Weebly powers over 40 million websites worldwide. Will yours be the next? It should be. And we’ll show you how easily it can be done in just nine steps.
So what can you expect from this guide? You’ll be taken through each step, one by one, on how to build a Weebly website. We’ll cover the basics, from to start (signing up) to finish (publishing) with all the creative stuff in between.
As we show you how to make the most of Weebly’s editing features, you’ll soon see why it’s rated one of our easiest to use builders. You’ll learn how to edit templates, choose a domain, integrate apps, and how to set up an online store.
So just sit back, relax, and get ready to create.
Pssssst – Weebly Cyber Week Deal!
Just to let you know, we’ve spotted that Weebly is currently offering 35% off all websites and online stores for Cyber Week. But hurry – offer ends December 6th 2019!
Firstly, head over to Weebly.com. You can build and publish your site totally free, so there’s plenty of time to see if you enjoy using it.
To kick things off, click ‘Get Started’ – either in the top right or bottom left corner. Now type in your name, email, and new password. The Weebly ball is rolling.
After clicking ‘Sign Up’, you’re taken to a page with one question and two options: ‘What kind of website would you like to create?’
Choose from ‘I just need a website’ or ‘I need a website with an online store,’ depending on your ecommerce ambitions. Don’t worry – this decision isn’t final, as you can add a store to your Weebly site any time you like.
Weebly has a free plan which you can stay on for as long as you like. This is why you can create, publish, and edit your site without paying a single cent.
You can upgrade to a paid plan any time, but we’ll help you with that later – for now, just enjoy building your website!
- Created a free Weebly account
- Chosen the type of website you want to create for now
Weebly has around 50 themes, all of which are totally free! There are plenty of categories to choose from: ‘Business,’ ‘Portfolio,’ ‘Personal,’ ‘Event,’ ‘Blog,’ ‘Coming Soon,’ and ‘Other’. From your choice, Weebly then suggests some more specific themes.
The Weebly themes are modern, sleek, and all mobile responsive. This means they look awesome on any screen. And, unlike Wix, you can change templates at any time, so you’re not restricted by your choice.
Can’t decide? You can preview each one by clicking the thumbnail to see how it looks on a full screen. Then, if you like it, hit ‘Start Editing’ in the top right. Make sure you click around for your favorite theme.
Learn how to choose and change Weebly themes with our article here.
Weebly also offers industry-specific options. It has delicious restaurant templates, fresh cleaning service designs, strong-looking personal training themes – you get the idea. These options save you even more design time – you just need to edit the text boxes and images and you’re good to go.
The template is what your visitors see first, so make sure it says what you want it to. Do you want a clear CTA (Call To Action) button, like ‘Book Now’? Or would a series of images work better? Whichever you choose, there’s a Weebly theme to suit.
- Browsed Weebly’s themes
- Previewed your favorite designs
- Picked your perfect theme
Before you start editing, you’ll need to name your website. The name of your website appears in your website address and is called a domain name. For example, ours is websitebuilderexpert.com!
So, how do you go about getting a domain for your Weebly website?
It’s easy – Weebly will automatically prompt you to type in a domain name!
You can get a free domain by choosing the Weebly subdomain. This means your website address will contain ‘.weebly.com’ – it’s not very attractive or professional, but it means you don’t have to pay a cent for your domain.
See the image below for an example of a Weebly subdomain as well as professional, or custom, domains.
If you want a custom domain (like ours), you can simply register one through Weebly. Just click ‘Choose’ to register your favorite domain. You will have to pay for this, however, and upgrade to a paid plan to actually use your domain.
The upside of using a custom domain is that it’s more professional, memorable, and attractive. Your domain is unique – think of it like your site’s fingerprint – so it’s worth finding the perfect one.
Just how much is a custom domain, though? Is it worth it?
Domains vary in price, but usually fall between $14 and $20 per year. Weebly’s domain prices fall into three options:
- 1 Year ($19.95)
- 2 Years ($16.95/yr)
- 5 Years ($14.96/yr)
There are cheaper prices elsewhere (check out Domain.com for great deals – you can get 25% off using the code WBE25), but registering your domain through Weebly is the easiest and quickest option.
