Website Builders Comparison Chart

Last updated on November 10, 2016

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This website builder review chart compares key features based on our opinion & feedback from other users:

 

Rating [1]

Overall

Best All-Around
Website Builder

Easiest to Use
Website Builder

Design-Oriented
Website Builder

Websites Powered [2] 92m 40m 1m+ 15m N/A 11m
Ease of Use 5 / 5 5 / 5 4 / 5 4 / 5 4 / 5 4 / 5
Design Flexibility [3] 4.5 / 5 4.5 / 5 5 / 5 4 / 5 4 / 5 3 / 5
Themes Design [4] 4.5 / 5 4 / 5 5 / 5 3 / 5 4 / 5 4 / 5
Responsive Themes [5] X [5] [5] [5] X X
Mobile Editor [6] X [6]
Pricing
(Monthly)
[7]
$4.50
$8.50
$12.50
$16.50
$24.50
$8.00
$12.00
$25.00
$49.00
$12.00
$18.00
$26.00
$40.00
$7.50
$20.00
$5.99
$9.99
$14.99
$7.95
Free Plan? 14 Days Trial X
Free Custom Domain [8] [8] [8] [8] X
SEO [9] 5 / 5 4.5 / 5 5 / 5 3 / 5 3 / 5 1 / 5
Export Website [10] X X X [10]
Restore Website [11] X [11] X X
Support [12] Email
Phone
Forum
Knowledgebase
Email
Phone
Live Chat
Knowledgebase
24/7 Email
Live Chat
Knowledgebase
Email
Live Chat
Forum
Knowledgebase
Email
Live Chat
Phone
Knowledgebase
Email
Forum
Knowledgebase
Blogging [13] 4.5 / 5 4.5 / 5 5 / 5 3 / 5 3 / 5 1 / 5
e-Commerce [14] 5 / 5 4.5 / 5 2.5 / 5 4 / 5 0 / 5 0 / 5
Email Service [15] X X [15] Upgrade Upgrade Upgrade
Newsletter Creator [16] X X X X
Membership Creator [17] X X X X
Mobile Apps [18] X X
Multiple Editors [19] X X X
Overall [1]
4.8 / 5 Stars

4.5 / 5 Stars

4.4 / 5 Stars
3.5-stars
3.5 / 5 Stars
3-stars
3.0 / 5 Stars
3-stars
2.2 / 5 Stars
See our Detailed Review Wix Review Weebly Review Squarespace Review Jimdo Review GoDaddy Review IM Creator Review

Want Our Recommendations? Click to Take a Short Quiz

 

Footnotes:

[1] Rating – Scores are based on an average of the scoring above – You should not base your decision solely on the average scores as there are many qualitative / subjective factors that you should consider prior to deciding.  Our scoring is to help you narrow your choices, then you should always test out at least 2 of the website builders to see which one you are comfortable with before investing your time and money.  

We highly recommend you read our detailed reviews for each website builder as we cover each builder in much more depth in those reviews.


[2] Websites Powered – Number of websites powered (in millions) by each website builder is based on publicly available information.  This does not necessarily equal to the number of active websites, or the number of paying customers, but will give you an indication of its size.


[3] Design Flexibility – Refers to flexibility of where you can place content, access to HTML / CSS codes to make further customizations or extent of tools provided by website builder to make modifications to design


[4] Themes: 

  • Wix has a very large library of professionally designed themes that spans across a lot of different industries, so it’s easy to find one that’s suitable for you.  
  • Weebly’s themes used to be average, but they have improved significantly over time.  
  • Squarespace themes are responsive and polished – by far the best amongst its peers.  

If you want your web design to look good, click here to see a collection of free beautiful, professional themes.


[5] Responsive Themes:

  • Weebly is adding more and more responsive themes over time.  They also have over a hundred older themes that are not mobile responsive, but are available for you to choose from. You can use Weebly’s mobile editor to configure the mobile layout for these older themes.
  • All Squarespace themes are mobile responsive and as such, all your website content will display nicely across mobile devices.
  • Jimdo converted all their themes to become mobile responsive, and they currently have 15 themes for you to choose from.


[6] Mobile Editor: 

  • Wix & GoDaddy mobile editors allow you to hide specific content on your mobile display while keeping these content displayed on your desktop version of your site.  This gives you the flexibility to have more control over your visitors’ experience while they are surfing your site on their mobile devices.  
  • Squarespace doesn’t need a mobile editor as their design themes are fully responsive – meaning your website design is automatically optimized to look good on any mobile devices.  
  • If you know a bit of code, Jimdo gives you access to edit the CSS codes of your mobile site – an added flexibility.


[7] Pricing – Monthly pricing based on annual plans.  Monthly price will be a bit higher if you enrolled on month-to-month payment plans.  Pricing plans should not be compared directly based on pricing, as each website builder offers different features for their own plans. Please read our detailed review for each website builder for further details.  We also have more discussions about the cost of building a website here.


[8] Free Domain – For web builders that offer you free custom domain names, you have to sign up to their annual plans.

  • For Wix, you only get a free domain name if you sign up to their Combo or higher plans.  
  • For Jimdo, you get 2 free domain names with their Business Plan, and 1 free domain name with their Pro Plan.  

Not sure how domain names work? See our domain name guide for beginners.


[9] SEO: 

  • Wix allows page level control, including H1 to H6 titles, and you can customize your webpages’ URL (webpage address) so search engines will better understand the purpose of your pages. Wix is also specifically highlighted in the Google Webmaster Guidelines (next to WordPress), answering a common question as to whether Wix is search engine friendly.
  • Weebly allows page level control and the ability for you to customize your webpage URL, but no H1 title tags (on page level).  Do note that if you don’t upgrade to a paid Weebly plan, your website will not be indexed by search engines.
  • Squarespace gives you full control over page titles, meta descriptions, and custom webpage URL.  It also has the “Google Author Rank” built into your profile to improve your search engine exposure & site indexing.  This is automatically done so you don’t have to manually insert snippets of codes into your site which is very convenient.  
  • Jimdo only allows page level title and meta description controls if you upgrade.  
  • IM Creator only allows you site wide SEO configuration, but not on a page level.

Want more discussions about SEO? See our Website Builder SEO guide here.


[10] Export Website:

  • For Weebly and IM Creator, you can export HTML / CSS codes to upload into your own host.  But to edit your site, you will need to modify the codes yourself.
  • Squarespace websites can be exported into WordPress, allowing you to edit your content in WordPress without knowing codes. 

[11] Restore Website: 

  • Wix allows you to save unlimited versions of your website so you can restore your entire website anytime, even weeks after you’ve made a mistake.
  • Weebly allows you to undo changes, but once you exit the editor or publish your website, you cannot undo any changes. If you’ve accidentally deleted your website or pages, you’ll need to email Weebly & wait for them to restore the deletions. So unlike Wix or Squarespace, you can’t recover your deletions immediately.
  • Squarespace allows you to restore deleted pages & blog posts, up to 30 days after they’ve been deleted.

 


[12] Support:

  • Wix’s phone support is available across all plans (including the free plan) which is fantastic, and if you are a VIP plan user, you get access to their “VIP Team”.
  • Weebly also recently introduced phone support.
  • Squarespace provides 24/7 email support and answers you within 1 hour.  Live chat support (Squarespace & Weebly) only available during daytime.   


[13] Blogging:

  • Wix integrates Facebook commenting system and you can  style your blog background, which is an added flexibility.  
  • Weebly also allows you to schedule when to publish your post, as a spam blocker, as well as allowing you to choose between Disqus, Facebook or their own commenting system, giving you a bit more flexibility on which platform you’d like to use. IM Creator does not offer a blog system, so you need to set up your own blog elsewhere (such as on Tumblr or WordPress).
  • Squarespace allows you to schedule when to publish your post (so you can write ahead of time). It can also connect & automatically publish your blog post on your Facebook & Twitter accounts.  Squarespace has the “Google Author Rank” built into your profile (to improve your search engine & blog indexing), a spam blocker, built in integration with Disqus commenting system (if you don’t want to use Squarespace’s commenting system), and has multiple author support for guest postings.  


[14] e-Commerce If you are building an online store, see our e-commerce builder comparison chart.  Even though Wix has decent e-commerce tools, you can access even more powerful tools through the Wix App Market (our review), allowing you to bolt on powerful e-commerce platforms such as Shopify (our review) or Ecwid.  Currently, GoDaddy and IM Creator do not offer any e-commerce features – but you can use 3rd party e-commerce software such as the Shopify Buy Button or Ecwid to add e-commerce function to your website.


[15] Email Service:

  • For Wix and Weebly, you can get your own custom email address through Google Business Apps (Gmail, but for businesses) for about $4 per month.
  • For Squarespace, if you sign up to their Annual Business or Commerce plans, you get one year free Google Business App to power your business email. This email account can be renewed for about $5 per month or $50 per year after your first year of free service.
  • For Jimdo, GoDaddy and IM Creator – “Upgrade” means that email service is only included if you upgrade to the web builder’s premium plans.


[16] Newsletter Creator:

  • Wix’s newsletter creator is called Shoutout, which allows you to import email addresses from your Gmail or Outlook / Hotmail. You can also automatically insert addresses of people who has contacted you through your contact form, or those who purchased products from you.
  • Weebly’s newsletter creator is called Weebly Promote, and it is also synchronized to your contact list within Weebly. Both Wix and Weebly’s newsletter services are free if you are using their platforms to build your website. There are options to upgrade if you need additional features / emails to be sent out.


[17] Membership Creator – Wix and Weebly allows you to create a membership log in function, where your visitors can register to become members of your website. You can restrict webpages where only your members have access to them. This is a helpful tool if you want to create private clubs / classes, or just restrict content from being accessible by the public.

  • With Wix, you just add on their Member Login app (from their App Market) to your Wix site and you can create an unlimited number of memberships.  W
  • With Weebly, you can have up to 20 members with their Pro Plan or unlimited members with their Business Plan.


[18] Mobile Apps:

  • Wix has a mobile app where you can create and manage blog posts, manage your online store (track orders, add / edit products, receive sales notifications), interact with your visitors (get notifications when you receive a message, when someone books an appointment, etc.), or even start live chatting with your website visitors when they are on your website! Wix also has a mobile app for their newsletter function (Wix ShoutOut app), allowing you to create newsletter directly on your mobile device to send to your newsletter subscribers.  
  • The Weebly App allows you to build your entire website (with their iPad app), write blog posts, manage comments, monitor traffic, and manage products & get sales notifications for your online store (using the iPhone & Android app). With the iPad app, you can even create your Weebly site offline (without internet connection) so you can work anywhere. 
  • Squarespace as 4 mobile apps, allowing you to write blog posts, manage comments, monitor traffic, track social followers, showcase your galleries / portfolio as a presentation on your iPad / iPhone, and a note app so you can keep track of your ideas which syncs with your website, Evernote, Dropbox, Google Drive, etc.  
  • Jimdo’s mobile App allows you to build / update your entire site (including blog posts) and monitor your traffic.  It is the only App that allows you to build an entire website through the App.


[19] Multiple Editors – Wix, Squarespace & Weebly allow you to add editors with different levels of access / authority rights to help you manage your website.  You can set limits so some editors can’t access all parts of your website. This is a very handy tool if you plan on having a team to help you manage and/or build your site.

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Jeremy Wong

About Jeremy Wong

Maybe just like you, at first we didn't have a darn clue about how to build a website, nevermind write half a line of code if our life depended on it! We wanted to build a website to start a side business, and felt overwhelmed, confused & scared about how to actually do it, which builder to use, and making wrong decisions. After years of trials & errors using different website builders, we're here to share our experiences with you.

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Jeremy Wong

About Jeremy Wong

Maybe just like you, at first we didn't have a darn clue about how to build a website, nevermind write half a line of code if our life depended on it! We wanted to build a website to start a side business, and felt overwhelmed, confused & scared about how to actually do it, which builder to use, and making wrong decisions. After years of trials & errors using different website builders, we're here to share our experiences with you.

,

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755 Responses to Website Builders Comparison Chart

  1. #

    Jeremy,
    I’m planning to start a website wherein I will offer my eons of architectural drafting experience to create custom preliminary floor plans for folks planning to renovate or add to their homes. I intend to provide multiple hyperlinked pages of helpful info and guidance, including instructions on taking specific photographs and dimensions of their existing home that will allow me to create reasonably accurate floor plans. Once contact is made, the primary communication thereafter will be email. I will also be adding pages on a regular basis, including recent projects and how-to tips. It seems to me that a website heavy in blog capability might be best, but I’m not sure I have the technical prowess to keep abreast of WordPress updates, whereas Squarespace seems more appropriate. Any suggestions? Many thanks. Gene Nelson

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Gene,

      I think any capable website builders (such as the ones listed above, including Squarespace) should be able to get the job done for you.

      Sounds like you’re only looking to setup pages, blog posts, insert tutorials / information, link together some pages to guide people to different parts of your website. Squarespace can help you do that without you having to be technical at all.

      Best way forward is to sign up for a trial account and give it a “test drive”. That’s the best way to find out!

      Jeremy

  2. #

    Jeremy,

    I recently tried to transfer my domain from a dutch website hosting company to Wix.com. Unfortunately the transfer failed but there is no explanation. Can you advise what could have gone wrong? Domain connection option does not exists on my current hosting site that is why i was transferring it. Any guidance you can offer will be grand.

    Thanks in advance,

    K

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hey Ketaki,

      I wouldn’t know as I wasn’t involved. Have you tried asking your hosting company? It’s very strange how they sell you a domain name but will not allow you to connect it to a website.

      Have you thought of transferring the domain name to another domain name registrar (such as GoDaddy)? From there, you can connect it to any website you build (including one built with Wix).

      We have a domain name guide that discusses about the pros and cons of transferring a domain name to a website builder or to a domain name registrar. It also contains other helpful basics about domain name you might be interested in reading.

      Jeremy

  3. #

    Jeremy,
    I am a 20-year professional clean comedian and need an appropriate website with blog, etc.
    Any suggestions as to which builder would be right to go with?

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hello Todd,

      I don’t think any one of them are specifically tailored to comedians, but you can certainly have a browse through Wix’s templates. They have a broad range of templates for different niches and they are easy to use (including the ability for you to publish a blog).

      Jeremy

  4. #

    Just found this…I’m building my site on the Duda platform…don’t get a mention – should I be concerned!!

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Jim,

      We mentioned about Duda here. We haven’t worked with or tested their website builder extensively, but based on my limited experience they’re not bad.

      Jeremy

  5. #

    looks like I am going to get a lot of help to set up a new webpage/website: THANK YOU!

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Thanks for letting us know! Glad our website builder comparison chart above is helpful to you.

      Jeremy

  6. #

    Excellent article! Answered all my questions so far. Thank you

  7. #

    I think you assume a high level of basic computer literacy. I’m no idiot but I’ve tried Weebly and Wix and think your 5/5 ease of use ratings are way out of line for an average technophobe like me. Weebly USED to have a REALLY simple set up but it’s become much too complicated and I can’t do it any more :o(

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Steve,

      Thanks for your comment. I guess it is somewhat subjective and varies from person to person.

      I recall when I first started using Weebly years ago and I found that it was very user-friendly. I try to be as objective as possible when I rate them nowadays but there may be a possibility that I’m slightly biased based on my experiences with them.

      I try my best to put myself in a beginner’s shoes when I rate them, and I also take into consideration the user-friendliness of other website builders in order to keep the scoring relative.

      In any case, I really do appreciate your feedback. Relative to other website builders, I do believe Weebly is one of the easiest-to-use website builders available in the market today.

      Jeremy

  8. #

    Hi Jeremy,
    Thanks for all of the detailed info – this has been a huge help to me. My issue is that I have a website hosted by Go Daddy with a Go Daddy Online Store Shopping Cart attached. I will be building a new website as I now need to have a few pages for member login only, and Go Daddy web builder doesn’t seem to offer this service. Would my best choice be to build a new website in Word Press and connect the Go Daddy Shopping Cart? That appears to me to be possible, but I’m not positive. I’m not super techie, and would like the easiest solution that would work. Thanks for your help!

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hello Tammy,

      It really depends on what you have in mind with the membership setup.

      If you just want to grant access to certain pages to members, without having them pay for access (like a monthly subscription fee), then Wix and Weebly have such membership functions.

      Both website builders also have ecommerce tools so you can sell products. But bear in mind their shopping carts are not connected to their membership functions so you can’t charge monthly membership fees.

      If you want to create a system where you can charge monthly membership fees, then WordPress has a few options for you (such as the Wishlist plugin). Using WordPress is much more challenging than drag & drop website builders. But it is more powerful and flexible if you don’t mind climbing a steeper learning curve.

      Jeremy

  9. #

    Great post Jeremy. I’d like to set up a website that will enable for tiered pricing structure (e.g. fixed and recurring) to be implemented based on different service offering. Some degree of customisation will also be required so if required a designer/dev can make appropriate changes outside of what I can do.

    What is required to get this tiered structure set up and integrated as an efficient payment functionality and will this work fine with sites like Squarespace?

    Thanks

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Kat,

      When it comes to making such extensive modifications, the website builders above are probably not suitable.

      if anything, I’d check out Shopify or BigCommerce, if you want to keep with hosted ecommerce builders (where you don’t have to manage hosting and other technical aspects of operating your website). They are pure ecommerce builders so you get a lot more ecommerce related tools.

      If those can’t be tailored to your specific needs, then you might need to pursue more customizable platforms, which are more flexible but need a lot more maintenance and are technically challenging.

      Hope this points you in the right direction.

      Jeremy

  10. #

    Love this chart! Very helpful. I’m about to set up my first website. Just some quick questions regarding Wix:

    1. In the “Responsive Themes” row, Wix has an X. Does this mean they don’t have mobile-responsive themes? That seems unlikely. I want to make sure my visitors can see all my content easily on their phones.

    2. In the “Mobile App” row, it says Wix will allow me to work on a newsletter from my ipad. Is that the only editing / managing I can do on a mobile device using Wix?

    3. In the “Export Website” row, there is an X for Wix. Does this mean my website could not be exported if needed? Am I reading that right?

    4. Wix does not have online chat. Do you think that’s something they’ll bring on board? Online chat is one of my favorite tech help features!

    Thanks for your expertise!

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Heather,

      Glad you’re finding this chart helpful to you!

      1) Wix doesn’t offer responsive templates. But they do offer a dedicated mobile editor so that your website is mobile ready. We have a guide here on comparing Wix’s mobile editor to other website builders’ responsive designs. It’s an intro guide so it will highlight some pros & cons.

      2) In addition to the app to help you manage your newsletter function (Wix Shoutout), Wix actually has an iOS app where you can receive instant notification when someone contacts you through your website, follow up on activities such as online store purchases or hotel reservations (so depends on what business you are operating), upload images on the go, etc. Visit their support portal and search for “Mobile App” and you’ll see more about it.

      3) Correct. The main reason is that once your website exits Wix’s proprietary drag and drop platform, the other hosts won’t have the same infrastructure to help you manage your website the same way as how you would with Wix. Even with Weebly, it only export in codes so any modifications you’ll have to edit the codes directly. If this is important to you, check out Squarespace as they allow you to export most content into a WordPress friendly format.

      4) They don’t have a “native” online chat tool, but you can find multiple chat tools in their App Market that you can bolt on to your Wix site.

      Hope this helps!

      Jeremy

  11. #

    Thank you for providing all this information, Jeremy!

    I’m a complete novice when it comes to websites, but would like one built where soccer fans can come and take part in competitions such as ‘Last man standing’. This is a game where you pick one soccer team that you think will win, if they do then you are then still in the competition and must then choose a different team for the next set of fixtures. If your chosen team loses or draws you are out of the competition. The winner is obviously the last man standing.

    With this idea, I would also like to offer users a ‘pay to play’ option, whereby they pay £1 to enter and the winner takes it all (minus 10% to help pay for running costs of the website). Also a ‘play for fun’ option so that people can still play, however they wouldn’t win the money if they were the last man standing, this would go to the last standing paying user/users.

    So with this in mind my website would have to have PayPal or card payment method for the users wishing to compete for the money prizes.

    I also have around another 10 games similar to this that I would like to put on the website.

    Please can you give me any advice on which website bulider to use? I would be extremely grateful.

    Thank you,

    Rich.

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Richard,

      It sounds to me that you will have to look for a software that caters to what you need, and not a website builder. I’m not sure if there are any software out there that has what you have in mind, and if you can’t find one you might want to consider hiring a developer to help you build one.

      Once you have the software built, you might be able to embed it into a website so people can participate in the game.

      If you need tips on how to hire developers, we have a guide on how and where to hire good developers.

      Jeremy

  12. #

    Hello Jeremy,

    I have a domain name and website designed through websitebuilder.com. While it is fairly easy to navigate, their resources and customer service and limited, i.e., have yet to have a clear answer to a direct question about how to do something on their website, and I’m hitting a wall with functionality. My first question (given my limited website design experience) is do all website builders have database creation abilities? I want to create a forum and do not see anywhere on their site options that I am directed to when following other tutorials.

    My second question would be now that I have a domain and website almost completely created is it possible to switch website builders? If I do, do I lose all of my work and have to recreate from scratch?

    Thanks so much for any insight.

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hello Jeanette,

      I have yet to see a drag & drop (code free) website builder have the ability for you to create databases, and create forums from scratch. However, platforms such as Wix or Weebly offer you apps where you can “bolt on” a forum to your website.

      Wix has a couple of options so check out their App Market and search for “forum”.

      As for your last question, if you switch website builders, you will have to re-create your content from scratch. In terms of your domain name, you can just disconnect it from your existing website and connect it to your new website. We have a domain name guide here that you might find helpful.

