4 out of 5 stars
- Free plan available
- $10.80 – $28.80 per month
- Amazing live chat support
Last Updated on June 7, 2019
Site123 asks you a couple of questions – like the type of website you want and what the name of the site is – before creating you a bespoke template that has all the features you need. Neat, right?
It’s no surprise to learn then that Site123 is built for individuals and businesses who need a website up fast with minimal fuss.
It may not the best for really complex or powerful websites, but for speed and efficiency (with loads of great help along the way!), you’ll struggle to find a better website builder.
|TOP 3 SITE123 PROS|
|#1||Brilliant support, especially from its live chat feature
|#2||Templates are fully mobile and tablet responsive
|#3||Fantastic and easy to use app market
|TOP 3 SITE123 CONS|
|#1||Some features lack depth and real quality
|#2||You can’t change templates once your site goes live
|#3||Not much creative freedom and flexibility
The ways we create websites are constantly evolving. A few years back, you needed to code your entire website from scratch.
Then came the birth of website builders, giving everyday folk access to website creation through the use of drag-and-drop tools.
Now, these website builders have evolved again, generating ready-made websites for you off the answers to a few simple questions about the type of site you’d like!
Site123 is a website builder at the forefront of innovation, making it easier and quicker than ever to create a website.
Their templates are well-designed, apps easy to integrate, and they offer you the ability to sell products through your website.
If that wasn’t enough, their help and support features are some of the best around, preventing you getting stuck on anything from the get-go.
But is it the builder for you? We’ve used it, and we’ve got people just like you to use it too. Let’s see how it got on when we put it through its paces…
Ease of Use
In a word: very.
Site123 works by first asking you a couple of questions, then generating a template with relevant features based on the information you provided.
Seemed straightforward enough to us, but here at Website Builder Expert, we always want to know what you, our users, think too.
So, we got everyday people to test Site123 and build a website before reporting back to us how they found it.
Here’s just a couple of their responses:
“Overall I found it really straightforward. In terms of intuitivity, it was really easy.”
“I found it really, really simple to use. I didn’t mind not having too much creative freedom because I could get a site up so easily.”
We also got people to rate how easy (or hard) they found different things to do and the stats back up their words.
100% of participants found it easy to complete basic tasks such as editing text, adding their own imagery, and embedding a contact form.
75% of participants even found it easy to perform slightly more complex tasks, like customizing the site’s navigation bar, integrating social media accounts, and making their location visible on a map.
It’s all well and good that Site123 is easy to use, but that doesn’t always mean people are happy with the way their website’s turned out.
After asking participants, 72% of them said they’d be happy to recommend Site123 to a friend who’s looking to get online.
While 72% is in no way a bad figure, the reason it wasn’t even higher seemed to be down to what people would need their website for.
Many said that if they wanted a complex website with lots of specific requirements, then Site123 wouldn’t be the product for the job.
It doesn’t have everything though. If display categories, archiving, and incorporating a comments section are important to your blog, then Site123 won’t be able to help you.
If you did want a website just to blog, then WordPress is your answer – it’s what it’s designed for.
Business & Ecommerce
How good Site123 is for business and/or ecommerce really depends on your needs.
It’s easy to build a simple, clean-looking business site that shows what your company is all about. Beyond that, you’ll struggle to create something more substantial.
You can use CTAs (Call To Actions), and Site123 has email marketing capabilities, but that’s about as far as it goes.
It also comes with ecommerce functionality on all of the premium plans and offers advanced ecommerce features on the ‘Professional’ and ‘Gold’ plans.
These advanced features allow you to sell digital products and add coupons.
Again though, it lacks real financial ecommerce tools – such as automatic invoicing and payment tracking – making it difficult to sell products on a large scale.
Site123 is a good option for basic business sites and even those who want to sell a few products. If you want something more substantial, you’ll want a more powerful solution like Shopify or Bigcommerce.
This is where Site123 comes into its own. It’s good value for money, easy to use, and has great support (but we’ll get into that more in the next section).
If you haven’t got much confidence in your own technical ability and need a helping hand, Site123 is arguably the best choice on the market today.
Whether your website is for photography, your new band, or just an online CV, Site123 has all bases covered.
Its templates are modern and come packed with useful features based on what your website’s for.
Site123 has blogging and ecommerce features, mobile responsive templates, and great help and support features to help you grow.
However, many of its features have limited capabilities, meaning that it’s not really the website builder to choose if you’re a business aiming to become a big player in the game.
Personal sites – great. Small business – great. Medium to big businesses looking for a powerful website builder to scale up with – not the best choice.
If you want a website that’s capable of growing with your business, Weebly has some great scalable tools and are currently investing a lot of time into improving their ecommerce features.
Help & Support
If building a website was like learning to ride a bike, then Site123 would be your stabilizers, supporting you right up until the point your site is ready to go live.
They offer help via email, social media and their knowledge base. What really shines through though, is its live chat support.
Live chat is available 24/7 and based on the same page as the one you’re editing on so you can receive fast, insightful responses without having to leave the page.
We loved it, and so did nearly everyone we got to test the product. Here’s a quote from one of them:
It was very intuitive and easy. I really liked having someone to talk to who just popped up when you wanted to ask a question. It felt like someone was holding your hand through the process.
Social Media Integration
Site123 allows you to link out to 25 different social media platforms (see image, right).
Unfortunately, it can only be displayed as an icon in the footer of your website pages so, as of yet, you can’t embed any live social feeds.
If you plan on social media playing a big role in your site, Site123 isn’t right for you.
Something like Wix is a far better option if you’re looking
to make social media and your website work well together.
