9 Best Portfolio Website Builders

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We interviewed people with portfolios and discovered that the best portfolio websites need to be easy to use and show off your work.

Based on this, we identified the nine best portfolio website builders – and found that Squarespace is the best portfolio website builder on the market right now.

In recent years, Squarespace has gotten better and better, elevating its performance and boosting its overall score to 4.8 out of 5 in our portfolio research. With the cost of living crisis looming overhead, it’s reassuring to know that Squarespace is an affordable option, scoring 4 out of 5 in our value for money testing.

Squarespace also has powerful SEO tools to help new clients find your portfolio, and boasts the best designs we’ve seen so far! Plus, since we first tested Squarespace, its ease of use has improved drastically, making it accessible for everyone — even if you don’t have any experience building websites.

However, Squarespace may not be right for you. That’s why we shortlisted the nine best portfolio website builders to help you find the best match for your specific needs – here’s the final list:

9 Best Portfolio Website Builders

  1. Squarespace Best overall portfolio website builder
  2. Wix Best for creative freedom and customizability
  3. GoDaddy Best for building a portfolio fast
  4. Duda Best for a technically polished portfolio website
  5. Zyro The easiest way to build a basic portfolio
  6. Weebly Best for building a free portfolio website
  7. Jimdo Best for building a portfolio with hands-off ADI (Artificial Design Intelligence)
  8. Strikingly Best for a single-page portfolio
  9. 1&1 IONOS Best for a single-page portfolio

Compare the Top 9 Portfolio Website Builders of 2021

Compare all nine portfolio builders and their key features below:

Swipe right to see more
0 out of 0

Squarespace

Wix

GoDaddy

Duda

Zyro

Weebly

Jimdo

Strikingly

1&1 IONOS

Overall Rating
4.8
Overall Rating
4.8
Overall Rating
4.4
Overall Rating
4.0
Overall Rating
3.8
Overall Rating
3.7
Overall Rating
3.6
Overall Rating
3.4
Overall Rating
3.2
Starting from

$16

Starting from

$16

Starting from

$6.99

Starting from

$14

Starting from
Starting from

$6

Starting from

$9

Starting from

$8

Starting from

$7

Free Plan
Free Plan
Free Plan
Free Plan
Free Plan
Free Plan
Free Plan
Free Plan
Free Plan
Storage space

Unlimited

Storage space

500MB – 50GB

Storage space

Unlimited

Storage space

Unlimited

Storage space

Unlimited

Storage space

500MB – Unlimited

Storage space

500MB – Unlimited

Storage space

500MB – 10GB

Storage space

Unlimited

Design Flexibility
4.7
Design Flexibility
4.4
Design Flexibility
4.3
Design Flexibility
4.1
Design Flexibility
Not yet rated
Design Flexibility
4.5
Design Flexibility
2.5
Design Flexibility
3.4
Design Flexibility
Not yet rated

We’re pretty proud of our research process, because not many sites can say they’ve carried out such in-depth testing before making recommendations. Here’s how our in-house research team go about finding the best portfolio website builders on the market.

First, we interviewed real-life portfolio owners, who rely on their portfolios to connect with new clients, showcase their work online, and build their professional reputation.

These interviews helped us confirm the most important areas to investigate. For example, we discovered that the following areas were the most valued by portfolio creators:

  • Affordability and value for money – the platform needs to be budget-friendly
  • Design flexibility – the site needs to look good, and be an extension of your brand
  • SEO tools were reported as the most important feature – so that new clients can easily find your portfolio
  • Storage space – the platform needs to support large file uploads
  • Ease of use – the platform should be hassle-free and easy to use

These were the areas we placed most importance on when testing and rating the portfolio builders – the scores each platform received for these areas affected their final star ratings the most.

We still tested other areas, such as help and support, and general features such as multilingual tools, email marketing, and social media integration. These simply had less impact on the overall score than the factors listed above.

We tested every portfolio website builder ourselves, against the specific criteria above. This is a lengthy and detailed process that involves testing every single platform ourselves, and identifying how extensive their features are.

For example, we don’t simply ask “Does Squarespace have SEO tools?” Instead, we go into its editor and go through a specific tasklist, checking for the ability to add alt text to images, customize URLs, change header code, integrate with Google Analytics, and so on until we have an accurate score for SEO functionality.

We apply the same in-depth exploration for every area we test. This is the only way to calculate an accurate overall score for each portfolio builder., based on areas that portfolio users have told us matter most.

Now you know all about how we put this list together, it’s time to take a look at who made the cut, and help you find which portfolio website builder is best for you!

Squarespace is the best portfolio website builder on the market, and you can find out exactly why we recommend it in our review further down this page.

If you need help choosing which Squarespace plan is right for you, you can use our interactive tool below. Simply hit ‘Start Now’ to be paired with your perfect plan – you won’t be redirected anywhere, so you can try it at any time without losing your progress on this review page.

#1. Squarespace

Best overall portfolio website builder

Editor's Choice

Squarespace

Best overall portfolio website builder

Outstanding

4.8

out of 5
  • Award-winning designs
  • Ideal for creatives
  • High quality features

Free trial available

Paid Plans: $16 - $49 / month

Pros

  • Beautiful templates – the best around
  • Quality features developed in-house
  • Unlimited storage on all plans

Cons

  • No free plan (but good value for money)
  • Customization slightly limited
Read Review

Squarespace is a website builder known for creating stunning, mobile responsive websites. It is popular among photographers and artists because of its affordable monthly premium plans and beautiful, design-conscious templates.

Squarespace Portfolio: Adrienne Raquel – Imagemaker and art director

squarespace example portfolio adrienne raquel
Click the image to visit Adrienne Raquel's portfolio

Squarespace’s Templates

When compared to other builders, it’s clear that Squarespace is head and shoulders above the rest for design functionality, which is why it earned the crown in this category with a high score of 4.7 out of 5. Its templates are crisp, clean, and full of white space, all of which give your portfolio a very high-end feel that can elevate you above your peers.

Squarespace is particularly ideal if you’re looking to build a marketing portfolio online. Several sites built around Squarespace’s templates make our list of the best marketing portfolio examples – why not go check them out?

All Squarespace templates are mobile-responsive to ensure your work looks great whenever and wherever it is viewed. Considering 70% of surveyed internet users worldwide said they’re using their phones more since the COVID-19 pandemic started, this is a key feature!

Squarespace’s portfolio templates also come with helpful features already built-in, including a blog, about page, and contact forms so new clients can easily get in touch.

Take the Nevins template in our gallery below, which puts your creative work front and center, while keeping the page clear of any unnecessary clutter.

Squarespace’s Key Features

Getting clients to contact you is next to impossible if you can’t be found online, so it’s reassuring that Squarespace makes it easy to tag your content correctly to ensure your pages are found by search engines.

best portfolio builders squarespace SEO

In-depth on-site guides also explain how to optimize each part of your portfolio in order to improve your online visibility – essential to drum up traffic and gain some potential new clients.

These guides include both text and video, which is really helpful for different types of learners. Some people learn best by watching and repeating, but others process information better by reading a text explanation instead. Thankfully, Squarespace caters for both!

Squarespace gives you unlimited storage on all its plans, which means you can upload plenty of media files to your portfolio, such as videos, images, podcast episodes, music, and so on.

A lot of other builders limit the amount of storage you can get on their cheaper plans – for example, Wix starts you out with a 2GB storage limit on its $16 per month plan. In contrast, Squarespace gives you unlimited storage from day one!

The primary goal of most websites is to turn viewers into clients, and views into opportunities. Most of Squarespace’s portfolio-specific templates come with contact forms and member areas already built-in, but if you choose one that lacks this feature, you can easily add it while customizing your site.

You can feature testimonials on your portfolio, as well as a blog and a newsletter sign-up. Social media icons and live social feeds connect your website with other platforms, allowing you to build a cohesive brand image.

In addition to these handy features, Squarespace also offers email marketing software to expand your portfolio’s reach. You’ll get plenty of email layouts to choose from, so that your emails match your portfolio’s branding:

 

squarespace email layout options portfolio builders

 

However, this doesn’t come included with your monthly subscription.You’ll get a limited free trial, but if you want full access to Email Campaigns, you’ll need to upgrade to a paid plan, starting from $5 per month.