      Jeremy

  13. #

    Great article and website.This stuff is very overwhelming to a novice like myself. I really like Squarespace, but the fact the apps only cater to iphones was a deal breaker for me. There price was very good for ecommerce. So now I’m debating about Wix and Shopify. I know everyone uses shopfiy, but it seems they nickel and dime you for everything. I’m a clothing start-up, so all this adds up. I’m scared Wix wont be as flexible.

    Thanks

    Roz

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hey Roz,

      Thanks for your note. It’s not unusual to feel that building a business online is overwhelming – it was for us at first as well! It gets much easier over time when things start to “click”. Hopefully you’re finding our discussions here helpful.

      Wix will definitely not be as flexible as Shopify, as Shopify in our view, is probably the best hosted ecommerce builder in the market today. They’re flexible, powerful and has the ability to grow with you as your business expands. So while they’re not the cheapest option around, they’re scalable and reliable which are also factors you should consider as you grow your business.

      On a side note, we published a guide on how to craft an awesome product page here. Hopefully you’ll also get some tips out of it!

      Thanks for commenting.

      Jeremy

  14. #

    Jeremy,

    We need to have a website for our Vineyard. We plan to have our own wine in the future to sell and a tasting room. Right now we need a presence out there. We have people who want to follow our progress and can hardly wait for wine. We also will be selling grapes because we have more planted than we can make into wine right now. We want a website to grow with us. We would like to be able to blog, and have all the search engines be able to find us. I use Bing more than Google just because of the photo. I have noticed that Bing does not always show all of the sites out there.

    I am a designer but do not know code so I would like to be able to put my creative spin on our site. We bought a GoDaddy domain many years ago so would like to be able to use that. We don’t want to loose our .vine or .wine since these domain extensions were being limited. We do have a .com too. We also want our emails with our domain, myname@victoriansummit. com.

    People have recommended to me SquareSpace and WordPress. I would like to know what your thoughts are and what you would recommend.

    Thank you
    Victoria

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hello Victoria,

      I think Squarespace is a really good choice for creatives (such as yourself). You don’t need to know how to code and you can still build a really good looking website with Squarespace.

      You can certainly connect your domain name from GoDaddy to your Squarespace website. Squarespace’s help center will have tutorials on how to do that.

      You can also connect your email addresses as well as Squarespace does offer you the ability to use Google Business Apps (basically the Gmail user interface) to power your custom email addresses. It’s only a few dollars a month, which is affordable.

      When it comes to WordPress, it is a powerful and flexible website builder. However, if you’re not proficient with codes or if you don’t plan on hiring a coder to help you, I’d suggest giving Squarespace a trial run first. We have a much more detailed comparison between Squarespace and WordPress here. I think you’ll find it insightful.

      As for SEO (helping your website become more searchable by search engines), take a look at our website builder SEO guide here. I think yo’ll also find this helpful.

      Jeremy

  15. #

    Hi Jeremy,

    Thanks for providing so much detailed info. Your site is super helpful!

    I’ve narrowed my choices down to Weebly or Wix. I’ve been playing around with both editors and so far I am finding Weebly more easy to use. I’m also finding the written response times of Weebly support to be way faster (minutes rather than days). That said, there are a few things above that are keeping me undecided. My sites will be a store/blog, with both elements being equally important.

    You mentioned above: “Weebly IM Creator does not offer a blog system, so you need to set up your own blog elsewhere (such as on Tumblr or WordPress)”. Please can you explain what you mean by this?

    Also, you say that you get Wix phone support even on their free plan. I don’t see a support number anywhere on Wix’s site or Facebook page. In fact, I had to keep popping into their Page to nudge them to reply to my emails. I’m curious to know how you and others find Wix support to be?

    Finally, you mention that Weebly is less SEO friendly. Is this something I ought to consider? I’d love to hear from you an other Weebly users how they found their SEO to be?

    Thanks in advance,
    Steph

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hey Steph,

      IM Creator doesn’t offer a blogging function, but Weebly does. So you can definitely create a blog with Weebly.

      As for Wix’s phone support, if you visit their support center and type in “phone support” you should be able to find it. Click on “Schedule a Call” or “Call Us Directly”

      We found Weebly’s SEO to work just fine, but Wix has a bit more flexibility especially when it comes to being able to customize your webpage URLs. When it comes to SEO in general, have a look at our website builder SEO guide here. It will offer you a bit more insights.

      At the end of the day, Weebly is easier to use than Wix, but we think that Wix offers a lot more updated and advanced features, which are also pretty easy to use. Weebly is a solid website builder for sure, but Wix is much more innovative. Have a look at the introduction section of our Wix review here for more details about what we think about Wix.

      Jeremy

  16. #

    Fantastic post, quiz tool and side-by-side analysis. All my questions are answered -thanks!

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Ivan,

      Thanks for letting us know! Glad you found our comparison table helpful.

      Jeremy

  17. #

    I love your site, thank you! I just registered my domain name through GoDaddy and opened an account on WIX to start a multi-feature blog.
    I am a bit confused, however, about how to use my domain name on Wix without upgrading to a paid Wix account. The page I’m facing on Wix says:
    “Connect a domain you already own
    Start by choosing a Premium plan to upgrade your website. Once your site is Premium, we’ll get your domain connected.
    Advanced: Transfer your domain registration to Wix”
    Which should I do? I’d rather have .wix included in my url to start than to pay a monthly fee right now (unless you advise that it’s worth it).

    Thanks in advance!

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Doreen,

      Thanks for your comment and for visiting our website!

      For Wix, if you want to connect your own domain name to your website, you’ll have to upgrade to at least their Connect Domain plan.

      If you don’t mind using the Wix subdomain at the moment, then you don’t need to upgrade. You can keep using Wix’s free plan for an unlimited time until you are ready to upgrade later (or not).

      There are certainly some advantages to upgrading. For instance, you’ll get better branding through your own custom domain name. This is important as you start to brand your business (or whatever your website is built for). So having a brand or a name to your website is definitely something you should consider, at least after you gain some traction and visitors to your website.

      Further, if you upgrade to their Combo plan (or higher), you can remove the Wix advertisement from your website. This too, is something you can consider down the road if you want to focus on branding your website.

      Hope this points you in the right direction!

      Jeremy

  18. #

    Hey Jeremy, I love Wix, they allow for multiple site editors now. Good stuff.

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hey Robb,

      Thanks so much for letting me know! I’ve updated the comparison chart above. Thanks for contributing – I appreciate it!

      Jeremy

  19. #

    I am looking for a good hosting company and one that incorporates Wix or Weebly, i was starting to use ehost but they are so restrictive and do not allow WIX or Weebly only their own basic websitebuilder

    I want to set up a site for travelers who can login via numerous ways, Facebook or their own login details created onsite
    I also want to set up a number of options where people can set up their own sell items onsite and maybe cars, electrical, property, etc…
    One of the most important parts is to ensure the site is user friendly and mobile friendly too, has forums in each and every country, plus each country selected will have their own content enabled

    Can WIX provide this?
    Thank you so much for the review, most insightful

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Mike,

      I don’t think Wix can provide the features you’re looking for. Sounds to me that you’re looking to build a marketplace (like eBay or Amazon), which is a specialized type of website. If you search for “marketplace website builders”, you’ll find a few options.

      Jeremy

  20. #

    I’d appreciate your insight about the issue of “owning” versus “renting” your site.
    I’ve read some articles that mention that when you rent ultimately, you may not have full control over your site, nor have the ability to use elements for other social media or other platforms.
    Although you mention WP as less user friendly then some of the others what are the options for ownership?

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hello Cathy,

      That’s an interesting way of putting it. “Renting” being using a drag & drop website builder where they provide you with all the technology and support you need to power your website, versus “Owning” meaning you have to build your site from scratch (almost), manage your own technology and basically play the role of an IT manager, at times (or hiring someone).

      To take that idea further, it’s like building your own house versus renting a place where it’s move-in-ready. Building a house is not rocket science by any means, but it does take a lot more time, education, effort, energy, and a lot more financial capital. But at the end of the day, you can customize it.

      With drag & drop website builders, they’re “move-in-ready” so you can get a website up and running very quickly, but with some limitations as they lack the flexibility of having a custom built website.

      If you want to control your website with a lot of flexibility, I’d definitely suggest WordPress. Other solutions can be a lot costlier and more challenging to manage (such as Joomla or Drupal). WordPress is probably the best “bang for your buck” when it comes to the amount of effort it takes to learn (or pay to have things configured / set up for you), versus the flexibility it offers you.

      Jeremy

  21. #

    Hi Jeremy, I’m thinking of developing my own website (not a techie, but encouraged by the proliferation of DIY website builders). I’ve heard a lot about WordPress.org or .com as a website builder, however I did not see that in your top 6. Any particular reason for that ? Thanks

    • #

      Sorry, just came across a detailed FAQ on your site on this topic. Will go through that. Many thanks.

      • Jeremy Wong
        #

        No problem, Porus. WordPress.org is a really good platform, but it’s fairly advanced for most beginners and non-techies.

        If you want more in-depth discussions about WordPress versus some website builders, take a look at this page here.

        Jeremy

  22. #

    Hi Jeremy,

    Firstly, thank you for providing this forum – it appears that you are giving a lot of advice here, so I hope you don’t mind me putting a question to you.

    I am about to build a website for my new business, offering the service of Civil Celebrant – for weddings and funerals.

    I have spent a bit of time trying both Wix & Squarespace and LOVE the way Wix works and looks, however almost anytime I ask friends / colleagues for advice they say that I should avoid Wix due to issues with Google not bringing it up in searches. One friend suggested this was because the mobile platform area is not responsive?

    I am wondering if you could please advise me whether you think Wix would in fact be OK. And are there any basic tips for ensuring I get the most out of Search Engine Optimisation? Or should I put a monthly budget aside for Google Adwords?

    Huge thanks..
    Kate

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Kate,

      Thanks for your comment. I think there are a lot of misconceptions around this topic here. We go over this in details in this article here.

      I think you’ll find it helpful!

      Jeremy

  23. #

    Hi Jeremy, some great info on here.
    I am looking to build a web site that will sell items once I have added value to them from the supplier. I need to know which website builder would be best to be able for me to take orders add some printed materials to the products supplied to me via the supplier in our workshop then to ship out to the customer. We will be starting with perhaps 20 items half of which will require printed items and growing the business adding more to the inventory. Any help on this will be gratefully received.
    Thanks
    Martyn

    • #

      Jeremy,
      I should have added, they will need to send me their artwork via e-mail. A turn around time would probably be 3-4 days.

      • Jeremy Wong
        #

        Hey Martyn,

        I’m not sure if I fully understand the process. So do you mean the ability for your customer to email you their artwork, then you add the artwork on the product which you source from your supplier, then you send your customer the final product?

        If so, what you will probably need to do is email your customer each time you make a sale to ask them for the artwork. The actual sale between your customer and your store is fairly straight forward. They just visit your online store and purchase the product from you. Just list out on your product page that you will email them for the required information to be added on to the product, before shipping the final product to them.

        At least that is what I’d do. It’s sort of piecing together the process, as I haven’t seen an ecommerce creator that can integrate all these together.

        Jeremy

  24. #

    Hi! I’ve been reading articles/charts on your website for almost 3 hrs now so I wanted to thank you for all the information you have made available for beginners like me! I had only heard about squarespace and wordpress so I’m now exploring this third option called Wix. I need help figuring out what platform to use for a community website where people interact, rank and review things (image content), leave comments and create their own accounts and profiles. Something like worldcosplay dot net . Any ideas?

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hello Mary,

      Wow, 3 hours? Thanks so much for reading our discussions! Very flattering indeed.

      It sounds to me that you need some sort of “social community website builder”. Search for that phrase in Google and you’ll find a few more suitable for your needs.

      Website builders like Wix or Squarespace don’t have ability to help you create a community / social network.

      Hope this points you in the right direction!

      Jeremy

  25. #

    What about portability? That seems to be a huge topic / and barrier for this decision. I will have an image rich site and am concerned that in the future I may decide to change hosts….? Please advise.

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hey Kathy,

      Take a look at Footnote 10 above, where we have more details about portability.

      Jeremy

  26. #

    I’m looking to start a “voice-over” career, so I need to be able to send audio files (as well as having a personal profile, etc.), but no need to accept payments through my site…any recommendations?

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Don,

      Any one of the website builders above will allow you to upload audio files so your web visitors can download them. You can also create a simple biography or “about me” page with any one of them.

      If you really don’t know which website builder to experiment with, I’d suggest starting from the left side of our table above (i.e. Wix, Squarespace, Weebly). Wix is the best “All Around” website builder, at this point.

      Jeremy

  27. #

    I am a newbie to website building, and I am completely overwhelmed. My site is powered by Powweb.
    I struggled with them for years. In recent years they have improved their customer service to where I can finally get human help. I have my site up and running now but I don’t believe it is verified by Google yet. I will have to find help at Powweb to do that. My site was built using Weebly – the older version, I think.

    But to get to my point, I am so glad to find your site. I wish I had found it before I even started my site. To someone who is a non-tekkie” type person, just learning what all the technical abbreviations meant was a problem. Thank you so much for this information.

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hello Patricia,

      Thanks so much for sharing your comment with us.

      To help your website become recognized by Google, try setting up Google Search Console where you can verify that you own the website. The help articles from Weebly / Powweb should be able to walk you through that. It does take some time for Google to process your site, so just be patient.

      One thing to consider is to use Weebly.com directly. As you mentioned, the version of Weebly that Powweb offers is outdated. If you used Weebly.com directly, you’d receive assistance from their own support team, directly.

      We have a discussion about that here. The article talks about using Weebly directly, versus the version that Bluehost offers. Even though it is targeted at Bluehost, the idea is the same as if it was targeted at Powweb.

      Jeremy

  28. #

    Hi, I’m interested in starting a professional Stylist business, which website will work for me and how can I attach a mass email to clients? I have already started a blog with WordPress, but it is confusing.

    Thanks,
    Sheri

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hello Sheri,

      I’d suggest you take a look at Wix and Weebly to start. Both of these website builders offer you newsletter capability (Wix Shoutout and Weebly Promote). See our Footnote 16 above for more discussions about them.

      These newsletter tools are fully integrated with the website builders already, so they’re easy to set up and manage. WordPress is a really good and flexible platform, but it’s much more advanced and has a much steeper learning curve.

      Jeremy

  29. #

    Hi Jeremy,
    I write for a living, and having swapped over to a new agent, she is quite strongly advising me to set up author websites for my two author names. I used to be happy with WPress four or five years ago, but I don’t need all the endless tweaking and SEO’ing that goes with WP, I need to be able to come up most days, post a few thoughts as easily as possible, and then concentrate on my work.

    My needs are simple really – possibly a slide show of my books, an area for each book, a shopping area to buy each book, a link to the Amazon, Kobo and Apple bookshops where readers can buy also, an ability to allow free downloads of chapters/books, a blogging area that keeps readers updated with what I’m doing and where I am, and last but not least an email capture device.
    Oops, forgot to list that I would like the facility to add photo’s to each blog post if needed and it needs to be responsive (as I know Gurgle’s algorithm penalises slow loading/non responsive sites).
    And it has to have Pizazz, Real Pizazz.
    Jeremy I’d appreciate your advice on the best platform, and buy via your link. BTW there are a lot of writers out there in the same boat, judging from the forums – I’m surprised that the big hitters haven’t cottoned on to the need (I’ve just had a quick look a Ukit and they have a template for a tattoo artist but not for a writer/author – bizarre).
    Hope you can help!
    Jeff

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hey Jeff,

      I’d suggest you check out Squarespace or Weebly. Both offer you responsive designs so websites built with these platforms are automatically mobile friendly. Wix is also mobile friendly, but they’re not responsive as you get a separate, dedicated mobile editor for Wix websites. So I think you might want to check them out as well.

      You can definitely insert slideshows, setup dedicated areas / pages for your books, link out to the several places that you mentioned and create blog posts. Those are fairly basic functions that the website builders all have.

      As for the ability to capture emails, Wix and Weebly have built in newsletter services (see footnote 16 above). So your visitors can subscribe to your newsletter series.

      When it comes to “pizazz”, I’d suggest you take a look at Wix and Squarespace’s design templates. Both of these website builders probably offer you the most professional looking designs.

      A prudent thing to do is sign up for to their free / trial accounts and invest some time into testing them out. That’s one of the best ways to help you make a more informed decision as to which website builder works best for your needs.

      Jeremy

      • #

        Thanks so much for taking the time to get back to me Jeremy. I think I’ll be going with Wix initially, (as you’ve advised I’ve had a play with both and I find Wix more intuitive for me).
        Great service, great site, thank again.
        Jeff

        • Jeremy Wong
          #

          Great! Thanks for following up and letting me know. It never hurts to sign up and test drive a few of these website builders. Best of luck on your website!

          Jeremy

  30. #

    I definitely agree that you should have consider to try a trial series of it so that you can choose which one is most comfortable to use and which one is appropriate for your webpage.Consider all the aspects and also the pricing of it whether i is beyond or above the limit value of your concern and the content of it if it is good to be the platform.

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hello Camille,

      That’s definitely the right approach. It’s the same idea as purchasing a car (but at a MUCH smaller scale!), it’s always wise to test drive a few options before finalizing your decision. Thanks for sharing.

      Jeremy

  31. #

    Wix is my all time favorite site to make a website. Thanks for this info.

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Thanks for sharing your feedback.

  32. #

    Hello! How possibly can we make a network marketing website with wix?

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Vially,

      Do you mean you want to build a website where your members / community can message each other, something like Facebook?

      If so, Wix won’t be the right tool for you. Have a look at Ning.com, or try searching for “online community builder” or something along that line.

      Jeremy

  33. #

    Hello Jeremy, I’m old school .. have my websites on Frontpage and they bring me a lot of business.
    I want to keep the look of what I have basically but have a modern engine under the hood of my old pickup (look) if you get my drift.

    I keep looking at all the new websites, themes, etc. and I do not understand the concept of ‘theme’s” exactly.
    My assumption is that a ‘theme’ is the composite of photos shown?
    Or is a theme the structural design? What I mean is, if I find a website that I like the structure of pages and menus, can I get rid of the canned pictures and add my own in their place?

    Thank you.

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Diana,

      Yes you can. So if you like the theme (the structural design), you can remove the default images and text, as those are just there as placeholders to help illustrate what a website could potentially look like.

      For instance, if you sign up to a trial account with Wix, and pick one of the themes / templates, you’ll very quickly see that you can move the pre-populated content around the site by just dragging and dropping them, and you can also delete these content or replace them with your own.

      Hope this helps!

      Jeremy

  34. #

    Hello –
    I would like to create a website for my handmade ceramics to show and to sell. Judging from your reviews the Wix website builder would be very good for such a thing. Can you give me recommendation for which template (s) would be most useful for me? Without knowing much it seems that ‘home decor’, or ‘fashion boutique’ and perhaps ‘lilou paperie’ would be good choices, but open to other template suggestions, as well.
    Looking forward to hearing from you,
    Ingrid

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Ingrid,

      I’m not intimately familiar with Wix’s templates (but I do enjoy browsing through them as they look so professional!), but I think you’re on the right track. I looked at the 3 templates you suggested and they all look really good! Other ones that I spotted are “Jewelry Designer” and “Bow Tie Store”.

      I like Bow Tie Store as the home page has parallax effect, giving me that 3D feel which is quite interesting and gets my attention.

      Jeremy

  35. #

    Thank you for all this information. I’m looking for a really easy to use, responsive site. I already have my domain name with another host. If I use, for example, Squarespace, could I still have my own domain name, i.e., MyCompanyName.Com, without any extension?

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hello Michelle,

      Yes – you can just connect your domain name from where it is held / registered, to your Squarespace website. To display your custom domain name on your Squarespace website, you’ll need to upgrade to at least one of its premium plans.

      Squarespace has tutorials on how to connect your domain name in their support portal.

      Jeremy

  36. #

    If i start a website on wix and upgrade to a premium plan, do i need to do this for every site or does the premium plan paid once allow me to host several sites

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hello Brian,

      For all of the website builders above, each individual website is upgraded on a standalone basis. So if you have 5 separate websites within your account, and you want to upgrade 3 of them to access more advanced tools / features, then you have to upgrade each of the 3.

      Hope this clarifies things!

      Jeremy

  37. #

    Hi Jeremy
    I’m a set designer, and I wish to promote my boutique rental properties. So of course Squarespace is aesthetically my first choice. BUT the phone support offered by WIX makes me almost willing to compromise! Also, I did not see templates on either site that had good calendar features (for showing availability etc., and local events). Do you know if I can import a good monthly calendar from elsewhere?
    Thank you!!!
    Miriam

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hey Miriam,

      I think Squarespace has a calendar function that might work well for you. Have you seen their Calendar Block?

      Wix has numerous Calendar Apps you can check out. Visit their App Market and search for “calendar” and you’ll see them.

      Hope this helps!

      Jeremy

  38. #

    Arghhh! – I love – love – love this site and your very helpful information!!! – however, whenever I read through a ton of content trying to find an answer, then can’t, I try to post a comment/question. When done, I hit “enter” only to be told that I timed out!! So frustrating.
    I still love you, though!!! LOL
    Here’s my question (which I am saving on Word, so when I time out I can close my browser and then go back into your site and repost).
    Actually – two questions – First: I post long lists of businesses on my site. The lists include the basic details about the business, their genre, description, etc. I add and change businesses listed frequently. Squarespace only allows me to type info directly into their blocks, so I would have to edit this huge block of info, or else use separate blocks for each and move them all around each time I added/deleted. Does WIX have a better option? – ie importing from an excel or word doc?
    Second: I need ppl to be able to search these business by genre and location. I see that Squarespace has an in site search capability, but can’t find info on WIX. Do they have a search capability or Plug in?