Already have a domain? You can easily connect it by clicking ‘connect or transfer now’ at the bottom of the popup – then just type in your URL and press ‘Search’.
No guide on building a website would be complete without some tips on how to create the best domain! So, here are our top tips – for a great domain, we recommend that you:
- Keep the name short
- Include popular keywords
- Target your area
- Make it memorable
And voilà! You have a beautiful domain just waiting to be used – let’s get on with building your site so you can make good use of it.
- Decided if you want a free or custom domain
- Created your ideal domain name
- Registered your domain, either by paying or simply clicking ‘Done’
- Want to know more about domain names? Our Domain Name Beginner’s Guide tells you everything you need to know.
After choosing your domain name, you’re taken to the Weebly website builder screen. This is where you’ll let your creative juices flow. We’ll go through the menus and features one by one, but here’s what it looks like at first glance:
Editing text boxes
Weebly is a ‘What You See Is What You Get’ (WYSIWYG) website builder. This means you can click and edit, as well as drag and drop media, without needing to know any code. So to update the text, simply click the box and type.
Editing the background
You can customize your theme even more by changing the background. Simply click the background image and select ‘Edit Background’. From there you can change the image, scrolling effect, and page alignments.
This is where you add the fun stuff. Using the ‘Element Menu’, on the left hand side, simply drag and drop your chosen media icon anywhere on the page. You can throw text, videos, buttons, and more anywhere you like. Take a look at the Element Bar below for just some of the elements you can choose from:
Any element with the lightning bolt symbol next to it can’t be used on the free plan – you’ll need to upgrade to use these features. However, everything else is free for you to play with!
Let’s say you want to add an image. Drag the icon where you want, then click ‘Upload Image’. A popup will then give you some options: you can upload from your computer, or press ‘Search’ and find a free Weebly image.
To edit other pages on your Weebly website, simply click ‘Pages’ on the top Navigation Menu and choose a different page. Adding elements is the same process for each page – just drag, drop, and click your way to a beautiful website.
From the Navigation Menu, you can make the most of Weebly’s flexibility. Change your theme, edit your site settings, move to a different page – it’s all there.
Check out our video below on how to use Weebly’s basic elements.
Adding New Pages
It’s easy to add new pages to your website. Simply go to the Pages tab in your menu and click the plus icon in the left-hand sidebar. A drop-down menu will appear with different types of pages.
Select the type of page you want to create – a blog page, for example – and give it a name. As you do this, Weebly automatically loads the page for you, with pre-filled images and content for you to make your own.
Remember to click ‘Done’ to save your new page’s settings. Once you’ve done this, return to the ‘Build’ menu tab to edit the page just like you would normally!
Changing the Color Scheme
You can change the color theme of your page by heading to the Theme section of your dashboard. For some themes you simply have the options of light or dark, while others give you actual colors to switch between.
This is fairly basic and you won’t see massive changes to your theme, but you can add a custom color to the range of choices if you want to.
Adding New Layouts
To really personalize your website, you’ll want to add new sections to the pages you’re editing. Apart from adding new elements, there’s also the option to add new sections.
This element sits at the top of the left-hand sidebar above all the other elements – simply drag it to where you want it on the page and let go.
It’ll give you a list of options: Gallery, Contact, Menu, Featured, and Team. Select the one you want to add.
Weebly then gives you a list of different layouts to choose from, so you can pick the one you like the best. Click on the layout you want, and it’ll appear on your page. Click save in the popup box, and get editing!
We all make mistakes, we all change our minds, and we all learn differently – we’re only human after all! That’s why it’s important to know how to delete elements on your site, as well as adding them.
You might want to try out a gallery on your homepage, but then decide it doesn’t work. You’re not stuck with it forever – simply click on the element, and look for the small blue cross that appears in the top right corner of the editing box.
Click on that cross, the box will turn red, and you’ll have the option to delete that element.
This is how to delete small elements such as galleries, text boxes, images, buttons, and more.