Squarespace Ease of Use

In the past, Squarespace has often been known as the ‘difficult’ builder, but that’s just no longer true. Recent improvements have made its editor much easier to navigate. So much so, in fact, that when we tested it, its ease of use rating jumped up by 15% on its pre-2021 score, and now sits at 4 out of 5. That means you can build a beautiful portfolio without the added headache.

Squarespace uses section-based drag-and-drop editing. So you can’t drag anything anywhere, but neither do you need coding skills. This style of editor ensures your site will remain looking good no matter the changes you make.

If you do get stuck, Squarespace has the very best customer support. It was the only builder to achieve a perfect 5 out of 5 score in our research. It offers in-depth tutorial videos and help guides smooth over any issues you may encounter and the 24/7 customer support means problems get solved rapidly.

Squarespace’s Pricing: $16+

Calling All Students!

If you’re a student and have a valid school email address, you can get 50% off your first year of Squarespace – simply head on over to Squarespace today and search for your school to get started!

Just remember, you can’t use this discount alongside any other offer codes.

Squarespace’s plans start at $16 per month. This gives you a great range of features, including unlimited storage and bandwidth (perfect for image-heavy portfolios), which is more than you get on Wix’s cheapest $16 per month plan! Overall, Squarespace offers better value for money than its main competitor, scoring 4 out of 5 in this category.

See the full range of Squarespace’s plans in the table below, as well as the difference between its monthly subscriptions, and the (cheaper) monthly cost of its annual plans:

Personal Business Basic Commerce Advanced Commerce
Monthly price, paid annually $16 $23 $27 $49
Month-to-month subscription $23 $33 $36 $65

You can sell through your site from the Business plan up – the fully specialized ecommerce plans start from $27 in case you want to sell artwork directly through your portfolio. This is a potentially decent money spinner if you can grow your traffic.

When you sign up to Squarespace, you’ll automatically start on your 14-day free trial, without needing to enter any payment details.

Get 10% Off Any Squarespace Plan

Save 10% on the cost of any Squarespace plan with our exclusive offer code. To redeem your discount, follow these steps:

  1. Copy the code below and go to Squarespace
  2. Create a Squarespace account
  3. Choose a paid subscription and enter the code at checkout
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Pick Your Squarespace Plan
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Do You Want to Build Your Portfolio With Squarespace?

Squarespace is the best-rated portfolio website builder – beautiful templates and powerful features are sure to impress future clients.

Find out more

#2. Wix

Best for creative freedom and customizability

People's Choice

Wix

Best for creative freedom and customizability

Outstanding

4.8

out of 5
  • 800+ templates on offer
  • Very intuitive to use
  • Most recommended

Free plan available

Paid Plans: $16 - $59 / month

Pros

  • Platform most recommended by our users
  • Templates for a wide range of industries
  • Free plan (with no pressure to upgrade)

Cons

  • Paid plans are quite pricey
  • Storage caps on all plans (max 50GB)
  • Can’t switch template once site is live
Read Review

Wix is an easy-to-use and versatile website builder. It has a user-friendly editor that helps you create a beautiful portfolio website quickly, and is very affordable. It comes with great support for SEO beginners too, making it easy to grow your audience. Plus, Wix is our top-rated ecommerce builder and allows you to sell your work alongside showcasing it.

Wix Portfolio: Riley Robbins – Film director

wix portfolio example riley robbins film
Click on the image to visit Riley Robbins' portfolio

Wix’s Templates

Wix is a great platform to create your portfolio website on. It provides more than 500 templates, of which 41 are specifically created just for portfolios.

Wix uses drag-and-drop editing tools to let you customize your portfolio – you can drag anything anywhere, meaning you have full creative control over your site. Some people enjoy this level of freedom, while others find it difficult to create a consistent look across their entire site.

Despite its Marmite nature, Wix came in second place for design functionality during our research and testing, scoring 4.4 out of 5. This means it gets our official seal of approval, although we recommend taking advantage of its free plan and trying it out for yourself.

Wix’s Key Features

One of the best ways Wix helps you build a successful portfolio is by making SEO as easy as possible. SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization, and is important for getting your site found on Google.

SEO can be daunting for beginners, but Wix has helpful guides and even an SEO Wiz to create a personalized, step-by-step guide for you to follow. This is a fantastic example of how Wix goes above and beyond to help your site succeed.

wix portfolio seo plan

Wix offers varying amounts of storage to its users depending on which plan you’re on:

  • Free: 500MB
  • Combo: 2GB
  • Unlimited: 5GB
  • Pro: 50GB
  • VIP: 100GB

These are Wix’s non-ecommerce plans, and so are best suited to portfolios. If you’re accepting payments from clients through your portfolio, then you’ll need one of Wix’s ecommerce plans, which come with more generous storage allowances:

  • Business Basic: 50GB
  • Business Unlimited: 100GB
  • Business VIP: Unlimited

In general, we recommend the Unlimited plan – 100GB of storage is a great starting point.

Let us just start by saying that when it comes to website features, Wix is the best. In our research, it earned 4.9 out of 5, which is the highest score out of all the builders. This means that it has a whole ream of high-quality marketing tools for you to access and use to promote your portfolio.

Wix lets you add a blog with a click of a button, ideal for content marketing and for sharing your expertise and updates with fans. Keeping a blog is also a great way to create fresh content for Google to crawl (which is the term used to describe how Google reads and sorts your website content) and potentially boost your site’s rankings, too.

Additionally, Wix comes with a massive app library, which is great for expanding your portfolio’s functionality. You can add a live social media feed, as well as integrate with one of many email marketing solutions, such as Mailchimp and Constant Contact.

It’s also worth mentioning Ascend by Wix, an all-in-one business solution that provides awesome marketing features from social integrations to on-site live chat and, of course, email marketing.

wix portfolio marketing dashboard

It’s created by Wix, so syncs neatly with your portfolio, and the free version comes pre-installed on your site. If you want more advanced features, Ascend by Wix plans start at $10 per month.

Wix Ease of Use

Wix is extremely easy to use – in fact, it came joint first (alongside Duda) in our ease of use testing, with a score of 4.4 out of 5.

When you’re actually building your site, hover-over tooltips are on hand to explain what features do, while dragging elements and dropping them wherever you think works makes designing your portfolio incredibly simple.

In our research, Wix received 4.3 out of 5 for its help and support, which, combined with its awesome ease of use score, makes it one of the most beginner-friendly builders out there.

Wix’s Pricing: $16+

Wix offers a free plan, which is a great starting point – but for anyone hoping to make a memorable impression, it’s really worth considering spending a little bit of money to push your portfolio to the next level.

Wix’s paid plans start at $16 per month. Paid plans let you use a custom domain name (or website address – essentially your portfolio website’s postcode) and removes all adverts too – letting visitors focus on the work you want to show off!

You’ll get up to 100GB of storage depending on the plan you choose, as well as unlimited bandwidth (the data used to power your website online) on all paid premium plans. This is ideal if you’re an artist, graphic designer, or work in a visual medium as it means you don’t have to worry about large file sizes draining your resources.

Additionally, Wix also offers a range of ecommerce plans, the cheapest of which will cost you $27 per month. This will allow you to sell your featured products if you wish. You can’t sell on any of Wix’s website builder plans, so if ecommerce is something that you might be interested in, you’ll need to make sure you upgrade to a specific ecommerce premium plan.

With premium plans you also gain access to more templates, more tools, and more apps from the Wix App Market – where you can find all sorts of cool apps that cover things like digital marketing, extra design styles, and additional interesting features for your online portfolio.

Ultimately, value for money is the one area that lets Wix down, with our research awarding it just 3.4 out of 5 here. This isn’t because Wix isn’t worth the investment – in fact, it’s the opposite. The quality of its offering has significantly improved over the years, so nowadays, you get what you pay for. In this case, that means top-quality. However, it is something to think about if you need to keep costs down.

Wix logo 165

Interested in Selling Your Portfolio Products Online?

If you’re looking to sell your work, Wix offers ecommerce plans starting from $27 per month, so you can have a host of selling tools at your fingertips!

Find out more

  • Wix ReviewIf you’re looking for more information on Wix then this is a great place to start.
  • Wix Pricing GuideWe take a closer look at the costs of each Wix premium plan.

