Top 7 Cheapest Website Builders in 2023: From $1/month

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Sticking to a budget is important, especially in the current economic climate, so value for money is a key factor when looking for the cheapest website builders.

IONOS has the cheapest plan available, starting from only $1 per month for the first 12 months. This is a great deal for those on a budget because you get enough time to see if the builder is right for you while paying a low price. Next is Hostinger, which usually costs $11.99 but is now discounted to just $2.99 per month – you also get the first three months free (if you choose the 48-month plan).

GoDaddy is third with a $9.99 per month price tag, which is a very reasonable appraisal considering you’ll get a complete website builder for that price. You see, while IONOS may have the cheapest plan it doesn’t mean it’s the best value for money. That title belongs to Squarespace which proved to be the best value for money out of the seven cheap website builders we tested.

Top 7 Cheapest Website Builders

  1. IONOS $1 per month for the first 12 months
  2. Hostinger $11.99 per month, currently discounted at $2.99 + 3 months free
  3. GoDaddy $9.99 per month
  4. Shopify $5 per month with the Shopify Starter plan
  5. Wix $14.40 per month with our code GET10!
  6. Squarespace $14.40 per month with our code WBE
  7. Square Online $29 per month, ecommerce included for free

We’ve analyzed and researched all the plans across all of the top providers to give you a full breakdown of what they offer for the price they advertise. Every website builder on this list has been tested by us – some of them are more worthy of your money than others, but all of them are trustworthy brands. We’ll give you the skinny on each, arming you with all the information you need to make the right choice.

Compare the Best 7 Cheap Website Builders

Price isn’t the only important thing when it comes to website builders. This chart compares the key features of each platform’s cheapest paid plan, so you can see which ones offer the best value. Use the arrows to compare the platforms side by side.

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Square Online

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Features vs Price
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Starting from


Starting from


Currently discounted at $2.99 + 3 months free (starting with the 48-month plan)

Starting from


Starting from
Starting from
Starting from
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Free plan or free trial


Free plan or free trial


Free plan or free trial

Free plan

Free plan or free trial

Free trial

Free plan or free trial

Free plan

Free plan or free trial

14-day free trial

Free plan or free trial

Free plan

Free custom domain
Free custom domain
Free custom domain
Free custom domain
Free custom domain
Free custom domain
Free custom domain
Ad-free on cheapest plan
Ad-free on cheapest plan
Ad-free on cheapest plan
Ad-free on cheapest plan
Ad-free on cheapest plan
Ad-free on cheapest plan
Ad-free on cheapest plan
Sales tools on cheapest plan
Sales tools on cheapest plan
Sales tools on cheapest plan
Sales tools on cheapest plan
Sales tools on cheapest plan
Sales tools on cheapest plan
Sales tools on cheapest plan
You might think this is a trick question, but we promise it’s not. Just because a website builder comes with a cheap price tag, it doesn’t automatically mean it’s good value for money. Sure, it might be easy on your purse strings, but very cheap pricing plans don’t usually come with an awful lot of useful features.

This is why some of the website builders we’ve listed in first place below don’t always come with the best overall rating. It’s important that you weigh up what’s important to you, and what features are non-negotiable before you commit to a website builder. The chances are that if you choose one just for the small price tag, you might find it lacking in other areas.

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More Information


The cheapest plans, but comes with limited features

Pricing: $1 per month for the first 12 months


The cheapest plans, but comes with limited features

Above Average


out of 5
  • Excellent load speed
  • Customization is limited
  • Pretty outdated overall

Free trial available

Paid Plans: $0.5 - $35 / month


  • Scalable tools for growth
  • Templates for all industries
  • Easy-to-embed features


  • Design of templates could be better
  • No free plan
  • Editor is outdated
IONOS Review

IONOS At A Glance

IONOS is specifically designed to get businesses online, and it stands out from the crowd thanks to its incredibly cheap pricing plans that start at $1 per month for the first year! It’s also good for scalability as your business grows, and it allows you to translate your website into multiple languages for better global reach.

While IONOS takes the first position for its $1 per month pricing, but you do get what you pay for. Our research shows that IONOS has poor customization and design options. Since our last round of research, IONOS’s value for money score actually fell by -26.2% from 4.2 to just 3.1 out of 5, which is due to a lack of features offered by its low price.

However, you can still go far with IONOS for just a dollar! Let’s take a deeper dive into this provider.

$1 per month Plus plan need to know:

  • Free domain for the first year
  • Professional email address
  • Limited customization and design abilities
  • Good online marketing tools
  • No ads
  • Prices renew at a higher rate in the second year of subscription
IONOS isn’t the easiest website builder to use, demonstrated by its low score of 2.8 out of 5 in our ease of use testing. Its editor is arranged in sections and, even though this ensures your website design stays nice and tidy, it can be frustrating when trying to move things around. Overall, this makes the editing experience feel restrictive.

In general, our testers had the impression that IONOS’s ease of use was more for efficiency than for sparking any love of website building in the user.

One tester said:

“It definitely feels like a website builder run by a company that doesn’t really care about website building, more just pumping out a functional product.”

On the other hand, it is very easy to add additional pages and expand your website. Plus, each new page is a blank canvas, meaning you can structure it however you like. This is great if you like to have a bit more control over your design, but it could pose problems if you just want to get your website up and running as quickly as possible.

IONOS offers two different types of pricing plans: one for website builders, and one for ecommerce stores. Both have plans that begin at $1 per month and, if you opt for the website builder plan, you can still add an additional store feature if you want to.

There are three website builder plans to choose from:

  • Starter: $5 per month
  • Plus: $1 per month
  • Pro: $15 per month
  • Pro (with an online store): $25 per month

It’s worth noting that these are introductory prices, meaning that when you renew your plan for the second year, the price will increase. This increases the yearly cost of the Starter plan to $9, the Plus plan to $15, and the Pro plan to $25 per month. If you choose the online store version, the renewal prices are $19 for the Starter plan, $25 for the Plus plan, and $50 for the Pro plan.