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Cynthia,

      Thanks for your comment!

      If I’m understanding your question properly, I think that with Wix, you’ll have to update your listings the same way as Squarespace. I’m not aware of a way to import blocks of information. I think you’ll have to copy and paste data from your Word or Excel file into a Wix element (such as text).

      As for site search function, Wix doesn’t have a “native” search function built in. However, you can bolt on 3rd party search apps directly into your Wix site. The benefit of using these apps is that they are configured to work properly with Wix websites. Visit their App Market and type in “search” to look for these apps.

      Good luck!

      Jeremy

  39. #

    Thanks J’ for your great info. Please what do you think could be the easiest and cheapest option to build forum site where members can log in and post ideas (post) and replies to post (comments) on different issues?

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hello Jerry,

      Some website builders (for example, Wix and Weebly) do have third party forum apps that you can bolt on to your website. However, I’m not entirely sure how good they are as I’ve never built a forum with good amount of interactions before.

      There is a community builder called Ning that you might want to check out. I’ve never used them before in my previous projects, so can’t assess them objectively. But check them out!

      Jeremy

  40. #

    Hi Jeremy,

    Thanks for all your wonderful information it is so helpful. I have two questions regarding Wix – after your feedback I have chosen to go with them for now. Do you know if it is possible to use 2 templates from Wix in one domain name? I want to have a blog that is a seperate template to my main website, but want the page link displayed on the main website and all reached by the same domain name. I’m having a little difficulty finding how to reach customer support on Wix for a not common issue.

    The other question is if I want to expand my business later down the track and move to an online store on Shopify, is it an easy process to change teams? It would only be the domain name that is essential really, I can copy info and have a design change without a problem. Thanks!

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hey Vanessa,

      You can create as many websites as you want under one single Wix account. However, each website can only use one template, and each website can only have one domain name.

      However, what you can try to do is create a sub-domain name. So for instance, for your main site you can use your normal domain name (such as example.com). For your blog (2nd website), you can use a sub-domain name, such as blog.example.com.

      You should be able to do that through your domain name registrar (consult their support team on how to do that).

      So you are “branding” both your websites using the same domain name. One is the main domain name, and the other is a sub-domain.

      In terms of migrating to Shopify (one of the best ecommerce builders in our view), it’s definitely possible. You can just disconnect your domain names that are pointed to your Wix websites, and reconnect them to your new Shopify sites. Shopify’s support portal will show you how to connect domain names to online stores built by their platform.

      Hope this helps!

      Jeremy

  41. #

    Hi Jeremy,

    Thank you so much for all this information! Such a great help.
    I am starting and online Jewellery boutique and want something easy to use through the back end re orders, customer information mail outs etc however I want something visually appealing design wise! and that looks great off the mobile! I have been looking at Wix, shopify and go daddy.
    As I am starting out and growing my business which one do you think would be the best fit for me!

    Thank you!

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hello Laura,

      It really depends. Generally speaking, Shopify is the best platform for building ecommerce websites (if you haven’t seen our discussion about Shopify, you can see it here).

      Even though Wix is easier to use, Shopify offers more tools, support and general ecommerce ecosystem for online stores.

      Once you get going and if your business start to grow larger, Shopify offers you much more advanced options, as well as the options of hiring specialists (design or developers) to help you customize your store.

      The immediate drawback is that Shopify is a bit pricier. But they offer much broader options for you down the road.

      Having said that, if you just want simpler tools, and an easier user interface where you can drag and drop content anywhere you want, then Wix is a good choice.

      I’d go with either Shopify or Wix, before GoDaddy.

      Hope this helps!

      Jeremy

  42. #

    Hello Jeremy!

    Thank you for all your great information. I’m in a bit of a conundrum.

    I am an online teacher and have taken some time to figure out the components I want to have in my website. And, I love (and am possibly semi-obsessed with) the designs on SquareSpace, so much so that I want to build my website on SquareSpace.

    The tricky part is that I found a software I like that has the exact online classroom components that I need, but whose plug-in is not compatible with SquareSpace. This same software is compatible with WordPress.

    Could you please offer me some advice as to what to do? Could I build my website on SquareSpace and then export it to WordPress, and add the plug-in there? And what exactly does it mean to export a website to WordPress? Or could I build my website on SquareSpace and then add a link for my online-classroom?

    Thank you in advance for any input you can offer.

    Kindest regards,
    Jill

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Jill,

      The export function for Squarespace only exports your content. So when it comes to design, you’ll have to configure that in your WordPress account. Generally speaking, if you want to make edits to your WordPress website design, you’ll have to tweak the codes to do so (you can see our discussion about Squarespace vs WordPress here).

      So the export approach might not work well for what you want. Functionally it might work, but design wise might not be what you’re looking for.

      The option of building your main website on Squarespace, then building your online classroom separately, then linking up both sites – it just might work. Some people prefer not to do that as they want to control everything under one roof. Another thing is that the design of your website and the online classroom may not match. They’re not big deals for some people, but obviously those are personal choices.

      If you don’t mind managing both platforms, the option you suggested will work.

      Jeremy

  43. #

    Hi Jeremy,

    I am wondering if I should use Squarespace which is esthetically beautiful vs using shopify which is more business oriented . I also have a dilemma since I am in Canada the templates don`t seem the same as they do in the video posted for squarepace it looks a lot more limited. I don’t know if its just an impression but It seems that not all of the website builder are equipped the same as for wix which is what I have used before it clearly indicates that theres the old version and the newest version. I did not get the new version as the one4s in the recent youtube videos.Does the Ip address come into play? I am also wondering if shopify is not as esthetic does it not have a more suitable e-commerce plateform for small businesses.

    What are the cons of squarespace and shopify?

    Thanks

    Alexia

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Alexia,

      All website builders should be offering the same tools and design templates for both US and Canada. I’m not aware that they limit tools / templates to users outside of the US, as Canada is a large market for most website builders.

      As for cons of Squarespace and Shopify, you can view our reviews for them here and here. We listed out certain pros and cons for each one of them there.

      Jeremy

  44. #

    Hey Jeremy,

    Not sure what kind of site I need… e-commerce or business. I’m not really selling something but in a way I am. I take still pictures and make a video out of them along with music and transitions. So what I need is a website displaying some of my work and a way for people to order different packages. I also need a way for people to upload their photos for their video. I use dropbox a lot and thought that would be a great way to transfer the photos.
    What do you suggest?

    Jill

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Jill,

      There isn’t a website builder that I’m aware of that allows users to upload their own files into your website. You can probably create one by it will require a much more powerful, heavily customizable website builder (perhaps WordPress or something like that).

      A work around is for you to list out your products, and after a customer purchases you can then send him/her an email providing further instructions on how they can send you their photos. I’d imagine you can use a website builder that allows you to sell digital products (so they don’t have to fill in a shipping address).

      Once they have made a purchase, you can set up an automatic email that gets send to them right away, providing further instructions on how they can send you their photos. Website builders allow you to send “Thank You” emails after someone purchases from you – so just use this email to insert your instructions.

      You can see which online store builder supports digital products here.

      Jeremy

  45. #

    Hey jeremy , thanks for your information.
    I am a fashion designer setting up my own buisness and recently set up my own custom template on wix. I did some researching before i published and paid and found out that apparently wix can make your website disappear if they want too? is this true ? also what would you reccomend as the best website builder for a new small buisness that needs an online store ?
    kind regards

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Anni,

      Website builders and (most technology services online) generally speaking, can shut down your account if you grossly violate their terms of services. Some examples may include posting adult content, hate content, that sort of content when you are not supposed to under their terms of services.

      So if you’re worried, make sure you read through Wix’s terms of services / use (link at the bottom of the Wix site). One should always practice the same level of prudence for all other services you use online. I know most people can’t be bothered to read them, but it’s just being careful.

      If you are just posting or selling fashion designs / products, I don’t see why they will shut you down. After all, Wix has over 1.9 million paying customers which tells you that they’re a very successful business so I’m sure they’re not going to “randomly” shut down “normal” websites!

      Hope this helps.

      Jeremy

  46. #

    Hi Jeremy,

    I’ve been going through your information for the past couple of days. So informative and thank you for posting it!

    My issue is I have a job right now that’s due yesterday so maybe you can point me in a direction because I’m researching myself into confusion.

    I’m a print designer and illustrator that’s been working for many years and I’m hired for my aesthetic sense. I’ve been resisting web design for as long as I’ve been able to. So I built my portfolio site in WordPress and long story short it got hacked amongst other things and in the end I had to nuke it. So obviously I need something else for my client while I sort out my WordPress skills!

    In brief, they need an e-commerce site with an about page, a blog, e-mail/newsletter integration and a separate login area for wholesalers and salespeople to order. They’re a small startup with a great line of products that want to grow but for now money is an issue. They want paypal and major credit cards and a very simple and straightforward site. It would be great to have something where more bells and whistles could be added later but not a must right at this second.

    The big thing is they want a custom design with the artwork I’m doing for them so that’s a big one. I know some code and can always become very good at something with a gun pointed at me but less stress is best and them waiting for me to learn is not really an option. I’d like to be able to customize it as much as possible.

    I really thank you for any thoughts you might have.

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hello Judy,

      Sorry to hear about your WordPress site! Take a look at Weebly. It’s super easy to use and allows you to publish a site very quickly.

      In addition to that, the reason why I’m suggesting Weebly (given you’re short of time) is that they give you access to edit the HTML / CSS codes so you can make custom tweaks to the design if you want to. It sounds like this is something you can take advantage of given you know how to work with codes and that your customer wants a customized design. The other website builders don’t give you as much access (or no access at all) to the codes of the website.

      You can sell products with Weebly, and you can set up a membership area to hide some pages to the public. However, the membership functions are fairly basic, so make sure you review their support portal to see what’s possible. For instance, you can’t set up paid membership subscriptions (meaning your members are billed every month for joining). But you can definitely set up a membership gateway – you just can’t charge for it.

      Hope this helps! And good luck!

      Jeremy

  47. #

    Hello Jeremy,

    I have a website through Dex Media where I also do print advertising. I have had this site with them for over 10 years. Their platform is Website Creator Pro. I have basically written the entire site myself. As a landscape designer and horticultural consultant I have many photo galleries and blog/educational pages. It is quite extensive and now a bit clunky and overloaded.

    When Dex approached me this year for my advertising renewal my options were to pay them $3,000 plus $199/month and they would rebuild my website in a word press format. After I got up from the floor (I pay $99 a month for the web site currently) I realized I had a problem.

    I have two big concerns. They have my business domain ‘www.coloradovista.com and if I decide to leave their program and build my own website I am not sure how that works.

    I receive client calls daily because they find my business through the web site and I always appear on the first page of a google search for a landscape designer in my area. I am very hands on and like to add project photos/designs once or more a month. So I am very active with my web site. I am now also developing my designs using sketchup and need to add video files to show 3d walkthroughs. I can afford no down time and my exposure on google needs to remain at the top of the search engine.

    Could you take a peek at my website (yes, you will see the need for it to be updated) and the type of content and recommend the best web site builder that I should go with to reproduce the site. Most importantly can you share with me how I transfer my domain (I have been in business since 2003) and do not want to lose what I have built in the last 13 years.

    I appreciate your time and consideration in advance.

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hey Tanya,

      Sounds pretty nerve wrecking to me! But honestly, I think a lot of businesses go through the same challenges: 1) to do it themselves or pay a lot of money to someone else to manage it; and 2) how to retain search engine ranking if you’ve been around for years (and rank well).

      I think there are merits to paying someone to building the site and managing it for you – but ONLY if you have a proven business model that’s generating profits, which sounds like you do.

      A lot of people are tempted to pay designers / developers a lot of money before they even have a viable, cash flowing business yet – it’s a big mistake in my view (we wrote an article about that here). I guess it’s easier to throw money at a problem (them not knowing how to build / design a website), when in fact, there are a lot of solutions to help business owners (such as the website builders we outlined above).

      In your case, since you have an existing business already, you have options. Either to pay the team to build / manage for you, or do it yourself. It also sounds like you’re quite hands on, so it might make sense for you to use a website builder so you can add / remove / modify content yourself, without using a “middle person”, so to speak.

      It seems to me that your bigger concern is how to build a new website without losing business (by retaining good search ranking). This is a bit of a “black box” as there is no guarantee that search engines will behave the same way once you have a new site up and running.

      So what Google recommends is that you “301 redirect” your old webpage addresses to your new webpage addresses. If you do it correctly, Google will know that your pages from your existing / current website, are now part of the new website. So in theory, all your page rankings should be passed on to your new website. In theory, you wouldn’t lose any rankings in search engines.

      However, in practice, it may potentially be different. So just keep that in mind. There are a lot of discussions about 301 redirects and case studies about moving websites on the internet – so do spend some time studying those.

      As for how to move domain names, it’s not too challenging. Go to a domain name registrar (such as GoDaddy) and you can purchase a domain migration service. They will have instructions on how you can move your domain name from your existing provider, and into GoDaddy.

      You should technically own your domain name (but it depends on how you worked out your deal with your current service provider), so you should be able to transfer it into another domain name registrar (see our domain name guide – Topic 7). If you meet resistance, perhaps don’t tell them you want to stop using them to service your entire website. Maybe tell them you only want to move the domain name. Once the domain name is out, then move on to the next phase. One step at a time.

      I know it’s a daunting decision and process, so take your time in studying what others have done. Learn more about the domain migration process (and make sure you confirm with your current provider that you can move your domain name) and also the 301 redirect process.

      Good luck!

      Jeremy

      • #

        Is there a website builder that you would recommend for me and that could work with me on the 301 direct? Thank you.

        • Jeremy Wong
          #

          Tanya,

          Yes. The top 3 website builders we discussed above all give you the ability to perform 301 re-directs. If you visit their support guides and type in “301” they will give you more details about how to do them.

          Their 301 re-directs only work if you use the SAME domain name as your previous site. If you are changing domain names (avoid this if possible, unless you want to rebrand your company), the process becomes a bit more tricky.

          Basically, you tell the website builder what are your old page URLs, and what are the new ones. So if your URL for a specific page doesn’t change after you migrate to a new website builder, then you don’t need to do a 301 re-direct for that specific URL.

          Migration is always a tricky task, especially if you have good search rankings to start out with. There are different known and unknown reasons why a search engine (such as Google) will change your ranking after a site migration. Keeping the URL structure the same for each page or doing 301 re-directs for those that changed is only one part of it. There are a lot of resources / discussions that cover this online, so a Google search will lead you to some of them!

          Jeremy

  48. #

    Hey Jeremy…I want to start a website that is social linking…i.e., Facebook or Twitter. I need the domain name, the site itself built ( i can pay up to $10,000) as well as technical support and e-commerce; I will also need an “App” for my site. Any advice?????? Is there a company that can do it all for me? Thank you for your help, I appreciate it so much

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Anthony,

      Check out marketplaces like Upwork. You can find a lot of developers for hire there. But just beware that there are good developers and there are less good / bad developers.

      Make sure you interview them fully (check their past projects, read their reviews, message them frequently with questions and see how comprehensive / insightful and how fast they answer them, and get reference checks).

      Hope this points you in the right direction!

      Jeremy

  49. #

    Hi Jeremy,

    Great information! I created a website some months ago before realizing the need for wordpress compatibility to allow for an interactive site. Do you know about simplesite.com and how easy would it be to export content to a wordpress compatible site like Wix? .

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Andrea,

      I haven’t used SimpleSite before so I can’t quite comment on their capabilities. If the ability to export content from a website builder into WordPress is important to you, take a look at Squarespace. In our discussion here, under section 9, we talked about its export function.

      Hope this points you in the right direction.

      Jeremy

  50. #

    So, does the “X” mean the site does not provide this function? In the quiz, I said I wanted a site that was mobile responsive and Wix was suggested for me. Yet, from the chard it does not appear that Wix is mobile responsive. Did I miss something?

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Rick,

      Correct – “X” means the website builder doesn’t offer that specific option. In the Quiz, the question asks if you want a mobile “friendly” website builder – which doesn’t necessarily mean it has to be a mobile responsive design. I’m sorry if it wasn’t clear enough!

      Wix doesn’t offer mobile responsive designs at the moment, but they do offer you a dedicated mobile editor where you can customize the mobile version of your website. So technically, your website can show different layouts / content on mobile phones, than on desktop computers.

      The advantage is that Wix allows you to pick and choose which content you want to display on a much smaller screen (mobile device) – so this gives you more control and flexibility. The drawback is that you have a bit more work to do to configure your mobile website.

      With a mobile responsive design (where the desktop version of your website is automatically re-arranges itself to fit nicely into a mobile device), you don’t have to edit for a separate mobile website so it saves you a bit of time. The drawback, is that you don’t have control over your mobile display.

      So just some pros and cons to consider for other readers who aren’t familiar with this.

      We have a detailed discussion about mobile displays for various website builders here.

      Jeremy

  51. #

    Hi Jeremy,

    I’m looking to build a business website to offer a unique set of services related to Project Management. I’ve looked at some of the free sites (Wix, Websitebuilder, etc.), and I don’t seem to see a template that would be a good fit for the type of business and services I want to offer. I’m now thinking about looking at some of the paid website companies, but there are a lot of them. Any recommendations for either paid or free sites? Thanks.

    Jay

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Jay,

      Sometimes it’s challenging to look at a pre-set “out of the box” template and see if it works or not, as the layout of the content and the outline of the design “as is” might not be what you have in mind.

      The benefit of using Wix (for instance) is that you can drag and drop content wherever you want. They also allow you to heavily customize the design of your webpages, without coding. So it might take some work, but you can alter the layout of the templates with their tools so to create what you have in mind. This applies to most other website builders out there (though it’s easier to alter designs with Wix).

      Other than that, if you want a design that completely catered to what you have in mind, you can always hire a designer and coder to custom create a design for you. But I think that’s going a bit too far, if you don’t have a cash flowing business.

      Jeremy

  52. #

    Hi Jeremy,

    Thank you so much for this very useful information. I’m starting to create my brand and my business. I need a website that can handle my many pages -Blogging, Information on my Plays( Show dates), Motivational Speaking business inquires, email subscription list, a site that can support my podcast/podbean and youtube uploads, would allow monetize my website?

    Need help

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hey Indigo,

      There isn’t a website builder that’s listed here that will give you all the tools you want – specifically the email subscription list and podcasting function. But they will be able to help you with your other requirements (pages, blogging, uploading YouTube, etc).

      If podcasting is more important than email sign ups, then take a look at Squarespace as they have a built-in “native” podcasting tool. You can then add on a newsletter sign up widget such as Aweber to your website. That will work.

      If having an integrated newsletter sign up function is more important to you, then look at Wix (Shoutout) or Weebly (Promote) as they have built in email subscription tools. You can integrate podcast audio sessions by inserting players like Soundcloud or something like that.

      Jeremy

  53. #

    Hi Jeremy,

    Love your articles. They’re all very helpful.
    I’m trying to open an online shop for my small business. I understand now how important SEO is. Problem is I don’t have any coding skills so now I’m looking for website builders that have a good built-in SEO. Also content on my website will be based mostly on pictures rather than written content since it’s a jewelry shop. Which one would you recommend in my case? Do you have any advice on optimizing images for SEO?
    Thanks in advance.

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Cristina,

      Ranking high in search engines based on just using images will probably be pretty tough, as Google (and probably other major search engines) might have a harder time understanding what your website is about if you only have images. It’s easier for them to “read” your text and understand what you’re discussing on the page.

      Having said that, what you should do is make sure you insert “Alt Text” for all your images. This allows Google to understand what the image is about since they can’t “read” pictures yet.

      Also, name your image files in a very specific way. So don’t name your image files generically, like “Image” for instance. If your image displays a Mac Air, then name the image file name to “Mac Air” or something like that. Be as specific as you can, as Google does assess the name of the file name when its trying to understand what the image file is about (not sure how much weigh they put on it, but it’s not a lot of work to label files anyway).

      Further, do all the basic SEO stuff, like meta descriptions, titles on your page so search engines know what the page is all about. All the drag & drop website builders above allow you to do that.

      If you can insert written content, that would be best. Even just to describe what your page is all about. This will help search engines understand your page content.

      Last but not least, try to promote your pages as much as you can. Share it with online communities, so get people talking and writing about your site. The more other websites link to your website / webpages, the higher it may rank in search results (generally speaking). Search engines view direct links to your website / webpages as an endorsement. We have a bit of information about SEO on our FAQ page here – you might find it helpful as well.

      Hope this helps!

      Jeremy

  54. #

    Unfortunately there is no comparison for iPad /tablet usage . The trend is towards mobile devices and the deal breaker for myself and many others is that any website builder I use needs to be editable on my iPad , especially since I’m about to purchase an iPad Pro . Cheers , Dave .

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Dave,

      Actually, Weebly and Jimdo both have iPad apps where you can build your website directly on your iPad. We have more details about this under Footnote 17 above. So definitely check them out!

      Jeremy

  55. #

    Such helpful information! Thank you! I was hoping you could give me some advice on which website builder is best for my needs. I am starting a new business and need my website to include a calander of events that would include pictures and change monthly, as well as taking reservations for classes and able to accept payments for said reservations. Any advice you can offer would be helpful! Thank you!

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hello Taleana,

      Take a look at Wix Bookings. It’s a tool that you can use with Wix to help you setup an online reservation system which people can make bookings with you. The tool is also integrated with a shopping cart so you can receive payments.

      Jeremy

      • #

        Thank you! Again… So helpful! By far the most helpful and informative website!