#3. GoDaddy

The quickest way to build a portfolio

GoDaddy

Best for building a portfolio fast

Excellent

4.4

out of 5
  • Fastest setup time
  • Easy to work with
  • Limited designs

Free trial available

Paid Plans: $6.99 - $29.99 / month

Pros

  • Easy to use and quick to set up
  • Good value for money
  • Plenty of must-have features

Cons

  • Templates can be slightly restrictive
  • Designs can look quite similar
Read Review

GoDaddy might once have been better known as the place to go to secure a domain name, but in recent years, its website builder has been taking the digital world by storm.  It’s rocketed up the ranks to place third in our top nine portfolio builders, with an overall score of 4.4 out of 5.

It comes with a great range of must-have features and is perfect for creating a stylish portfolio quickly thanks to its ADI builder. However, it is worth noting that its customization outside of this function is limited, especially when compared to Squarespace and Wix.

GoDaddy’s Templates

Instead of starting by picking a template, GoDaddy asks you a few questions about your site, and uses your answers to automatically create a website for you. You can then  tweak and customize this design until you’re happy. This method of building is called ADI (Artificial Design Intelligence) and makes GoDaddy the fastest builder to create a portfolio with.

Even though GoDaddy does it all for you, its designs always come out looking slick and professional, which is why it scored 4.3 out of 5 in our design functionality category. However, if you want to have more creative control over the end product, you might find GoDaddy’s editor a bit frustrating. It uses block-based elements, which make moving or resizing things tricky. You’ll need to stick to the set structure.

GoDaddy’s Key Features

GoDaddy has its own SEO wizard, which is a beginner-friendly way for users to start optimizing their portfolio. Similar to its ADI builder, GoDaddy asks you questions about your site and creates a tailored SEO plan for you to follow. It even suggests which keywords you should target to rank higher in Google!

However, it’s important to note that although basic SEO tools are included on GoDaddy’s cheapest plan, you won’t have access to its SEO Wizard website optimizer.

GoDaddy isn’t too forthcoming on its site about how much storage you get with each plan, but it seems that you get unmetered storage and bandwidth on all its plans. Unmetered storage means you are not charged based on the amount of storage you use.

However, it’s worth noting that this doesn’t mean your storage capacity is unlimited. The Platinum plan is capped at 1000GB. This is plenty though, and shouldn’t pose a problem for the majority of portfolios. If you use video as a medium, though, it is worth considering whether this is going to be enough to meet your needs.

Helping entrepreneurs build their online presence is something GoDaddy is clearly passionate about.

Its Websites + Marketing package is powered by GoDaddy Insights, and means your site automatically comes with helpful marketing tools. You’ll receive some really useful insights about how your site compares to similar sites online, too.

What kind of marketing tools can you expect? Although GoDaddy doesn’t allow you to connect directly with third-party marketing apps, it does come with in-built email marketing tools, as well as supporting Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest. You can even use GoDaddy’s software to create social media posts that reflect your portfolio branding.

GoDaddy Ease of Use

Thanks to its ADI functionality, building a website with GoDaddy is incredibly easy – mostly because it does all of the hard work for you! However, it does come with a degree of customizability, and you can tweak your pre-made template to suit your brand once you get it into the editor.

GoDaddy’s ADI builder means that not only is it very fast to create a website, it’s also extremely easy. Anyone can sit down and create a GoDaddy website! This is why we awarded it a total score of 4.1 out of 5 in our ease of use testing, making it the second easiest-to-use builder out of the 14 we analyzed.

GoDaddy’s Pricing: $6.99+

GoDaddy’s monthly plans are really reasonable, too. For a portfolio website, you’re looking at around $6.99 per month.

GoDaddy has four paid plans ranging from $6.99 to $29.99 per month when billed annually. For a professional portfolio, you’ll likely need the $13.99 per month Premium plan, as it’s the cheapest plan to include SEO. All plans come with a generous one-month free trial.

However, if you only have a small budget to get started with, GoDaddy is one of the few website builders that offers a free plan. Although this is much more limited than its premium packages, it’s a good option if you need to keep your costs down. We just recommend that you don’t stay on it forever!

godaddy logo

Do You Need to Get Your Work Online Quickly?

GoDaddy is the fastest way to create an online portfolio – it does most of the work for you. You could publish your portfolio today!

Find out more

#4. Duda

Best for building a technically polished portfolio

Duda

Stylish portfolio designs

Very Good

4

out of 5
  • Very structured designs
  • Good for multiple sites
  • An expensive option

Free trial available

Paid Plans: $14 - $59 / month

Pros

  • Balance of creative freedom and guidance
  • Very easy to use
  • Widgets for bookings, events etc.

Cons

  • No free plan, and the cheapest is $14/mo
  • Limited support on cheapest plan
  • Poor internal marketing tools
Read Review

Duda is a website builder that comes with super stylish designs for an ultra-sleek portfolio. Its templates are very structured, meaning your portfolio’s design will always remain consistent and professional – although you don’t get much creative freedom.

Duda’s Templates

Duda is an ideal choice for anyone who wants a stunning portfolio without the responsibility of full creative control over your site. You get over 90 templates to choose from, all of which are clean, simple, and stylish.

Your site’s design is very dependent on the template you choose – unlike Wix, for example, you can’t totally redesign your layout, so make sure you pick a template you like. All templates are totally mobile responsive, so your work will look its best on smartphones and tablets as well as on desktop.

Duda’s strengths really lie in its designs, and this shone through in our research – it received 4.1 out of 5 for design flexibility, which puts it toward the front of the pack alongside the likes of Squarespace, Wix, and GoDaddy.

Duda’s Key Features

Duda doesn’t provide the most comprehensive set of SEO tools, although it has everything you need to get the job done. It comes with a free SSL certificate, along with features such as:

  • Customizable meta titles, meta descriptions, and URLs
  • Canonical tags
  • An additional SEO specific app
  • Mobile responsive templates

It is missing alt text to go alongside images which is a mainstay of most website-builder SEO offerings, and it lacks keyword support and SEO best practice prompt. However, what it does have is enough to help your site rank in Google.

Similar to Squarespace, Duda gives you unlimited storage on all its plans, even the cheapest $14 per month plan. This gives you a lot of freedom from day one, and means you won’t be forced to upgrade just because you ran out of storage space for your files.

Duda is a mixed bag when it comes to marketing. It only scored 2.1 out of 5 for website features in our research, which makes it hard for it to live up to its more advanced competitors in this area.

While subscribers to the Team plan and above get access to cool marketing tools such as email header images and client management, it lacks basic marketing features. There is no newsletter tool, for example, which is a real shame, and it has limited social media support. For example, you won’t be able to connect to Instagram, and you’ll only be able to insert a Twitter feed, or Facebook comments directly into your website.

Additionally, you won’t be able to directly integrate your site with extra third-party marketing apps, so expanding your website’s functionality in this area can get tricky.

Duda Ease of Use

Duda came joint top in our ease of use testing, earning a top score of 4.4 out of 5, sharing the title with Wix. In fact, it’s 22% easier to use than the average website builder because of its focus on delivering an enjoyable user experience, which Duda delivers through clear, structured templates and section-based drag-and-drop.

You can edit within your template’s guidelines, making this an ideal builder for anyone who wants a great-looking site without having to put too much work into the design themselves. However, if you start trying to get too creative, you’ll find Duda challenging to get results from, as customizability can be quite limited.

Duda’s Pricing: $14+

Duda has three price plans:

  • Basic: $14 per month (billed annually)
  • Team: $22 per month (billed annually)
  • Agency: $44 per month (billed annually)

The Basic plan includes multi-language options, HTTPS encryption, and lets you build one website. You only have access to email support on this plan, which is less than ideal.

There’s no sugar-coating it: Duda is expensive. The Team plan is the only one that offers a free 14-day trial. This is a good way to try out its more advanced features, but is a little frustrating if your budget doesn’t stretch to $22 per month. On average, it’s around 59% more expensive than Squarespace.

For these reasons, Duda only scored 1.2 out of 5 for value for money. This puts it right at the bottom, meaning that it offers the worst value for money out of all 14 builders we tested.

That said, if you’re looking to build several different portfolios, the Agency plan might be a good option, as this lets you build up to four websites for $44 per month (billed annually).

duda logo

Do You Like Duda’s Stylish Portfolio Designs?

We can’t get enough of Duda’s designer templates, and we bet your clients will feel the same! You can try it free for 14 days.