As we mentioned, having the cheapest prices doesn’t automatically make it the best value for money option. Unfortunately, its $1 per month pricing and feature set don’t match up well against its competitors.

Unfortunately, IONOS isn’t known for its impressive design features. Users reported that the templates on offer feel outdated, although there is a theme for almost every industry you can think of. However, after our recent testing, we can say IONOS has made a slight improvement to its template designs, rising from a 3 to a 4 out of 5, raising IONOS’s overall design functionality score by 4%, from a 2.5 to a 2.6 out of 5.

While its templates may have improved slightly from last year, getting creative control with this website builder is still tricky. Customization is limited, and you’re often restricted by the template you’ve chosen, unlike Squarespace.

Despite its disappointing designs, 1&1 IONOS does come equipped with a small but good set of tools to help small businesses get online. It comes with a free domain for the first year, a personal email account, and robust SEO tools to help your business grow. In our research, IONOS’s feature score actually increased by 11.2% from last year, from 2 to 2.2 out of 5.

The MyWebsite Now builder is specifically designed to help beginners get online quickly. It’s ideal if you aren’t bothered about creating a website with all the bells and whistles attached, but instead, want something functional to promote your business.

You can sell online with IONOS through four plans, and the online store-only Expert plan starts at $35 per month.

With the beginning Starter plan, you get to sell 500 products; a free domain for one year; integrated payment and shipping methods; cross-platform selling with social media sites, like Facebook and Instagram; and marketing Radar software to track the activity of your competitors.

Do We Recommend IONOS’ Cheapest Plan?

Yes and No. While you aren’t going to find a website builder for cheaper than $1 a month, IONOS gives you what you pay for and does lack in some areas. You can still create a dynamic website, and translate it into multiple languages. It also allows you to connect your site to social media, as well as integrate a blog and advanced features such as photo galleries, parallax scrolling, and video backgrounds. If you want a functional website but the cost is a major factor, then we recommend IONOS.

If you have other criteria to be met other than just cheapness, then we suggest you look at providers like Squarespace or Wix. For a few extra bucks, you could find yourself a provider more in-line with what you want.

IONOS is the cheapest website builder, costing $1 per month.

#2. Hostinger

Best for uptime reliability

Pricing: $2.99 per month + three months free (if you choose the 48-month plan)

Hostinger - Web Builder

Best for uptime reliability



out of 5
  • One to watch
  • Experimental AI tools
  • Good customer score

Free trial available

Paid Plans: $2.69 - $39.99 / month


  • Easy-to-use template editor
  • Inbuilt AI branding tools
  • Free email for 3 months


  • No app market
  • Limited social media integration
  • Cant switch templates once published
Hostinger Review

Hostinger At A Glance

Hostinger is the new kid on the block, but it’s already making big waves in the website-building world. It boasts some cutting-edge features, such as its AI writer, which is super useful for smaller businesses that can’t afford freelancers. In our last round of testing, it rose 16% in both overall features and design from last year. It’s still growing in a lot of ways, but there are some rough patches. We awarded it a customer score of 2.8 out of 5 to reflect this, but that doesn’t mean it will stay that score forever.

$2.99 per month ‘Website’ plan need to know:

  • Unlimited bandwidth
  • Unlimited storage
  • Free domain for a year (or connect your own)
  • Built-in AI tools
  • Blogging tools
  • Free email for 3 months
  • Integrate with Google Analytics
  • Can’t sell on this plan

If you’re interested, Hostinger is offering the first 3 months free if you sign on for the plan for 48 months instead of 12 months. Additionally, you can get 10% off at checkout if you use code WBE at checkout.

Thanks to its grid-based drag-and-drop editor, Hostinger is one of the easiest builders to use, scoring 3.9 out of 5 in our ease-of-use testing. It allows a good amount of creative freedom, without everything becoming too overwhelming. As one of our in-house testers said:

“Drag and drop when adding elements made it highly customizable while also keeping things tidy.”

This is perfect if you’re looking for a straightforward, no-frills website to accompany your business.

However, the reason for its simplicity is that it isn’t as feature-rich as some of the other builders out there. It provides the basics, but if you want anything advanced, you’ll need to have a bit of coding knowledge to get there –  not exactly what we’d call beginner-friendly!

Hostinger performs well in terms of value for money, scoring 4 out of 5 in this category (though this is a fall of -4.8% from last year’s score of 4.2 out of 5).  It also offers a 30-day money-back guarantee, so you can start building your website risk-free.

There is only one plan to choose from:

Keep an eye on Hostinger’s prices because it often runs sales, reducing the total cost by up to 75%.

Hostinger comes with a collection of stylish and mobile-optimized templates that are perfect for promoting small businesses. It also gives you the option to build one from scratch, which is ideal if you want to put your brand identity center stage.

Hostinger used to stumble when it came to customization possibilities. To keep things simple, you couldn’t do too much to your templates to make them stand out from the crowd. It was the trade-off for the easy-to-use editor. But in our research, Hostinger shot up by a dramatic 16% in design functionality, going from a 3.1 to a 3.6 out of 5 since we last tested it.

Its templates jumped from 3 all the way to a perfect 5 out of 5’s, and its aesthetic capabilities rose 200% from 1 to a 3 out of 5. You can use visual guides and dynamic columns to snap elements exactly where you want them, which is helpful for beginners who are new to web building.

Because it’s such a new website builder, Hostingers’s stock of features is slightly limited, and it doesn’t come with an app market, relying solely on Zapier for all third-party integrations. This is why it only scored 2.8 out of 5 for this category in our research, though this is once again a 16% rise from when we last tested it.

However, its cheapest Website plan does include a free email address for three months, a free domain for one year, basic SEO tools to help with growth, Google Analytics integration, and unlimited storage space and bandwidth. Not bad for just $2.99 per month!

All Hostinger’s plans come with a set of unique AI tools that make it feel like a contemporary builder. These include an AI writer for acing keyword-rich copy as well as a logo builder that’s super useful if you need to keep costs down and don’t want to hire a designer.

