Even though Jimdo has above average e-commerce features, you can still build a very good website with them even if you are not an online shop.
Jimdo is based out of Germany, and their team and website support more than 8 different languages – so they truly have a global presence. More than 15 million websites are created through Jimdo as well.
We have personally met with their teams in Shanghai (China) and Tokyo (Japan), and have had email correspondences with one of their founders (Christian Springub) and a couple of USA team members. We were consistently impressed with their passion for helping people build websites, which is an important consideration when selecting the right website builder.
Overall, Jimdo is a very good website builder for those who do not want to pay thousands of dollars for a custom built website, or for those who do not know how to code. It is very easy to use, their customer service and community forum is superb and most important of all, it takes away your headaches of website building so it frees up your time to do more important things.
Jimdo is a very easy way to create a website for small businesses, or for personal use, organizations, clubs, that kind of stuff. It’s a little bit over five years old now. We started in Germany but we’ve internationalized the company quite fast; we have offices in San Francisco, China and Japan now. We fully support 8 languages; people can build sites in these languages and also get support from our staff in languages like Spanish, for example. – Christian Springub, Jimdo Co-Founder
TOP 3 PROS AND CONS OF JIMDO
- Strong e-commerce tools for online stores – Jimdo’s e-commerce platform provides you with back-end support which helps you track inventory, open / close orders and automatic pre-set email responses to your customers, etc. If you signed up for JimdoBusiness, you can also set up discount codes for promotion purposes. They also allow you to tag products so you can pull up certain categories of products quickly if you want to highlight or cross-sell specific products. These features can really help you manage your online store, and also makes Jimdo stand out from other website builders. (Click here to see a good overview video here)
- Large community forum – Jimdo has large community forums in multiple languages which allow you to post questions and find answers from other fellow Jimdo users as well as from Jimdo’s forum moderators. Multiple language support is something that’s very unique to Jimdo. If you go to other website builders, you will find that they mainly serve English speaking users. With Jimdo, they currently support 8 languages.
- Free platform – Jimdo’s free platform (JimdoFree) provides you enough tools to build a very functional website. There is absolutely no pressure to upgrade to the paid platform (JimdoPro and JimdoBusiness) and there are no time limitations as to how long you can remain a free user. Credit card information is not required when you sign up for a free account to test Jimdo out.
- Limited number of professionally designed templates – The quality of Jimdo’s templates is relatively average when compared to other website builders. Using Jimdo for free grants you a certain number of templates but to access even more templates, you will have to become a paying subscriber. There are also third party Jimdo templates providers which really help supplement design choices (more about this below). [UPDATE – Jimdo recently added more templates to their collection. They also added advanced features such as (1) full background slideshows with tools to customize different visual effects into the background image, and (2) full background video, which allows you to insert a video as the background to your website – how impressive is that! This is the first of its kind amongst website builders we review. These updates show that Jimdo is making big strides in their template designs. We’re looking forward to more impressive features.]
- Jimdo advertisement on the free platform is quite visible – If you are using Jimdo’s free website builder, it includes an advertisement logo on your website which is quite visible. All free website builders have their own advertisement credits (understandable since they’re providing services for free) but Jimdo’s is a bit more visible (but not the worst amongst all the website builders). Upgrade to the paid platform to receive other benefits and also to remove the advertisement. [UPDATE – Jimdo listened to their users, and have now significantly reduced the size of the advertisement and it is now located in the footer area – away from the main content area. This is actually a very generous gesture from Jimdo, considering you are using their services for free!]
- Not a true drag-and-drop user interface – Even though Jimdo’s website building tools are not drag and drop, don’t let this fool you into thinking that Jimdo isn’t easy to use. Its functions and user-friendliness still gets the job done, although it would feel more interactive with drag and drop.
JIMDO REVIEW VIDEO
Watch More Jimdo Video Tutorials to Learn How to Use Jimdo!
JIMDO IS IDEAL FOR….
Jimdo is ideal for small to medium sized businesses, as its e-commerce platform is more than adequate to do a really good job.
If you are running an e-commerce “heavy weight”, we suggest that you really push Jimdo’s platform hard to ensure that you are fully satisfied their e-commerce functions are suitable for you, prior to upgrading to their paid subscription program.
If you are looking to build a website that does not require e-commerce transaction support, Jimdo is a very good candidate to try as it does have all the basic tools required to build a strong personal or corporate website.
EASE OF USE
Even though Jimdo is not a pure drag and drop website builder, it is relatively easy to use. You build the website right in front of you by adding elements (website building blocks such as paragraphs, pictures, galleries, etc) on to the page. The advantage is that what you see on screen when you are editing the website, is what the website will look like after you publish it. So there is no need to flip back and forth between editing mode and published mode.
Overall, Jimdo is very user friendly and it takes only a few minutes to figure out how to add elements in Jimdo, so the learning curve is not steep. Adding, subtracting and editing elements are a breeze.
TEMPLATE DESIGN OPTIONS
Jimdo has over 120 Jimdo templates available for you to choose from, but overall, we rate their designs as average.
