As a professional web designer I hardly had looking for a website builder myself, however, I am aware that most clients don’t know how to make a website from scratch.
The purpose of this article is to look into some of the options since I get so many questions about them from my clients.
What is a Website Builder?
Essentially, website builders are an all-in-one platform that let the beginners build a site easier, without needing to know coding or technical skills.
Website builders are web-based, meaning you do not need to download or install software, you just need a browser (such as Google Chrome, Firefox or Safari) and an internet connection to start building your website.
Website builders come with a range of features such as uniquely designed website templates, drag-and-drop editors that allow you to easily add elements to your website and ‘built-in’ hosting services.
Although it sounds automatic, a good website builder can deliver a professional looking site that uses mobile-friendly best practices, integrates with social media and e-commerce tools, and seamlessly updates to stay current and secure.
Websites builders are a good option for people who:
- Ease of use.
- No behind-the-scenes coding experience is required.
- Have a small site-design budget.
- Need to launch a website quickly.
- Who is setting up their first site
The website builder will include templates for all types of use cases, such as bloggers, small business owners, and online retailers can all get professional looking sites up and running fast.
The platforms offer an intuitive design with drag and drop editors that enable you to design your website by selecting elements from a menu (such as an image or a form) and dragging them to your web site’s page on your screen.
The services even let you include items such as social share buttons, photo galleries, blogs, and media players.
Free Website Builders
Website builder platforms – such as Wix, Weebly, and Squarespace – are ideally suited to small business owners seeking a cost-effective solution to managing and marketing their business’s online presence. These platforms are among the most generous with their free offerings If you choose that path.
Once you’ve chosen a template for your site, you need to make it your own. Most site builders let you tweak the color scheme, fonts, and page layouts, as well as add new pages.
Usually, the website builder offers page-templates for the most commonly used types, for instance, About, Contact, Products, Galleries, FAQ, Blog, and so on.
Then publishing your website. You can either publish your site on a free plan (includes a non-unique domain and website builder advertising on your site) or upgrade to an advanced plan, which includes unique domain and no advertising, plus additional features.
Cons of Website Builders?
No questions about how Website builder make a well-designed, mobile-friendly site with minimal technical knowledge. However, website builder may not be the best choice if you need:
- Highly customized site code and functions.
- A fully customized template and theme.
- Web servers to load your site at the highest possible speeds.
- Regular access to site backups
- Site updates.
- if you decide to move your website to another web hosting, you’ll likely be out of luck because of the custom code they use to display your site is difficult to transfer to another platform.
If your site needs any of these elements, you may be better off using a CMS like WordPress or hiring a web Designer designer and this is something you should check before selecting your chosen platform.
Looking for more advice and possible alternatives to DIY website building? Check out our next post, Selection a WordPress Theme.