Like IONOS, you can list up to 500 products on Hostingers online store option. However, unlike other providers, there’s no option to upgrade to get more space.

You also get a free domain and free unlimited SSL certificates.

Do We Recommend Hostinger’s Cheapest Plan?

Yes, we do, but not if you want to sell products. The Website plan is super affordable at just $2.99 per month, making it great for small business sites on a budget. Along with the AI tools and improvements made to both features and design functionality, Hostinger provides more of a complete package than other cheap builders. However, its commerce options are very limited. If you want a dedicated online store, we’d suggest opting for another provider like Shopify.

Get your first three months for free with Hostinger’s $2.99 subscription, plus 10% off with code WBE.

#3. GoDaddy

Fastest way to build a website

Pricing: $9.99 per month


Fastest way to build a website

Very Good


out of 5
  • Hands-off ADI building
  • Strong marketing focus
  • Cheapest plan is limited

Free plan available

Paid Plans: $2.99 - $469.99 / month


  • GoDaddy Insights tool helps you grow
  • Edit your site on the go from your phone
  • Fast setup helps you publish sooner


  • No SEO optimizer on cheapest plan
  • No sales or payments on cheapest plan
  • Poor social integration on cheapest plan
GoDaddy Review

GoDaddy At A Glance

GoDaddy’s artificial design intelligence makes it the fastest way to build a small business website – and at $9.99 per month, it’s pretty cheap too! Every plan includes GoDaddy Insight, which provides a tailored action plan to help boost your online presence – the perfect tool for small businesses. GoDaddy has dropped slightly in our ranking, going from a score of 4.4 to a 4.2 out of 5.

However, it’s also the only website builder to improve its site speed and is now the only one to be rated ‘Good’ in our research, demonstrating a real commitment to improvement. This is a good sign for anyone looking for a website builder that offers long-term growth.

$9.99 per month Basic plan need to know:

  • 1-month free trial
  • No free domain
  • No adverts on your website
  • 24/7 phone support
  • GoDaddy Insight analytics
  • No built-in SEO website optimizer
  • Integrate with one social platform
  • Offer one-time appointments (no recurring bookings)
  • No ecommerce

GoDaddy in Action: The Brand Phoenix

black and white photo of Janice.
Janice Isabel Torres
Creative Communications Executive
Janice is a strategic agency partner for top brands, offering white-labeling services, which she has provided to dozens of top communication agencies. Her consulting practice, The Brand Phoenix, was founded in 2014.


How did you find your GoDaddy plan?

In addition to an easy user experience, I love GoDaddy because of the customer service by phone. I am a bit old school and like to talk to real people. They are literally open 24/7, which is great for night owl entrepreneurs like me, who occasionally wake up at 3 a.m. with an idea that needs to be paired with the purchase of a domain.

Websites drive industry authority, increase SEO, control company narratives, and offer users safe place to exchange data.

GoDaddy is super beginner-friendly because it does most of the hard work for you. It uses Artificial Design Intelligence (ADI), which asks you a few questions, then uses your answers to create a personalized website for you. That’s why it scored an impressive 4.1 out of 5 in our ease of use testing, with one user commenting:

“It was easy to use. I could find everything I needed to find. If I needed to make a simple website for a business, this is the one I would choose.”

The ADI builder means that your template comes with relevant features already built-in, and you can jump straight into making it your own, filling out your own content before publishing.

GoDaddy comes with a free plan in addition to its four premium pricing plans, all of which have a one-month free trial. This allows you to test it out risk-free. The cheapest premium plan costs $9.99 per month when you pay annually:

  • Basic: $9.99 per month
  • Premium: $14.99 per month
  • Commerce: $16.99 per month
  • Commerce Plus: $29.99 per month

While the Basic plan gives you a decent set of tools, it’s designed for very basic websites. Due to its lack of SEO tools, limited social media integrations, and restrictive appointment features, most small businesses are likely to feel its limitations.

With GoDaddy, you don’t start off by choosing your own template, because your site is created for you through the ADI editor. However, that doesn’t mean you’re limited to what it chooses for you, because you can switch up your layout and design pretty easily. Customization is limited, so complex branding will be a struggle, but it’s enough to put your own stamp on your site.

GoDaddy’s overall design functionality score took a small dip in our research based on last year’s scores, falling -5.8% overall from 4.3 to a 4.1 out of 5. This was due to a lack of template updates and mobile optimization, two factors of high importance for our users.

GoDaddy is designed to support entrepreneurs and small businesses, which is clear in its suite of marketing tools. GoDaddy Insight is particularly useful as it ranks your site by comparing it to similar businesses, and provides a custom action plan to help you improve.

However, unless you’re a brand new small business, you may find the features on the cheapest plan limiting. A big let down is a lack of recurring online appointment bookings, as well as having no free domain!

However, while GoDaddy’s overall feature score has fallen -6.7% from 3.3 to a  3.1 out of 5, it has made some improvements by adding a logo maker and the ability to add customer testimonials to your site.

Since a 2022 revamp of its ecommerce options, GoDaddy actually has quite a wide range of sales features available on its online store builder. These won’t be to the same level of depth as Shopify or Wix, but users will be surprised at the sheer breadth of options GoDaddy allows you to do.

You can have up to 5,000 products to sell, plus the GoDaddy Insights helps you keep track of all your purchases. The Marketplace feature lets you sell across Amazon, Etsy, and more – and GoDaddy also has no transaction payments!

The lack of any real scalability is a downside, as are the general lack of features GoDaddy suffers from. In our research, we gave GoDaddy an overall ecommerce score of 3 out of 5.

Do We Recommend GoDaddy’s Cheapest Plan?

Yes, but not forever. GoDaddy’s cheapest plan is great if you need a simple site and you want to get it published quickly. Essentially, it’s the perfect starting point, especially given how useful its GoDaddy Insight tool is! However, you’ll want to upgrade as your business grows. This is because GoDaddy’s pricier plans offer greater value for money, especially when it comes to advanced SEO tools like custom headers and URLs, which help Google scroll your site faster.

