Best for White Collar Businesses
As one of the providers featured on our best website builders list, IONOS is built for functionality. While other builders advertise how easily they can create websites, IONOS instead gives you the hard facts of what the platform provides. This includes storage space, email inbox size, and how many web pages you get, so you’ll know exactly whether it can handle your website.
We recommend IONOS for users who need enterprise support and functionality above everything else and don’t mind limited creative control in favor of a simple website that guarantees consistent performance.
- ✅99% uptime & quick page loading times to improve customer experience
- ✅Templates are suited for corporate businesses
- ✅Comprehensive knowledge center
- ❌Features are limited – no scheduling or booking tool
- ❌No free plan or free trial available
- ❌Dated interface makes any meaningful customization hard
The purpose of a website builder is to make designing a website as quick and easy as possible. So how did IONOS do on this front?
If we’re being honest, not great. In our user testing, IONOS only scored 2.8 out of 5 for ease of use. This is a particularly low score in our research out of the builders we tested. For example, Wix scores a 4.4 out of 5 overall for ease of use, a top performer in our research.
This mostly comes down to its limited and restrictive editor. From our 11 years of experience, a good website builder’s editor is intuitive and user-friendly, but our users found it very difficult to personalize their templates during testing. They reported that it was particularly difficult to move different elements around because of IONOS’ section-based layout. Even something as simple as choosing a color scheme was much harder than it needed to be.
One of our testers commented:
“You’re restricted to the fixed elements on the page, and the editor only really covers the basics. For example, there’s no pop-up feature or many options when adding a new section.”
Much like the rest of the builder, IONOS’s templates are more functional than fabulous. There are only 25 to choose from, and with our background and expertise in website builder templates, there were none that really caught our eyes.
In fact, users felt that they were quite outdated, which isn’t ideal when customization potential is so limited. This means you have to work twice as hard to try and create something unique for your brand. As a result, IONOS only scores 2.6 out of 5 for design.
Heads up!Once you’ve published your website, you won’t be able to go back and change your template. This means that you should consider carefully when choosing one. Ideally, you want to pick one that will grow with your business. If you do decide you want to switch, you’ll have to start from scratch.
However, IONOS’s design score has risen from last year’s 2.5 out of 5 because it introduced an AI website builder. Simply enter a few business details and IONOS will create a customizable website with images and text. If you’re someone who doesn’t have the time to spend on design, IONOS’s AI Website Builder helps you focus your attention on more important matters, such as making the necessary legal preparations for running a small online business. This is because all of IONOS’s templates have a corporate feel to them that conveys a sense of professionalism, even the custom AI ones (which we tested).
So, what do users think of IONOS MyWebsite?
During our testing and research, it achieved a customer score of 3.3 out of 5. This isn’t the best, but it’s certainly not the worst either, putting IONOS in 8th place out of 11. Our number one position for this category goes to Shopify with a 4.8 out of 5.
Overall, our users wouldn’t pick this builder out as their favorite, but it’s not all bad news. IONOS will still appeal to a set group of users, such as small business owners, which is what we’ll be exploring in the section below.
- This review covers IONOS’ website builder, MyWebsite.The company also provides hosting – you can read our IONOS hosting review here.
Let’s take a look at the different categories IONOS can provide for:
IONOS for Business
This is where IONOS comes into its own. The MyWebsite builder is set up to help small businesses get online, offering more corporate-styled templates than other competitors and it even has an AI website builder that’s designed to save you time when building your site.
IONOS comes with a free domain for the first year, a personal email account, built-in email marketing, social media integration, and tools for search engine optimization (SEO).
It can also translate your site into multiple languages, which is great if you’re looking to promote your services in different countries. IONOS also prides itself on its performance, meaning it can handle many users from across the globe without any loading troubles.
Its value for money is a great point in its favor because lots of new businesses often have a small budget to work with. IONOS’s affordable plans mean that small startups won’t have to break the bank to establish a respectable online presence.
IONOS for Blogging
Although it’s not known for its blogging capabilities, IONOS does provide a range of tools to support a blog.
IONOS offers features such as displaying article categories, allowing comments on posts, social bookmarking, a search feature, and an RSS feed.