Find out more

  • Duda Review – learn more about who Duda is best for, and whether it’s right for you in our full review

#5. Zyro

Best for simple and cheap portfolio websites

Zyro

Best for simple and cheap portfolio websites

Good

3.8

out of 5
  • One to watch
  • Innovative AI tools
  • Straightforward and easy

Free trial available

Paid Plans: $2.69 - $39.99 / month

Pros

  • Great customer score in our research
  • Experimental AI branding tools
  • Grid layout is ideal for beginners

Cons

  • Doesn’t come with an app market
  • Poor social media and marketing tools
  • Switching templates can get tricky
Read Review

Zyro Portfolio: Steven Mollet (AKA Stounson) – Artist

Steven Mollet Portfolio
Click the image to visit Steven Mollet’s portfolio

Zyro hasn’t been around as long as the other website-building behemoths on this list, but it’s already making waves in the digital world. It’s incredibly easy to use, pairing a straightforward grid-based drag-and-drop builder with sleek, modern templates. However, it’s still finding its feet, and lacks some of the advanced functionality you get with more established website builders.

Zyro’s Templates

Despite how easy it is to use, Zyro’s templates don’t look cheap or unprofessional – in fact, each one is stylish and perfectly optimized for a number of different screen sizes, making them perfect for housing a sleek portfolio website.

Besides, if you can’t find a template that suits, you can build one from scratch, taking control of every single element. Alternatively, you can let Zyro do all the hard work and opt to use its ADI builder.

Zyro scored 3.1 out of 5 for its design functionality, which puts it in the middle of the pack. However, there’s still room for improvement. For example, Zyro’s customizability has its limitations, and it can be quite hard to change the base template too drastically. This can make it hard to give your website its own unique stamp.

Additionally, it can be quite tricky to switch templates once you’ve published your site. You’ll need to disconnect your plan from your current design, before attaching it to another one. Plus, you’ll then need to do all of your reformatting again. Essentially, it’ll feel like you’re starting from the beginning.

Zyro’s Key Features

As a newer builder, Zyro’s SEO tools aren’t very robust, and if you want something more advanced, you’ll need to upgrade to the Unleashed or Ecommerce Plus plan. On the cheapest plans, you won’t have access to tools like Google Analytics.

However, Zyro does offer a basic set of features that will help your portfolio to rank better in search engine results. These include:

  • Editing and customizing meta titles, meta descriptions, and alt-text.
  • Custom URLs
  • 301 redirects
  • Mobile-optimized templates

However, it doesn’t come with canonical tags, header code, or any keyword support or SEO best practice prompts. You won’t be able to connect to an SEO-specific app either, as Zyro doesn’t come with an app store.

The amount of storage available depends on the plan you choose. If you opt for Zyro’s cheapest Basic plan, you’ll only have 1GB of storage and 3GB of bandwidth. However, if you upgrade to the Unleashed plan, all caps are removed, and you’ll have unlimited storage and bandwidth to play with.
Like its SEO offering, Zyro’s marketing tools aren’t the strongest, which is why it only scored 2.4 out of 5 in our website features category. You can add a blog and categorize your posts, but that’s about it.

Zyro doesn’t offer any inbuilt email marketing functions, and only supports social icons and an Instagram feed. It also doesn’t come with an app store, so you won’t be able to access any extra tools that way, either. You can integrate with third-party apps, but you’ll need to use Zapier to do it.

Despite this, there’s one area where Zyro is ahead of the curve: artificial intelligence. It offers a number of AI branding tools, such as its AI writer, which produces keyword-rich copy for you.

Zyro also has an AI logo maker that’ll whip you up a quick design in no time, as well as an AI heatmap. This is very useful for predicting which parts of your website design will attract the most attention from your visitors. Simply upload an image of your webpage to generate your map.

Zyro Ease of Use

Zyro is one of the easiest website builders to use, and it scored 4 out of 5 in our user testing. Its grid-based, drag-and-drop editor makes customization a breeze. Unlike GoDaddy, Zyro allows a good dose of creative freedom, whilst still keeping things simple. If you’re a beginner, or you don’t have the time to fuss around with a complex design, Zyro is a great choice.

You could argue that the reason Zyro is so easy to use is that its editor doesn’t come with as many features as its competitors might, and we’d have to agree. However, if you don’t need all the bells and whistles, this shouldn’t be too much of a deal-breaker.

Zyro’s Pricing: $8.90+

Zyro has four different pricing plans to choose from:

Overall, Zyro performs very well for value for money, scoring 4.2 out of 5 and putting it in fourth place in this category. The Basic plan is a good option if you’re just starting out, however, we’d recommend jumping straight to the Unleashed plan if you want to scale your website and attract more visitors.

You won’t be able to sell on either of these plans, though. If you want to make sales through your portfolio, you’ll need to choose one of the two ecommerce options.

It’s worth noting that Zyro frequently runs special discounts on their plans, reducing the total cost by up to 69%! This means that you could bag the Unleashed plan for just $1.90 per month!

zyro logo

Do You Want to See How Easy It Is to Get Online with Zyro?

Zyro is one of the simplest builders out there, making it a breeze to get your website up and running! Plus, it’s affordable too! Check it out using its generous 3-month trial!

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#6. Weebly

Best for building a portfolio for free 

Best Value For Money

Weebly

Best for building a portfolio for free

Good

3.7

out of 5
  • Beginner-friendly
  • Fast, guided setup
  • Free and cheap plans

Free plan available

Paid Plans: $6 - $29 / month

Pros

  • Very easy to get started with
  • Plenty of great SEO tools
  • Half the price of Squarespace

Cons

  • Limited customization opportunities
  • Poor formatting on mobile
  • Dated and unimpressive designs
Read Review

Weebly is one of the easiest and most affordable portfolio website builders, making it a great choice if you’re just starting out or want a simple portfolio building experience.

We spoke to film director Jonny Dry, who uses Weebly for his portfolio. Here are his thoughts…

Portfolio address: www.jonnydry.com

Portfolio preview:

weebly portfolio example jonny dry

Why did you decide to use Weebly? 

“I would have probably used Squarespace given the choice, however the price of Weebly alongside its site builder was simply the best balance between price and functionality. I tried the likes of Wix and the initial process was so protracted and the site builder so complex that I stopped and tried Weebly. Immediately it was clear that the whole layout was far more intuitive and I could see results much quicker.”

Why did you decide to create a portfolio website?

“Given the variety of work that I undertake I needed a space to bring all of that together in a coherent way. As I’ve grown as a filmmaker for example I’ve begun projects that aren’t necessarily for me but for a third party. The website enabled me to have a space on the internet that was fundamentally mine and a reflection of the work that I do, rather than everything scattered across different web platforms.”

What have been the benefits of having your own portfolio?

“Aside from the practical benefit of having everything in one place that I can send to people in support of applications, it has also been of significant personal benefit. Since the process of designing the website forced me to seriously consider how I wanted to be perceived. For me, the website needed to be an online business card or CV but one that could be designed to reflect me and my values, rather than the prescriptive layout of Linkedin for example.

A strange thing to say as well is that the website has also led me to take more ownership over the work I’ve produced. When I’m able to include website links in email signatures or on applications and project pitches, I’ve found that I mentally take more pride in what I’ve done and am bolder about marketing myself.”

Weebly’s Templates

Although Weebly’s template designs aren’t quite as eye-catching as Squarespace’s, they are simple and clean, meaning they provide the perfect backdrop for a no-nonsense portfolio that’s all about showcasing your work.

Despite this, they are relatively basic. Each template is made up of sticky blocks that aren’t that easy to move, meaning that customization potential is limited. You’ll only be able to make changes within the boundaries set by your chosen template, so it’s much harder to put your own stamp on things.

Weebly’s templates also aren’t the most mobile-friendly, and can look messy on smaller screen sizes. Even if you barely edit your chosen layout, expect to see some irregular formatting when you move away from the desktop.

Because of this, Weebly only scored 2.5 out of 5 for design in our research. This puts it a long way below the likes of Wix, Squarespace, and GoDaddy. As a result, we’d recommend choosing one of these if you want template designs that are more modern, have more customizability, and are properly optimized for mobile.

Weebly’s Key Features

One of the best things about Weebly is its strong SEO tools – it has too many to list them all here, but its standout features include customizable URLs and its very own SEO app. You can manage your SEO straight from Weebly’s editor:

weebly portfolio builder seo

It also comes with a helpful Ultimate SEO Guide which helps you optimize your site from day one, and continue to work on your portfolio’s SEO long after you’ve published it online.