You can build a website with GoDaddy in minutes.

#4. Shopify

Best for scaling your online store

Pricing: $5 per month (social media selling only)


Best for scaling your online store

Very Good


out of 5
  • Sell unlimited products
  • 0% - 2% transaction fees
  • Advanced sales tools

Free trial available

Paid Plans: $29 - $299 / month


  • Shipping discounts on cheapest plan
  • Powerful inventory and selling tools
  • Very scalable, so can grow larger stores


  • High fees for non-Shopify Payments users
  • Upgrading plans quickly grows expensive
  • Paid apps can easily add up as you build
Shopify Review

Shopify At A Glance

Shopify is a dedicated ecommerce platform – its primary function is to help merchants build, run, and grow online stores. This means all its plans, themes, and features are tailored to selling online, making it more suitable for larger businesses. In fact, 28% of online stores in the US use Shopify, the highest percentage out of any ecommerce website builder.

Its cheapest plan, the Shopify Basic, costs $29 per month, with the next tier starting at $79 per month, so make sure you need its features if you want value for money.

Shopify does in fact have a cheaper plan: the Shopify Starter plan. For only $5 per month, you get access to a Shopify store, which is designed specifically for social media selling. You won’t get the same amount of features as the Basic plan, but it’s great for people looking to sell fast!

$5 per month Shopify Starter plan need to know:

  • A simple storefront
  • Unlimited product pages
  • Fast and secure checkout
  • Contact page for customer inquiries
  • Linkpop, the link in bio tool designed for commerce
  • Access to Shopify apps
  • Shopify order management and integrated fulfillment network
  • 2% transaction fee, unless you use Shopify Payments

Shopify in Action: Lucky Dog Design Co.

Kayla Hutchinson headshot of her holding birthday cards
Kayla Hutchinson
Founder and Graphic Desginer
Founder Kayla Hutchinson has been a graphic designer for more than a decade. When Kayla’s not making cards or stickers, you can find her hula hooping, embroidering, drinking coffee, or getting lost in a good book.


Which Shopify plan did you start with?

I started with a template available on Shopify for free for 3 years, then migrated over to a custom website within Shopify 2 years ago.

What did you like about your Shopify plan?

I love how it creates a seamless process for shop owners and buyers. It is easy and painless to create new products, add specific shipping, and accept many different payments.

What could be improved upon in the plan?

I would love more analytics. The analytics for Shopify users at the most common level seems to be cut off. Basic analytics you may want as a small business just does not exist. That said, I would recommend Shopify for product based business owners 100% of the time.
Despite being a very powerful, feature-heavy platform, Shopify is pretty user-friendly. For some, it might take a little longer to understand, but you can build a detailed website with Shopify. As one of our testers said:

It’s good for people who are willing to invest a lot of time and money to build something that is professional and scalable.”

In our research, we gave it a 4 out of 5 for ease of use, putting Shopify just behind GoDaddy in this category.

A large part of Shopify’s modus operandi is its app market. Most functions and features that aren’t immediately found in the in-editor navigation bar can be downloaded from the app store.

Shopify is a pretty advanced ecommerce platform, and it shows in its pricing. While there’s no free plan, it does provide a three-day free trial on all plans, and $1 per month for three months on the Basic plan. Its cheapest plan costs $29 per month:

  • Shopify Basic: $29 per month
  • Shopify: $79 per month
  • Advanced Shopify: $299 per month

The prices increase quickly between plans, so it’s best to think ahead before committing.

If you want to start selling immediately and don’t need a fancy store, then the Starter plan might be for you. You can only sell on social media, but with monetized links and all the robust sales features of a Shopify store, it’s definitely worth it for some. Despite this, Shopify’s plans are still pretty expensive which is why it scores 3 out of 5 in our value for money research.

All of Shopify’s designs are created specifically for online stores.

There are nine free themes, but most of them need to be purchased – the cheapest of these costs around $100, with the most expensive costing $180. If you don’t like any of Shopify’s free themes, this is a big upfront cost that you’ll need to budget for.

In terms of design, Shopify’s themes look great, scoring 4 out of 5 in our design functionality research.

They’re all mobile responsive, cover a range of industries, and some come with multiple styles to choose from. Themes are tailored to specific industries, with relevant features automatically included.

While it is primarily an online store-building platform, you can still build a non-ecommerce website on Shopify (though we wouldn’t advise it). Shopify had a near 10% rise in its score for website features from last year. This was due to an update of its internal features offered such as onsite testimonials, audio uploads, and product comparison functionality.

Shopify’s greatest asset is its huge app store – it’s pretty reliant on third-party integrations, so chances are you’ll need to install at least a few apps to get the most out of your store. We recommend browsing Shopify’s app store and adding up which apps you might need to get an idea of the extra costs to budget. In our research, we gave its app store a perfect 5 out of 5!

Shopify is a powerful online store builder that comes packed with features. It’s also our top-rated provider for ecommerce in our research. On the cheapest plan, you can expect:

  • Two staff accounts
  • Multichannel selling across marketplaces and social media
  • Inventory syncing with up to four locations
  • Abandoned cart recovery
  • Discount codes
  • Gift cards
  • Shipping discounts
  • Print shipping labels
  • Fraud analysis
  • Shopify POS Lite – accept in-person payments
  • Sell in 133 currencies and up to 20 languages

There are even more exciting features on the advanced plans, including real-time shipping rates, manual foreign exchange rates, and professional reports. We gave it a 4.7out of 5 for sales features in our research, a rise of 4.2% from 4.5 since last year.

Do We Recommend Shopify’s Cheapest Ecommerce Plan?

If you need its big-hitting features, then yes. There’s no denying that Shopify is a powerful ecommerce platform. Only being able to sell through social media is very limiting, even if it is only $5 per month. But if you need most of its tools, then even its $29 per month plan can feel expensive. Remember to budget for a theme, apps, and a domain – Shopify doesn’t include a free domain with any of its plans. To get real value, you need to be serious about scaling up your store and making use of its features. If you just want a small online store, we’d recommend Wix.

