A good but basic website builder
Not sure Web.com is right for you? Here are the top 5 website builders we recommend, based on our extensive 2023 research.
- Cheap intro offer – Your first month with Web.com will only cost you $1.95, and comes with a custom domain name, too. After this, your subscription price renews at $10 every four weeks.
- Publish a site almost instantly – Web.com gives you an industry-specific template with free photos, headings, menus and other content, potentially saving a lot of time and hassle.
- 24/7 phone support – While Web.com’s other help options aren’t always too useful, we did like Web.com’s 24/7 phone support. It’s reassuring to know someone can answer your questions, whatever time zone you’re in.
- No free plan – Sadly, Web.com doesn’t offer a free plan or a free trial, so if you want to use it to build your website, you’re going to have to commit and pay a monthly subscription from the off.
- Limited customization tools – It’s simple to make the majority of edits on Web.com, but the row-based editor can limit your creative control.
- Lack of advanced components – You can’t drag-and-drop more sophisticated elements such as promotional popups, or a booking calendar.
Let’s cut straight to the chase — we like Web.com. It’s not the very best of the bunch, but nor is it the worst either. Instead, it’s solid and reliable, and does a good job of building straightforward, basic websites without all the extra bells and whistles.
Web.com has recently undergone some major updates, meaning that it’s now easier and quicker to build a website. Its editor, in particular, has seen some big improvements, switching to a row-based drag-and-drop format that makes it easy to add and rearrange elements within your template.
Although its features aren’t super advanced, Web.com comes with all the basics, so you can customize each website page to reflect your business and brand. Plus, if you know how to code, you’ll be able to do and add more.
Its cheap starting prices are also worth mentioning, too. Build a website for just $1.95? Yes, please! Be aware though: this price is only valid for the first four weeks. After this, it will renew at $10. In the grand scheme of things, however, this is still relatively cheap, making it a good option if you need to keep an eye on your budget.
Web.com’s target users are small businesses, and we agree that’s exactly the type of user this builder is perfect for. With this platform, you can build an attractive and professional-looking website in around an hour. It’s ideal if you want to add an online presence to your current business offering.
However, its features are limited in certain areas. For example, during our testing, we couldn’t add a booking system, online calendar, or a promotional popup. We also wouldn’t recommend it if you’re looking to start a blog. If these are elements you need, we’d recommend looking elsewhere.
Web.com is best for you if…… You want an easy-to-use builder, with a drag-and-drop editor.
… You don’t need any advanced features — just the basics, please!
… You need to keep your costs down.
If any of these sounds like you, head over to web.com to learn a bit more about it and give it a whirl.
In the past, Web.com had a bit of a reputation for being overcomplicated and long-winded, but, happily, this is no longer true. Recent improvements now mean that it’s simple to build a website with Web.com thanks to its drag-and-drop editor and helpful onboarding process.
When you first get started, Web.com’s process is quick and painless. You’ll be asked to choose how you want to you build your website (yourself, or through an Artificial Design Intelligence builder), before being redirected to the template library. Simple!
Although not ground-breaking, all of Web.com’s templates are clean and professional-looking. You can sort them by industry, so it’s easier for you to find a template that’s relevant to you. Some industries have fewer templates than others, but there’s at least one for everyone, and you can make it your own when it comes to customization.
Once you’ve chosen your template, it’s time to add your unique brand stamp. We particularly liked Web.com’s tour around the editor — it’s great for beginners who’ve never built a website before, and shows you where all of the most important parts are. It also comes with some helpful tips to get you started, too.
Using The Editor
Web.com’s editor is very similar to others that we’ve tested. It uses a limited drop-and-drag format, which means you can select the components you want, and drag them where you’d like them. This makes it super easy for you to make changes to your template.
Everything you’ll need can be found in the intuitive left-hand sidebar. All you need to do is select and drag! And if you need to change the color scheme, upload new images, or add your own text? Everything can be done with just a few clicks.
However, there are some limitations to what you can do. Similar to Squarespace and Weebly, Web.com’s templates are organized into rows. This means you can move things around within these boundaries, so you can’t exactly put things anywhere. When you drop them into the editor, they’ll snap into place within the invisible guidelines.
If you like to have complete creative control, you might find this frustrating, but for those who like to have a structure, you’ll appreciate the skeleton framework that Web.com provides.
Web.com has over 100 templates to choose from, all of which are split by industry. Whether you’re starting an online store, a restaurant website, or a portfolio, there’s something for everyone, even if some of the industries only have one or two designs to pick from.
As well as giving you a choice of industries, Web.com also offers two versions of each theme: a single-page layout, or a multi-page one. This means that if you want to, you can put everything onto one single homepage, or you can expand and add extra pages.
Whether you go for single or multi-page, there’s still one thing you need to be sure of: that your website looks great. So how do Web.com’s templates perform in this area?
Well, they’re not the best designs we’ve ever seen, but they’re far from the worst. All of the templates look clean and professional, which are two of the most important things to consider when building your website. However, we did notice that the layouts looked pretty similar.
Of course, you can customize them to your unique preferences. Thanks to the many different row layouts that Web.com offers in its editor, we’re sure it won’t be too difficult to add your own spin. However, we would have liked to see some more adventurous designs tucked away in there, too.