[UPDATE – Jimdo recently introduced more design layouts to their existing collection. New advanced features were also introduced such as (1) full background slideshows with tools to add different visual effects to your background image, and (2) full background video, which allows you to upload a video to play / display as the background to your website – how cool is that! We haven’t seen this feature amongst other website builders so it is really the first of its kind. These improvements demonstrate that Jimdo is continuously improving and listening to their users. These updates can make a huge visual improvement to your design if you choose to try out Jimdo.]
The good thing is that Jimdo allows you access to their HTML and CSS editor so if you want, you can completely customize the website’s design there (or hire someone to help you). It’s a very nice option to have if you really want a customized design.
There are also third party templates providers out there that give you more design options and choices at affordable prices. You can find them relatively easily through search engines – here is one that showcases their website design examples. Overall, there are plenty of good options for designing your Jimdo website.
SUPPORT / TUTORIALS / COMMUNITY RESOURCES
Jimdo also has a Live Chat function from 9am – 5pm PST, which can help quite a bit if you prefer to chat with someone live instead of email.
JIMDO MOBILE DISPLAY
Jimdo has a mobile editor that automatically compresses your website to fit nicely in a mobile display. It’s quite nice as you don’t have to build a separate mobile site which will save you time.
Further, you have the option to edit the CSS codes of the mobile display so you can style or add a bit more design to your mobile site (it’s a nice touch, especially if you know a little bit of code, or you can hire someone to help).
Your mobile site will also be e-commerce ready and also has a special Mobile Express Page (which is a landing page) in which your mobile visitors can easily find important information about your website. We have a dedicated full review of Jimdo’s Mobile Editor here. In the review, we’ll also compare it to the mobile editor of other website builders to see how Jimdo stands.
UPDATE – Jimdo released an iOS App in August 2013, enabling you to build an entire website from scratch using your Apple mobile device. This is a huge step for Jimdo as it makes their website builder truly mobile – something other popular website builders have yet to accomplish. It’s true that Weebly also has an iOS App, their app is a bit limited and only allows you to check your website’s statistics and also write / edit blog posts. Jimdo’s app allows you to actually build pages, add content, just like how you would do so in front of your desktop computer. It’s a huge step forward. See our detailed discussion here.
SEO (Search Engine Optimization)
Jimdo web pages are automatically search engine optimized. While you can modify the global SEO settings for JimdoFree websites, if you are a JimdoPro or JimdoBusiness user, you can make further SEO optimization by adapting meta tags for each individual web page.
Jimdo actually provides helpful SEO tutorials on their website which is also a nice resources and support to have.
We’ve seen arguments that website builders perform very poorly in search engine rankings. However, we have personally built Jimdo websites that have also ranked on first pages of search results. So don’t let others discourage you – just because they can’t do it, doesn’t mean you can’t either! SEO is about planning, technique and persistence, but that’s beyond the scope of this review.
HOSTING AND EXPORT OPTIONS
Jimdo hosts all the websites for you, even if you are using their free platform (JimdoFree), so you do not have to pay for hosting separately.
The advantage is that they manage the entire process for you so you can concentrate on building your website and focusing on other more important things. Jimdo takes care of all the security upgrades, backups and do all the techie stuff to ensure your website is always up and running, and doesn’t get hacked.
Currently, Jimdo does not have an official export function yet. The disadvantage is that one day if you decide to leave Jimdo, you won’t be able to take the website with you and host it somewhere else. However, to be fair, this is not unusual for website builders at all, since website building technologies are not easily adaptable or made-compatible across different hosting platforms.
Our recommendation is that if you’re interested in Jimdo, try it for free to see if it fits your needs. If so, then you can decide whether you would like to commit. There is no pressure whatsoever from the Jimdo team.
PRICING – IS IT WORTH THE INVESTMENT?
If you are building an online shop, JimdoPro and JimdoBusiness are very reasonably priced given their e-commerce tools and infrastructure, which automates a lot of the manual work that you will be required to do with other website builders.
For other website builders that do not have good e-commerce features, you will probably have to use a third party shopping cart which will be an added cost that Jimdo users do have to worry about. Another aspect to consider is their global support and vibrant user community.
We have had email correspondences and met some of their global leadership teams, and we can confidently say that their care for their customers, passion and enthusiasm is very rare amongst “companies”. They place user experience as a priority before anything else.
The current price is $90 per year (or $7.50 per month) for JimdoPro, and $240 per year (or $20 per month) for JimdoBusiness (click here to see pricing table). In our opinion, it’s really worth the investment if you are serious about your website, especially if you have an online store.
CONCLUSION / RECOMMENDATION
If you you are a small to medium sized business or an online store, looking to build a website to create an online presence, Jimdo is a strong candidate for you to consider.
They have all the necessary e-commerce features integrated into their website builder, so you save time and headaches from trying to integrate 3rd party shopping carts into your website. Jimdo has very good global support and community, and are passionate about what they do (we know this as we have personally met with some of their international team members).
This is a good indicator that they will remain successful in the long run, and it is something you should also think about since this will positively impact your website.
We recommend testing out Jimdo’s free platform yourself before committing to the paid programs. Even if you do decide to upgrade, you still have the 30-day risk-free trial to test out JimdoPro or JimdoBusiness further. Try Jimdo for Free
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