  56. #

    Hi Jeremy,

    Thank you so much for writing this article. So very helpful and fair play to answering each comment – top man.

    Take care,
    Krupa

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Thanks Krupa! Glad you found helpful and valuable information from our discussions here.

      Jeremy

  57. #

    Hey Jeremy,

    do you have any suggestions, about Bitcoin payment option? All of these platforms include Bitcoin feature / is it free or prepaid one?

    Thanks for you article.

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Lenushka,

      Wix does have an app in their App Market that will allow you to collect payments in Bitcoin. Just search for “Bitcoin” in the search bar.

      You can also consider Shopify or Bigcommerce, both of which are “pure” ecommerce builders and are some of the best online store platforms in the world right now. Both do have Bitcoin payment processing capabilities. Take a look at this page here to check them out.

      Jeremy

  58. #

    Jeremy- thanks for the info dude….good stuff. Which builder is better for allowing ads/sponsors/banners etc?

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hey BJ,

      I think all of them will be just fine. It’s pretty straight forward to insert an image / advertisement banner, and linking it to another website or webpage.

      Having said that, you should test out a few website builders to see which one you prefer to work with, or have other tools that you are looking for. In terms of adding images / banners, all of them should do just fine.

      Jeremy

      • #

        Thanks! Will let you know how it goes. Thanks for all this great info.

  59. #

    Jeremy,

    Thanks for putting a side-by-side review of several site-building sites. Do you find in your experience that elements of sites change themselves over time? I’ve found text that I had put in bold to later be ‘unbolded’. I have had images that I loaded end up copied into other locations. I have had images that I loaded deleted completely. These have happened after I published the site.

    In your experience and time spent reviewing sites, are these difficulties typical or commonplace or part of the cyberworld?

    I’m rather frustrated at this point and would appreciate insight from some with more experience than I have.

    Thanks, Eric

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hey Eric,

      I’ve had that happen to me once in a blue moon. Specifically, I was using Weebly back then. But it’s not a consistent issue as I just quickly re-bolded the text (for example) and it didn’t happen again. It was so infrequent that I was thinking perhaps I changed it but forgot. It wasn’t a huge issue for me, given its infrequency.

      Have you brought up this issue with whichever platform you are using?

      Jeremy

  60. #

    I use Wix as my website builder 99% of the time and recommend to other people. My clients have been very impressed with their websites developed in Wix and people have commented on how professional my own website is which I developed with Wix. When my clients saw my website they asked me what platform I used and when I told them they wanted me to create their website right away for them.

    I have also worked with GoDaddy and WordPress. I still always end up going back to Wix. I find that Wix offers an abundance of features to create and build a professional website. Creating and building a website with GoDaddy was okay but I found that there were many limitations as to what I could do to ‘dress up’ the website, e.g. headers, slideshows, videos, include apps, etc.

    WordPress also helps to produce very dynamic websites if someone prefers to use WordPress. I guess I just find Wix is easier to work with.

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hey Ellen,

      Thanks for sharing your experiences with us!

      Jeremy

  61. #

    Hello, Jeremy,

    I’m currently have a website at GoDaddy. I like the basics of their website builder, but as an educator I’d like to create a password protected area of the site and I can’t do that with their interface– they used to offer it, but it went away. So I’m wondering if you could give me an idea where I could go to have that option? I’d also like to have the option for a paypal interface as well but this isn’t as important to me. Thanks!

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hey Drue,

      Wix and Weebly both have membership gateway functions (see Footnote 16 above). However, neither has a payment gateway integrated with it. So while you can create membership areas with both web builders, you can’t charge your members for access (yet).

      If that becomes important to you, there are membership widgets such as Sentry Login that can be used with Wix and Weebly. Hope this points you in the right direction!

      Jeremy

  62. #

    Hello, Thank you for the great info. Just a correction, Weebly does not offer a free domain. In fact, you pay a whopping $40 USD for a single domain through Weebly. Then they make you get your email address through Google Apps for another whopping $45 USD. Also, they do not notify customers of charges to their credit cards. Not even a courtesy email receipt. I once was a happy Weebly customer. I’m super turned off and will be closing out all of my sites and re-building elsewhere.

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi D,

      Weebly does offer a year of free domain, if you sign up to their annual plan (this is highlighted in our footnote and also on Weebly’s site I believe).

      We also have a comprehensive discussion about domain names in this article here, where we discuss the pros and cons of receiving a domain name through a website builder (such as Weebly) or purchasing one from domain name registrars such as GoDaddy.

      The auto charging of credit card relates to the renewal of your premium plan. Most online services nowadays auto charge on a monthly or annual basis (depending on which plan you chose) and this is a standard practice. It’s the same as signing to a monthly / annual gym membership – they wont’ call / email you to notify you that they will bill you.

      Businesses nowadays assume that if you don’t want to continue with their services, you’d contact them to cancel your plan. In this case, you just have to log into your Weebly user portal to discontinue your plan. This too, is a very standard procedure across all website builders (or other online services).

      Sorry to hear about your disappointment though. I can understand that getting billed without expecting it is a very frustrating experience. However, it’s a very standard business practice, just like if you purchased a gym membership or a monthly subscription to a magazine. What I personally do, is set up calendar reminders of upcoming renewals of all my subscriptions, so that reminder gives me ample time to consider if I’d like to renew or not. If not, I contact the service provider to cancel.

      Jeremy

  63. #

    Hi Jeremy,

    This is the most comprehensive information I have found and want to say thank you for the hard work it must have taken to put it together. I am starting a new business (for the first time) and looking at GODaddy for the domains and Wix for the design & hosting based on your information and reviews. I was looking around your site for additional information on which service is best for personalized email addresses (for ex: info@ companyname.com) to go along with the sites. GODaddy offers each email address for $3.49/month which isn’t bad but price is definitely a factor to us at the moment so any comparison/information you have on price and benefits would be greatly appreciated.

    While we could start with one simple email address for “info”, we prefer to have 3-4 different email addresses (me, wife, info, and potentially additional hires) .

    Thank you,
    Larry

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hello Larry,

      I personally use Google Business Apps to create custom email addresses, and it’s about $5 per month, so marginally more expensive than GoDaddy.

      Note that Wix is partnered with Google Business Apps, so the set up is probably pretty easy.

      I personally prefer the Gmail user interface and its reliability. Having said that, I haven’t used GoDaddy’s email service before. So I guess it depends on which one you are more comfortable with.

      Jeremy

    • #

      Hi Jeremy

      Just a quick message to thank you for providing some very useful information on building a website; I have been investigating this over the last couple of days and out of the ones you have mentioned I am veering towards Squarespace.

      However I am also looking at Adobe Muse and Webflow, both of which provide software to build a site without writing code – have you come across either of these and what are your thoughts?

      Thanks
      Shane

      • Jeremy Wong
        #

        Hello Shane,

        Unfortunately I haven’t used Muse or Webflow so I can’t discuss meaningfully about their pros and cons.

        If others reading this have something to add, please feel free to do so!

        Jeremy

    • #

      You can have Go Daddy forward pretty much any email address with a domain name you purchase there to another email address. That way you don’t have to actually purchase the email addresses until you’re ready. Worked really well for us. We have three email addresses for one domain name that are forwarded to a Go Daddy email address at an entirely different domain we own. Hope that helps.

  64. #

    Hi Jeremy. Thanks for this awesome post.

    I am looking into taking my aunts’s business online (it’s a surprise). She sells ladies fashion items (such as handbags & shoes). Although we are based in the US, her store is back home in the UK and so she doesn’t need to sells anything online. The purpose of the site is to show case items she will be shipping back home to be sold in her physical store there. She runs it from the US and has staff that work for her there. Moreover, I intend on adding details such as link to her business’ Facebook page and sales announcements on the site. I have already purchased a domain name using Namecheap based off your other article. Which one of these would you recommend. I am torn btw Squarespace & Wix. I love that SqS has a responsive site and you can switch themes easily.

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hello Oliver,

      I think either one (Wix or Squarespace) works. It sounds to me that you’re aware of the pros and cons of using Wix and Squarespace. We do have an article here that compares both website builders directly here.

      If you’re a bit torn about which one to use, I’d suggest that you sign up with both platforms and just invest a few hours to play with them. You might end up loving one of them over the other! It’s like test driving a car. You might think you like a car, until test driving it.

      Hope this helps!

      Jeremy

      • #

        Yes I have read your article (as well as other reviews online) so am familiar with the pros and cons 🙂 But like you said, I would best know by trying both out and seeing which one I prefer. Thanks!

  65. #

    Hi Jeremy,

    Thanks for the the comparison info…very helpful!! I am looking to build a real estate related site and was wondering if Wix or the other website builders enable property searching?

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Thanks, Chris.

      I don’t think Wix has any specific real estate / property searching tools.

      The way you can integrate non-Wix widgets into a Wix website is to use the “HTML Code” function, where you can embed the codes from the widget provider.

      So visit your real estate tool provider and see if they allow you to embed codes on websites to make them work (I’d be surprised if they don’t), and just sign up to a Wix account and give that a try to see if it works well for you!

      Jeremy

  66. #

    Hey. So I’m an actor and need a site that’s not expensive to have where I can post tons of pictures, some video- like 20 mins to so, maybe more, text and also a store w Pay Pal. Which is the best deal and is user friendly? I’ll want to update often and I’m not good at this. I have WordPress right now and it’s SO damn difficult.

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      hi Joe,

      Take a look at Wix or Weebly. Both will allow you to post unlimited number of pictures, videos and can link up to PayPal to help you process payments.

      Both are quite easy to use, but I’d say Weebly is easier than Wix as they have less bells and whistles.

      You can sign up to both for free, and give them a try. No obligations to sign up to a paying plan at all, until you’re happy with your final choice.

      Jeremy

  67. #

    Hello Jeremy, thanks for the info above.

    I do have a question. My mother and I are looking to start a Retail clothing/jewelry store online. We want it very user friendly but we want it to stand out as well. Which would be best if we want it to be customized even though we don’t have any coding skills?

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Addis,

      I’d suggest you take a look at either Wix, Squarespace or Weebly. We have a comparison chart for ecommerce builders here. You’ll be able to compare those 3 builders from an ecommerce perspective there.

      All are very easy to use, and you don’t need to know code at all!

      Jeremy

  68. #

    Can you tell me which of these website builders I can purchase/register a .ca domain. I tried at WIX and can’t do it there and had to leave a support ticket at Suarespace. Thanks

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Mark,

      Yes you can definitely connect a .ca domain name to any of the website builders above (such as Wix or Squarespace).

      They may not sell a .ca domain name, but you can purchase one from a domain name registrar (such as GoDaddy or Namecheap), then connect the domain name to the website you build.

      Take a look at our Guide to Domain Names for more details!

      Jeremy

  69. #

    I am trying to find a web builder that has templates related to amusement rentals such as inflatables, rock wall, etc. Do you have an idea which site builder has those? I’ve looked at Wix templates and didn’t see anything I can use. I also need it to be user friendly since I’m not very computer savvy. : )

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hey Tessie,

      That’s a pretty specific niche that you’re in. Wix by far has one of the largest, industry-based templates. What I’d suggest is that you look for a template in the Events section that you like, and just use that as a starting point.

      I guess what I’m saying is that don’t let the fact that you can’t a specific template that is dedicated to amusement rentals to stop you from starting! You can add your own designs into the template to make the design your own.

      Jeremy

  70. #

    Hi Jeremy,

    Wow, are you thorough! Great website, thank you. I want to build a health consulting website that has content that could be used in an online course for health consumers, say through Udemy or Siminars etc. Between Wix and Weebly (my two preferables, but open to others) is there one that would be more suitable for that purpose in terms of taking content (if not the entire website) and putting it on an elearning platform?

    thank you

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi John,

      I’m not entirely sure if that’s how education websites or Udemy work? I “think” you build your entire course through Udemy so that’s quite different than on your website? So I’m not quite sure if you can just take your website and throw it into Udemy.

      But what you can do is advertise your courses on your website, and link / lead people to Udemy (or other educational platforms) so they can sign up there. Either Wix or Weebly will allow you to build content around your courses and link out to wherever you sell your courses.

      Jeremy

  71. #

    Hi Jeremy,
    I am currently looking for a easy to use web site to use for my Nutritional counseling practice. I need something that I can post articles on various topics, a place where clients can access and download forms, as well as an interactive calendar that I can have time slots listed and clients can book their own appointments in. I would also like to be able to include videos and have affiliate links. Can you please advise if Weebly and Wix can do those things and which is better for my purposes. Thanks so much for your great information.

    Cathy

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Cathy,

      I’d recommend that you use Wix (see our review here if you haven’t yet).

      They have an in-house booking engine (called Wix Bookings) that allow your visitors to book and pay for appointments directly on your website. The booking engine will also notify your clients of the appointment. Take a look a this video to see how Wix Bookings works.

      Wix also allosw you to insert downloadable files (for your forms), and also embed videos and affiliate links.

      Hope this helps!

      Jeremy

  72. #

    Jeremy, good info but how can anyone vote a non-responsive site in 2015 better than a responsive one? I like wix a lot but have to move from it because a non-responsive site is a no-go

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Gary,

      Thanks for your comment. I actually don’t entirely agree with your observation, but I can understand why one may prefer a responsive design.

      Wix allows you to build a mobile friendly site with its mobile editor where you actually get to pick and choose what you display on your mobile site. So it is just as effective as a website with a responsive template.

      The key point is to present your website in a user / viewing friendly way, and Wix (as well as other responsive designs) can help you accomplish that.

      For some other website builders that offer responsive templates, even though the website will display well on mobile devices, you have no control over how the site will be displayed (unless you edit the codes to the template). With Wix, you get a certain level of control via its mobile editor. The drawback, is that you do have to do a bit more work to edit your site in the mobile editor but I think the trade off for the additional control / flexibility is well worth it.

      A lot of very large companies out there don’t use responsive designs either. They have a dedicated mobile site so they can control their visitors’ user experience.

      So while responsive design is a pretty hot topic nowadays, it is just an option or a tool. I wouldn’t suggest getting too caught up in the “hype” and focus on what can get the job done based on what you need!

      Thanks for raising this point, Gary – it’s definitely an interesting discussion for all of our readers!

      Jeremy

      • #

        hi, i would like to know which website builder can do a website like ebay, i would like build one to sell items, new and second hand but let other people advertise their items too, accept payments, but charge a small fee for every sold item, thank you very

        • Jeremy Wong
          #

          Hi there,

          Unfortunately none of them have features to do what you want. It sounds to me you’ll have to hire a capable developer to help you custom build something like this. I’m not aware of any software that enables you to build a marketplace. Would love to know if any others know of one!

          Jeremy

          • #

            Jeremy there are a couple of options – you can always go down the WP route with Woo or Easy Digital Downloads plus a good theme like Marketify, but the latest and greatest thing around for my money is sharetribe (and no, I am not affiliated with them in any way). It’s a clever and user-friendly marketplace builder. Custom domains are possible on most plans, and price wise pretty reasonable (starting at US39/mo for up to 300 members). It’s clean and crisp, and functionality is high with good support. Pretty much what Squarespace would look like in a marketplace offering.

            • Jeremy Wong
              #

              Very interesting, Kate. Thanks for sharing!

  73. #

    Hi Jeremy,

    Thanks for this guide. Do you know of any solution for a website that requires user logins and user info to be saved? I’d like to use something like Wix for the front-end and a php/sql database for the back-end user accounts. I appreciate your thoughts…happy new year.

    Nik

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Nik,

      I don’t think Wix (or any of the website builder above) will be able to cater to your needs. Wix and Weebly have built in membership tools, but they’re limited to allowing each member to sign in with their own user name and password to access certain membership protected pages.

      So if you want anything more advanced than that, such as creating a paid gateway for paying members only, or being able to customize the database on the backend, you might have to use something like WordPress.

      But have a look at Sentry Login, which is a membership widget that can work with Wix to help you create a paid membership site. They might also have more flexibility on the backend so you can customize a few things there.

      Happy New Year!

      Jeremy

  74. #

    the “websites powered” seem to indicate Wix with a massive majority over Squarespace and Weebly- seems to be at odds with independent measures at w3techs which shows the reverse?

    source: http://w3techs.com/technologies/overview/content_management/all

    I think this is important info to understand correctly, as user volumes do have a correlation to platform maturity…

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Richard,

      The statistics above (websites powered by each platform) are publicly disclosed figures from the website builders. Further, Wix is a publicly traded company so their disclosed statistics are audited every year, and reviewed / verified to a certain extent on a quarterly basis.

      Based on their most recent quarterly statistics, they have over 1.6 million PAID users. So that is a meaningful number. Unfortunately, as other web builders are not publicly listed on the stock exchange (yet), there isn’t a way to find out how many actual paid users they have.

      Another metric we like is how frequently they are searched on Google. We have a chart here that shows you the trending of Google searches, which will give a bit of a taste of how popular they are compared to each other. It’s not a perfect metric, but when combined with several other data points, can start to help you form a view of which website builder is leading the industry.

      It seems to me that W3Techs (the source you quoted) is based on surveys. So there can be a lot of biases in their studies. But I guess they’ve formulated their table based on the best available stats they could collect.

      At the end of the day, it’s hard to assess with pinpoint accuracy who has the most active users given limited data. The best metric I think is the number of paid users. But as mentioned, only Wix discloses this data, at the moment.

      Thanks for adding to this discussion!

      Jeremy

      • #

        hi Jeremy – thanks for the reply, makes sense. thanks again (and you deserve big kudos for replying to every comment you get!)

  75. #

    Jeremy, I run a soccer club that is in urgent need of a new website and am wondering if any of these free tools will work for me. I would like to pull in content (league tables, results, fixtures) from another website, I would like to have different types of users with different capabilities, I would like to have an admin site behind the website to allow news stories to be created and published. I would like to have multi-level menu options. I would like to have a club shop function to be able to sell merchandise. I would like to be able to have users subscribe to newsletters. I would like to have the option to post a news story on Facebook, Twitter, etc (existing accounts).
    QUESTION: From what you are reading, does it sound like I need a web developer to build me a site from scratch?
    Regards,
    Peter.

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Peter,

      I think given the complexity of your website needs, it’s best to consider hiring someone to guide you through the process especially if you don’t have technical / coding skills.

      While some of the drag & drop website builders can cater to some of the items you need (such as selling merchandises, multi-level menu, newsletters, social sharing), some of the more advanced features are beyond the basic capabilities of the web builders (pulling in content, segmenting user capabilities, creating multiple admin users).

      Have a look at this article here to get a better sense of how much it might potentially cost you if you were to consider building a custom site with developers assisting you.

      Jeremy

  76. #

    Thanks for creating this chart, it was very helpful in deciding which site I would use!

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      You’re very welcome Sarah! Glad you found it helpful.

      Jeremy

  77. #

    WIX is a good site, I have my Travel Agency site built with WIX, but the down side is that you can not add an SSL certificate with them.

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Thanks for your comment, Randy.

      With Wix (or any other drag & drop website builders) above, you won’t be able to add SSL certificates to all the webpages. But if you are using their ecommerce tools, the check out cart will include SSL so that all your purchasing customers’ private information is secure.

      Generally speaking, some website owners like to add SSL certificates to every single webpage on their site. Google said that one of their many ranking factors (estimated to be well over 200 factors) is whether your site has an SSL certificate, but all the studies I’ve seen from leading experts indicate that this ranking factor is not meaningful to how a website ranks in search engines (yet anyway).

      It’s an interesting topic of discussion so thanks for raising it!

      Jeremy

  78. #

    Jeremy,

    I want to personally thank you for wealth of information and actually SHARING with us! Answering each post is Rarely seen and Im sure I can speak for many of us…. THANK YOU!!

    My father and I have a dog breeding business and I would like to set up a website for him. Nothing too fancy, I have a layout in mind. I was under the impression weebly offered a free site with the domain included (custom), but I see now it is not. So my question is, what would be the cheapest way (right now) to do this? Pay the monthly fee or buy a domain from another source? I see a few big companies offer domain name pricing pretty cheap.
    We also take deposits/payments via paypal. What are your thoughts sir?

    I also would like to start my online shop and I see some good options but I’m still a little confused on which one to pick. This one will be more of a retail shop for Clothing/Apparel, mainly fashion based. This will be more upscale modern though.

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Jesse,

      You’re very welcome and glad our discussions here have been helpful to you!

      In terms of domain names, you can find decent deals at reputable domain name registrars such as GoDaddy.

      As for connecting a custom domain name (your own domain name) to a website, for most website builders (if not all), you will have to upgrade to a paid subscription plan. So for Weebly, you will have to subscribe to at least their Starter plan.

      If you sign up to the Starter Plan, you will only get a 1 year free domain name from Weebly if you subscribe to an annual plan. So if you sign up to the 6 months plan (which is the lowest period you can commit to for Weebly), you won’t get the free domain.

      If you do get the annual plan (with the free domain), after the first free year, you will have to renew it every year after that for $20. If you purchase your own domain name (such as from GoDaddy), the average cost for a domain name is about $10 – $15 per year.

      So you can weigh your pros and cons there (sign up with a web builder for 1 whole year and get the first year of domain name fee waived, or don’t commit as long and just buy your own domain name elsewhere, but know that you will pay a lower domain name fee every year afterwards).

      As for PayPal, with Weebly specifically, you can only connect it to your shopping cart if you subscribe to their Business plan. The only payment processor that you can use with Weebly’s Starter plan, is Stripe (which is quite popular). But Stripe is not offered to every country around the world (you can see where they are available here).

      For your clothing / apparel store, aside from Weebly, take a look at Shopify. They’re a full-featured, pure online store builder. They’re not the cheapest, but for good reasons as they’re really good.