Shopify is our top rated ecommerce website builder.

#5. Wix

Best overall website builder

Pricing: $14.40 per month with discount code “GET10!”


Best overall website builder



out of 5
  • Sell unlimited products
  • 0% transaction fee
  • Great creative freedom

Free plan available

Paid Plans: $16 - $159 / month


  • Best overall website builder
  • 500+ quality templates to choose from
  • Free plan available


  • Only 2GB storage on cheapest plan
  • No product reviews on cheapest plan
  • No stock management alerts
Wix Review

Wix At A Glance

Wix is a website builder that also provides ecommerce plans for those wanting to build an online store. Its cheapest plan is $16 per month, but you’ll need to upgrade to the $27 per month Core plan to start selling. It strikes a good balance between brand-focused creative freedom and growth-driven sales tools, making it perfect for small businesses with plans to expand.

With the $16 per month Light plan, you’ll have access to the following:

  • Free domain for one year
  • No adverts on your store
  • 2GB storage
  • +800 templates across a variety of industries
  • 24/7 customer care

Wix in Action: Event Safety Plus

Sarah Davis headshot wearing glasses and red shirt
Sarah Davis
Co-Founder and COO
We work with event planners and community leaders to develop strategic plans for safe community events.


Why did you choose the cheapest Wix plan?

Our company needed a cost-effective option. We are a bootstrapped consulting startup and watching how we spend our money was definitely a factor in choosing how we built our website.

What were you able to achieve on this plan, and how did you like it?

Wix was amazingly easy and everything is very intuitive. If you want to do something and you can’t figure it out, the help is always available. I have used it numerous times and I have always been able to figure out what I need to do.

What I like most about Wix is the ease of adding functions. Just last week, we decided to add a blog page to the website. Within 30 minutes, I had the page created with 4 pre-written blogs published. Having all of that is priceless!

Wix is a beginner-friendly website builder with an intuitive drag-and-drop editor. With a comprehensive set of features for nearly anything you could imagine, Wix makes it easy to create the website you want. As one of our testers said:

“So many elements are available to add. Everything is there premade and you only have to customize it for your site”

We should mention that while Wix is easy to use, it can be daunting for beginners because it gives you so many features and options! However, it also offers helpful hints and tips as you build, too, so you can just follow Wix’s lead. In our research, it got joint first for ease of use with a score of 4.4 out of 5.

Wix has four premium plans for building a website, with the first starting at $16 per month. This is on the rather expensive side on this list, and Wix only gets a value for money score of 3 out of 5, down -11.8% from last year’s 3.4. The four plans are:

  • Light: $16 per month
  • Core: $27 per month
  • Business: $32 per month
  • Business Elite: $159 per month

There’s also an additional Enterprise plan tailored for large-scale businesses that need custom plans.

While these plans are a little pricey, our independent research shows that Wix does indeed offer the best website building service. Its low value for money score comes down to a lack of features offered when prices rose due to economic factors. However, if you want a good deal, Wix is offering our readers an exclusive 10% off when using GET10! at checkout.

Additionally, Wix also has a free plan that you can use indefinitely! Naturally, there are some caveats, like having to use a Wix domain name and have Wix adverts displayed on your site. You also can’t sell online and you won’t have access to Google Analytics.

Wix has around 500 templates to choose from and they cover a wide range of industries and niches, from fashion to portfolios and sports – even CBD!

You also get free reign over your template’s customization – you can change fonts, colors, and the layout as much as you like. This can be great for creating a unique brand, but can also be overwhelming, and result in a cluttered design if you’re not used to best practices. That being said, Wix actually improved their design score from last year by 4.5%, rising from 4.5 to 4.6 out of 5, thanks to improved template offerings and UX.

Wix has an absurdly good range of features for all occasions, from booking appointments, pop-ups, displaying videos, and more. The ADI function can even build the website for you by just asking a few questions. Wix has the highest score of website features of any builder we’ve tested with a 4.8 out of 5.

With the Light plan for $16 per month (or $14.40 is use code GET1O!), you get 2GB of storage and 30 video minutes to put on your website. Recent improvements made to the provider include Semrush integration, allowing you to keyword search directly from the platform. This is a massive ease of convenience for users who can now use built-in SEO tools to optimize their site.

Of Wix’s four plans, three allow online selling. The cheapest costs $27 per month when you choose to pay annually, or you can select a different plan:

  • Core: $27 per month
  • Business: $32 per month
  • Business Elite: $159 per month

Wix’s cheapest Core plan is designed for new or small online stores, providing basic ecommerce tools to get you started. These include:

  • Up to 50,000 products
  • 20GB storage space
  • 5 hours allowance of video on site
  • Sell on social channels

You also have access to advanced tools that will help you grow your store, including abandoned cart recovery, customer accounts, and $300 worth of ad vouchers.

Do We Recommend Wix’s Cheapest Plan?

Yes! Wix’s Light plan may be a pricier option than others on this list, but Wix easily offers the best features and the most complete website building package. With Wix, you don’t have to compromise on quality – and there’s always the free plan if you’d like to check it out for yourself!

Wix is our top website builder overall – get 10% off with our unique code “GET10!”.

#6. Squarespace

Best value for money

Pricing: $14.40 per month, with discount code “WBE”


Best value for money



out of 5
  • Excellent brand presence
  • Good marketing features
  • Inbuilt analytics

Free trial available

Paid Plans: $16 - $49 / month


  • Stunning templates
  • Best help and support
  • Marketing features encourage growth


  • Customization limited by template layout
  • No free plan
  • No ecommerce on cheapest plan
Squarespace Review

Squarespace At A Glance

Squarespace is one of the big hitters of the website-building world, and for good reason. It’s an ideal choice for small businesses thanks to its built-in analytics tool, good SEO performance, and extensions library. It provides a supportive framework for small businesses to grow in strength and reach. Plus, it’s great value for money, the best of any builder we’ve tested! It rose a remarkable 15% in our testing from last year from a 4 to a 4.6 out of 5, making it our best value for money builder, especially when you take advantage of our exclusive WBE 10% discount code, reducing the price for the Personal plan from $16 per month to just $14.40.