Weebly is often praised for its huge app store, where you’ll find helpful SEO apps you can add to your portfolio to give it an extra boost.

Weebly has different levels of storage for its users, depending on which plan you choose:

  • Free plan: 500MB
  • Personal plan: 500MB
  • Professional plan: Unlimited
  • Performance plan: Unlimited

Weebly’s free plan is good for starting out on, but less than ideal for any professional portfolio – you’ll have adverts on your site, and only 500MB storage. We don’t recommend the Personal plan (it doesn’t offer great value for money, as we’ll discuss in a second), so the Professional plan’s your best bet!

In our portfolio research, Weebly came in third place for website features, with a score of 3.9 out of 5. This is down to the wide range of tools it has to offer. Its built-in marketing features vary from plan to plan, but the core tools that benefit portfolio sites include:

  • SEO tools
  • Customized forms for lead capture
  • Displaying your Instagram feed on your site
  • Creating pop-up notifications

There’s also Weebly’s in-house newsletter tool called Weebly Promote, which syncs with your site and comes with pre-designed layouts for you to customize, to ensure your branding stays consistent. Pricing for this tool starts at $8 per month.

It’s important to note, though, that Weebly’s social media integration capabilities are limited. It doesn’t support live feeds, and doesn’t come with a social post creator like Squarespace and Wix. You’ll be able to feature social icon buttons, but that’s about it.

However, If you still need more marketing tools, there are plenty to choose from in Weebly’s App Center – a strong point for this builder.

Weebly Ease of Use

Weebly’s editor is a simple drag-and-drop editor that lets you move on-page elements as you see fit – ideal for the less tech-savvy amongst you! It even includes an in-built form editor, making it easy to add a form and encourage people to contact you directly through your website.

However, there are some limitations. Despite adopting the drag-and-drop format, you won’t have total free reign. You’ll need to keep elements within their pre-set blocks, giving you less freedom of movement than you’d have with Wix.

Because of this, Weebly only scored 3.4 out of 5 in our ease of use testing, putting it in a relatively disappointing seventh place. Despite this, it has its strengths: we can’t dismiss its clear onboarding and uncluttered (although slightly outdated) editor.

This makes it ideal for small, simple portfolios or for anyone that wants to build a portfolio website quickly and cheaply. Editing is super simple so you don’t need to worry about any learning curve at all. The SEO options are good and cover the essentials, making it perfect for beginners looking for a helping hand.

Weebly’s Pricing: $6+

One of the best things about Weebly is its affordable prices. Its value for money is so good that it scored full marks in this area, achieving a perfect 5 out of 5. Unlike Squarespace, Weebly comes with a free plan,  so you can build and publish without spending a cent.

Weebly’s cheapest paid plan is the $6 per month Personal plan, which is extremely affordable when compared to main competitors Wix and Squarespace.

However, to remove adverts, get real value for your money, and build a truly professional portfolio, you’ll need the $12 per month Professional plan.

Yes, it’s double the price of the Personal plan, but it’s more than worth it because of all the extra features the Professional plan unlocks – including unlimited storage and a free domain.

Weebly also has tons of apps which is a great way of scaling your site without having to upgrade your plan. You can simply add any extra features you need one by one, making it a budget-friendly option for growing your portfolio.

weebly logo

Do You Need an Affordable Portfolio Builder?

Weebly is packed with great SEO and blogging tools, it’s easy to use, and it’s half the price of Squarespace!

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  • Weebly Review Our detailed Weebly review tells you everything you need to know about the platform
  • Weebly Pricing GuideWe explain the costs involved with Weebly’s premium plans

#7. Jimdo

Best for hobby portfolios looking to stay small

Jimdo

Best for portfolios built using ADI

Good

3.6

out of 5
  • Cheap plans with no ads
  • Limited website features
  • Top ADI builder

Free plan available

Paid Plans: $9 - $24 / month

Pros

  • The best cost per features option
  • Clean, professional ADI websites
  • Dedicated mobile editor

Cons

  • Limited SEO tools
  • Poor marketing tools
  • Restricted support on cheapest plans
Read Review

Jimdo is a fairly straightforward website builder that uses ADI technology to create websites quickly and efficiently. It offers pretty good value for money and is a great cheap option if you want to sell through your portfolio, too. But for a more full-rounded portfolio, you might want to consider a more versatile builder like Squarespace or Weebly.

Jimdo Portfolio: Lunaphelia – Photography

jimdo example portfolio lunaphelia
Click on the image to visit Lunaphelia

Jimdo’s Templates

Overall, Jimdo scored 3.1 out of 5 for design, which puts it in the middle of the pack. Jimdo offers a good range of attractive website designs, although you won’t find much in the way of creative freedom in its editor. Expect to see lots of chic white space perfect for showing off your work.

That said, Jimdo’s ready-made websites won’t knock your socks off. They’re fit for purpose, but once built, you won’t be able to change much about them, which might be frustrating for some. Plus, this also means that many of their designs come out looking very similar – not ideal when you’re trying to build a unique brand!

However, it does have its strengths, one of which is its mobile editor, which gives you all the tools you need to make sure that your website looks good, no matter what screen size your visitors are viewing it on. You can also switch templates at any time if you want to.

Jimdo’s Key Features

Jimdo is great for hobby or personal portfolios,and the reason for that is that its SEO tools aren’t the best around. Simply put, they’re pretty basic.

That said, you can add alt text, customize URLs , and edit your meta titles and descriptions. Jimdo even comes with an “automatic SEO” feature on all but its free plan, where smart technology fills out your SEO settings for you.

You get 500MB on Jimdo’s free plan, and unlimited storage on its most expensive but aptly named Unlimited plan:

  • $0 Play plan: 500MB
  • $9/month Start plan: 5GB
  • $15/month Grow plan: 15GB
  • $39/month Unlimited plan: Unlimited

$15 per month is a lot to pay for just 15GB of storage, considering Squarespace provides an unlimited amount for just $16 per month.

Jimdo’s biggest area of weakness is its website features. It only scored 2.3 out of 5 in this category, making it one of the worst out of all the builders we tested, and putting it far below its top competitors. In fact, it performed 61% worse than Wix in this category.

This is down to a number of things. Firstly, Jimdo doesn’t allow you to add a blog, nor does it support a members area. Additionally, there’s no email marketing to speak of, so building a loyal database of customers is trickier.

This is made even more challenging by the fact that Jimdo doesn’t have an app store like Squarespace, Wix, or Weebly. As a result, there’s no option for you to fill the gaps with third party apps.

However, it’s not all bad. Something Jimdo really shines at is social media integration. If you connect your online accounts to Jimdo, it can pull photos, information, and opening hours directly from Facebook and Google.

It also comes with an additional logo builder, which is great if you’re right at the beginning of your brand-building journey. This leaves you more time to perfect your site and promote your work!

Jimdo Ease of Use

Jimdo scored 3.4 out of 5 in our ease of use testing. Generally, our users enjoyed using it because of how simple its ADI builder makes the whole process. All you need to do is answer a few questions and voila – you have a website that’s pretty much ready to go.

This makes it a good option for beginners, or those short on time. Here’s the website that Jimdo created for us – all we had to do was answer a few questions!

It provided features we had selected as important, and kept the styling in keeping with our design choices. Admittedly, it’s not the best looking website we’ve ever made, but it does the job!

Jimdo’s Pricing: $9+

In our research, Jimdo scored 4.8 out of 5 for value for money, making it a serious contender if you’re conscious of keeping your budget under control. It has three pricing plans to choose from:

  • Play: $0 per month
  • Start: $9 per month
  • Grow: $15 per month

It also offers two ecommerce plans – Basic and Business – which cost $15 and $19 respectively.

Jimdo is one of the only builders that offers a free plan, however, it does come with some pretty hefty limitations. You won’t be able to build more than five website pages, and the ones you do have will be covered in ads. There’s no help and support, either, so you’ll be on your own if you get stuck!

That’s why we recommend opting for the Start plan at the very least. Although this does come with a monthly cost, $9 isn’t too much to pay, especially because it gets rid of all those pesky ads for a more professional feel. Not only that, but you’ll be able to create up to 10 pages, as well as access more comprehensive SEO tools.

If your needs aren’t too demanding and you don’t want to spend too much money (the ad-free plan costs just $9 per month), then Jimdo is a solid choice for anyone looking to make a simple portfolio website.

jimdo logo

Are You Setting Up a Personal Portfolio?