If you want to delete a larger section such as a background, simply click on the area you want to remove. You’ll see a few options appear: Edit, Move, and Delete. Click the Delete button and you’ll see a popup asking you if you’re sure you want to delete. At this point you can either cancel or confirm – if you click ‘Delete’ then that section and everything inside it will be deleted.
This ‘are you sure?’ method means you won’t scrap any bits of your website by accident, which is a relief!
- Edited text boxes
- Edited the background
- Added new elements
- Added new pages
- Experimented with your color scheme
- Added new layouts
- Checked you can delete unwanted elements
- Customized your Weebly site!
Also in the Navigation Bar is ‘Apps’. You guessed it – this takes you to the Weebly App Center. Whatever your website, Weebly has an application to help boost your performance. We recommend adding some popular apps like ‘Social Feed’, ‘Site Booster’, and ‘Content Color Box’.
Not only does it categorize apps for sales, traffic, social and Weebly-specific, but it even recommends apps just for your website. It’s like having your own personal shopper – the American Dream, right?
Weebly has an impressive amount of apps – over 300, to be (sort of) precise. More than 50 are free, and there are always new apps being added, so you won’t struggle for choice.
Don’t feel overwhelmed – you can sort by ‘Popular’, ‘Highest Rated’, ‘New’, and ‘Free’. Or just search for whichever type you want, whether it’s an FAQ section, countdown timer, or social feed. You can even categorize them on the left hand side.
Also, before making any purchases, you can check the user ratings on each thumbnail. Can’t find one you like? Scroll to the very bottom and you can submit a new app idea, or even develop your own (if you can code).
To install apps, click on the one you want and then find the ‘Add’ button. A popup box will appear – you need to click ‘Connect’ to install the app and agree to any terms.
Once the app has installed, you’ll be taken back to your website. The app will automatically appear at the bottom of the left-hand sidebar, under the ‘Installed Apps’ section.
Once your app is installed, drag it onto your page as you would any other element.
- Explored the app center
- Installed some apps
- Added apps to your website
Back at Step 1, you had the choice of setting up an online store. If you chose not to and changed your mind, no worries – you can easily set one up. Close your editor for now and go to your account dashboard. Open up the menu in the top left corner, and click ‘Store.’ This takes you to the clear and simple setup page.
Another way of adding a store is by staying in the editor and selecting the ‘Products’ element. If you don’t have a store already, then Weebly will direct you to the store setup page.
Don’t want a store? You can skip this step!
From here, you can see all the steps you need to create an online store, including everything from adding products to setting up taxes. You can then integrate each feature with just a few clicks. Just use the action buttons on the right hand side.
The options follow a natural order for setting up an online store. So, starting from the top, setting up a Weebly online store looks like this:
- Add Store Information
- Add a Product
- Start Accepting Payments
- Set up Shipping
- Set up Taxes
- Publish and Start Accepting Orders
You can’t sell on the free plan, or the cheapest Connect plan. That means you’ll need at least the $12 per month Pro plan to sell through your site.
However, you’ll need to upgrade to the Business plan to access premium tools like PayPal and coupon generators. Fear not, you can change plans throughout by clicking the strategically placed yellow ‘Upgrade’ prompts. See below (you can’t miss them).
- Added a store to your site
- Followed Weebly’s steps to set up your store
- Added products
- Upgraded your plan if necessary
- Find out more about selling with Weebly in our Weebly Ecommerce Review
Up until now we’ve assumed you’re happily building on the free plan. However, as we’ve seen there are cases where you might want to upgrade – for example, to unlock advanced features or start selling online!
Let’s take a quick look at Weebly’s prices and how you can upgrade if you want to.
You already know about Weebly’s free plan. There’s no time limit on it, and you can actually publish your site without paying a dime. However, it has its drawbacks – no custom domain, limited features, no ecommerce, and Weebly adverts displayed on your site.
The free plan is perfect for cost-conscious website creators, but luckily its paid plans are pretty budget-friendly too! There are four price plans to choose from:
- Connect plan: $5 per month (billed annually)
- Pro plan: $12 per month (billed annually)
- Business Plan: $25 per month (billed annually)
- Business Plus plan: $38 per month (billed annually)
Here are the highlights of each plan:
- Connect: Purely for connecting a custom domain, this plan isn’t good for much else, and won’t remove adverts from your site!