However, we wouldn’t recommend this website builder if blogging is your main purpose because it lacks features such as blogging analytics and the ability to schedule posts. There are alternative platforms that are better equipped to support a blog and help it grow, such as Wix and Squarespace.
IONOS isn’t a bad choice if your primary goal is to build a business website with a blog attached on the side. It also recently introduced an AI Text Generator to help you create content for your blog as well as an AI Text Improver to give you advice on how to improve your writing. These two tools working together mean even a writing novice can produce high-quality content for blogs.
It won’t be the most impressive element of your site, it will definitely be functional. If you’re keen to learn more about how to start your own blog, read our guide.
5 Best Small Business Website Builders – Check out the other top platforms for small business websites
IONOS for Ecommerce
In the past 5 years, we saw IONOS’ ecommerce functionality as a useful add-on, but there have been some improvements since then. There are now three plans on offer, the most advanced of which (Pro) allows you to sell an unlimited number of products, supports wholesale businesses, and integrates your store with Facebook, Instagram, eBay, and Amazon.
While it still has a long way to go to match the power of dedicated ecommerce platforms like Shopify, it will do the job for businesses that need a basic website with an online store attached. Plus, it’s pretty easy on your budget, too!
However, if ecommerce is your main goal, or you want something with a more fully realized ecommerce offering, we’d recommend taking a look at either Wix or Squarespace. These builders still give you the option of a website alongside an online store – but they offer advanced sales tools and a lot more scope for growth.
- Ecommerce Website Builder Comparison Chart – For a full breakdown of the online store builder market, see our detailed chart.
- 5 Best Ecommerce Website Builders – Click here for our list of the best online store builders.
IONOS for Portfolio
Portfolio sites certainly aren’t a strength of IONOS. The templates have a more corporate feel to them and they allow you to create photo galleries, add testimonials, and embed live feeds from your social media. This is great for showcasing some work, but it’s not enough if that’s the main focus of your site. Given your lack of creative control, they don’t really work for artistic industries or websites for artists.
Squarespace is the clear winner when it comes to building creative portfolio sites. Its templates are modern and stylish, and it’s not just us saying that – it’s used by loads of professional photographers and artists, too.
IONOS for Scalability
Thanks to its built-in marketing tools, SEO features, and multilingual translation, we’d say IONOS has good potential when it comes to scalability.
We were impressed by how easy IONOS makes search engine optimization. You can access all of the SEO features from the editor, so you won’t need to navigate between pages to make your website search engine-friendly.
IONOS has also added the unique feature of an AI SEO Text Generator that instantly generates titles and descriptions for improved Google search results visibility. SEO is directly tied to how you grow your audience size by appearing more on Google, but you have to consider that IONOS is primarily for small businesses, which means it does have its restrictions.
While it offers great performance, it does lack the tools and features you need to truly run a large and complex business or online store, only scoring 2.2 out of 5 in our research for website features. For a large store, you may need an ecommerce-focused platform like Shopify or Magento.
IONOS isn’t the most complex of website builders and, as a result, a lot of what it offers is pretty limited. You’ll find that it’s missing a large amount of advanced marketing features, such as popups and a reduction in the number of compatible social media feeds. There are not even booking or scheduling tools, limiting the types of business you could even run with IONOS.
However, there are a few areas where IONOS really stands out. Below are the most important:
You don’t need to rely on the sometimes flakey Google Translate. With IONOS, you can translate your site’s content into 62 different languages. Not only that but if you’d like multiple languages on your site at once, you can have up to 60 at any given time. Muy Bien (Very Good)!
You don’t have to limit yourself to the US and UK markets, so you’ll now have access to a larger audience and an increase in potential revenue.
IONOS lets you change your site’s content based on who’s viewing it, or what time of year it is.
Let’s say you’re a dental practice and want to let new customers know they can get a free consultation. You can set your site up so new visitors see the free consultation offer, but others won’t.
This works for seasonal deals as well. You can change what people see on your site to reflect the calendar month.