Keep things small and manageable with Jimdo, a straightforward builder with some neat perks such as cheap sales tools.

Find out more

  • Dig deeper into Jimdo’s pros, cons, features, pricing, and more with our detailed Jimdo Review

#8. Strikingly

Best for building a single-page portfolio

Strikingly

Best for building a single-page portfolio

Above Average

3.4

out of 5
  • Helpful support team
  • Uninspiring designs
  • Limited website features

Free plan available

Paid Plans: $8 - $59 / month

Pros

  • On-page help and support
  • Good storage space for small builders
  • Relatively easy for beginners

Cons

  • Slow site speed
  • Poor value for money
  • Others do it better
Read Review

Strikingly is a simple website builder that aims to make it easy for anyone and everyone to create an online portfolio. This welcoming philosophy is reflected in its beginner-friendly editor and helpful support resources. However, Strikingly lacks scalable features and truly stylish designs. Since we first reviewed this builder, it’s only continued to fall behind the industry standard, seeing a 12% drop in its overall score. Anything bigger than a basic portfolio will struggle on Strikingly.

Strikingly Portfolio: Teejay Art – Painting and meditation

strikingly portfolio example teejay art
Click on the image to visit Teejay Art

Strikingly’s Templates

If you’re looking to build for free, you should know that Strikingly comes with a free plan, but that this only allows you to build one-page websites. This doesn’t seem the most obvious choice for a portfolio website, but for smaller showcases it’s a nice, simple way to present your work.

However, the majority of Strikingly’s templates are quite outdated compared to its competitors. It scored 2.8 out of 5 in our testing, which isn’t ideal for a website that relies on aesthetics to promote work in the best light.

Strikingly’s Key Features

Strikingly keeps its SEO pretty simple, and guides you through optimizing your site using its SEO checklist, which you can find in your portfolio website’s dashboard.

Although Strikingly does cover the basics, it struggles to compete with the SEO tools offered by builders such as Squarespace, Wix, and Weebly. This makes it more suitable for personal portfolios rather than professionals needing to land big clients.

Strikingly starts you off with 500MB storage per site on its free plan. This limit gets increased each time you upgrade:

  • $8/month Limited plan: 1GB storage per site
  • $16/month Pro plan: 3GB storage per site
  • $49/month VIP plan: 10GB storage per site

Strikingly’s upper storage limit is 10GB, which is pretty small when you compare it to those builders offering unlimited storage, or even a builder like Wix which provides 50GB storage on its $27 per month plan.

For this reason, we don’t recommend Strikingly for large portfolios – it’s not a very scalable option.

If you have big dreams for your portfolio, you’ll probably hit a ceiling with Strikingly before too long. It only scored 2.7 out of 5 for website features in our research. Whilst this is more than the likes of Jimdo, it’s still pretty low.

That said, it comes with okay blogging tools, flexible designs, and offers great value for money. You can even add a small store to your portfolio if you want to sell a few products through your site.

You can easily add a blog, and create newsletters to send to your subscribers, although this latter feature is only available on the VIP and Audience plans. Saying that, you can still integrate it with your Mailchimp account, if you have one. Social media integration is available on all plans.

Strikingly Ease of Use

Overall, Strikingly is very beginner-friendly, and easy to use for people of all abilities. It scored 3.4 out of 5 in our ease of use testing, putting it in line with the likes of Jimdo and Weebly. Its focus on accessibility makes it awesome for technophobes, but can make it feel limiting to anyone with more experience.

If you have big dreams for your portfolio, you’ll probably become frustrated with Strikingly before too long, and find it too constraining.

One of our favorite things about Strikingly, however, was how much it caters for beginners with its help and support resources, scoring 3 out of 5 in this area.

Helpful starter videos, articles, a great knowledge base, plus the option to submit a message to Strikingly support staff, all add up to make Strikingly ideal for beginners looking for a little more help and support as they build their portfolio.

When we tried out Strikingly’s live chat support, our pricing query was read and replied to within one minute – that’s pretty impressive! On top of that, the ‘Happiness Officer’ who replied was helpful, friendly, and answered our question straight away.

Strikingly’s Pricing: $8+

Strikingly scored a disappointing 2.9 out of 5 when it came to value for money. This is because, although it has a generous free plan that you can stay on for as long as you like, and its paid plans are pretty affordable, its features aren’t as advanced as we saw on its competitors.

There are three paid plans to choose from:

  • Limited: $8 per month (billed annually)
  • Pro: $16 per month (billed annually)
  • VIP: $49 per month (billed annually)

To build a multi-page website you’ll need at least the $16 per month Pro plan, which is a shame as other builders let you do this on their cheapest plans. $16 is also pretty steep, especially when you consider what you get on Squarespace and Wix for the same price.

However, if you don’t want to grow beyond a one-page website, Strikingly is a good option, and although its Limited plan lives up to its name, smaller portfolios might find it offers just what they need at an affordable price.

strikingly logo

First Time Building a Portfolio Website?

Strikingly is beginner-friendly, and comes with awesome help and support – perfect for building a basic portfolio.

Find out more

  • For more information on Strikingly’s features, plans, and templates, check out our in-depth Strikingly Review

#9. 1&1 IONOS

Best for portfolios with an international reach

1&1 IONOS

Best for portfolios with an international reach

Above Average

3.2

out of 5
  • Awesome load speed
  • Restricted customization
  • Outdated overall

Paid Plans: $0.5 - $30 / month

Pros

  • Tools for international growth
  • Edit and amend settings all in one place
  • Templates for all industries

Cons

  • No free plan or trial
  • Limited customization tools
  • No advanced marketing features
Read Review

1&1 IONOS is a simple website builder that shines thanks to its incredibly cheap pricing plans. You can build your portfolio and get it live for just $1 per month for the first year! It’s also got all the tools you need to appeal to an international market, too, broadening your global reach.

1&1 IONOS’s Templates

When it comes to choosing a template for your portfolio, 1&1 IONOS has plenty of choices. It comes with templates for every industry, so there’s something for everyone.

However, our users reported that the designs are all pretty basic, and feel outdated. They look nice and clean, but there’s not much to set them apart, because they all feature similar layouts.

Despite this, you can swap templates at any point, if you want to. You will need to do some reformatting though, and as you’ll see, customizing your IONOS template isn’t as easy as it might seem – the degree of personalization you can apply is pretty limited. It’s not surprising that IONOS only scored 2.5 out of 5 in the design category.

1&1 IONOS’s Key Features

Uninspiring templates aside, IONOS comes with some fairly strong SEO tools to help your portfolio rank higher in the search engines. From customizable meta titles and descriptions to Google Analytics, it has everything you need to boost your traffic.

It even provides SEO best practice prompts to help you as you build your portfolio. This is especially helpful for website-building newbies, and isn’t something many platforms provide. Squarespace, for example, is missing this key feature.

However, there is always room for improvement, and 1&1 IONOS falls flat when it comes to mobile optimization. Their templates aren’t set up to be viewed across a number of screen sizes, and this could work against you, pushing your site down the rankings below other portfolios that are mobile-optimized.

1&1 IONOS offers unlimited storage on both its Plus and Professional plans. Although you won’t get this on the Starter plan, it’s pretty good value considering that the Plus and Professional plans only cost $5 and $10 respectively (at least for the first year!).
Marketing isn’t IONOS’s strong suit. Although it comes with a handful of the basics, there’s a lot it could do better, and ultimately, it sits way behind its competitors in terms of advanced features like commercial pop-ups.

It also doesn’t have any inbuilt email marketing tools, or the ability to connect to third-party apps. That’s why it scored a disappointing 2.5 out of 5 in our testing.

But it’s not all bad – 1&1 IONOS does come with some basic marketing tools that small portfolio owners will appreciate. For example, It integrates with most social media platforms, with the exception of Instagram. It also supports live feeds, too!

Where it really shines is in internationalization. By this, we mean it comes with a ton of tools that can help to make your portfolio accessible across the globe! You can directly translate your site into  62 different languages, without having to export it all to a translator program.

It also allows you to adjust your content based on who’s viewing it, or what time of year it is. That means you can control what certain target groups see, helping to bring your work to the right people at the right times!