Customizing Your Template
Thanks to Web.com’s straightforward editor, customizing your chosen template isn’t hard. As we’ve mentioned above, there are some restrictions because of the row-based layout, but if you’re not one for complete creative control, it’s all pretty simple.
One of the easiest ways to make your template stand out is by reordering the old blocks and adding new ones in. Web.com comes with a ton of pre-made layouts for everything from galleries to testimonials. That way, you can fill your homepages with all the good stuff that makes up your unique brand.
We’d also suggest connecting your Web.com website to Google Analytics. This is crucial for tracking the performance of your site, and understanding what your visitors want. Then, in the future, you can adapt and edit your website to meet their needs!
Outside of this, though, it is worth noting that Web.com doesn’t offer the most advanced features. When we tested it, we couldn’t add a promotional pop-up, a calendar or a booking system. We also found it quite tricky to insert a blog, although we managed it in the end.
Despite this, there is an ‘Advanced’ section where you can add your own code, if you have the know-how. We don’t expect that most beginners will want to dabble in code, though, so if you need pop-ups or a booking system, we recommend looking elsewhere.
Web.com offers a few ways to get in touch if you get stuck, such as email, live chat, and phone support. In our opinion, the best option out of the three is the 24/7 phone line (1-866-655-7679, free with all plans).
The live chat tool is super useful, too — especially if you’re not keen on speaking to people over the phone. However, sometimes the answers can be slightly vague compared to the support you receive if you just speak to someone directly.
If you’d rather a third option, you can raise a support ticket, but when we tried this, we hit a brick wall when the system asked us to log in with a ‘Secret Word’.
Web.com’s Facebook and Twitter pages are popular and responsive. Its posts cover all of its services (hosting, domains, and the website builder), so you can use these channels if you’re struggling to reach the team in other ways.
You can find Web.com’s social media accounts below:
- Web.com on Facebook (163k likes): use Messenger to contact support
- Web.com on Twitter (13.9k followers): tweet the team at @webdotcom
- Web.com on YouTube (around 100 videos)
Web.com also comes with a knowledge base, where you can use the search bar to peruse numerous articles to help with your issues.
However, we found it slightly tricky to find what we were after. This is because Web.com also sells hosting and domains, meaning that our search results weren’t always about website builders.
Rather than searching, you can use the icons under the search bar to head straight to all website-builder articles, which we think is much more efficient.
Online Business Articles: Surprisingly Good
Every cloud has a silver lining, though, and Web.com’s Small Business Website Forum is an awesome resource.
It’s not a forum in the usual sense of users sharing ideas and problems. Instead, it’s an archive of great online business articles. Make sure to bookmark the ones you like, so you can refer back for tips while you’re setting up your own small business site!
Web.com offers three ‘Website’ (website builder) plans. All three come with super discounted rates for the first four weeks, before returning to a normal monthly price.
You can also choose to pay month-by-month, or, similar to other website builders, annually. Unsurprisingly, the annual payment means that you’ll be saving more overall.
Here’s how much you pay to join, followed by the full price per month, and per year:
|Web.com plan||Offer ($/1st mo)||Full price ($/mo)||1st Annual Term||2nd Annual Term Renewal|
|Website Builder Starter Package||$1.95||$10.00||$50.00||$100.00|
|Website and Online Marketing Package||$2.95||$15.00||$75.00||$150.00|
At this point, we’d normally give you a link to the pricing page to show you what you get for your cash. With Web.com we can’t, because, unfortunately, you’ll need to create an account and log in before you can see the prices.
So here’s a screenshot:
All three plans include the following:
- Drag-and-drop website builder
- Free domain name for a year
- Library of stock photos and videos
- Hosting (web space to publish your site)
- Social media integrations
You’ll need to be on a higher plan, or pay separately, for…
- Site submission to Google and other search engines (2nd-tier plan+)
- Option to sell online (3rd-tier plan only)
- Domain name renewal after a year (from $37)
Although not necessarily bad value for money, Web.com isn’t outstanding in this category. Those on a budget will appreciate its lower starting prices, but it doesn’t offer a free trial or a free plan, so you’ll need to commit to paying for at least the first month if you want to test it out.
Thanks to its recently updated editor, Web.com now sits firmly in the middle of our website builder rankings. This means that it’s a good option if you’re looking for a straightforward platform to build a basic website. It comes with all the necessary features to create a simple business website, or small ecommerce store.
However, it won’t be for everyone! If you want to build something more complex, you might find that Web.com lacks some more advanced features, particularly if you don’t have the skills to code them in yourself. For ecommerce, especially, if you want to grow your store rapidly, we recommend looking at either Shopify or BigCommerce instead.
Saying that, Web.com does have some good points going for it. It’s super easy to use and comes with a wide range of templates to help you create a professional-looking site. Plus, its starting prices are incredibly cheap, so you won’t be losing too much if you give it a try and decide it’s not for you!
However, that’s not to say you can’t use code if you do know it. At the bottom of the editor, there’s an ‘Advanced’ section where you can add custom code if you want to.
This is still pretty cheap compared to other website builders, but competing platforms often offer a larger suite of inbuilt features than Web.com does. This means that in the long run, a slightly more expensive builder might be better for growth.
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