Analytics is an important aspect of any site. Whether you want to track a user’s time on one of your pages, or just how many views your latest blog post has, it’s a great way to stay on top of things.
Some website builders offer their own analytics but with Site123, this is supplied via Google Analytics.
The upside is Google Analytics is tried and trusted software which shows you accurate, immediate results.
SEO & Marketing
Site123 offers some core SEO (Search Engine Optimization) tools to make sure your website has the chance to rank as high as possible on search engines such as Google.
Things like being able to edit the meta title and description (the text that appears on Google’s search page), customizable URLs, and adding alt text to images, so search engines can identify what they are, all help.
Don’t worry if that sounds a bit complicated, Site123 has guides to show you how to do it all.
What Site123 doesn’t offer is support with which keywords to use or any SEO-specific apps. So some form of pre-existing SEO knowledge will be required to get the best out of your site.
You can connect a domain free for the first year on any of Site123’s premium plans with the annual renewal cost billed at $13 thereafter.
There are over 130 domain extensions to choose from, meaning you can tailor your domain to your industry – for example you could pick the domain extension .store instead of .com.
Site123 has a domain search tool to make finding your perfect domain quick and easy.
If you already own a domain, you can simply direct it to your website after upgrading to any of Site123’s premium plans by changing the DNS (Domain Name System) settings of the domain.
This way, the domain will still be hosted by your current host, so you can continue to renew and manage it there, and it will simply be directed to your website.
If you aren’t sure how to change the DNS settings, Site123 can do this for you as well.
Site123 protects your website totally free of charge through something called secure SSL (Site Socket Layer) encryption protocol.
Sounds like a load of techie jargon, right? Essentially, it’s technology that makes your website totally confidential. Your data is protected by the most modern security procedures.
This is all done by Site123 for you in real time, 24hrs a day, so you never have to worry about the security of your Site123 website.
Backups & Restores
No one wants their website to crash, but it’s always reassuring to know that whatever you do have is backed-up.
Site123’s handy autosave feature ensures that you’ll never need to worry about losing all your site’s content.
All your content can be restored to the last autosave in a matter of clicks, making sure your website performs to a high level, and your heart rate stays nice and low.
The first thing to note when looking at Site123’s pricing plans is that the amount you pay differs depending on how long you sign up with them for.
There are four time periods: 3 months, 1 year, 2 years and 3 years.
As you’d expect, the longer you sign up for, the cheaper your monthly bill is. Think of it as loyalty discount.
Below is the breakdown of how much Site123 charges for each pricing plan, the cost difference depending on how long you sign up for, and the amount you could save as a percentage:
|Site123 plan||Pay 3-monthly ($/mo)||Pay annually ($/mo)||Pay 2-yearly ($/mo)||Pay 3-yearly ($/mo)||You save (%)|
Now onto the big question: what do you actually get for your money?
Well for starters, Site123 do offer a free plan. This gives you the ability to build and publish as many websites as you want, 500MB storage, and 1GB bandwidth. Not bad.
The problems with this are that 500MB is too small if you want videos on your site and the small amount of bandwidth can limit your content and traffic.
On top of that, your website will be stamped with Site123 branding, both in your subdomain and on the footer of all your site’s pages.
If you want your website to be taken seriously, investing in a premium plan is a smart idea. Which plan depends on your needs and the image below breaks down exactly what each one offers you.
Each plan allows for more and more storage space and bandwidth. This means the higher plans are better suited if you have a lot of media to put on your site (if you are a photographer, for example), or if you are expecting a lot of traffic.
The same goes for ecommerce. If you’re looking to sell a couple of items a month on the side, great. But if you’re serious about selling and email marketing, you should be looking at the Gold and Professional plans.
In short, Site123 is all about simplicity.
The website builder is easy to use thanks to its design-assisted approach and makes creating a website a breeze. The templates are mobile responsive and offer both blogging and ecommerce functionality.
Because so much is taken care of for you, it can be difficult to really customize or build a complex site with lots of specific requirements.
Site123’s other shortcoming lies in the quality of its features. Features is something that they’re investing in, though, and they are steadily improving.
They provide some of the best help and support services on the market and their live chat is the absolute best we’ve used. It also came out with glowing references from those who we tested it with.
If you’re a medium to large company with the hopes of scaling up your business fast however, it’s probably best to look elsewhere.
Site123 is best suited to either personal websites or small businesses who want a place online to showcase their company info and contact details, or sell a few products.
Why should I pick Site123 over another website builder?
If you need a website up fast but don’t have any knowledge of coding, or how to create a website in general, then Site123 is a great choice.
Its use of design assistance – where Site123 asks you a couple of questions about what type of website you’re after and then generates you a template with the relevant features – is an incredibly intuitive and time-saving option.
Other website builders such as Wix ADI and GoDaddy also work off design assistance so it’s worth checking them out too before coming to your final decision.
What’s the best thing about Site123?
The help and support, hands down. You’ll never get stuck for more than a few minutes doing anything with Site123’s friendly and useful live chat, which is available 24/7. The response time is quick and the answers you receive are always clear and concise.
If live chat isn’t really your thing, they also offer email support, social media advice, and a knowledge center, packed full of useful articles with both written and visual pointers.
What does the future look like for Site123?
In a word, bright! Site123 are always striving to improve and enhance their product and make it the best website builder it can be.
If you’re signed up to one of their plans, you’ll get regular emails from them about all the new features they’re creating and the improvements they’ve made to old ones.
Site123 is definitely a website builder that’s heading in the right direction, and you can be confident in the platform moving forward if you opt to go with them.
Please note the insight contained within this article is for general information purposes only. We’re glad to answer any questions you may have about this article and its supporting research. Read more here and for further information, please contact Website Builder Expert directly via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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