1&1 Ease of Use

Despite producing pretty basic-looking websites, building and customizing your portfolio with 1&1 IONOS is more difficult than you might think. It only scored 2.8 out of 5 in our ease of use testing.

This is mainly because the layout of each template makes it very difficult to have much creative control over how your website looks. The editor is arranged in sections, and this makes it very difficult to move things around as you see fit. Even choosing a color scheme is trickier than it should be!

However, it’s clear that dividing the templates up into sections is one way of making sure that your website remains clean and tidy. It’s also simple to add extra elements and pages to your design. Each new page starts out as a blank canvas, so you’ll be able to flex your creativity here!

1&1 IONOS’s Pricing: $1+

In our research, 1&1 IONOS achieved its highest score in the value for money category, where it was awarded 4.2 out of 5. This makes it even better value for money than Wix and Squarespace!

However, this is mostly down to its excellent introductory prices. It has three website builder plans to choose from:

These kinds of prices make 1&1 IONOS one of the cheapest website builders you can start with, although it is worth noting that these are only applicable for the first year. This means that when you renew your subscription for a second term, the yearly cost will jump up, so you’ll be paying the following:

  • Starter: $5 per month
  • Plus: $10 per month
  • Pro: $15 per month

1&1 IONOS doesn’t offer a free plan or free trial, so you’ll need to be willing to splash the cash before you can truly know if it’s the right builder for you – a pretty big disadvantage compared to other competitors.

1&1 IONOS logo

Do You Want to Make the Most of 1&1 IONOS’s Cheap Prices?

1&1 IONOS is perfect if you’re looking for a basic but affordable website builder to create your portfolio site.

Find out more

  • If you want a more in-depth overview of 1&1 IONOS, check out our thorough 1&1 IONOS Review.

Are There Other Noteworthy Portfolio Website Builders?

You may have skimmed our list expecting to see certain portfolio builders appear in our top nine. If you’re wondering if there are other portfolio builders that we haven’t included, then the answer is yes.

There are plenty of other portfolio builders out there, and many of them are very popular. We’re passionate about giving the best advice to our readers, so we only recommend builders that we’ve put through the entirety of our thorough research process from start to finish.

However, that’s not to say we haven’t tried other builders, too. Here’s a quick run-down of other notable portfolio builders that deserve a mention, even if they didn’t quite match up to our top nine.

#1. Format

Starting price: $12 per month

Free trial: 14 days

Our summary: Format is a website builder aimed specifically at photographers. It’s good at what it does, and provides helpful features such as image protection, but its niche focus makes it limiting for other professionals. If you’re a photographer, though, it’s worth checking out!

extra portfolio builders format
Format is a great portfolio website builder for photographers. Click the image to visit Format!

#2. Pixpa

Starting price: $7 per month

Free trial: 15 days

Our summary: Pixpa is an attractive builder for creatives. It’s affordable and comes with tailored features such as client-proofing. Pixpa aims to be an all-in-one package for creatives, and does a good job with its niche.

That said, Pixpa’s not as well-rounded as other builders we’ve tested. Again, it’s best for photographers – its primary purpose is to help creatives show off photos, and its blogging and SEO tools aren’t quite as strong as we would like.

extra portfolio builders pixpa
Pixpa has neat features such as client proofing, and is great for showing off photos. Click the image to explore Pixpa!

#3. Fabrik

Starting price: $9.17 per month

Free trial: 14 days

Our summary: Fabrik is a portfolio builder geared towards creatives – we like the fact it feels more inclusive than both Pixpa and Format, welcoming filmmakers, artists, and models as well as photographers. Plus it has a ton of features to keep its creatives moving forward online!

So, why didn’t it make our top nine list? Well, we thought the designs could have been sharper, and customization options a lot more developed. For creatives looking for plenty of freedom to extend their brand online, Fabrik may be too limiting. But it still deserves a mention as a popular alternative to traditional website builders.

extra portfolio builders fabrik
Fabrik welcomes all creatives, not just photographers. Click on the image to see more of Fabrik!

Tips for Picking a Portfolio Website Builder

Using a website builder to create your own digital portfolio is becoming an increasingly popular choice for professionals all sorts of backgrounds, including designers, artists, models, writers, filmmakers, and photographers. But portfolios are no longer reserved just for creatives.

Creating an online portfolio is an essential part of sharing your work, connecting with new clients, and presenting all your work in one place. These days, having an online presence is vital for getting noticed, and portfolio website builders give you the tools to take your work to the next level.

Not only that, but it also helps you to sell your work, too. Website builders like Wix come with a wide range of ecommerce tools and features, to help you sell online whilst also showcasing what you can do.

But first up is picking the right website builder for your portfolio. You’ve got a lot of choices, so how do you even know where to start?

To point you in the right direction – and save you a lot of time and effort when shopping around – it’s worth remembering that the very best portfolio website builders will help you:

  • Showcase your work and stand out from the crowd
  • Get found and gain an audience
  • Generate industry contacts and new business opportunities
  • Save money (by being affordable and scalable)
  • Save time and effort (by being easy to use)
  • Sell your work online
squarespace-portfolio-website-builder
Having a portfolio website gives you your own private gallery online in which to show off your talents to the world

Website builders make it incredibly easy to create your own stunning portfolio website and show off your skills to the world.

Let’s imagine a gallery full of your work and no-one else’s, that was entirely dedicated to showing off your skills and that anyone could visit at any time of time of day. This would give you more exposure, less direct competition, and the chance to show off your work in the best way possible – that sounds pretty great right?

Now what if you could completely design and build that gallery yourself – even if you didn’t know the first thing about construction? Even better, no?!

The best portfolio website builders provide lots of templates specifically designed to help you show off your work in the best way possible.

You’re free to edit and amend the demo content as you see fit – so if you like a certain feature, say a mosaic-style gallery – then simply replace the images in the frames with your own photos or content!

This not only puts your creative work front and center for users, but is incredibly easy and time-saving to do.

As templates are pre-designed with portfolio stores in mind (but are still totally editable too), visitors have no trouble finding the content they’re looking for. Navigation has already been optimized to be simple and straight-forward – whether it’s a gallery or images, links to writing examples, or even a contact page to get in touch with you.

You can even browse app markets (most website builders have one in some form or another) for additional display options or extra features to show-off your work and make it stand out in a crowded marketplace – it’s essentially the same as downloading apps for your smartphone or tablet!

Whether you are an artist, a photographer, a model, or any other kind of creative – you need a platform to showcase and show-off your catalog of work. Portfolio website builders provide you with wide-ranging selections of eye catching templates that help you stand out from the crowd, lots of gallery and display options to make your work pop, apps to add attention-grabbing features and encourage simple navigation so visitors can quickly see everything you have to offer.

The best portfolio website builders can help boost your online visibility, make it easy to connect your website with social media accounts for cross-platform promotion, and provide marketing tools to help you get the word out to fans and potential clients!

For all the criticisms they receive, website builders actually offer pretty good SEO (search engine optimization) tools that can improve your site to help it rank higher in search engine results pages (SERPs).

It’s easy to add ‘alt tags’ to images and ‘meta data’ to webpages – both of which act like a description of your portfolio website that helps search engines sort and categorize it, similar to a blurb on the back of a book.

Having ‘alt tags’ and ‘meta data’ is essential in order to rank higher and get found by people online.

You can also add a blog very easily to your website through most website builders, which can be a great way to show off your knowledge and promote your creative work.

This is known as content marketing and can also help you rank higher in SERPS because Google scans the content on your page and picks out the words relevant to what someone is searching for.

For example, if you are a photographer and write a lot of blog posts about the types of film you use when shooting landscapes, then you’ll stand a better chance of ranking highly when someone searches for ‘best camera film for landscape photography’.

Maintaining a blog is an easy – yet important – way of creating regular new content for your site and visitors.

There are also marketing tools available to use to further promote your portfolio and spread the word about your work.

Most website builders offer some form of email marketing tool, such as Wix’s ‘Wix Shout’, which are ideal for sending out news updates or for letting your fans know about your next exhibition or show.

You can support these email campaigns with additional marketing apps, such as ‘Traffic Generator’ that can create Google Adwords campaigns for you and drive traffic to your portfolio – a great way to be found by your target market.

You could even download an app to connect your social media feeds with your website.

Imagine syncing your portfolio updates with your instagram account for super-simple, cross-platform marketing that can really build you a dedicated audience!