$14.40 per month Personal plan need to know:

  • Connect a custom domain
  • Free domain for the first year
  • No adverts
  • Unlimited storage
  • Unlimited bandwidth
  • Comprehensive SEO features
  • Awesome 24/7 customer help and support
  • No ecommerce on cheapest plan
  • Basic analytics software

Squarespace in Action: A+ Pyschiatry

Circular headshot of Jess
Jess Levy
Certified Psychiatrist
Jess Levy is a board certified psychiatrist in a Cleveland, Ohio who treats children and adults. He is the proud owner of A+ Psychiatry.


How long have you been on your Squarespace plan?

I’ve been using Squarespace for about 14 months. I designed my website using little to no HTML knowledge.  What I like about Squarespace is the templates, they tend to be clean, crisp and pop!

Are there any issues with your Squarespace plan?

What I dislike about Squarespace is you have to pay a for a separate account in addition to the domain name if you want to design a second webpage. It feels like a ripoff.

What do you like about the Squarespace plan you're on?

I do like the drag-and-drop editor. It’s a huge step up from messing with spacers. I also like the SEO analytics. Lastly I like that it comes with a library of free to use stock photos.
In the past, Squarespace received a bad rap for its ease of use, however, in recent months it’s worked hard to simplify its editor. One tester compared it to Wix and said:

“My page ended up looking so much sleeker and neater than when I used Wix.”

As a result, it’s now ranked as one of our easiest website builders to use, scoring 4.4 out of 5 in our user testing. That’s a massive 11% increase from its previous rating!

Its editor uses rows to organize its designs, giving you the ability to reorganize elements within a section. This might be too restrictive if you like free reign to drag-and-drop wherever you please, but it’s great for those with little design experience, and who want to keep their website tidy and attractive.

As we mentioned, Squarespace is our best-rated builder for value for money in our research with 4.6 out of 5. Unfortunately, Squarespace doesn’t offer a free plan, but it does give users a 14-day free trial. This is great if you want to give it a go and see if it’s right for you, but you’ll first need to upgrade to one of its four paid plans to publish your website and set it live.

Its annual plans range from $16 to $49 per month if you choose to pay the full cost upfront:

  • Personal: $16 per month
  • Business: $23 per month
  • Basic Commerce: $27 per month
  • Advanced Commerce: $49 per month

If $16 per month sounds a little pricey to you, we’ve got some good news: you can get 10% off the full price when you use our exclusive WBE discount code. Simply enter the code ‘WBE’ at checkout, and you’ll reduce your monthly payments to $14.40.

This is where Squarespace earns its crown. It’s the reigning monarch of stunning visual design and all of its templates are designed to support high-resolution media. Unsurprisingly, it has the highest score of design overall in our rankings with 4.7 out of 5, with its UX design earning a perfect 5 out of 5. Its templates will look beautiful regardless of the device they’re being viewed on and, unlike other builders, such as Shopify, they’re all free.

It is worth noting that you won’t be able to edit your website’s base code if you’re on the Personal plan. This kind of advanced customization is only available from the Business plan up. If you’re a beginner, this limitation will give you a safety net, so you won’t ever accidentally edit the code by mistake and affect your website’s stylish look!

All of Squarespace’s plans come with a healthy dose of premium features, all of which are usually designed in-house, so they’re purpose-made to integrate with your website. Of course, the more expensive your plan is, the more features you’ll have access to.


The Personal plan benefits from a fantastic set of blogging tools, high-quality SEO features, and space for up to two website contributors. Its basic analytics also give you a good overview of your performance.

If you need any additional functionality, be sure to take a look at Squarespace’s extensions library. This is the equivalent of an app store and gives you access to plugins such as Delighted, Quickbooks, Mailchimp, and Smart SEO. Major improvements were made to it since last year, and it raised Squarespace’s overall feature score by 4% from a 4.4 to a 4.6 out of 5.

The cheapest way to sell online with Squarespace is with the Business plan for $23 per month. With it, you’ll get access to an array of ecommerce features, albeit these are a little basic. You get unlimited products and can accept online payments, but do be warned there’s a 3% transaction fee on all sales. It’s still a great site for those wanting to start a small business, and users can always upgrade to the Basic Commerce plan for $27 per month if they want a full, ecommerce platform.

In our research, we gave Squarespace a 4.4 out of 5 for ecommerce overall, a slight drop of -2.3% from last year’s score, due to a lack of additional features when compared with Wix and Shopify.

Do We Recommend Squarespace’s Cheapest Plan?

Yes, we do! Its personal plan comes with just enough features to get your small business up and running, and the beautiful templates are sure to make an impression on your potential customers. Plus, when you do outgrow this plan, Squarespace has three others to choose from, so you can scale your business with confidence.

Our research crowned Squarespace the best value for money.

#7. Square Online

Best for selling for free

Pricing: $29 per month (you can sell for free)

Square Online

Best for selling for free

Very Good


out of 5
  • Sell unlimited products
  • 2.9% + $0.30 fee per sale
  • Super easy to use

Free plan available

Paid Plans: $12 - $79 / month


  • Free domain and no ads on cheapest plan
  • Sync online and offline sales using POS
  • Offer a range of delivery options


  • No abandoned cart on cheapest plan
  • Transaction fees charged on all plans
  • No product reviews on cheapest plan
Square Online Review

Square Online At A Glance

Square Online strikes a great balance of offering affordable starter prices while providing scalable features. From day one on its $29 per month Professional plan, you can sell an unlimited number of products – it’s also easy to use, and is especially ideal if you want to sync an offline business with your online store.

