but I’m also dealing with other two quite often (Avada is way more popular). Don’t judge me 🙂

    • Karol K.

      That’s a good point about the imports.

      What do you think about the quality of the output code that Divi spits out? There are some voices here that it’s not the most optimized from a performance and SEO standpoint.

      • You’ll have to approve my previous response – it was with links and is awaiting moderation 🙂

  • Great article. I’ve used all 3 of these themes for client projects this year. I think they’re all so close to greatness. What kills me is the use of inline element styles. If you can’t style it via stylesheet, I’m not going to want to use it. Divi does it. Cornerstone does it. I’d love to see a comparison between them in another year.

    • Karol K.

      How do you pick which of these themes to use for a particular client project? Just curious.

      • The only reason I used Avada is because the project was a rebuild and they were already using it. Reasons to choose Divi: small project (low budget), interest in the built-in split testing, or need for moderate customization (I find it easier to customize than X). But it frustrates me. (Why is “full width” only 89% wide?) Other than that, I use X or build from a skeleton.

  • With all these themes, they leverage the database heavily for layout configurations. Is anyone running a site with large audiences and/or content in the 10,000+ post range (including comments etc)? How do these perform for page load speeds etc?

    • Abemore

      irrelevant with a page caching plugin

  • Great, thank you!

  • Catfish Creative

    You mentioned that there was no clear winner regarding cost. Sorry, I disagree. While I do not know which mega theme is the “best” I do know that my lifetime investment with Divi cost me $250. With support—forever. I have 5 or 6 client sites built at present with it.

    With either of the other platforms I’d be looking at multiples of $60 or $64, which translates into $300 to $320 for 5 sites and includes only 6 months of support.

    For me the there is a clear financial winner starting pretty much with your second site. As I mentioned I do not know which is the “best” from any other perspective, and many things about Divi bug me, (it’s getting a little bloated) but from a financial perspective it’s a clear winner for me.

    Thank you very much for your comparison.


    • I agree. Best $250 I’ve spent in a long time. Been building some cool sites with it, learning css as I go. On my 5th site right now, and converting my own over as well. I like their constant email tips newsletters, too. BTW Catfish Creative is a cool name and logo.

      • Catfish Creative

        Thank you Chaz.

  • Themes like these are great for clients to build their own sites or for code adverse designers to build sites for themselves. otherwise all three are a poor long term choice IMO despite being fantastic products.

    I’d like to think the audience for these products is mostly limited to these two groups but I imagine it’s probably not. The clients are too ignorant to know what they’re getting and the web worker is often hoping they’ll never figure it until they’ve gotten paid and someone else has to deal with it. On the other hand, the lock-in can be great for repeat business / maintenance agreement justification.

    It really doesn’t much matter which of these you pick. The longer term end result of your poor choice will turn very similar.

  • Dree Blundell

    Honestly i find the people at elegant themes money grabbing twats nowadays. I have had nothing but bad experiences. First of all, they only have the popup support during their Black Friday sales, so they can help you give them your credit card details. Then enjoy sending messages to support and waiting and waiting…Then their flash add on sales is bullshit, you later get an email about some crap freebie which is not the one advertised nor one you want. I had the theme, they give you no warning it will expire. Then it expires, then they wouldn’t let me just upgrade, as I wanted the new drag and drop builder, no I had to buy a whole new membership… I decided to no longer get developer as I only needed it for one site. Only to sign in and be told that I had to pay another $50 to use the new drag and drop divi as it’s a ‘plugin’. Oh my god seriously, is this a joke?!! Of course now the quick support is no longer…. I would just say, don’t. And let’s not forget that if you want to export to another theme, good luck…… after all their talk about making that part of newer versions, where is it? Instead you are stuck with their shortcode dump to make you stick with them, I imagine.. ugh. Just, ugh. I hate it when companies go greedy and forget their customers, and sorry Elegant Themes, you are now that sort of company.

    • donor_king

      but their (international) marketing network is very slick.. they have spent big

      >> Only to sign in and be told that I had to pay another $50 to use the new drag and drop divi as it’s a ‘plugin’.

      lol… another 50 bucks?

  • Good call on Gonzalez. This was the first I had heard of it and for $29 it’s going up on my Avada install tomorrow. Side note to general commenters, X sucks. There support was okay, but I got tired of it and moved along.

  • Victoria

    Avada is the first choice.. however am testing Bravio now a days that has introduced a very good page builder where I can save anything to use later..

  • Jonatan Augusto

    Amazing review! Thanks very much. It helped me a lot!

  • Alexander Drutz

    What about the RTL support in this themes and builders? And why didn’t you mention Elementor that can give a good fight to all wp builders ?

  • Alisha Parks

    Absolutely agree

  • Alisha Parks

    Great article!