      Take a look at our ecommerce builder comparison chart here.

      Hope this helps!

      Jeremy

      [UPDATE: see our Beginners Guide to Domain Names for more discussions on commonly asked questions about domain names]

  79. #

    I tried to do Site Builder.com and the first thing they asked after taking my CC info was that I should send a copy of the CC and my drivers license. No company has ever asked me for that before. Is this unusual? A little worried here.

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Joan,

      That is very awkward for sure. I’m not sure why they should ask for your drivers license. All of the website builders that we’ve used before don’t ask for credit card information up front – only when you want to upgrade. I think nowadays, most services offer a free trial period first before asking for credit card information.

      But that is not always the case as I’ve seen some businesses only allow people to try their products after they provide CC information – to isolate serious candidates. But those businesses are more specialized and are at a much higher price point (mainly business-to-business types of operations).

      I would be very cautious when online businesses ask for drivers license. Something just doesn’t feel right. Did you ask them why they’d need that piece of information? I’d be very skeptical if their answer is “to verify that you are the holder of the credit card”.

      Jeremy

  80. #

    Hello Jeremy,

    I would like to become an affilliate for HSN, QVC ect… and sell their products. What would be my best choice. I don’t have a website or blog as of yet.

    Thank You,

    Kimberly

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hello Kimberly,

      I think all of the sites discussed above will work. If you don’t have a preference based on the discussion above, take our Quiz to see if it helps.

      Or else I’d suggest you sign up to test out Wix, Squarespace and Weebly. Give them a free trial and see which on you prefer to work with. All of them are relatively easy to use (drag & drop website builders), but their user interfaces are different. So you might prefer one over the others.

      Jeremy

  81. #

    Hi Jeremy, I am currently using WordPress and find that trying to set up a website for a non-techy like me is seriously frustrating!! I will be opening up a small B&B in our town soon and would like to have something that is user friendly. WordPress uses so much lingo/jargon that I just don’t understand. Layouts of text and photos are off…just doesn’t work for me nor do I have the time to research and figure it out. I need something that allows me to drop in photos with ease, puts us out in the social media world, tailored to a B&B…would you recommend WiX for this?

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hello Marianne,

      WordPress could definitely be frustrating for people who aren’t technical or haven’t learned it before. Most people (like yourself) just want to get the website built and move on to other important things!

      I definitely recommend that you take a look at Wix. Wix has templates and tools that are directly relevant to hotel / B& B type websites. Their tools allow your visitors to book rooms, and you can manage your booking calendar as well.

      Take a look at our discussion here for more information.

      Good luck!

      Jeremy

  82. #

    Hi, Sorry to bother but I am hoping to start a small website for a club. I know this is a bit of a ridiculous thing to ask, but our club isn’t funded are there any website makers that don’t charge monthly fees? It doesn’t have to be amazing or extremely professional. I was hoping to stay away from tumblr but i am having trouble finding anything.

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Sandy,

      It’s not “ridiculous” at all! A lot of websites are not funded and are built by volunteers.

      Take a look at Wix or Weebly. Both allow you to publish a website for free. The only drawback is that you won’t be able to connect your own custom domain name (website address) to the website. You will have to use their subdomain name structure, so it will look something like abc.wix.com or abc.weebly.com

      You also won’t get access to some more advanced tools. But you’ll get all the basic web building tools for free.

      There is no time limit to how long you can use the free plan either. So if you decide to upgrade down the road, you have that option.

      Hope this helps!

      Jeremy

  83. #

    Is there any way to copy and paste a word document to one of the pages on my website? I don’t want a link for someone to open a document, I want to go to a certain page and be able to see the document. If there is some way to do this, I would give WIX at lease 4 stars, maybe more.

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Vickie,

      Yes you can do that with Wix. Go to Wix’s App Store and search for “Google Drive Share Tool”. You can display a Google Doc directly on your page so your visitors can view it.

      However, this does require you to use a Google Doc (which is very similar to Microsoft Word).

      Jeremy

  84. #

    Why word press is not in the list?

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Suchitra,

      The website builders being compared here are drag & drop website builders. WordPress is not a drag and drop platform and as such, it is not quite comparable to the ones being discussed here.

      But we do have a series of comparison articles that you can find here, where we benchmarked the drag and drop website builders to WordPress. Hopefully you’ll find them helpful.

      Jeremy

  85. #

    Jeremy,

    I want to open an online store that sells doors and furniture that are hand made with multiple variants as: style – wood type – size (length & width

    varies) – color – Add-ons such as multiple hardware options (handle, hinges, nails, bolts)

    Is there any way that the chosen Variants can be superimposed on the product to create the final look of the product being purchased?

    One that offers major Credit cards and Paypal too

    Shipping options would be great as well

    I appreciate any sound insight

    Sincerely,

    Jim

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi James,

      I haven’t seen an ecommerce website builder that allows a shopper to see the updates “live”. A lot of them can certainly allow a shopper to choose product variations. I know what you’re looking for though, as I’ve seen them with larger brands before (such as customizing a car with options online).

      A workaround (though not as “cool”) will be to upload different pictures of various variations of your products, so shoppers can have a sense of what they can expect. Of course, the shopper may not find exactly the configuration that he/she wants.

      All of the ecommerce builders we’ve discussed here will offer product variants (but no visual customizations), accepts credit cards / PayPal and offers shipping options.

      Jeremy

  86. #

    Jeremy
    I am looking to set up a website for my Foundation. So I am looking for a website builder that would be able to process donations. When I read all of this I am so overwhelm. What are your thoughts.

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Cindy,

      Refer to my comment on October 25 2015 below. PayPal has donation buttons that you can insert into your website builder. But if you want a website builder that offers a specific donation function, Squarespace has it.

      Jeremy

  87. #

    Hi Jeremy —

    Just a note to say how NICE it is of you to answer everyone’s questions!!! It’s heartwarming to see someone take the time out to do that in cyberspace!

    Take care —

    E

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Thanks, Miss Thing!

  88. #

    Hey Jeremy! Fantastic article and your help below is well thought out and insightful…hence why I am turning to you for help! I am an actor and a voice over artist. I would like to create a really good looking site and I have the layout all thought out. It would be my main headshot on the left and on the right the word ACTOR and below that VOICE OVER. When you click on either one it would take you to the respective files….either headshots and a video reel for acting or audio files for voice over. There would also be links for whatever project I am doing at the time. Which site builder would be best. I don’t even know what code writing is, let alone knowing how to do it!

    Thanks in advance Jeremy!

    JD

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hey John,

      I think any one of the top website builders listed above will do the trick. They are all code free, drag and drop website builders so you don’t have to write any codes whatsoever.

      Just insert two text or image elements to insert your words “actor” and “voice over”, then hyperlink them to two separate pages where you can insert videos or audio files. It’s really quite straightforward even for beginners!

      Best thing to do is sign up for a couple of free trial accounts and start testing them out (such as Wix, Squarespace, Weebly). You might like one builder over the others, so it’s important to invest a little bit of time to see which one you prefer, before finalizing your decision.

      Hope this points you in the right direction!

      Jeremy

  89. #

    Hi Jeremy,
    I am looking to set up a website and e-commerce builder for a small business that I have created. It deals in custom order pens and has many different variations on what can be ordered. I don’t know what to start with seeing that Wix, Weebly, and Square Space are on your list for E-Commerce store builders as well as this one. Any help is appreciated,
    Logan

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Logan,

      If you want to build a straight forward ecommerce website, without a whole lot of advanced tools, then Wix, Weebly or Squarespace can work for you. If you want a lot of advanced bells and whistles in terms of tools, then pure ecommerce builders such as Shopify or Bigcommerce might be more suitable.

      With Wix, Weebly and Squarespace, you can list a lot of products and have multiple variations for each product (so you can sell a version of a pen that has different variations of colors, for instance).

      My comments to your question is quite generic but that is based on limited information. I think the way forward is for you to just go through each builders’ website and study their ecommerce features. Also dive into their support pages to see what they are capable of doing.
      You should also sign up to their free / trial accounts and invest some time to testing their builders – this is the best way to get an idea of whether you like using them or not!

      Jeremy

  90. #

    Thanks Jeremy and Connie, for a very helpful site and service, based on your own actual experience. : )

    I want to build a website and/or blog that will basically be like a Facebook group. Members, posts, personal chats (PM), uploading photos, avatars, etc. I’d also like it to be password activated, meaning that people need a password that I provide to participate, and that can be changed – by me – periodically. I’d like also to have a payment feature available, and the ability to have other editors/admins/mods. I’d like to be able to have multiple groups with different passwords, and give members the ability to form their own groups, although that’s optional, since they could just ask me to do that.

    I basically want to make a FB group outside of FB. Not to compete with them on any kind of scale, but just to provide a safer place for an existing group to be active. Safety and ID security are essential.

    I’m willing to pay a modest monthly fee – $20-30, maybe even $50 or more (eventually!).

    What do you suggest? Thanks in advance. : )

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Vernon,

      Thanks for your question. Unfortunately if you want to create a social interaction platform, you will need to hire a whole team of very advanced developers to help you do that – and that will not be cheap!

      But it sounds to me that you might not want to build an entire social platform, but perhaps you are just looking for something outside of Facebook to use? If so, take a look at Ning.com. They are a tool which allows you to build your own community and might be helpful to you.

      Hope this points you in the right direction!

      Jeremy

      • #

        Thanks Jeremy – will check that Ning thing out. Sorry about the double post! : )

  91. #

    Hi Jeremy,

    I’m from Vietnam and recently moved to Peru. I want to start up a small business as left-handed one selling foods between the 2 countries. I will start from scratch & very small. I’m non-IT background, do you think I can follow the DIY approach with online resources like yours or realistically, I should hire web-developer to build one for me? Appreciate your practical advice.

    Thanks & regards,
    Tu

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Songtu,

      That’s a pretty hard question to answer, as it depends on a lot of different factors.

      But if you just want to set up a basic website that describes what you are doing, contact information, product offerings / options, then any one of the above website builders will work well for you.

      But if you want to allow people to log into a membership gateway and place private orders, with each order having its own characteristics / pricing terms, then I’d suggest you hire a capable developer to help you build a custom platform for that.

      Jeremy

  92. #

    Hi Jeremy,
    THanks for answering all of these great questions. I am stuck between wix, weebly, and squarespace for my healthcare consulting firm’s website. I can’t seem to find a theme that really speaks to me on any of these builder sites. Do you know if any of these 3 would favor healthcare or consulting? I am leaning toward squarespace for the free trial, responsive themes, and website export option.
    Thanks,
    Will

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Will,

      All three builders have free options for you to test out. But if mobile responsive design is an important option for you, Weebly also has some new themes that are responsive. Weebly also allows you to export your website, but they are exported in raw HTML / CSS format so you can’t quite import it into another website builder platform (such as WordPress).

      If you’re still undecided, one thing I’d highly recommend is to sign up to free accounts with each one of the platforms, and invest a few hours to “play” around with each website builder. Understanding what features are available for each platform’s is one thing, but you also have to enjoy working with the platform!

      Jeremy

  93. #

    Hi Jeremy,
    I have a tiny hobby business with many low-priced items for sale.
    I’m currently with jimdo @$240/yr which is pretty much absorbing my small profits & looking to move to a lower-priced e-commerce website.
    I suppose I’ll have to repost everything which took me weeks to do a couple years ago.
    Could you please suggest the best of the above-mentioned websites for my hobby business longer term?
    I mostly sell through the odd pop up shop, not online, very little online, though online is ultimately the way I want to go.
    Unfortunately, I get very little traffic.
    Your advice would be greatly appreciated.
    Thank you!

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hello Fran,

      Have you considered downgrading your Jimdo plan to a lower plan (the Pro plan)? That way, you don’t have to migrate website builders and you get to cut your annual fees by more than half.

      The challenge is that you mentioned that you have a lot of products to sell, and for all the website builders above, if you want to use their lower priced plans, they limit you to smaller number of products that you can sell.

      With Weebly, you can sell up to 10 or 25 products with their Starter or Pro plans, respectively. With Squarespace, you can only sell 1 or 20 products with their Personal and Business plans. If you want to sell more products, then you’ll have to sign up to their highest plans, which won’t give you cost savings which is one of your goals.

      So that’s the dilemma. If you want to list more products, you’ll need a higher plan. If you want a lower priced plan, you can’t list as many products.

      One option is to consider trimming down your product offering to include only your best selling products. Just focus on those, and you might be able to choose a lower priced plan.

      Jeremy

      • #

        Thanks for your reply, Jeremy. I had a feeling there wasn’t much of an option.
        Sadly, I have too many products & would find it difficult to reduce them to a smaller number of items.
        Maybe, I’ll have to focus on listing the items on a Facebook page or group, which I have already done.
        Shopify is being plugged a lot on FB, but it’s costly.
        Cheers Fran

        • Jeremy Wong
          #

          Hello Fran,

          Shopify’s lower plans are pretty reasonable, given that they are a pure ecommerce website builder and their tools are very advanced. If you are considering them, you don’t necessarily have to dive into their higher priced plan right away. Start with the lower plans and see if they help you grow your business. If they do, then you can consider if you want to invest in a higher plan to access even more tools. You can see our review of Shopify here.

          One thing to know is that Shopify can help you build a decent Facebook store. Just something to consider since you mentioned you are using Facebook to grow your business.

          Jeremy

  94. #

    hi all, i dont know if the pricing in this comparison chart is wrong, or weebly have just just jacked their pricing up? here is says business is $25 pm but i just went to upgrade to business and its apparently $45+ pm ???

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Leo,

      As far as I’m aware of, Weebly’s monthly plan for their Business Plan is still $25 per month. If you are seeing $45 per month, you might want to email their support team to get a firm confirmation whether they have updated their plans? But I just checked their website and I’m still seeing $25 per month for their Business plan.

      Jeremy

  95. #

    Hi Jeremy, I would like to ask if any of the website builders you stated actually Build a website for me if I call them with the exact specifics. As an example if I were to build something similar to Facebook, (just saying), would they buid it for me or do I need to build something myself and look for a professional to do the coding for me. My friend and I have an idea but would like to know if any of these websites actually provide professionals who will do a more professional job rather than me doing a less professional job and annoy my prospective customers, Thanks for reading my question

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hey Bram,

      None of the website builders compared here have a “Done For You” type of services, as their intent is to enable you to build websites without having to know how to code. So they are based on a “Do It Yourself” model.

      But you can always hire capable designers to help you build your website. For instance, Squarespace has a listing of designers, developers and set up experts that you can hire to help you out. They’re not a part of Squarespace, but they are listed on their website.

      Jeremy

  96. #

    Hi, thanks for the valuable info. Where does programs like SmugMug, WordPress, Photo Shelter etc. come in? Why are they not compared with these ones?

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Johan,

      The platforms that you referenced (except for WordPress) are geared towards photography websites, so the focus is a bit narrow for this chart. We do have a discussion article about PhotoShelter here.

      As for WordPress.org, it is a CMS (content management system) and is different from the drag & drop website builders we are comparing here. With WordPress.org, you can’t drag and drop, or move content around without knowing how to code. Also, you need to set up your own hosting which can be technically challenging.

      The website builders we discussed above do not require you to know how to code or set up your own hosting services. They’re very user friendly and are targeting users who are not technical, or those who don’t want to spend excessive amounts of time managing the technical aspects of website building.

      We’ve considered WordPress.com (the hosted version of WordPress which is less technical than WordPress.org), but it is not a drag and drop set up. As such, this makes it challenging to customize your design and layout.

      Hope this explains things a bit.

      Jeremy

  97. #

    Hey. This is extremely helpful. Can you give a little guidance regarding databases and donation options for a non-profit?

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Geoffrey,

      If you want a platform that allows you to control or store data (such as contact information), you’ll probably need to find a more powerful solution, such as a CRM (customer relationship management tool), which can be costly. But if you don’t mind updating a database manually, Excel spreadsheet is a very handy way to do so. This just means you won’t be able to integrate your Excel database with your website, which should be fine for smaller operations. But if you are a large organization, I’d suggest you consider checking out some CRM platforms.

      Regarding donations, you can always insert a PayPal donation widget into your website (you can do so with all the website builders listed above). Squarespace does have a donation tool, so definitely check them out as well. Their donation process is powered by Stripe (payment processing provider).

      Jeremy

  98. #

    Hi Jeremy. I am in a quandary. I want to open a business/eCommerce website that sells products to the military. I need the website builder to be mobile responsive. I have not found any other sites except Wix.com that has a somewhat patriotic theme. I am sure the other websites’ templates can be adjusted, but you have to find your own photos, which can be grain or poor quality from the internet. Any suggestions on which website builder can give me customizable templates and the ability to download quality photos? I also wanted to add captcha, but Squarespace does not offer it. HELP!!

    Thank you. Jim

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Jim,

      Take a look at this page here to see some recommended sources for both free and paid, high quality images. You don’t necessarily need to rely on the website builders to source the images for you (even though they have libraries). You can definitely get them yourself and upload them into your website.

      Weebly also has customizable templates, as they allow you to edit the codes to the template. So if you are a bit handy with codes, Weebly offers you a lot of flexibility. If not, I’d stick with Wix as they do give you tools to modify your design without having to touch any codes.

      Jeremy

  99. #

    Hello Jeremy,

    I am the most novice when it comes to building websites. I truly appreciate your comparison chart; it has been most helpful. As thorough as it is, I’m still trying to decide which builder would be the best for me. I think that I’m trying to decide between Wix and Square Space. Please give me your opinion on which builder would be the perfect fit for me if I want the following things when attempting to build an author’s website:

    – ability to collect emails from people viewing the page (mail sign up/updates)
    – ability to pose a question and have people share their responses (similar to what I’m doing on your page now)
    – add social media links directly from website AND the ability for people to share easily

    Thanks so much for taking the time to respond to the many novice people out here attempting to build their own websites 🙂

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hey Que,

      Both Wix and Squarespace will be able to do what you’re looking for.

      Wix does have its own newsletter function called Wix Shoutout (take a look at our discussion under Footnote 15 above). With Squarespace, you should be able to integrate Mailchimp or Aweber, which are independent newsletter services provider.

      To allow people to post answers, you will need to use blog posts in order to do so. Wix uses Facebook commenting system so that works fine (see Footnote 12 above)

      Both Wix and Squarespace do provide social sharing features as well.

      So it sounds like both website builders will be able to cater to your needs. So I’d suggest you sign up for free accounts with them and actually test out which builder you prefer to work with. That’s the only way you can be sure!

      We also have a Wix versus Squarespace discussion post here. You might find it helpful.

      Jeremy

  100. #

    Hi Jeremy, i’d like to ask you an advise. Which one of these Website Builders is best for developing a price comparison website ? ( loads of products, pictures, sizes, stock status, all automated. )

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Doctrinam,

      I think it really depends (sorry I can’t be more precise here). If you are just looking to build a simpler page structure (written content, pictures), then any one of the website builders will work.

      But if you are looking to build a much more sophisticated system, such as PriceGrabber, then you’ll need a pretty customized platform to do so. The drag and drop website builders will not be effective in this case. You’ll most likely need to speak to a custom developer and the website will be quite expensive to develop.

      Jeremy

  101. #

    Hi,

    I’m searching for a good website builder for an affiliate marketing site. It will contain articles related to my niche and have affiliate links incorporated into the articles. I don’t want it to look like a blog where you scroll and scroll down the page of numerous articles. I’d like to be able to categorize my content. Later on, I also want to incorporate other advertising banners and/or products that are related. I’d like a good to have the capacity to collect people’s emails and send newsletters. I don’t know much about SEO tools but I’d like to have the ability to maximize that. Would you still say Wix is the best option or something else? I was looking into Website Builder but did see a lot of options for tech support. Does Wix have the ability to add lead pages or pop up pages to gather member contact info?

    Thanks!
    Carmen

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hello Carmen,

      You can certainly create pages of content using any of the website builders above (such as Wix as you mentioned). So you don’t necessarily have to use their blog features to insert your affiliate links or advertising banners.

      However, if you don’t use the blog structure to create your content, you won’t be able to categorize your content, as only blog posts have the ability to assign categories or tags.

      Regarding collection of emails, you can use newsletter service providers such as Aweber of Mailchimp. They’re quite popular and I believe you can integrate them into the website builders as a widget. I know that Aweber has a pop up feature where people can sign up through the pop up screen.

      But also consider Wix or Jimdo, as they both have built in newsletter functions. Take a look at Footnote 15 above.

      Good luck!

      Jeremy

  102. #

    WONDERFUL!! Many thanks for this thorough comparison chart and breakdown. It saved me a TON of time!

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Thanks Sistah!

  103. #

    Great article and comparison chart. What’s even more amazing is the author of the article willing to help and answer questions. Greatly appreciative.
    What are your thoughts about using Shopify through Facebook. For a small (15-20) product line mostly DVDs, does this seem like the best way to go? Is the 9.99 price point offered just a teaser rate? I understand other ecommerce apps can be used on facebook too.

    Ellie

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Ellie,

      I would suggest building out a full ecommerce store using an online store builder such as Shopify. While you can definitely sell your products on Facebook (using tools provided by Shopify), it’s always preferable to have a selling platform outside of social networks.

      As for pricing, I really can’t help you much on that. All I can say is to test your assumptions and see how your audience react accordingly!

      Jeremy

      • #

        The 9.99 per month is what facebook is offering to set up a shop, not the price point for DVDs. I thought the price was too low to be true. Thanks for the reply

  104. #

    Jeremy,
    Thank you for these reviews. This is so helpful to me in my decision making process.

  105. #

    Thank you! You provide a great place to start to work out which online website design service will be useful!
    Cjheers

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Thanks Margot!