$29 per month Professional plan need to know:

  • Sell an unlimited number of products
  • Free domain for one year
  • No adverts on your store
  • Automatic syncing with Square POS
  • Offer pickup, delivery, or shipping
  • No abandoned cart
  • No product reviews
  • 2.9% + 30 cents transaction fee

Square Online in Action: The Hive

Alyssa Tollefson headshot wearing brown shirt
Alyssa Tollefson
Graphic Designer
I am a Square Online (Weebly) web designer. I help small businesses leverage all the features Square offers so they can provide a top-notch omnichannel experience for their customers or clients.


How do you feel about your Square Online plan?

I love how simple Square Online sites are. They make it extremely efficient to offer an excellent experience for my clients and for their customers. For my web design consulting business, I love that I can use Square to host my website, invoice and contract my clients, and manage all my projects. It takes a lot of busy work out of the equation for me.

What particular features stand out?

For my boutique, The Hive, I have made use of the many apps that integrate with Square, but most notably, is Shippo. I’m able to use Square Online to login and fulfill orders, but the Shippo integration allows me to print labels and pay for all my shipping in one place. Then, I simply drop off my packages at the Post Office. It makes my shipping workflow easy and straightforward.
Square Online is easy to use, making it a great choice for beginners or for sellers eager to start making money quickly. The setup process is quick and simple and helps you along by asking questions about your business so it can tailor your site to your needs.

However, things do get trickier once you enter the editor. This is because Square uses its own terminology for well-known ecommerce features, and sometimes it’s difficult to find the element you’re looking for among the many tabs in the toolbar.

Once you’re familiar with it, it couldn’t be easier to get your store up and running. One of our testers said:

“It gave you just the right amount of options, it never felt like it was overloading you. This always makes the process easier when you’re not getting overwhelmed with choice.”

Square Online has a free plan, and it’s immediately better than others based on the fact that you can sell an unlimited number of products.

To remove adverts from your storefront, you’ll need to choose one of Square Online’s two premium plans, which start at $29 per month when you pay annually:

  • Plus: $29 per month
  • Premium: $79 per month

We should also mention that each of the plans comes with different transaction fees, too. On the free and Plus plans you can expect to pay 2.9% + $0.30 on each payment, whereas the Premium plan has a fee of 2.6% + $0.30.

The cheapest Plus plan removes adverts and provides a free domain for one year, or you can connect to your own custom domain if you have one. Other features on this plan include Instagram integration, Square POS syncing, curbside pickup, order status text alerts for customers, gift cards, and more.

Square Online did not score well for design in our research, only getting a 2.6 out of 5. It doesn’t start you off by choosing a template – instead, it creates a tailored store for you based on the information you provide during setup. This means you end up with a store that follows the best ecommerce practices for your industry, but very little creative freedom.
While predominantly an ecommerce platform, Square does still have a range of features that are important for any type of website. In our research, Square actually rose by 6.7% from last year for website features, from 3.7 to 3.9 out of 5. This is due to great improvements made to its app and widget store, which rose by 50% from a 2 to a 3 out of 5.

However, Square was the only ecommerce builder to see a reduction in Sitespeed performance, decreasing by 10% since last year.

Square Online provides the usual ecommerce necessities, such as inventory management, shipping tools, and gift card creation. However, it reserves the advanced features for the more expensive plans, such as abandoned cart recovery and shipping discounts.

It also throws in some great bonus features, which shows that Square Online is paying attention to sellers’ needs and moving with the times. Examples include order text alerts, curbside pickup, and in-store customization, which lets customers edit their orders and set their pickup hours. All of these features are available on the cheapest plan.

Do We Recommend Square Online’s Cheapest Plan?

Yes! Square Online’s cheapest $29 per month Plus plan is perfect for a small online store, and its free plan is a great way to get to grips with running an online store without having to spend a penny. It may be missing weightier features like abandoned cart recovery, but it still offers amazing value for new sellers who need an attractive, feature-rich store.

Square Online lets you start selling on its free plan.

Buying Guide: Choosing a Cheap Web Builder

Before we summarize this list and tell you our verdict, let’s go over what the most important factors are for choosing a cheap website builder, as well as covering some pressing user questions:

  • How much is it? – A cheap website builder should be affordable.
  • What do I get for that price? – You also need to get some value for your money. If it can’t do what you want, then there’s no point in investing in it. A good cheap website builder will have a good balance of cheap price but plenty of features.
  • How long will it take me? – A frustrating and obtuse website builder will have you quitting quicker than anything else, believe us. Good ease of use is vital to actually being able to build your website.
  • Can I grow on it? – Once you’ve built your site, you need to be reassured that it can grow an audience quickly through marketing and SEO.
  • Where can I go if I need help? – You want your website builder to provide support if things go wrong and it not feel like a ‘cheaper’ version

Can I use a website builder for free?

A handful of website builders offer free plans, but they’re essentially glorified demos. Wix has a free plan, for example, but your site will have ads, and you won’t be able to attach a domain to it – not terribly professional. Free plans are great for testing the waters, but that’s about it.

Is Wix cheaper than Squarespace?

Both platforms offer free plans, but Squarespace works out cheaper versus Wix because it offers a lower entry price plan. However, Wix is actually the better platform overall – it has better features and customer support, and it’s easier to use.

Is Wix actually free?

Yes! Wix offers a free plan which you can sign up for today! However, you will have to use a Wix domain, and have Wix ads appear on your site, plus you won’t have access to all of Wix’s extensive features. Other than that, you can still host and create a quality website for free!

Which is the cheapest website builder for small businesses?

For small businesses, we would recommend Square Online, as it lets you sell for free. You will have ads and limited access to features, but it is the cheapest way to sell online.

Which is better, Wix or Squarespace?

With Wix vs Squarespace, Wix is our top-rated website builder overall. It has superior features, excellent ease of use, and great help and support. Squarespace isn’t far behind, boasting better value for money and designs, as well as being Wix’s equal when it comes to help and support, and ease of use.

Does Google have a free website builder?