- Pro: Cheapest plan to sell online, removes adverts, and includes features such as HD video.
- Business: Full set of ecommerce tools, advanced features such as pop-ups.
- Business Plus: Premium selling features such as abandoned cart emails.
We recommend upgrading to the $8 per month Pro plan, as it offers much better value for money than the Connect plan. It’s the cheapest plan for creating a truly professional website.
- Explored and compared Weebly’s prices
- Decided if you want to upgrade
- Chosen a price plan
- Signed up
If you’re happy with what you’ve created, you can now publish. Great! If you’re not completely happy, don’t worry – you can revisit the Weebly website editor to make some changes after you publish.
To publish your site, hit the blue ‘Publish’ button in the top right corner. You will then receive a popup telling you it’s published, and how to integrate a ‘Pro Tip’. Weebly really wants your site to succeed.
You’ve now published your Weebly website. Like we said, it’s easy to update and edit at any time. You can also upgrade your plan if you want to. Just head back to Step 1 to view the plans and their benefits.
If you publish your site, but then change your mind, you can head to your Settings and scroll down to the very bottom. There, you’ll find an option to unpublish your site with a single click. Easy!
- Published your site!
Once your site is live, there are a few things you can do to encourage its growth and success. Don’t just leave it to languish all alone – instead, make regular tweaks, edits, and changes to keep your site fresh and relevant.
Go back and edit content – update old information, write new articles, and add extra sections to old pages. Fresh content will not only keep your visitors happy, it’ll show Google that your site is relevant and active.
Optimize for Google
You want your site to rank in Google’s search results, right? Right. It’s the best way of getting more traffic and boosting your online presence. The way to climb up through the ranks is by mastering SEO (Search Engine Optimization).
SEO is the process of boosting your site’s chances of ranking highly in the search results, and involves lots of factors. Some are super simple, like using headings to structure your content, while others are a little more advanced.
Weebly has a great range of SEO tools to help your site rank, as well as beginner-friendly guides to walk you through each step. Start off with its Ultimate SEO Guide and you’ll be a pro in no time!
Promote via Social Media
Everyone is on social media these days – and you want everyone to see your site!
Pick a couple of social channels that suit your site – for example, Instagram is perfect for photographers, and Pinterest is ideal for selling handmade items. Then start sharing snippets of content, blog posts, images, and more to engage your visitors and gain followers.
Email marketing can be your best friend. It’s a great way of releasing new product information, letting your visitors know about news and events, or enticing them back with sales and discounts.
Weebly has its own email marketing system called Weebly Promote, which helps you build your mailing list, easily create customized emails, and track your emails’ performance. This is free to use for your first two campaigns; after that it costs $8 per month.
Weebly also has fantastic blogging tools, so you can combine blog posts with email campaigns and newsletters to keep your visitors informed and engaged.
- Updated your site
- Familiarized yourself with SEO
- Shared your site on social media
- Set up blogging and email campaigns
Now you’re ready to create a Weebly website. Feels good, doesn’t it? We’re sure you’ve nailed the steps already, but let’s go through the stages one more time:
How to Make a Weebly Website
- Sign up and start building for free
- Select a theme to suit your needs
- Choose your domain name
- Build your Weebly website using the Elements Bar
- Add apps to boost your website
- Add an online store
- Choose a price plan
- Improve and grow your site
So, from Sign Up to Publish, these are the nine steps for creating a Weebly website. It really is that simple.
Now let’s recap what we love about Weebly. Essentially, it’s really easy to use: the drag-and-drop feature lets you customize everything from text boxes to videos, which means anyone can use Weebly (even with no coding experience).
Don’t believe us? Read some of the latest Weebly success stories here.
Where Weebly doesn’t do so well is in giving you total creative control. Its templates are stylish but simple, so if you’re after sleek sophistication you’re better off with a builder like Squarespace or Wix.
Overall, though, Weebly is a solid website builder. It has everything you need for a sleek, professional site, with minimal effort. You can also create a website for free, although we recommend choosing a premium plan for a more advanced, personalized Weebly website that truly works for you.