  106. #

    Hi Jeremy-
    Based on your reviews and survey, I’m leaning toward Weebly. This is a starter website that I plan to expand later. I’m curious why you did not include Adobe Muse in your comparison. The ubiquitous Adobe CC is so popular with web design. Any thoughts on that product in comparison to your top picks? Thanks

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hello Rashelle,

      We haven’t tested Muse extensively as we haven’t used it for our own projects before. But based on what I know, it is a bit more advanced in terms of user interface, when compared to the website builders we’ve highlighted above. Muse shares a similar user interface as Photoshop (also created by Adobe), which a lot of users find a bit challenging to learn. I heard that other website builders such as Wix or Weebly are much more user-friendly.

      But if you’re comfortable with Photoshop, then using Muse will feel a lot more “natural” for you.

      Jeremy

  107. #

    I think it would be much easier for us old dinosaur’s if there was a dictionary that gave definitions of the computer terms.

    I know when I was learning to sew, I had no idea what bia’s meant……but when I looked it up, I figured it out.

    So words like HTML codes and domain to name a few, really are not in my vocabulary, nor most old dinosaur’s like me.

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Joanne,

      I know what you mean, and I’m not an old dinosaur yet! When I first started, I was clueless and confused as to what these techie terms meant as well.

      Take a look at Webopedia or TechTerms. Type in what you want defined in their search bars and you’ll get an overall explanation. Wikipedia may also be helpful as well. Once you get more into website building, it gets a bit easier!

      Jeremy

  108. #

    Hi Jeremy, I own a day spa and have a website built with Simplesite. I am finding it limited with regard to using resources like Google Analytics etc, and would like to switch to a new website builder. The Simplesite platform is mobile responsive and as I am not very tech-savvy, I’d need one that could be easily set up. From the chart above, it appears that Wix does not have responsive themes and does not support exporting websites. Does this mean I would have to rebuild my site from scratch if I go with Wix, and would it affect my ranking as well?

    Thanks for your time and effort.

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Kay,

      If you prefer a mobile responsive website, I’d suggest taking a look at Squarespace or Weebly. All the design templates that Squarespace provide are responsive, and the newer templates with Weebly are responsive.

      Squarespace allow you to export your content into WordPress. Weebly allows you to export all your website codes, but you will have to know how to edit codes to make changes once you are outside of Weebly’s editing platform. Take a look at Footnote 10 above.

      Hope this points you in the right direction!

      Jeremy

  109. #

    Hi Jeremy!

    I would like to make websites for small companies. I have tested both Wix and Weebly. With Wix there might be a problem. It seems it is not possible to add editors? Am I right or not? I have my own user name and password but it is not a good idea to share my own password, because then my potential customers could use my credit card information to upgrade their website (my creditcard informations are availeble in my acoount settings).

    Another question: Is it true that Goole does not find easily Wix or Weebly made webpages?

    Lauri

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hello Lauri,

      Wix currently doesn’t allow you to add multiple editors to a single website. We’ve mentioned this under Footnote 18 above. But Weebly and Squarespace do allow you to do this.

      As for your last question – I don’t think it’s necessarily true. If you build a very helpful and content rich website, and promote it properly, you can rank very well in Google search results. We’ve done that before ourselves in our past projects.

      Some people believe that WordPress is much better, but there are also thousands and thousands of WordPress websites that do not rank well in Google search results. So it really depends on what you do with your website, and a lot less dependent on which website builder you use. That’s just my own view and experience!

      Jeremy

  110. #

    I recently signed up with Web.com but they are charging me $114.95 per month for our website. I’m looking to switch and create a website for our small business that my wife and I run. We are starting from scratch with no customers and I think I’ve narrowed down my search to Wix, Squarespace and weebly. I like them all and I like the SEO friendliness of Squarespace and Wix, but Wix doesn’t have a responsive website design which I know google likes. Squarespace doesn’t offer phone support to where I can call in with questions with support. They all seem to be priced about the same so any recommendations to help get our business launched? Really looking to have the website bring in new business for the monthly service we provide. No ecommerce necessary.

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hey Tyler,

      Sorry to hear about Web.

      Wix doesn’t have responsive designs, but they do offer you a mobile editor to edit the mobile version of your website.

      The advantage of having a mobile editor for a separate mobile site is that you can have control over the design and layout of the mobile version of your website. You can control how a piece of content looks, where it is placed, and you can even remove it from being displayed on your mobile site (and have it still appear on the desktop version of your website).

      So Wix’s mobile editor offers you more control, while with a responsive design you don’t have any control over the design / layout of your content (unless you know how to modify the codes to the template).

      The drawback of using a mobile editor, is that you have to spend a bit more time editing the mobile site. But once you have to configured it’s just a bit of maintenance going forward.

      So at the end of the day it’s a personal preference. I’m can’t say for certainty that Google prefer mobile responsive websites (such as Squarespace) over separate mobile sites (such as Wix). I think as long as there is some sort of mobile site, then you’ll be okay.

      Have you also considered Weebly? They do offer you some mobile responsive templates, and do have phone support.

      Jeremy

  111. #

    Hello!

    I have been using Wix for a while now and I have noticed that image quality appears to be poor. There have been a lot of discussion in the Support section of Wix, and till now I have yet to find a satisfactory solution from the support team with regard to the image compression/optimisation/quality.

    Taking that into consideration, I would appreciate a recommendation as to which website builder is best-suited for photographers and designers, where image quality is of upmost importance.

    Thank you!

    Zi Yan

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hello Zi Yan,

      When building websites, it’s best to size your images according to how big you want it to actually appear on your webpages. So if you can, try not to use the resizing function provided by the website builders. Use an image editor and actually shrink the images there, rather than using the drag and drop tools to resize your images. Also, if you want to compress the file sizes without losing too much quality (so you can have webpages that load faster), try using this tool here. We use it ourselves as well.

      If you want to consider another website builder, I’d suggest Squarespace. Their designs are quite suitable for photographers and designers. They do offer a 14 day free trial period so you can give them a test drive to see how they work out for you.

      Jeremy

  112. #

    Hi Jeremy

    I have narrowed your recommendations to 2 – Wix and Weebly.
    Personally, which would you prefer?
    BTW, I just want a simple website for my teaching & students.

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hey Shenley,

      It’s really hard to say, but the good thing is that you’ve narrowed your choices down to two!

      I’d suggest that you sign up to free accounts with both Wix and Weebly, and just give them a try so you can get a better view of which one you prefer to work with. That’s the only way to be sure!

      At the end of the day, in my own experiences, both are fantastic. But you may prefer the user interface of one over the other. So there is definitely some subjectiveness here.

      Jeremy

  113. #

    Hi Jeremy,

    I have a friend who is looking to build a business website that includes blog, podcast, webinar information along with selling e-books. He would like to include affiliate information and perform web analytics. What website builder(s) would you recommend?

    Thanks!

    John

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi John,

      Squarespace is the only website builder referenced above that has built in website tools for podcasts. With Squarespace, you can also create blog posts, and sell digital products. The only downside is that their ecommerce check out (for selling digital products) only integrates with one payment processor (Stripe). But Stripe is quite popular and easy to set up, so shouldn’t be a major hurdle.

      You can also integrate with Google Analytics to get your traffic data, or use their built in Squarespace Metrics.

      Hope this helps!

      Jeremy

  114. #

    Hi Jeremy,
    My husband would like to start a website for his business that would display his contact information, pictures of the food along with the pricing. The website would not only have to allow the customers to order online but allow them to pay also. Are there any website starters you would recommend?

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hello Bryttiny,

      If the ecommerce set up is fairly basic (just information, images, add to cart button and a check out process), then Wix, Squarespace, Weebly or Jimdo will get the job done.

      You can have a look at our ecommerce comparison chart here, which will give you a high level breakdown of each website builder. Shopify and Bigcommerce are a lot more advanced and so I think they’ll be beyond what you need (and they’re pricier as well).

      Hope this points you in the right direction!

      Jeremy

  115. #

    What do you think about FASO “Fine Art Studio Online” for hosting and building an artist gallery with selling capability website? I noticed it is not listed.
    thanks,
    Cindy

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Cindy,

      We haven’t seen them before, or used them. So we don’t have an opinion about their services. Sorry about that!

      If any one else has used them before, feel free to share your experiences with us!

      Jeremy

  116. #

    I’m undecided regarding whether I want a website or a blog. I have devoted a lot of time over the past couple of months on wix, wordpress and blogger. I run into stumbling blocks with whatever I try because I have such minimal technical skills. I keep trying because I want to be able to manage whatever I create. I think a website will meet my needs better, because I’d like to provide information that won’t need continual updating; but, I also want to blog about changing topics. Can you offer advice, please?

    One more thing — I need minimal expense. Although, I hope to attract some clients through my website my primary motivation is to provide information for those who can benefit from it.

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Jan,

      Give Weebly a try, as they are probably one of the easiest, most user friendly website builders available in the market. They’re free to use, and their lowest plan is a few dollars per month. By upgrading to their lowest plan, you can remove their advertisement, and can use your own custom domain name which will give your site a much more professional look and feel.

      Jeremy

  117. #

    Hi Jeremy,
    Will Wix allow you to charge for the membership before allowing members access to the restricted pages?
    John

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi John,

      At the moment, Wix doesn’t have the feature where you can charge your members a fee to access restricted pages. Have a look at Sentry Login, which is an independent widget that apparently can help add that function to a Wix website.

      Jeremy

  118. #

    Hi there. After being ripped off too may times and becoming terminally frustrated with web developers and their ‘black arts’ I have just built a very simple site on Weebly. Now I want to build a much bigger more complicated site which can grow with me.

    I am painfully aware that Tites, Meta tags, Back Links etc. etc are crucial so can you tell me which of your featured DIY web builders offers the best and most clear mechanics for the ‘background’ stuff? Many thanks

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Niels,

      Thanks for sharing your experiences and glad to hear that you were able to build a website with Weebly yourself.

      To be honest, most of the website builders here will have the basic mechanics for you to configure your website SEO settings. The configurations won’t be as flexible as using other more powerful builders (such as WordPress), but in my view they’re good enough. Bear in mind the 80/20 rule, so you don’t spend all 80% of your time trying to perfect the other 20%. You might be better off spending your energy elsewhere to yield a higher return for your business.

      But if your concern is that you want to customize your Weebly website beyond what is capable / could be handled by Weebly, then it’s really a case by case situation, as some other website builders will offer certain features that Weebly won’t. And if these features are really critical for your business, then a migration may be justified. But as you know, migrating a website is a big investment in time and energy. So make sure you know exactly what you are looking for before you migrate.

      One way of exploring what features a website builder offer (that Weebly does not), is to sign up for a free / trial account and just play around with the platform.

      Hope this helps somewhat!

      Jeremy

  119. #

    Which websites allow you to upload you own video to your homepage background?

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Rosa,

      I think that Wix, Squarespace and Jimdo supports background videos. For Squarespace, I think it only works with their Cover Page layouts. With Wix and Jimdo, you can use video backgrounds even with their normal pages.

      See the tutorials for Wix, Squarespace and Jimdo here.

      Jeremy

  120. #

    Hi i want to build a photography website giving access to my members only through sign in and sign up i cannot find this option on any website kindly help ….??

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Ayesha,

      If you are looking for a website builder that has a membership log in function, take a look at Wix and Weebly (see our Footnote 16 above).

      But if you need something more powerful that’s completely catered to photographers, have a look at PhotoShelter. All their tools are built catered to professional photographers.

      Jeremy

  121. #

    Looking to build a website for travel basketball tournament company. Will need to be able to have our own domain, promote sponsors, make announcements and upload documents. Will also need to embed information from an outside app (tourneymachine) Just wondering if you could give me an idea of which company would be best to build our website.

    Thanks
    Andy

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Andy,

      All the above website builders should be able to do what you want to do. They all have the ability to embed codes (so you can insert external widgets), but the question is how well will the widget work for each website builder, as the widget creator may not have created the widget to work specifically with a particular web builder.

      So the best way forward is to sign up for a few website builders and see which one you like to work with. It is very subjective and I wished I could tell you which exact platform is best for you. Unfortunately, it’s really a trial and error type of exercise, to see which one you prefer. I’d suggest you test out Wix, Squarespace and Weebly as those are the top 3 web builders we suggest at the current moment!

      Good luck!

      Jeremy

  122. #

    I have a question, Is WordPress.com free?

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi there,

      You can use the platform for free, but like the drag & drop website builders discussed here, you will have to upgrade in order to get access to more features, such as the ability to use your own domain name (instead of example.wordpress.com), remove WordPress advertisements, get direct support, and numerous other tools. I think they start at $99 per year, and the top plan is $299 per year.

      Jeremy

  123. #

    Wonderfull and well presented. I have two complex questions. Therefor it would be very usefull to have a tel. Number for each supplier.
    I am 73, retired and sarted in the cmputer professon 53 yeaars ago. I would appreciate your response to my suggestion.

    Thank you
    Bob

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Thanks Bob! Wix and Weebly has phone support so you can call them during their phone support hours. With Squarespace, they have a live chat.

      Jeremy

  124. #

    Jeremy, this is a great resource, thanks. We are building site for a non-profit organization with several hundred members. We would like to include in our site a people directory of our members that shows pictures and contact information. Do you know if (a) either Squarespace or Wix has a template or app for that, and (b) if either of those two services provides a member login or password protected site functionality? Thanks, Bill

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Bill,

      I’m not aware of such a user interface with either Squarespace or Wix. But Wix does allow you to create a membership portal (using one of its App) where only members can log into see certain pages. You can take a look at the App here.

      Alternatively, Weebly also has a membership login tool that you can check out as well.

      Good luck!

      Jeremy

  125. #

    Good day thanks for help it very helpfull site.

  126. #

    Great review! Thank you for sharing. As we struggle to figure out how to start our web site, we constantly struggle with the best way for a small, online business to accepts payments. Our business conducts training seminars several time a year around the country. We would like for attendees to be able to complete an online registration form and submit payment online. It seems as though services like Paypal won’t allow us to do this very efficiently and most web hosting platforms want us to use Paypal or a similar service. Any suggestions? Thanks again for the great review.

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hey Richard,

      Have a look at Squarespace as they do allow you to create either a custom checkout form or custom product form if you use their ecommerce tools. So you can ask your customers to leave their detailed information in multiple fields so you can collect those data for your needs.

      Be aware that with Squarespace, they only use Stripe to power their shopping cart to manage payments. But Stripe is a good payment processor and Squarespace makes it pretty easy to set up.

      You can also have a look at Shopify or Bigcommerce as their production functions are very customizable as well (see our ecommerce builder comparison table here).

      Hope this helps!

      Jeremy

  127. #

    I was surprised that WordPress and Shopify were not also compared. Is there a reason for this?

    I’m trying to get a small glass jewelry business up and going, getting a website and photography have been my big bugaboos. I finally got somewhat of a handle on the photography (glass is so hard to photograph!) and now have to figure out the best website for my type of business.
    The one thing that struck me about Wix is that the website is not transferrable, meaning if I wanted to go with another provider for any reason, I would have to build the whole website over again? Or am I missing something here?

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Herb,

      You can actually see our ecommerce online store comparison chart here. We do benchmark Shopify against other online store builders.

      As for Wix, the main reason why you can’t transfer websites for Wix is that their proprietary drag & drop system can’t be found with other platforms. For instance, if you want to move your content to Squarespace, or even WordPress, both of those website builders are not using the same building platform technology as Wix. As such, you can’t just move the codes over and have them work.

      Hope this helps!

      Jeremy

  128. #

    Hi Jeremy,

    Great info but im still stuck, im looking at building predominately a blog site that will also have reviews and eventually an ecommerce side to sell photos and gifts, I just have no idea what would be best as i have no coding knowledge at all.

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Sarah,

      WordPress is probably the best platform if you are focused on blogging as they have great blogging tools compared to the drag and drop website builders we’ve referenced above. However, one of the challenges of using WordPress is that if you want to use it proficiently, you’ll have to know a bit of codes (or working with someone who knows code). If you don’t, it makes it quite challenging to adjust designs and integrate (some) tools. We have a number of discussion posts that talks about how some of the website builders compare to using WordPress here.

      If you want to use a platform which requires no knowledge of code at all, and has decent tools for blogging while having an option to sell products on the side, I’d suggest you take a look at Squarespace or Wix (see our notes on blogging above). One thing about Squarespace is that their ecommerce shopping cart is only compatible with Stripe but it’s quite easy to integrate. With Wix, you have more shopping cart options.

      You can also take a look at our comparison chart for ecommerce builder here. You can probably ignore Shopify and Bigcommerce as they are “pure” ecommerce builders, and are more suitable for dedicated online stores.

      Jeremy

  129. #

    Hi Jeremy,

    I am interested in building a site for my wholesale business. I need to have “net 30” terms as a payment option, which I will obtain payment outside of the site. I know that shopify allows this, however, do any other of your reviewed sites allow for a manual payment such as “net 30”? I like using squarespace, but that appears to not have an easy solution to this.

    Thanks,
    DC

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi DC,

      Take a look at Wix and Jimdo – both have a manual payment option built into their ecommerce tools.

      We have a bit more discussion on Wix’s ecommerce tools in this article here.

      Hope this helps!

      Jeremy

  130. #

    Hi Jeremy! Thank you for an excellent service you’re providing!

    I have a website which I build using Weebly through Bluehost. I think it would be a good idea to switch to a website builder, e.g. Weebly.com and start using it directly due to more functionality, ability to use updates immediately, etc. So, now I’d like to make a choice of a website builder (because it doesn’t necessarily be Weebly). In my view, Weebly is simple, but offers considerable limitations in the variability of design options. I guess, however, that it applies to all WYSIWYG builders, and I am not prepared to devote considerate time to master WordPress.

    My website is about the best places to visit in cities. It’s http:\\theplacestovisit.com I need to have the following:
    – Many pages, easily 300+ in a year, a good page tree (several layers)
    – Mostly text pages with a few pictures + functional maps
    – Good comment section, like the one on this your page
    – Not very high requirements to the design
    – Social buttons as Facebook, Twitter, etc.
    – Ability to sell digital products (e-books).

    So, would you say that for my particular website Weebly is the most suitable, or there is a better choice?

    Also, this website is to be in English only. Which builder would you suggest if I needed to create a bilingual website, in English and in Russian?

    Thank you in advance!

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Dmitry,

      Thanks for your comment. What you have in mind is indeed a pretty large website (300 pages)! If you want a good page tree structure, using Weebly.com is a good option as they are pretty flexible there.

      But at the end of the day, if you are going to building that many pages, WordPress might be an option for you to consider as their content management system is good which enables you to make site wide updates a lot quicker than drag and drop builders. WordPress’ commenting system is also top notch.

      The only drawback is that WordPress does have a higher learning curve, but once you invest the time to learn it, it’s not too bad at all (assuming you are just building a more basic website, as if you want to build in all sorts of features or have a lot of design flexibility, it can get tricky as you may have to deal with codes).

      As for building a bilingual website, we have a discussion post here.

      Hope this helps!

      Jeremy

      • #

        Thank you very much, Jeremy!

        You made me considering WordPress seriously again. It is a very important desigion to make as switching is very time consuming, I guess.

        Jeremy, please let me clarify: would you say that since my website is going to be quite large relatively soon, it’s a good idea to start with a more powerful system, WordPress, from the very beginning, and since I plan to keep the site quite simple (mostly text with comments, just too much structured text), mastering that part of WordPress should not be a rocket science. Or would you say that if I start, say, with Weebly, and create, say, 300 pages, I may be stuck at some time because WYSIWYG builders are not really created for large websites and I would likely be forced to move out because it would not work properly or I would not be able to create a good page tree structure, or some other reasons.

        So, the question: is for my situation WordPress seems to be a better choice, but Weebly can also cope with those tasks OR my website is going to be too complex for Weebly or other WYSIWYG builders, and I should definitely start with WordPress?

        Thank you in advance! You are helping to save so many hundreds of hours!

        Dmitry

        • Jeremy Wong
          #

          Hi Dmitry,

          I suspect for what you are trying to build, you can use either platform. WordPress is a bit more complex but has more advanced tools to help you better manage all your content (300 pages is a lot!), and Weebly is much easier to use, but their management tools are not as good when managing a huge website.

          For instance, if you need to re-use an image multiple times, with Weebly, you’ll have to re-upload the same image over and over again as they don’t have a database for you to grab the same image to insert into a specific page. With WordPress, once you upload an image once, you can grab the same image easily without having to upload it again.

          Also, if you want to highlight / spotlight certain pages, WordPress allows you to link those pages and showcase them in an automated way. With Weebly, you will have to manually build the showcase section.

          But the challenge with doing that with WordPress is that you will have to look for the right theme to use, and it is likely that you will have to make (code) modifications to your site to get it to work exactly how you want to.

          So there are definitely pros and cons to each, but if you are committed to learning WordPress and codes, I think for your unique needs, it will be a much easier platform for you to manage down the road.

          Here is a short post where we compared Weebly and WordPress that you might find interesting as well.

          Good luck!

          Jeremy

  131. #

    Jeremy:

    Your website comparison reports are terrific and have been very helpful. Our needs are somewhat different than a traditional ecommerce business.

    We are launching a new business offering a technology-enabled service. Customers will receive reminder messages at several user-specified times every day. Each message can have 1-30 reminder items which can vary from message-to-message. Thus, a customer account (order) is a 3-dimensional matrix of:

    . Day (Monday-Sunday)
    . 1-6 specific reminder times during each day (HH:MM)
    . 1-30 specific items for each reminder time during each day with an item having several variable fields (e.g., description, amount, note, other).

