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Wix is our favorite website builder and scores highly across the board in our testing. It’s super fast to get started with Wix, and is brilliantly simple to create a website using one of its top-class templates or its streamlined artificial design intelligence system (ADI) – which creates the shell of a website specifically tailored to your needs.
Once you’ve created the basis of your website, you’ll have access to a plethora of apps and features which will give you the ability to create loads of different types of website – whether that’s for a business, an online shop or even a blogging site.
You won’t need any experience with website builders, or even web development in general with Wix. Its simple but detailed editing system means that you’ll be able to create a completely original website without any stress.
Want to know more about Wix? Check out our full Wix review
Although good, Weebly isn’t quite as good as Wix. It doesn’t have as many website templates to choose from, and the ecommerce functions are expensive compared to Wix.
However, it’s still a fantastic website builder and has loads of great aspects for users new to website builders. The templates are flexible and you can change between them at any time. Like Wix, it also has a really intuitive drag-and-drop editor, which allows for deep customization of your site. You’ll also have access to over 300 apps and plugins which will help make your site work brilliantly for all your visitors.
It isn’t perfect, but might be your perfect website builder – Read our full Weebly review to find out why
If you want your website to look fantastic, Squarespace is the website builder for you. It only has 91 templates to choose from but, as they’re developed in-house by Squarespace themselves, all of them provide an extremely high design standard.
It’s also a great platform for running a blog, because of its aesthetically-pleasing template designs and intuitive text editor.
Using Squarespace as an online store is just as easy as creating a blog. It has templates designed specifically to work as online stores, and a really straightforward product manager system, which will let you manage prices and track stock. PayPal, debit/credit card and Apple Pay payment options are also built-in on Squarespace.
It is a mite more expensive than Wix but you’re paying for a lot of the work up-front, so you do get slightly more for your money.
Check out some of Squarespace’s terrific templates in our full Squarespace review
72% Rating- 1&1 MyWebsite is a bit of a mixed bag. It’s got some good features, including an in-depth page editor and easy-to-access HTML and CSS code. 1&1 MyWebsite also makes it really easy to create a multilingual website – this is something that not all website builders do so it can be really useful if your business, for example, operates in multiple countries.
1&1 MyWebsite also has some very affordable pricing plans – the most expensive of which costs $9.99 for the first year. However, 1&1 offers no free package, which makes it feel like taking a leap of faith when signing up to 1&1 MyWebsite.
Another big issue with 1&1 MyWebsite is the lack of an ecommerce functionality – so if you want to use your website to sell products, you’ll have to find a different website builder. 1&1 MyWebsite’s templates look slightly outdated, as well, which is a shame.
61% Rating- GoDaddy is a big name in the world of website development, and perhaps best known for its website hosting and 24/7 on-the-phone support.
However, its website builder tool, known as GoCentral, is perhaps a weak link in its portfolio of internet services. It has a restrictive page editor which prohibits any major changes to the website template. It has a lack of apps, especially compared to Wix and Weebly. GoDaddy’s website builder is completely focused around building websites for businesses and online stores – to the point that it makes no sense to try and build a different type of website.
59% Rating- Site123 has a very intuitive ADI service which can build you the shell of a website in literally a few minutes. It also has an unusual, but powerful sidebar-based editing system which makes it very easy to change the layout of your pages and add content to them.
Site123 is a good website builder for creating online stores. Nearly all of the setup is done for you with an online store template – all you have to do is add the product information onto your site to start selling.
However, it’s not all good news. The templates are a little bit predictable – they’re not bad per se, but they lack the wow-factor you would get with a Squarespace template, for example. There are five pricing packages, including a free trial. The cheapest version is really limited for features, which is a shame, given that the other packages quickly ramp-up in price.
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How We Picked the Top Six Website Builders
As we mentioned above, our research and reviewing is completely independent and impartial and we base our ratings on a mix of subjective user trials and objective comparisons between the different website builders.
For example, when looking at the ease of use factor for each website builder, users are given a set of instructions to create a website and, once finished, the users rate the builders on how easy it was to complete each instruction – and whether they had to reach for the support pages. The users are a mix of website builder novices and seasoned veterans, which makes our ratings balanced and comprehensive.
When it comes to comparing the features offered by each website builder, our research team conduct exhaustive desk research to build a feature map for each builder. This allows for objective, side-by-side comparisons of the quantity of features, and based on the user testing, we can also assess the relative quality of the features available on each website builder – for example, most website builders offer app marketplaces and integration but that doesn’t mean they’re equally good.
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How To Make Your Own Website For The First Time
Before you do anything, you’ll have to pick a website builder to build your site with. We’re generally big fans of Wix here at Tech.Co – it’s super easy to use while allowing you loads of creative control. However, some website builders, such as Site123, make the initial construction of the website ludicrously simple, although they do rob you of some editing capabilities.
Once you’ve picked your website builder, you’ll have to pick from their selection of website templates – these give you a rough guide, almost like a blueprint for your site, so you’ll be able to make your website unique without having to start from scratch.
Making your website unique, however, is generally pretty painless. It’s almost like editing a Powerpoint presentation. Most website builders use drag-and-drop editors which allow you to plonk text, images and more exactly where you want it.
If you think this website’s design (right) looks like it might be out of your league, you’ll be pleased to know it’s only a few clicks away! It was one of Wix’s 500+ template options, and if, for example, the orange background isn’t quite to your liking, you can completely reconfigure the design. If you’re planning on using this website for an existing business, you can also upload any logos or adapt designs to fit your current branding.
When you’re happy with your template and have adapted it to suit your needs and look the way you want it to, it’s always worth previewing it before you publish – just to make sure everything is looking correct!
Read our 5 Step Guide to Creating Your First Website
How Much Does it Cost to Create a Website?
Probably less than you think. Most website builders have packages that start at around $5 per month, with the most expensive packages costing between $25-40 per month. Naturally, the more you pay, the more features you’ll have access to.
While the cheapest packages will allow you to create a viable website, the most popular packages generally sit around the $8-15 per month mark. These will free your site from the website builder’s own branding, allow you access to features like analytics tracking and even ecommerce functions. If you want to create a really top-drawer website, which can improve your business, grow your blog or get your name out there – you’ll likely need these features.
It’s generally not worth fretting about the features you might be missing out on with the $30+ per month packages. These give you access to really high-end features such as currency conversion for international product shipping, or even the chance to have your site reviewed by a web design professional.
Should you want to, you can even create a website without paying a penny. A lot of website builders, including Wix, offer free trials so you can have a play around with the builder before committing to a monthly outlay.
It’s not all good news, with a free site, though. When you come to publishing it, you’ll likely have to put up with adverts from your website builder of choice along the side, which won’t make your site look as professional. You’ll also be missing out on some really useful features which could make your website better for your users and help you to make you more money or give you more exposure.