Yes, it has Google Sites where you can create a very basic public-facing website. It’s more of a tool for work than for creating a large website but it is completely free!

Our Testing Methodology

We’ve been testing website builders for over 10 years. In that time, we’ve seen great website builders and some terrible ones, too. We’ve seen awesome free platforms and really bad paid platforms and, along the way, we looked for value as well as price. Today, our research focuses on a number of categories when deciding the overall scores to award to each of the builders in this list. These categories include:

  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Value for money
  • Design flexibility
  • Help and support
  • Customer score

Click here to go back up to website builders.

When analyzing these overarching categories, we focus on a number of sub-criteria within each to help us determine the quality of the builder. In the past, each of these categories used to hold equal weight, but as our methodology has developed, we’ve recognized that this doesn’t reflect the reality of what small business owners and entrepreneurs are looking for. As a result, we’ve carefully considered each category and allocated them a different weighting depending on how important our users say they are to them.

Below, we’ll examine the different weightings we used when finalizing our list of the best cheap website builders.

  • Website features – weighting: 20%

Whether you’re paying top dollar for a website builder or looking for a cheap plan to get you started, everyone wants to know that they’ve picked a platform that has all the tools and features they need to make their website a success. That’s why this category, at 20%, has one of the highest weightings out of the bunch.

When judging this category, we took into account sub-criteria such as blogging functionality, app markets, SEO and marketing tools, and internationalization capabilities, as well as storage space and the overall quality of features on offer. We also carried out a sitespeed test.

  • Design functionalities – weighting: 20%

First impressions are crucial, which is where the design functionality category comes in. The sub-criteria we analyzed here was the template choice, whether an ADI option was available, how flexible the design was, and the quality of the UX. Additionally, we checked whether mobile editing was available and looked out for added extras such as an image editor.

Our users told us that they wanted to be able to build an attractive website, regardless of price, so for that reason, we gave this category a high weighting of 20%.

  • Value for money – weighting: 10%

Everyone wants to feel like they’re getting their money’s worth and this is what this category is all about. Here we examined whether the builder offered a free plan or free trial, how much the cheapest plan was, and what features were available for the amount of money paid.

It might be surprising that this category only has a 10% weighting, however, it’s important to stress that ‘value for money’ and ‘cheap’ aren’t the same thing. A plan could be incredibly affordable but offer fewer features because of its lower price point.

  • Help and support – weighting: 5%

We hope you never have to use it, but having a good help and support system is crucial in case you run into any problems when building your website. Under this category, we looked at what support options the platform has, whether the restore option was available in case of any accidents, how good the knowledge center was, and the number of help and support features on offer for the price you pay.

Because help and support is (hopefully) something you’ll only need to use occasionally, if ever, we’ve given this category a lower weighting of 5%.

  • Customer satisfaction – weighting: 25%

When it comes to cheap website builders, the experiences of other users are crucial in deciding which platform to choose. After all, they’ve tried and tested them, so they can give a real-life accounting of what the builder is like. That’s why this category has our highest weighting of 25%.

When forming the overall scores for this list, we looked at sub-criteria such as Trustpilot scores, brand recognition, UX, and whether other users were likely to recommend a particular builder.

  • Ease of use – weighting: 20%

We asked real-life small businesses and entrepreneurs to test each of the builders in this list and give their honest opinions on their experiences. We particularly focused on users who were just starting out, and therefore more likely to opt for a cheaper plan.

No one wants a builder that’s near-impossible to use, which is why this category has a weighting of 20%.

In addition to all of this research, we’ve tried and tested every single website builder on this list, creating free demo sites, so we know that each one has value to offer the right user. The only job left is to find you the perfect platform so you can start building your website!

The Website Builder Expert product testing process

Website Builder Expert Product Testing Process diagram

Cheapest Website Builders: Summary

Whether you need a blog, portfolio, online store, or small business website, you now know the cheapest website builders for your specific project.

IONOS is the cheapest of the cheap at just $1 per month, but always make sure you pick a plan that meets your needs – it’s the best way to ensure you get the most value for your money.

Here’s a quick recap of the cheapest website builders and how much they cost:

Cheapest Website Builders for Small Businesses

  1. IONOS $1 per month for the first 12 months
  2. Hostinger $11.99 per month, currently discounted at $2.99 + 3 months free
  3. GoDaddy $9.99 per month
  4. Shopify $5 per month with the Shopify Starter plan
  5. Wix $14.40 per month with our code GET10!
  6. Squarespace $14.40 per month with our code WBE
  7. Square Online $29 per month, ecommerce included for free

Some cheap website builders are definitely better than others. Always check which features you’re getting for your money, to make sure you get the best deal you can.


No Wix doesn’t own your intellectual property or the creation of your website content. Its main purpose is to help you build your website.
IONOS is the cheapest way to build a website with a domain name, as a free domain name is included with its Plus plan for only $1 per month. Remember that this plan only lasts for six months, and then costs $18 per month.
Written by:
Once upon a time, my digital knowledge was virtually nonexistent – I couldn’t even hook a printer up to my laptop without a good helping of blush-inducing curses. Since then, I’ve worked hard to change that and, thanks to the team here at Website Builder Expert, I’ve learned a lot (who knew that hosting doesn’t just refer to handing out drinks at a summer BBQ?). Using my passion for words and my own experiences with website-building and digital marketing, I’m determined to help others like me get comfortable and take the internet by storm– without any stress or the need for profanities!
Researched by:
I love to understand human behavior and the cognitive biases that drive us to do what we do. For over nine years I have worked as a mixed method researcher – research using a mix of numerical data and personal experiences – across a range of sectors, from insurance and policy development to finally arriving at Website Builder Expert five years ago. Fascinated by consumer decision-making, I meticulously built our leading ranking methodology to explore where providers like Wix sit within a competitive industry and what value they truly bring to our audience.
As a member of the Market Research Society, I’m an advocate for high ethical, commercial, and methodological best practices. All of this combines to give you the most ethical recommendations based on real data.

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