    We want customers to be able to setup & maintain their account (enter & maintain a standing order for the service) through our website.

    Is there one or more website builder offering you suggest we focus on in our selection process?

    If there isn’t an “out-of-the-box” solution, which offering(s) would get us closest to our requirements and need the least customization?

    Thanks again for your time, effort and help.

    Rob

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hey Robert,

      I think what you’re looking for is more of a CRM system (“Customer Relationship Management”). I just don’t think any website builders will include such advanced tools as part of their website building platform.

      Take a look at software such as Infusionsoft, which is a pretty good CRM system.

      Hope this helps a bit.

      Jeremy

      • #

        Hi Jeremy:

        Thanks for the reply. As you mentioned earlier, we are planning to use Salesforce.com’s PaaS for our backend data management system & website integration with Salesforce is common.

        However we want to market the service, on-board users and give them access to their account from the website for account management (customer portal). A membership function may support the last ability. In some ways, our multi-dimensional order is similar to the size-color-style requirements of clothing distributors.

        Perhaps this additional information can help you guide us to an appropriate solution(s).

        If it’s more appropriate, we can speak off-line.

        Thanks again for all you do.

        Rob

  132. #

    We are a small company, we make 1 item for the dental industry. Our product is trademarked and we have sold it for 20 years to dental supply houses. We are changing our market to direct sales to the dental professional and need to have an ecommerce site. We only have one item to advertise to this market. We already own the domain name we want to use. What do you recommend?

    We are old school, not very tech savvy and need advise. We need easy. please give us a recommendation of whom might be best fit. Do any of the companies you compare really have phone numbers that can be used for support?

    Any and all information will be appreciated.
    Thanks

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Cheryl,

      I’d suggest checking out Wix or Weebly, as both of them are probably the easiest website builders to use in my view. They’re free to sign up and test, so it would be a good idea to give them both a test drive before deciding which one is better suited for your needs.

      We also have an article here to compares both of these website builders, if you need a bit more details in regards to the differences between them.

      Jeremy

  133. #

    Thank you for a great resource, Jeremy.

    We are starting a small tour company and need to have the ability to have a calendar for scheduling/reservations, the capability of processing credit cards for reservations made through the site (maximum 6 tour choices), as well as an easy-to-use blog and all of these available through mobile. I really like Squarespace designs and their automatic conversion to mobile display.

    I have built a couple of sites in the past, including one with Wix, and so have a little bit of experience, but I am certainly no expert. I’d appreciate your educated opinion on which site builder may be best for me.

    Thanks in advance!

    Paul

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Paul,

      Both Wix and Squarespace have the ability for you to allow your visitors to make appointments. However, you will need to use external widgets / apps and integrate those into either your Wix or Squarespace website.

      For Wix, their App Market has a few calendar / scheduling apps for you to integrate. For Squarespace, if you look in their help center (type “calendar”) you’ll see a few articles relating to integrating scheduling apps.

      But I don’t think either of the allow the scheduling tools to be integrated with their ecommerce shopping cart.

      What you can do is insert a product so people can purchase reservations. Once they’ve purchased the reservation slot, you can send them to the page where they can make a reservation. You can do this by inserting the instructions on which page to visit in the “thank you” email that gets sent to them once they’ve made a purchase (deposit for the reservation). You can create the scheduling page and just hide it, so only those who made the purchase will know whereto go.

      It’s not a perfect solution, and is a long workaround, but just might work.

      Jeremy

      • #

        Jeremy, thank you for your reply! I’ll investigate the options.
        Paul

        • #

          Hey Paul, Did you tested the option suggested? I am also facing the same issue i.e how to integrate reservation widget with weebly site in cost effective manner.

  134. #

    Are WordPress themes mobile responsive? Does it change from wordpress.com and wordpress.org? Thanks!

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Mariana – I think there are responsive and non responsive themes for WordPress. So if you want a responsive theme for WordPress, make sure that you pick one that is labeled as such!

      Jeremy

  135. #

    HI,

    Wow, that is great informative to compare, but I’m looking for website that I can write quotes, poems and write a song that I don’t want someone copy it without my permission sort of like watermark or copyright? I have somewhat knowledge with CSS and HTML but I have no knowledge how to get website run or how to get domain? It’s something I’ve been think about long time now, I want to find right website builder that would fit my creative, should I go with blog or profolio website for something like that?

    Thank you for amazing information!

    Sincerely,
    Purnima

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Purnima,

      There really isn’t a very effective way of stopping people from copying your creative work. it’s just one of the downsides of the internet in that everyone can pretty much copy anything if he/she really wanted to. The same goes for the physical world as well but obviously with physical goods it takes a bit more effort, but still very much achievable. But hopefully that won’t discourage you from sharing your creative work with the rest of the world!

      As for domain names, some of the website builders will give you a free domain name if you sign up to their annual plans (see chart details above). But you can also get your domain name from domain name registrars such as GoDaddy, and connect it to your website.

      As for which builder to use, the best way to go about choosing is to find the website builder that you enjoy using, as all of them are different from one another in terms of user interface and tools (to a certain extent). But I’d suggest taking a look at Squarespace and Wix to get started as they have some pretty good looking and creative templates.

      Jeremy

  136. #

    Hi, great comparison first of all, very informative and helpful!

    I have a few questions though. When conducting transactions online through these web hosts, are there any costs involved that goes to third parties?
    Say i choose squarespace for my website and a customer decided to buy something off it, would some of the money in the ecommerce transaction be used for anything or anyone else besides me and the customer? Or are there no fees involved when setting up this eCommerce aspect of your site?

    Thanks in advance!

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Luc,

      There will be payment transaction fees. For instance, when you go shopping at a local store and you use your credit card, the merchant that sold you the product will have to pay Visa / Mastercard / Amex etc fees, which is a couple of percent of the total value of the transaction.

      So it works the same way with online stores. If you use PayPal (or any other payment processors) to collect money from your customers, they will need to be paid for providing that service. You can find more information about such fees directly on the ecommerce web builder that you use, or on the payment processors’ websites but it’s usually something around 2% – 3%.

      Some ecommerce builders also take a small percentage of your transaction value. But they will waive that fee if you upgrade to a higher plan (varies from builder to builder).

      Hope this explains things a bit.

      Jeremy

      • #

        Hi Jeremy,

        Thank you for the informative answer. I will check their websites, but its good to have an idea of what to expect.

        Luc

  137. #

    I have an existing website which looks great. The problem is that when it comes to changes like text, graphics you have to use HTML and there is no ability to add landing pages for campaigns. What I’d really like to have is a copy of what I have but with the ability for a coding novice to be able to edit and change existing pages and to add additional pages at a click of a button. The site is already hosted so I don’t need that function and we own our domain so we don’t need that either.
    Can you suggest anything?
    Thanks

    Stef

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Stef,

      Have a look at Weebly. They allow you full access to the HTML / CSS codes so you can make edits / customizations there if you want to.

      They also provide hosting services (part of the package) and so you won’t have to use your own hosting services. In other words, if you want to use Weebly, you won’t be able to use them with your own hosting services.

      If you have your own domain name, you can connect that to a Weebly site and they have tutorials on how to do that in their Help Center.

      Jeremy

  138. #

    Jeremy,

    Thank you for a great and informative chart!

    I was looking for some advise, I am a first time builder and have no experience. Anything you could offer would be greatly appericated.

    I am trying to build a business website that:

    is mostly informational/educational and does not have a need to list my own products, because I don’t carry inventory (currently, but may need to eventually), all things are made to order/custom. Given that, I’m looking for a system that allows for custom invoices (through email or online through a code) allowing the customer to access their order and pay online after I create the invoice,

    Allows many of my suppliers websites to be viewed and browsed from mine (directly on my page) through what looks like embedding, though I am unsure if that is the terminology. (The suppliers already allow this, I just wanna make sure it would work), and

    Allows for the creation of a members only area with access to videos and information.

    Ascetics, and function are must in this endeavor, even if it means slightly more work. Apps are always a plus though

    Let me know what you think!

    Thank you again for your guidance

    Kev

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Kev,

      It sounds like you need a pretty flexible and advanced website builder. I’d suggest you take a look at Shopify (see our discussion here) as they allow you to have a lot of flexibility as to how you want to customize your store / website, and there are plenty of Shopify Experts that can help you do custom work to enable you to get what you want.

      Jeremy

      • #

        Thanks a lot for the help Jeremy! Best wishes and keep up the great work!

        Kev

  139. #

    Jeremy –

    thanks for all this information.

    I’m trying to build a site that’s heavily dependant on crowdsourcing. Sort of like a recipe site that allows users to both submit and rank best chocolate cake recipe. So I need community to be able to do more than just “like”.

    So, I need to have people register using facebook or unique name. Then contribute. Then vote. Would squarespace (or weebly or other), let me build such a site?

    Thanks!

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Kate,

      I don’t think any of the website builders discussed here will give you the capability to create a crowd source / visitor contribution type of website. Those sort of websites are much more complex and I suspect you will need to hire a very capable developer to help you custom build what you have in mind.

      The website builders we’ve discussed here are great for building more “typical” sort of sites, such as business, ecommerce, photography / portfolio, blogs, hobbies, general content, where the site owner will create all the content.

      Hope this guides you in the right direction!

      Jeremy

      • #

        Thanks, Jeremy. That’s kind of what I thought/feared!

  140. #

    Hi Jeremy

    What are your thoughts on WIX versus WordPress please?

    Thanks

    Trudy

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Trudy,

      We have a more comprehensive discussion about Wix versus WP here. Do read the comments as well as you’ll more discussions there.

      Hope you find it helpful!

      Jeremy

  141. #

    I disagree Squarespace being the first one. I honestly do know that builder, but I’m still an avid fan of Weebly(just saying!). Their various templates and easy tools had been a major outpour for those who wants to build their own site.

    Cheers though for this post. Have a great day Jeremy.

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hey Marlo,

      Difference of opinion I guess! But I appreciate your input and views. It’s definitely a healthy debate.

      Don’t get me wrong, Weebly is a great website builder and we love using Weebly. But we just feel that Squarespace is pretty awesome too! : )

      Jeremy

  142. #

    For export website, weebly should be “no.” One can export it to html, but you cannot export it to another weebly site nor use it with weebly again. In short, you can export it, but cannot import it back to weebly. That’s like saying you can do a backup, but cannot restore your backup. Absurd right?

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hey Alvin,

      Thanks for your input. Weebly allows you to export a Weebly website to import it into another hosting service, but they don’t have a function for you to import it back into Weebly again. The same thing applies across other website builders discussed here as well.

      I think the main reason is that each website builder’s platform has its unique code base (that enables you to drag and drop content to build out your website). So if you start tinkering with the codes after you export the site, if you are allowed to import the site back into the website builder (after you’ve modified the codes a bit), then the codes may not work properly and /or conflict with that website builder.

      But if you want to move a website across to another account, give their support team a shout and they are likely able to do that. Granted, I haven’t tried that myself, but I don’t see a reason why that shouldn’t be a possible.

      Good point though so thanks for bringing it up!

      Jeremy

  143. #

    Thank you so much for this great comparison chart and information on website builders! It has been so helpful! Just curious – do you have any thoughts on Logo Garden as a website builder? Thanks.

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Kristin – I’ve never heard of them before, so I don’t have any comments about them. But from a quick look at their site, it seems like they’re focused on creating logos? As such, probably not a good benchmark against the website builders we’ve reviewed here.

      Jeremy

  144. #

    what do you think about ipage? any comments on how ipage stacks up against your list above?

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      iPage is more of a hosting service, so not quite comparable to the website builders we’ve discussed in our table above.

      They do offer you the ability to get a WordPress site hosted, and they also offer you the ability to use Weebly. So if you are thinking about using Weebly through iPage, you should take a look at our discussion about using Weebly.com directly and using Weebly with another hosting service). There are definitely pros and cons to consider.

      Jeremy

  145. #

    Hey mate I am creating a site were I can sell products on, Im a starter so I don’t want to spend to much but I want it to look really good and mobile friendly. So I was wondering what is the best option. And also these are all compatible with putting it on google. Thanks a lot

  146. #

    I have inventory that belongs to my clients for which I offer warehousing and shipping services. My “customers” are employees of my clients who go on my “store” and select merchandise and literature they would like sent to them. I need a website/store that offers inventory control and does not require payment processing. I have tried Go Daddy but they require a payment method. Others do not offer inventory control. Do you know any that can do what I need?
    Thank you.

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      hi Cari,

      I haven’t seen a platform that offers that before, but I’m sure it’s achievable if you make some extensive modifications. I would suggest you check out Shopify (the ecommerce builder) and see if some of the Shopify Experts can help you tweak the platform to achieve what you want.

      Jeremy

  147. #

    Hi there , good work on the chart .
    i need to create a website that has the possibility for visitors to open their private profile and upload photos into it and for others to see them and buy them if they want, kind of like Instagram mixed with Elance , which platform do you guys think is good for me ? thanks in advance for your help.

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Bilal,

      It sounds to me what you need is a very customized solution. So none of the website builders that we’ve discussed here will enable you to do that. You can try looking for capable developers on Elance or oDesk, but make sure you know exactly what you want, including functionality, mock ups / drawings of how you want your user interface to be, etc, so that you can get a quote from some of the developers!

      Jeremy

      • #

        Hi there ,Thank you very much for your reply Jeremy,
        i actually did post a job proposal on Elance and i got one Indian website designer biding at 2500 usd for the website and the logo,and one from a “developed country” designer (as you said in one of your articles) at 80 bucks an hour for the website only without precising the number of hours needed.
        can i have your opinion please on the price asked by the Indian designer and also what’s the number of hours needed for a developer to build a website if you had to guess ?
        Thanks again; the information on your website are very valuable.

        • Jeremy Wong
          #

          Hi Bilal,

          It’s really hard to say, and I do appreciate how challenging it is to hire a developer especially the first time around. There are many many factors that gets factored into the quote, including how complex of a site you want, what platform you want to build it on, etc.

          I would say that US$2,500 is what I would expect from an emerging country, but know that if you want to make changes, add a few things here and there, then costs will start to add up. Also, in my experience, they can get the job done, but that’s about it. So don’t expect them to have any creative input into the process, or write very clean code. They will be there to do what you tell them to do. Of course I’m sure not all Indian developers are like that, so I’m just generalizing based on our own experiences.

          As for the other designer (US$80/hr), I would suggest that you lock in the scope of the work, and know exactly what you want so he/she can give you more of an accurate quote. There’s always the debate between hiring on a per hour basis, or a fixed fee. There are a lot of good discussions about this topic and I’m sure you can find more info about that with a Google search.

          But if I was to generalize and guess, I’d say for a good developer in a developed country, I’d say a decent custom website will cost anywhere from $5,000 to $10,000 to get developed. It really depends on what you are trying to build. And this range can quickly go into $10,000+ if you hire really strong developers who know what they’re doing and write very good code.

          And of course, you can never get assurance that you will get what you want. But you can help mitigate uncertainty through interviews, looking at his/her portfolio, maybe even asking for references, and also, have a very clear scope of work so to minimize any disputes.

          Jeremy

          • #

            Thank you , you really helped taking out some confusion about ideas i had. it’s pretty much what we could expect from a genuine good content website or blog; you’re doing a great job guys.
            i have the ambition to pursue this idea that i have but surely it doesn’t seem like it would be easy ,or cheap,and that’s alright because that may mean that it could be worth it who knows right?!. but tell me would you have any suggestions about a good developer ? i hope i’m not asking a too much. Thanks again

  148. #

    Very helpful and detailed website. Thanks for the free guide – I believe I will use it

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Thanks for your feedback Susan! Glad our discussions here are helpful to you.

      Jeremy

  149. #

    I purchased a e-comm website on wix and need some help building the website , do you know anybody I could get in touch with to help build the website?

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Frank,

      I don’t have any referrals, but you can reach out to Wix to see if they have any suggestions.

      You can also try to look for freelancers on either Elance or oDesk.

      Jeremy

    • #

      Go find some freelance designers on the Internet.

  150. #

    it was very helpful thank you.

  151. #

    I am thinking I want to use squarespace for my medical intuitive RN website. I will be offering various medical advice information and also consulting. I will be asking for donations for those that cannot pay and fee for personal consultation.

    On top of being an RN, I am a jewelry and interior designer. Is it possible to use squarespace for medical intuitive RN consulting and also sell jewelry for donations on same site? Does square space own my website or have rights to it? Also, I have already purchased a domain via google.domain. how do I incorporate it here? I received your informational book on line a while back and thank you for your insight. i decided to return to your site to get started on my websites….(This is the first one and then I need to make a few others for Rare Disease and a personal one) Im wondering if I should use different web builders for the various sites or stick to one! help me out please!

    Thank You Tiffany

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Tiffany,

      You can certainly create a site with both RN consulting and also sell jewelry at the same time. But from a branding / business perspective, I’m not too sure if you should do that? If both products / services are complimentary, then I’d say go for it. But in this case, I’m not entirely sure if that’s a good idea (but that’s just my humble opinion without knowing too much about what you do). So do consider creating separate websites for them, so you can brand your businesses individually. People who like jewelry might not need nursing material, and so having both in one single website can be very confusing for some visitors.

      As for domain names, you can certainly connect it to a Squarespace site. If you visit Squarespace’s help page, just type in “Domain” and you’ll get some tutorials on how to connect them.

      Jeremy

  152. #

    Hi Jeremy

    First this is wonderful to see the comments and your answers. I have been at a bit of a loss as to what I need to do.

    I have 2 websites that I have build several years ago on Frontpage, one is a personal one and one is for our business. There is no shopping cart (and not sure yet we want that but we want that option).

    I need to find another program that I don’t need extensive coding knowledge (as I have none) but I want it friendly for people to read (many have commented they like what we have now and how they can understand our products) (you can see the website from my email address).

    We do have a lot of products and need to add more and of course change things almost weekly or daily esp with the dollar exchange rate when we buy from other countries etc.

    I was looking at WordPress.com (yes i got caught up in that webhosting) and actually signed up (tried to cancel but everything goes to a recording and no one has responded to email)

    I do not mind paying for something, i just want to make sure it can grow with me and the amount of products we have but i also want it to be not too complicated. I have a business to run as well.

    Also I am not understanding the difference i see with say Wix and Shopify (supposedly shopify can work with WordPress) IS shopify one on its own or does it always work with another? (I can’t be the only one with this question)

    Sorry if i am confusing things here but have wanted to ask someone and of course i have people wanting to develop the website for me but I want to be able to change it myself when i want.

    This is wonderful that we can ask questions here and thank you so much for your help!!!!

    Is Wix extensive enough for me?

    Thank you !

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Sheila,

      So do you need a shopping cart function? You mentioned that you didn’t have one, but then said you have a lot of products to sell.

      In any case, if you are going to have a lot of products and want to update them efficiently, you should definitely have a look at Shopify (you can see our comparison chart for ecommerce builders here).

      Shopify is an “approved” shopping cart with WordPress.com – meaning that if you build an ecommerce store with WordPress.com, you can use Shopify to help you process payments. But if you use Shopify on its own, it’s just a standalone online store builder and won’t have anything to do with WordPress.

      Hope this points you in the right direction!

      Jeremy

      • #

        Thanks Jeremy

        To explain, we sell products at our retail (brick and mortar) store, from our mobile (traveling) store as well we want a website that people can see our products and their pricing and even maybe add to the cart… but here is what we do/don’t like about finishing the transaction online…….

        first some people are not sure what they actually need and we want to help them with their order, or they need to understand the properties of the product when using them.

        second, we cannot add to an order if its strictly online driven (or upsell if you like that term), in other words there are products that go with the items (and yes I get the “other things that go with this” product view) but many customers don’t fully understand some of the properties and the products they need to go along with it or how to use it.

        I see that GoDaddy now has an online store, have you had a look at this at all?
        i have numerous domains all registered with godaddy and my email actually goes through godaddy (websites hosted elsewhere due to the frontpage ease of use issue).
        i love Godaddy’s support, their access to support and would strongly consider their store if it was decent.

        Also these carts that a customer has and submits to us (in several of the ecommerce sites) charge a fee per transaction but what if we want to be in contact with the customer before the actual money transaction happens.

        Not sure if I have explained myself well, but hopefully you can understand what I am trying to achieve, and basically that is to have personal contact with the customer to finalize the sale.

        Thank you again for your help!

      • #

        Thanks Jeremy

        I had asked some extra questions but actually spent yesterday doing some research. I had been wondering about Godaddy and their online store as they have one now. I called Godaddy and they tell me they cannot do offline payments (which is something i need)

        I started a demo on Wix as they allow offline payments but I realized that Wix was not extensive enough for my store because I do need to enter product by supplier as well as its description.

        i have been reading through Shopify and Shopify allows offline payments such that i can do debits etc i just have the cart sent to me. This is very important to me.

        I will look more in to Shopify

        Thank you for all that you do on these comparisons.

  153. #

    Looking to build a web site for a start up handyman service with the ability to upload photos of completed work and since I’m always on the move it must be mobile. what are your thoughts on what would be best for a one person LLC?

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hey Harry,

      If you want a functional mobile site, any of the top 3 website builders we highlighted above will work. Squarespace’s templates are all mobile responsive, so they look great across all mobile devices. Wix and Weebly has their own mobile editors. But Wix has a lot more design templates for you to choose from than Weebly. But out of all 3 of them, Weebly has the easiest user interface.

      It’s important to sign up for a few free accounts and just spend some time to see which one you like the best. Each one of them has its own pros and cons, and all their user interfaces are different. So while one person may prefer Squarespace, another person may prefer Wix or Weebly.

      So all of them allow you to create a mobile site. But you should pick one that you’re the most comfortable with.