IONOS gives a lot of SEO functionality to the user. You are able to tweak the SEO settings on every page in the editor, as well as accept SEO suggestions for page titles and descriptions from the AI SEO Text Generator. This would be enough support to turn a beginner into someone fairly competent at SEO, leading to more success and growth for your site.
For its Pro plan subscribers, IONOS also offers rankingCoach SEO optimization. rankingCoach is a digital marketing software used by professionals, giving users in-depth SEO metrics and keyword research, as well as the ability to launch Google Ad campaigns. This is important for growing your website and increasing your site’s traffic and audience.
Help and Support
The knowledge base – or Digital Guide – is comprehensive, offering in-depth guides and inspiration across hundreds of topics. It’s even split between technical knowledge and marketing help, offering additional marketing support to its users. In our research, we gave IONOS a strong help and support score of 4.8 out of 5, placing it joint first for this category alongside Wix and Squarespace.
IONOS offers 24/7 phone support, has live chat available from 8am to 8pm, and a dedicated knowledge base. It’s worth highlighting that you won’t be able to access this knowledge base from the dashboard, so you’ll need to flick between tabs to get the answers you’re after.
In our research, IONOS scores 3.1 out of 5 in this category, putting it on par with Wix and Shopify – our top providers when it comes to ecommerce. Unlike these two competitors, IONOS’s plans are very affordable, with the cheapest starting from just $1 per month. IONOS fell in our ranking for value for money by 26% due to the fact that IONOS doesn’t offer enough features to justify its price (even one as low as $1 per month).
IONOS has three plans to choose from:
- Starter Plan – $6/month
- Includes: AI Website Builder, SSL Certificate, 24/7 multichannel support, 17,000 stock images
- Plus Plan – $1/month
- Includes: AI Website Builder, AI Text Generator + Improver, AI SEO Text Generator, online booking tool, SSL Certificate, 24/7 multichannel support, 17,000 stock images, rearrange features in editor
- Pro Plan – $15/month
- Includes: AI Website Builder, AI Text Generator + Improver, AI SEO Text Generator, rankingCoach, online booking tool, SSL Certificate, 24/7 multichannel support, 17,000 stock images, rearrange features in editor
Heads up!Although exceptionally cheap, it’s important to point out that these prices are promotional introductory prices. This means that they’re only valid for the first 6 months, after which point they’ll increase. The renewal prices are as follows:
- Starter – $12/month
- Plus – $18/month
- Pro – $28/month
If you want to sell online, each website builder plan has the option to add an ecommerce store. You get the same features as the regular plan, just the added option to sell products. Here’s what that does to the prices:
- Starter – $6/month for the first six months, then $24/month
- Includes: 500 products
- Plus – $1/month for the first six months, then $30/month
- Includes: 5,000 products
- Pro – $30/month for the first six months, then $60/month
- Includes: 10,000 products
The other key difference is the number of other channels you’re able to integrate with. With the Starter plan, you’re limited to Facebook and Instagram. The Plus plan allows you to sell on Facebook and Google Shopping, but not Instagram, while the Pro plan gives you access to all three.
IONOS certainly carves a little niche for itself, but how does it compare with the wider, website-building industry?
In terms of pricing, IONOS has the cheapest discounted starting price of $1 (for the first 6 months). The actual price of the Starter plan is $12 per month, but it’s still on the cheaper side when it comes to website builders. For example, Wix and Squarespace, both start at $16 per month.
However, IONOS drops down in ranking when you consider the features you get for its starting price. Wix and Squarespace offer users blogging, scheduling, accounting, ecommerce, mobile editing, and analytics while IONOS requires you to upgrade just to move sections in the editor. In our research, we could only give IONOS a 3.1 out of 5 for value for money, and an even lower 2.2 out of 5 for features.
Although it’s not the best website builder on the block, IONOS doesn’t pretend to be anything it’s not. It’s a good option for anyone who wants a cheap and basic website.
If you want something flashy or artsy, there are plenty of other platforms out there to choose from. If you’re interested in creating a basic business website with the aim of international growth, IONOS MyWebsite could be a good choice. You can put a site together quickly and easily, without spending a fortune – or even spending much at all.
If you’ve done your research and think IONOS is right for you, go ahead and sign up to see what you think.
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