Platforms like Wix and Squarespace provide several marketing tools to help you push your portfolio to the next level. Create specialized email marketing campaigns to notify subscribers of updates to your portfolio, integrate with social media and show off your work across multiple channels, or even add a blog to show off your knowledge and expertise. People can’t appreciate your work if they don’t know it exists, so take advantage of the marketing tools provided by website builders to promote yourself to fans and potential clients.

As this will be the first time most prospective clients are seeing your work it’s super important that you make a great first impression – just like if it was a job interview.

I know that I (and many friends and colleagues, and I’m sure you too!) have always had more success when making a strong first impression and the same is true for your website.

Whether it’s a job interview or your portfolio website, it pays to create an impression that makes an impact. The portfolio website builders we recommend below are ideal for getting yourself noticed in the best way possible.

Having lots of templates to choose from is a big plus point for anyone building a portfolio website because it gives you a lot of options to choose from when deciding on how to make a great first impression.

User-friendly editors keep website design simple and uncomplicated, so it’s painless to create a specific contact page or add a contact box so that people can easily submit enquiries or reach out to you.

Remember, people like convenience, so if it’s hard to get in touch with you then you could lose out on potentially lucrative business opportunities!

Make it easy for visitors to buy work directly from your portfolio…
Convenience is key, and that’s exactly what Square Online Checkout links give you and your visitors.
Wait, what are those?
These checkout links allow you to add buttons to your portfolio website that take direct payments from visitors – so you can sell products through your site. No hassle, no fuss, and best of all, no expensive fees!
All you need is a free Square Online account, and you can create and add these checkout links to your portfolio – simply copy and paste them onto your website.
There’s no charges or subscription costs to use Square Online Checkout links, just a 2.5% transaction fee per transaction – that makes it much more budget-friendly than a pricey ecommerce plan!

Just imagine how time-saving it would be to do away with cold emails and cold calls in order to try and drum up business. Just add a contact form and let people get in touch with you directly!

Website builders make it easy to add contact pages and forms to your portfolio website so that prospective clients can contact you directly. This does away with the need for you to send cold emails or make stressful cold calls asking for business and so is a huge time-saving opportunity. Add to this SEO boosting apps and features to help your website rank higher and get found in Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs) and you’ll be on your way to generating lots of new business!

Using a website builder is a far more affordable option than hiring a professional designer that might set you back thousands of dollars.

Nearly all website builders offer a free plan, which is great if your needs aren’t too demanding.

However, if you want more storage, more templates, or a custom domain (like a personalized website address) then it’s worth considering a paid premium plan.

For the price of a Starbucks Grande Caffe Latte each month (around $5-10) you’ll not only be able to build your own portfolio website, but you won’t even need to worry about things like hosting, storage, and site security as they will all be taken care of!

This is a huge time, effort and money saver as you’d otherwise need to spend time researching, comparing, and paying for it out of your own pocket if working with a designer.

Paid plans also give you more storage space and bandwidth, which are both important in helping your website to grow.

Having more storage lets you add more content to your portfolio to keep users engaged, while bandwidth is the name for the data used to power your website when people visit and is provided by your website builder of choice.

Having more bandwidth means you can support more visitors and higher levels of traffic.

It would take years for you to rack up a bill on a website builder that would match the cost of hiring a website designer, so to my mind it makes much more sense to remove as much financial stress as possible if your budget is tight.

Our recommended portfolio website builders are not only easy to use, they keep things within budget too. Paid monthly premium plans are affordable and work out much cheaper than the on-going costs you’d be stuck with if hiring a costly web designer or developer to create your site from scratch. Paid plans also include hosting, storage and bandwidth – all of which would prove increasingly expensive if you had to sort them all out separately by yourself.

The drag and drop editors used by website builders makes it incredibly easy for even the biggest technophobe to create stunning, professional-looking website in no time at all.

Nearly all major website builders provide an easy-to-use drag and drop editor that pretty much does what it says on the tin! You select an element such as text or image and then you drag it to where you want it on the page and drop it there – simple.

Drag and drop editors are also known as ‘What You See Is What You Get’ editors (WYSIWYG), which means that any changes you make in the editor will be reflected on your live website.

It’s sort of like when you create a custom birthday card on a site like Moonpig – the card you receive will look exactly like the one you designed.

Drag and drop website building is incredibly easy and doesn’t require you to know anything about coding at all, which does away with fiddly code tweaking and lets you focus on creating a stunning portfolio website.

This is a very time-saving way of working because you’re essentially editing in real-time, so you know exactly how your portfolio will look to visitors.

But for some readers, time may be at even more of a premium and you might not be able to afford a few hours to dedicate to building a portfolio website. In this case, just work with the pre-designed templates and edit as much or as little as you want, then publish it to the web.

For added peace of mind, website builders provide lots of help to keep your building experience running smoothly and ensure you don’t run into trouble.

Among the available support options are Wix’s in-editor tooltips that explain what tools do if you hover over the little question marks, it includes Weebly’s live help chat for efficient problem solving, as well as Squarespace’s in-depth tutorial videos and wide-ranging support guides.

It’s important to have support available when you need it as it helps to solve issues quickly, so you can carry on working and don’t waste time waiting around for an answer.

When you can simply drag and drop your photos or artwork wherever you want, it makes designing a unique portfolio incredibly easy. It also means you don’t need to know how to work with HTML, which means you can create your website quicker. And because your portfolio will look like it does in the editor, it means you can fine-tune your design and know exactly how it will look to your visitors. If you really need to save time – then there’s pre-designed templates for you to edit and publish, simple!

A portfolio website isn’t just about showcasing your work. In fact, if you choose the right builder, you can sell your pieces, too!

Website builders like Wix and Squarespace offer ecommerce functionality, however, only on some plans. For Wix, our top-rated ecommerce builder, there are three plans to choose from, starting with the Business Basic plan, which costs $27 per month.

If you’d rather build your portfolio with Squarespace, its Business plan will allow you to sell online and costs $23 per month.

Regardless of which builder you choose, it’s important that you make sure to choose an ecommerce plan if you want to sell online. If you’re not sure whether you want to sell yet, you can always upgrade at a later date.

 

Best Portfolio Website Builders: Recap

Final Breakdown of the 9 Best Portfolio Website Builders

9 Best Portfolio Website Builders

  1. Squarespace Best overall portfolio website builder
  2. Wix Best for creative freedom and customizability
  3. GoDaddy Best for building a portfolio fast
  4. Duda Best for a technically polished portfolio website
  5. Zyro The easiest way to build a basic portfolio
  6. Weebly Best for building a free portfolio website
  7. Jimdo Best for building a portfolio with hands-off ADI (Artificial Design Intelligence)
  8. Strikingly Best for a single-page portfolio
  9. 1&1 IONOS Best for a single-page portfolio

We carefully identified the most important factors for building a successful portfolio and ranked these builders accordingly. Looking at affordability, design, SEO, ease of use, and more, we tested and scored each builder to produce this definitive top nine list.

Squarespace is our top-rated portfolio builder for a number of reasons.

It provides a selection of beautiful and professionally-designed templates, which act as a great base for your portfolio website. It’s designed to make creatives’ online lives easier, so even if you’re pressed for time, you can build a great-looking online gallery. Plus, its much-improved ease of use makes it accessible for virtually anyone!

Squarespace is also a very scalable choice, with both tools and plans to accommodate and encourage your portfolio’s long-term growth.

Jump on its 14-day free trial and see if you agree with our verdict – for its stunning, visual designs and high-quality features, we recommend Squarespace as the best all-round portfolio website builder.

If you end up loving Squarespace’s free trial, we’ve got a little exclusive deal for you – get 10% off your first Squarespace plan by entering the code WBE at checkout. A special treat for our readers!

Close behind Squarespace are Wix and GoDaddy, which each have their own strengths. Wix is great for creative freedom and customizability, whilst GoDaddy allows you to build a beautiful and professional website in no time at all!

We looked at a whole range of other portfolio website builders, so you should find your perfect choice in this list. Some are better than others, but only you can know which one is best for you.

Whichever builder you choose, once you’ve created your portfolio, come back and let us know how you got on!

Further Information

FAQs

An online portfolio is a digital collection of your work, usually housed on a website. It makes your work easily accessible to potential clients and employers. In the digital age online portfolios are an excellent way of showcasing what you’re capable of.

Not a good one, no. If you want your own website it’s going to cost a few dollars one way or another.

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