      Jeremy

  154. #

    hello
    i am a mosaic artist and i need my website to do more than just offer 2 dimensional pictures of my portraits and designs.
    i need short videos and multiple pictures to show stages of development and detailed quality of mosaic designs.
    but there doesn’t seem to be any website options that account for this.
    i have created videos that show how mosaics change when exposed to light and time of day – which will help sell my products realistically.
    but i see no formats that will include it in websites, especially on first page.
    what’s to do? Can you help? I have tried web designers but they all dont seem to understand this basic requirement.
    so i do it myself….
    i would appreciate any advice

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Edi,

      All of the website builders discussed above allows you to insert videos, slideshows, images. So you can definitely insert your own video, or multiple images to form a gallery to showcase your products.

      Jeremy

    • #

      Hi Edi,

      A good web designer will understand your needs. If you want to contact me feel free to do so, I already have some awesome ideas.

      hannah @ seodeva . com

      Cheers!

  155. #

    Hi Jeremy,

    My wife and I are looking to start an online retail store (fashion), however with zero experience seek out your advise on a single choice.
    I have looked over your reviews and must admit that I’m still at a loss.
    We have also come across numerous people recommending WordPress. Would you kindly advise us. Many thanks.

    Mike.

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Mike,

      Generally speaking, using WordPress is a good option if you aren’t afraid of climbing are pretty steep learning curve (as compared to website builders that we discuss on our website). If you want to build your store yourself with WordPress, you’ll have to be fairly technical and helps to know codes. Making changes / edits to your design or backend functions on WordPress to customize your store will require modifying codes.

      It’s either that or you can hire a coder to help you with this, but good WordPress developers are not cheap (and you don’t want to pay for a cheap one as it can cause you even more pain (mental and financial) if you pick up the wrong developer!)

      If WordPress is not for you, there are several good online store builders that can help you get your ecommerce store up without you having to be technical at all. We have a comparison table for ecommerce builders here and you can take a look to see which one best suits your needs.

      If you need an advanced store and tools, check out Shopify and Bigcommerce. If you want a relatively simple store, then Wix, Weebly or Squarespace can be helpful here.

      In general, the non-WordPress ecommerce builders are there to help you take care of all the technicalities of hosting and building websites. Whereas with WordPress, you’ll have to spend time and energy to maintain all the technicalities of operating a website.

      We have a few discussion articles comparing a few website builders and WordPress. You can see them here.

      Jeremy

    • #

      Please don’t use WordPress. I have so many clients coming to me to untangle the WordPress mess it’s incredible! Stick with something user friendly like Weebly or Wix. Personally, I’m a Weebly fanatic and try touse it for all of my clients, even teach them how to do it themselves. WordPress is a nightmare.

  156. #

    I have run across another web builder that I think is worth a look. Could you review and add to your comparison chart? I know it may take a while, so is there a way to get an email when you publish your review, rather than check back in periodically? It seems to be 3 products: marketing pages, online course creation, and delivery of online courses (and collect the fee). I have demoed, but I’d like another opinion since you are already familiar with other builders. It’s at kajabi.com.

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Walt,

      I haven’t used Kajabi before, but I’ve heard about it. It’s built specifically for delivering online content / classes. So having said that, if that’s what you want to do (to sell online courses / classes, and collect tuition fees), then perhaps they will have more relevant / targeted tools for you.

      Generally speaking, the website builders we’ve discussed above are more “general” and have some really great tools to help people build sites. But they may not have the technical infrastructure to help you deliver courses. You can certainly create pages with text, videos, and Wix and Weebly even have membership gateways to lock up your courses so that only members can access certain pages. But they probably won’t have tools specifically built for online classes.

      Jeremy

  157. #

    Hi Jeremy,

    I’m looking out to branch out as a freelance writer for hire and though I have dabbled in wix and blogger, I want something that looks professional and FREE. Would wix or any other site fulfill my needs. Thanks.

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Jeremy,

      If you are looking for a free web builder, then Wix, Weebly or Jimdo might work for you. Just bear in mind that they do limit the tools available for their free users, and will “unlock” more tools once you become a paying customer.

      So in general, you can definitely create pages, insert your contact information, post some of your past work, credentials, etc, with just the free version of Wix. But if you want to brand the website as your own (not show any Wix banners, and connect your own custom domain name), then you will need to upgrade to a paid plan. Such restriction is also true for other website builders.

      Jeremy

  158. #

    Thank for all the great information I really like your articles.
    I want a very simple website with 4 pages photo gallery and the usual.
    I bought a domain name and hosting from one.com (webhotell) for $34 a year.
    It has a WordPress (one-click autoinstaller) and a primitiv web editor.
    i don’t like neither of them.i have tried Wix and I liked it but then I saw webeasy pro which is a program to install on my computer.
    Price for webeasy is $49 one time payment.
    My question is if I go with webeasy and upload my website will I lose out on SEO and other goodys Wix has to offer.
    Price is definitely an issue put a good and easy manageable website is also a must.

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Ossy,

      Generally I would recommend against downloading a website builder software to build your website, for a couple of key reasons:

      1) Hosted website builder such as Wix are continually growing their available tools and web building features. So if you get webeasy pro as a one time payment and installation, it doesn’t continually improve. The website building industry is growing quite fast, so if your service provider doesn’t grow, you won’t get access to advancing tools.

      2) Generally speaking, one time payment of $49 might not get you a whole lot of support if you need it. Providing support is a very resource intensive process. That’s also why website builders we’ve discussed on this page charge monthly fees, so that if you need support, they’ll be there to help you.

      3) If you use a downloaded software to build your site, you’ll have to find your own hosting services, which will also charge you a monthly fee. With drag and drop website builders such as Wix, they provide you with all the hosting services already to power your website. They also maintain the servers and keeps it secure, so you don’t have to worry about all the technical aspects of hosting. If you get your own hosting, you will have to deal with some level of technical matters.

      With Wix, their lowest paid plan is just over $4 per month, and they provide you with the ability to connect your own domain name with the website, and also provides you with hosting services. Don’t forget that you will also get the benefit of using new features when they release them. So it’s not too high of a monthly plan.

      Hope this gives you some insights into my thoughts.

      Jeremy

  159. #

    First, let me thank you for this page. After many years with a small law firm, I am going back out as a solo. I need a suitable website which a novice can make, but also one that represents my profession well. I plan on following your recommendation and pick two and try them out. Which two? The biggest question I have is about email. According to your chart, neither of the two that I am inclined to try provide email. “Weebly & Squarespace” This is leading me to consider godaddy, because they do. What do you recommend? How else can I handle email?

    Thanks again!!!

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Brian,

      With both Squarespace and Weebly, you can use Google Business App’s email services to power your email. We use Google Business Apps ourselves to power our custom domain email address as well, and we love it as it’s easy to use (Gmail) and is very reliable. So it’s fantastic for businesses. The small drawback is that it does cost about $4 – $5 per month, but for us it’s well worth it.

      Here are some tutorials from Squarespace and Weebly on how to set up your own custom domain email address.

      Hope this helps!

      Jeremy

  160. #

    Hello

    i would like to start online shopping, but i dont know which provider can build great e-com… web

  161. #

    Hi Jeremy! My husband and I are looking to expand our personal training and nutrition consultation business by offering online training and consultation aside from in person training. I’ve been researching what website builder would be best if we were to have people pay for our online virtual personal training and consultation using paypal. What website builder would you recommend? Is there a website builder you know of that allows for virtual training and paypal payments? Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Thank you in advance!

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Dulce,

      Wix, Weebly and Jimdo all integrates with PayPal.

      None of the website builders are specifically geared towards providing virtual training, so it depends on how you want to deliver your courses.

      If you are doing live video stream, you can take your training sessions off site, and use tools like Skype or Google Hangout.

      But if the courses are in pre-recorded video format, then you can always create pages, insert your videos into those pages, and hide those pages. Then when someone pays, you can then email them the links to the pages with the videos.

      With Wix and Weebly, they offer membership gateway features as well, meaning that you can create membership and only your members can log in and access certain pages. So in a way that offers the feeling of “exclusivity”.

      The membership function for Wix is free and you can find it in their App Market (more about their App Market here).

      With Weebly, you can sign up 100 members with their Weebly Pro plan, but if you want more members and if you want the ability to add a “log in” button on your menu bar, you can upgrade to their Business Plan. We’ve discussed more about their membership program in this article here.

      So while none of the web builders have dedicated functions for online courses, you can build an infrastructure around that by using some of the basic tools (as I suggested).

      Hope this points you in the right direction!

      Jeremy

  162. #

    Hello Jeremy, Thank you for the great information here and prompt responses to people’s questions. I run a bbq business and have about 50 products I would like to sell online. I want a professional looking website that allows customers to use paypal/debit/credit cards. I also want to incorporate a blog, recipes, cooking videos, social media links, and hopefully an interactive game app. I have some experience building a website, but I’m not a professional, so which site would you recommend for me? Would you happen to know how I can create an app for my customers as well, so they can order products with the click of a few buttons?

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Drew,

      Have you checked out our comparison chart for ecommerce builders? I’d highly recommend taking a look at Shopify as they’ll be able to cater to the items you mentioned, except for the game app which sounds like you’re going to build yourself. I haven’t created an app before but you’d probably have to hire a developer for that (assuming you’re not a hard core coder!)

      Jeremy

  163. #

    I am well over 60, a solo lawyer and my knowledge of all things tech start and stop with “is it plugged in?”
    I cannot afford to pay an IT person to create/host/maintain a web site, so I am determined to finally create one myself.

    I am looking at the comparison charts and sadly cannot make heads or tails of most of the features, e.g. HTML, interface, etc.

    All I need is a site that is incredibly simple both to build and view, but has a professional look:.

    My pic,a brief bio and a description of services offered and my practice’s contact info. Finally a way for a potential client to send me an e-mail inquiry directly from the website.

    Could you please recommend one or two of the web services that will let me play with it for a bit, give me the most customer support and has the least possibility of letting me truly mess up?

    I really would be grateful!

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hey Gari,

      No worries – we were just like you before as well! Everybody starts somewhere.

      If you’re looking for the easiest website builder to use, yet look professional, I’d suggest you test out Weebly. They have a very good (and easy to learn) user interface. You literally just drag and drop “elements” into your website (such as titles, text, images, galleries, etc).

      So you can definitely set up a few pages with biography, images and also a contact form that hooks up with your email address.

      Jeremy

  164. #

    Jeremy, Your research is fantastic!

    I am a financial writer primarily, and discouraged after several years of using Contribute, then trying to learn Dreamweaver to upgrade my website and make it easier to use. The learning curve is steep and is taking way too much of my time. My site is almost pure educational, needs many pages of content, but I’d also like to post up epub and ebooks, as well as linking to articles that I have written for publication, and have the ability to upload informational webinars.

    Would also like to have the ability for people to give selected feedback on the site. I am vacillating between Wix and Squarespace.

    Am I trying for too many things?

    PS Which website did you ultimately work with, or did you decide to work with a web designer.

    Thank you immensely for your help.

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Myra,

      I think both Squarespace and Wix will enable you to do the things you want. Just not that to get unlimited pages with Squarespace, you’ll need to subscribe to at least their Professional plan.

      You can also upload files to your webpages so that people can download them (such as ebooks). Linking to other webpages / articles is pretty straightforward. For Webinars, if you have the videos files or if they could be found on YouTube, then you can definitely insert them into your pages. But I’d suggest you upload them to YouTube first, as YouTube is much better at streaming videos and that takes the effort / load off your website. You can always mark the video as private if you don’t want people to find it publicly.

      You can always insert comment sections (such as using Disqus) if you want to allow people to comment on your page publicly. If you want private feedback, you can insert a contact form so your visitors can contact you via email.

      Hope this points you in the right direction!

      Jeremy

  165. #

    I have built a website for a nonprofit on WIX but am looking for information on hosting reliability before I choose them. Another member of our Board suggests WordPress because it is better established. I am not eager to rebuild the website, but she has a very good point. Anybody have information on how reliable various sites are in their hosting and mail handling?

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Tanya,

      I think the reliability of hosting services varies across different hosts, from strong to really weak.

      A general rule of thumb is, the more expensive the hosting service, the more reliable it is for WordPress. There are specialized “WordPress Hosts” out there who’s entire business is just to cater to hosting WordPress sites. WP Engine is one of them and their services are very reliable and security is one of their top priorities. But they do charge a premium starting at $29 per month per website.

      Some other hosting services, while cheaper, are not as reliable and their support team are not WordPress experts (WP Engine only employs people who are very knowledgeable about WordPress). So if you are leaning towards moving to WordPress, I’d recommend them.

      We do have another discussion article comparing Wix and WordPress here. If you haven’t seen it yet, I’d also suggest taking a look at it!

      Jeremy

  166. #

    I like all your articles. You give us insights of the software that help people out in deciding the right one for them.

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Thanks Kylie!

  167. #

    I want to build a site that is in high tech industry. It would be kind of like LendingTree.com where customers put in what they want and how many and I send to my distributors. It’s all service as I will not sell any items or carry any inventory so there is no need for a purchasing option. What I need I my website to do is have multiple options for each product. There will be a lot of products and a lot of options for each product. What I want to avoid is a huge cluttered mess and make it easy to navigate. What would you recommend for this?

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Brent,

      I just visited the site you referenced and I think you’ll probably need a pretty custom solution to build something like that. So I don’t think any of the drag and drop builders I referenced above will be able to help you build what you want. You’ll most likely need to look for a capable developer to help you.

      Check out Elance or oDesk to see if you can hire a developer to help you with this.

      Jeremy

  168. #

    Hi Jeremy

    I am an artist (painter, mixed media assemblage) down here at the bottom of the world in New Zealand (right next to Australia)! I am checking out the website builders and like the look of squarespace, but it seems it cannot do e-commerce for NZ? Weebly also appeals because it is the easiest to use by the sound of it. I’m not v. techy and I haven’t sold online before. Looking at etsy and linking new website with pinterest f/b as well.

    What I want: a beautiful, simple slide show for artworks. Space for “about me”, “about the works”, maybe some studio shots, option for a blog. Shopping and shipping. I’m not really expecting to sell outside of NZ and maybe Australia – but, hey, you never know! Essentially a showcase with option for selling.

    Should I be considering a NZ website builder, rather than international? Hard to know what the nz ones are like – seem expensive and unreliable as to speed. Also would a .nz domain be better than a .com, co etc?

    Thanks, you have been most informative and helpful.

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Kerry,

      Currently, Squarespace uses Stripe to power their payment processor for merchants using their platform, and I don’t think it’s available in NZ yet.

      As for Weebly, yes I think they are one of the easiest website builder to use and you can create slideshows, blogs and other pages to showcase yourself and your products. They allow you to link up your shopping cart with PayPal so it’s pretty easy way to get up and running in a very short period of time.

      You don’t necessarily have to use a NZ based website builder, as all the website builders we discuss are global. I’d personally prefer to use global web builders as it usually suggest that they are more developed and has a much larger customer base.

      You don’t necessarily have to get a .nz domain name. Generally speaking it’s always better to get a .com domain name, just in case you expand beyond NZ. But on the flip side, if you are only targeting local clients, this will show them that you are a local store. But I suppose you can be very clear up front about that on your home page.

      Jeremy

  169. #

    Hello, I want to create a website in which people can create an account and upload videos from their computer, sort of like YouTube if you will. Which one is the best website builder for this task?

    Thanks,

    – Shem

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Shem,

      It sounds like you need a pretty customized solution for that. None of the website builders we’ve discussed here has the ability for your visitors to upload their own videos into your website.

      Jeremy

      • #

        Does WordPress has the ability for people to upload their videos to my website? Does it cost any money?

        Hopefully you know and can answer me, thanks.

        • Jeremy Wong
          #

          Shem – WordPress is extremely flexible if you are proficient with coding, or if you hire a very capable WordPress programmer to help you. But I personally haven’t looked into this before so I can’t give you a definitive answer about this.

          Jeremy

  170. #

    Hi Jeremy, I’m interested in creating a site using Wix and wanted to know if there is a way to track how many people have visited the site? Thank you so much!

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Marilyn,

      You can add Google Analytics to your Wix website. Google Analytics is free and it helps you track a lot of different statistics on your website, including number of visitors, how many pages they’ve visited, how long they spend on your site, etc.

      You can find out more information on how to add Google Analytics to your Wix site in their support page here.

      Jeremy

  171. #

    Hi there,

    In regards to SEO options for website builder Wix, you mention that Wix allows page level control, including H1 to H6 titles, but you cannot customize your URL. I’m not familiar with the H1 and H6 titles, what does this mean?

    Also, you mention not customizing your URL on Wix, so does that mean if we switch to a Wix sitebuilder we have to add the name Wix to our own custom URL? Or are you referring only the URL as it relates to SEO settings.

    If we switch to Wix from Godaddy V7 sitebuilder (which were having lots of trouble with because Godaddy tech support does not know how to fix problems despite trying many times) can they import our text and images, pages ect to their site builder (different template of course) or de we have to rebuild site from scratch.

    We like Squarespace features but we do not like that black bar that borders all their templates. And we don’t really like how the scroll down bar is not on the outside edge of the templates. It feels like your website is reduced in screen size to allow for those fixed borders that surround the templates. We assume this is the part that makes their templates mobile. That part just doesn’t feel right to us though.

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Nevin,

      “H” means Heading. Very simplistically, when used, it tells Google that it is something worth emphasizing, or is a section divider. So when Google crawls and reads the content on your site, having these headings will help it understand a bit better what your content is about. H1 has a much higher emphasis than H6. So for some users, having better control over headings can help you better communicate what you are trying to emphasize on the page.

      Not being able to customize the URL means that if you can change the text of your URL. So for this page you are on right now, our URL structure is domain name / page name “website-builders-comparison-chart”. Being able to change it means I can change it to “website-chart” (for instance). This also helps tell Google what the content of the page is, so having this flexibility is good.

      So you don’t have to show any “Wix” text in your website address (if you are using one of its paid plans).

      Hope this clarifies things!

      Jeremy

  172. #

    Who owns the website when an outside firm builds the website?
    Thanks,
    Tom

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      That depends? I’m not entirely sure how to answer your question without any more context. If you hire a firm to build a website for you, then it’s really up to the contractual agreement between you and the firm. But logically you would want to make sure that you have final ownership of the website!

      Jeremy

  173. #

    I am wondering if WIX has a mobile application. When I go to their site, it indicates they do have mobile; but when I look on your chart is appears they do not have mobile. Can you clarify?

    Thanks!

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi RebMill,

      Yes Wix does have a mobile editor, so you can configure the mobile display of your website built with Wix. What they don’t have is a Mobile App, which some other builders have (such as Squarespace, Weebly or Jimdo) that allows you to manage your website on your mobile device.

      Some people who are constantly on the go prefer to have mobile apps to do some editing, approve blog comments, etc remotely. But if you’re not going to be doing a whole lot of editing while you are not in front of your computer, then having or not having mobile apps is not too important.

      Jeremy

  174. #

    I have a small business that is just starting out in which we teach surf,stand up paddle boarding, fitness, ocean education and safety, etc. a feature I would like to have is for customers to be able to book a lesson or package online and pay a deposit to reserve spot. Do any of the site builders accommodate this? Also, am I reading correctly in that you only get eCommerce on weebly if you sign up for their premier ($25) plan? Whereas squarespace you get at least some eCommerce in their lesser priced plans? Thank you for this review and your feedback.

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi Sa,

      With Weebly, you get access to their ecommerce tools even if you are using their Starter or Pro plans. But with the lower plans, you are limited to less products you can set up (10 for Starter Plan and 25 for Pro Plan). Take a look at this more indepth discussion to see the differences between the plans.

      I don’t think any of the website builders we discussed here has the ability to let your visitors book a date in a calendar and make a deposit for that day. But what you can do is create product pages for people to purchase bookings, by adding the deposit amount to the shopping cart. So the “deposit” is the product that they can purchase.

      However, you’ll have to contact them afterwards to confirm the booking date. I’m not too familiar with other online booking engines that you can add into website builders and have them smoothly integrated.

      Jeremy

  175. #

    Hello Jeremy,

    Thank you for your great information. I have a question to ask. I am trying to choose a company to host a eCommerce web site. I am starting a online business where I will be selling products. I need a website that can have a shopping cart and also be able to have a log in feature where I can have my customers sing up to create a account.

    I tried Godday and Squarespace overall I liked both however, square space templates are so simple and plain and they only allow one picture to be uploaded for the product. And go daddy doesn’t have a the log in feature.

    Would you be able to advice on what your thoughts are? Do you think I possibly buy a ready made template and customize so It gives me all the features I am looking for?

    Thank you
    Alex

  176. #

    Jeremy,

    Thank you for the very informative website builder reviews. I am looking to create a website for my real estate company that rents out space in a strip mall, has a few residential rentals and billboards. I do not need ecommerce. I would like an industry specific theme to work with. I also am looking to show photos and locations on a map. I use Mailchimp for my retail business and like its ease of use and would like a website builder that is also user friendly and not too expensive. I would welcome your recommendation.

    Thanks,
    DC

    • Jeremy Wong
      #

      Hi DC,

      I think all of the website builders have the capability to do what you want. So if you are looking for the easiest website builder to use, I’d suggest giving Weebly a try. You can sign up for a free account and test them out to see what you think.

      But their templates are not as nice as Squarespace or Wix, but if that’s not too important for you then it’s not a huge concern. But Wix has a much larger selection of industry specific templates, and Squarespace’s templates are just a lot more visually appealing.

      They all allow you to sign up for free to test them out without any obligations to upgrade. So it’s worth investing some time into figuring out which one works the best for you.

      Jeremy