Which web builder should I choose?

Before engaging a designer to customize the look of your website, you’ll first need to decide which website builder is right for you. A web builder lets you take advantage of free or low-cost software to quickly get your website online. The web builder you choose determines how your site looks, functions, and the features you can include. To make it easy for you, we've looked closely at seven of the most popular web builders.

Wix

Wix has the highest public recommendation of any web builder, boasting that over 160 million people worldwide choose Wix to create a free website. 

Ideal for

  • Small businesses or personal websites
  • People who want to design their own website, but still need some help
  • People with web design experience who want a simple editor

Pros

  • Hundreds of templates to choose from 
  • Easy-to-use “drag and drop” interface
  • SEO and marketing tools
  • Hosting and SSL are all-inclusive

Cons

  • Must upgrade to a paid account to remove advertising
  • Unable to change template (or if you do, you must rebuild it from scratch)
  • No ‘Live Chat’ option

Pricing*

  • Free plan
  • Free premium trial
  • Annual billing

Shopify

Shopify is a popular e-commerce web builder suited to those looking to sell a large range of products. This quick-and-easy web builder offers all the features a retailer needs such as upsell and promotion capabilities. 

Ideal for

  • New sellers looking to set up an online, retail store
  • People who want to focus more on their retail business than web design

Pros

  • Fast setup process
  • Very easy-to-use (compared to other e-commerce web builders)

  • Wide range of sales features 
  • Social media integration

  • All-inclusive package includes hosting

  • 24/7 phone support
  • High customer satisfaction scores

Cons 

  • Limited design options and templates (not ideal for customization)
  • Can be expensive

Pricing*

  • 14-day free trial
  • Monthly subscription fee

Square

A new offering from Square (the popular point-of-sale system) is Square Online Store.  This is a popular and affordable ecommerce web builder for small businesses as it allows for easy inventory management, shipping, delivery, donations, and more.

Ideal for

  • Small business owners who already have a brick and mortar store and are looking to sell online.

Pros

  • Fast setup process
  • Very easy-to-use
  • Inbuilt marketing features
  • Extensive sales features and inventory management tools
  • Email, phone and Live Chat support

Cons

  • Limited design options and templates (not great for customization)
  • Lack of payment processing options (Square and Paypal only) 

Pricing*

  • Free and paid plans available (free plans incur a small transaction fee)

Squarespace

Squarespace is well-known for offering a highly curated set of beautiful, polished templates that you can customize and maintain with an easy-to-use editor. 

Ideal for

  • People who want to design an eye-catching website, but still need some help
  • People with web design experience who want a simple editor

Pros

  • Good balance between design options and ease-of-use
  • Well-designed templates
  • All templates are mobile responsive
  • Ability to add coding with a Premium Plan
  • 24/7 customer support

Cons

  • Advanced features require a little more learning from the user
  • No add ons or app store available 

Pricing*

  • Free 14-day trial
  • Monthly or annual billing

Jimdo

Jimdo is an affordable, very easy-to-use web builder that offers a wide selection of templates. A suitable option for people with minimal web design knowledge or those running a small, basic online store.

Ideal for

  • Small businesses and personal websites
  • People with no web design experience at all (for complete beginners)

Pros

  • Easy-to-use “drag and drop” interface
  • Create/edit your website from a mobile phone or tablet
  • All templates are mobile responsive

Cons

  • Email support only 
  • Template flexibility and limited options
  • Not ideal for medium to large businesses who need an online store 

Pricing*

  • Free trial
  • Annual billing

Magento

Magento is a well-known e-commerce platform, specializing in shopping cart systems. Designed specifically for online shopping and inventory, it does not cater to product pages, blogs, or other marketing-type pages. 

Ideal for

  • People with coding knowledge who are looking to create a unique and customized e-commerce website
  • People looking to sell a large range of products through an online store

Pros

  • Total design flexibility and customization 
  • Marketing tools available
  • Extensive sales features and inventory management tools
  • User-run forum to assist with queries and provide support
  • Wide range of extensions available (5,000+)

Cons

  • Costly add ons such as hosting, security measures and SEO apps
  • Requires coding knowledge to use this builder to its full potential

Pricing*

  • Free 3-month plan
  • Monthly billing

Weebly

Weebly has a smaller set of tools when compared to other web builders, but it is very easy-to-use. It offers simple, customizable templates and the basic tools you need to build a stylish business site, or even an online store.

Ideal for

  • Portfolios, business sites, blogs, or online stores.
  • People looking for multiple design options but still want an easy-to-use web builder 

Pros

  • Easy-to-use “drag and drop” interface
  • Design features such as contact forms, sliders, and photo galleries

  • Most templates are mobile responsive
  • Social media integration
  • Inclusive package includes hosting and backend support
  • Helpful SEO guides and support center

Cons

  • No add on options outside of what Weebly offers
  • Must upgrade to a paid account to remove advertising

Pricing*

  • Free trial
  • Annual billing

*Pricing structure as of May 2020.

 

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