List and reviews of website builders

  1. uKit Review Rating: 4.9

    4.9out of 5

    Creating a website should be easy and fun — this is our philosophy here at uKit. Let your imagination run wild or use predefined options. uKit is a slick and contemporary site builder that definitely gets the job done.

A website builder is a tool that largely simplifies access to getting online. Thanks to best website builders, millions of users all over the world were able to get online not having any knowledge of the technology of constructing a website, hosting it, changing, and doing other relevant connected actions. Visual builder is the core, allowing anyone to use best website builder without a need to know how to code, and there is no need anymore to start working from a blank page, being completely frustrated about how and what needs to be done. Almost every website builders company offers a vast number of templates to use, which allow saving nearly 90% of time and efforts from the start.

 

What’s a builder of websites

The biggest advantage everyone gets using a website maker is a possibility to start own online presence fast, almost effortlessly, and without a need to make large investments of money and time. Some of them are so advanced today that they give their users a free possibility to use Artificial Intelligence to tune up the website just in a few clicks based on initial data provided by the user. All you need to do today to start your own website is to choose a template to your liking or to indicate a type of industry you are working in, tell things about your business that you want to emerge on the website and press a button of ‘starting wizardry’. In a couple of seconds, the work will be done and all you are left to do is just to publish the website. Voila! As simple as it might get. Hail to Artificial Intelligence!

But even if you’re selecting some web page builder that does not (yet) give you AI option, they all have templates, which cut off at least 90% of time and efforts that otherwise would be done if starting a website from scratch. You choose some theme to your liking and then easily personalize it moving and altering objects and fields on its pages, only working with a mouse and a keyboard. And that’s how most websites are powered by users today. No need to worry about cost, time, and bureaucracy anymore.

What rated types of websites one can start today using tools of premium website makers:

  • wiki-like

  • web stores

  • sharing platforms for audio, video, textual, picture information

  • professional – to run the business and tell about your services

  • portfolio

  • portal

  • personal

  • non-profit organization

  • news/media

  • medicinal

  • infopreneur

  • governmental

  • entertainment/gossip

  • educational

  • crowdfunding

  • company website

  • blogs

  • biopic.

 

Comparing hiring a person-programmer with using a website building tool

There are varying advantages and disadvantages of attracting a person to do the job and using a web tool. Below, we’re considering each such approach.

Advantages of a builder (human or agency):

  1. Depending on your budget, there are no restrictions in creating any website. Of course, the more you want from your project, the bigger cost it will take but if you are not happy with limiting your oeuvre that a website creator tool imposes (and you’ve tried many of them to define that for sure), then the only choice left is to address a human builder or agency (contractual or freelance).

  2. Your every wish will be taken into consideration and adopted – which is nearly impossible to expect from an average interactive platform to build a website unless you are getting deep into the HTML/CSS/JS code.

Disadvantages of a builder (human or agency-developer):

  1. Price. While an online tool allows you (in most scenarios) to use it for free for a number of days or weeks to make you get used to it and estimate its power, and so you can actually make a website for free in the beginning, there is no such peculiarity in an agency or individual programmer. If you want to estimate their work – highly likely, they will provide you with some examples of their previous work, which can be organized as a portfolio and feedback of other customers. But you will have to pay them for their work at the start to make the work also started. Job’s cost will launch from a couple of thousand dollars for a market in wealthy countries (like the UK or the US) or at least some hundreds of bucks if you outsource to some poorer countries (with high technical background, though) like India or Pakistan.

  2. Speed. Don’t expect work to be done in hours or overnight. Usually, the work is split into stages that embrace studying your technical specification and asking questions, selecting a method of development, drawing up the future website’s face, writing code, testing it, and handing it to you to make user tests. After, there will be work to correct mistakes and final acceptance. These are weeks of time at least.

  3. Bureaucracy. There is a lot of paperwork embedded and you simply won’t get away from that. Drawing a technical specification is one of the most important, complicated and time-consuming document stages that may exhaust you. Then, there will be a conclusion of a contract to work and making an initial prepayment. Agreements on every stage will take efforts and time. Don’t forget about multiple stages of testing and making the final payment after drawing up and signing the act of commissioning. Every stage will deplete your time, especially considering time zone differences between you and your contractor, if any.

Advantages of website creation (tool):

All the same, as was mentioned in the disadvantages of website creation services of a human, here come as vivid advantages:

  1. Time. When you decide to start a website, you do it on your own or together with some more profound person. Everything that will actually be required from you is to sit on the computer, register in a chosen quick website builder and start working. The result will imminently follow in hours or days (sometimes, minutes). This is intriguingly fast.

  2. Money. You won’t have to pay anyone. If to consider the most part of modern website builders available on the market, they give you a free trial period to make you understand your feelings about them. Those days or weeks are always perfectly enough to construct a website and launch it. It’ll take you zero dollars. After you make a decision to stay with this website maker (or to migrate to another one), you just pay for using it on a monthly basis and that’s it. If you migrate somewhere, it may be necessary to repeat the entire work. But in no case, it will cost you as high as a person-builder will cost.

  3. Absence of bureaucracy. When you decide to start a website, you just sit and start it in a web builder. No need to agree on anything with anyone, unless you haven’t already dealt all nuances with your partner or another involved party. The only exclusion from this rule will be the case when you’re working in a large company that has internal agreement stages that might take a while. But in this case, most of the large companies usually gravitate to selecting a developing studio or to make a website using own powers.

Disadvantages of a site builder (tool):

  1. You can’t build just any type of website. There are natural limitations that you won’t avoid in any site builder: social network, sales platform of Amazon’s or eBay’s type, booking.com-type of website and others. They are just too heavy to be built without much special different software. And they contain thousands of static and a countless number of dynamic pages, which are not that easy to make even to professionals in coding.

  2. Most site builders will limit the possibilities of moving/changing objects embedded into the pages of a template. For instance, you won’t be able to use more than a predefined number of fonts, their colors, or move some field too far into any of four sides. Or the same, you won’t be able to change a shape of an object from, let’s say, rectangular to one with rounded corners, to repaint a button or to give shade to the menu. Or altering a table, you can find that it’s impossible to unite its cells, change their filling color or to alter its lines’ features. All these small nuances may push you to opt for a human builder or to change the code with your own hands (if you are proficient enough in this).

  3. Some site builders require you to get into the code to alter things. Some of them are too hard to master for regular users (like Wordpress), as you nearly can’t build something powerful if you don’t have coding skills. Even if you do know something, mastering Wordpress isn’t a simple or fast task.

  4. Some site builders may require their users to install something on their computers, which is not always an affordable action.

 

Who might use website builders

 

We usually split all users of site builders into such groups:

  • People who don’t want to deal with people or studios-builders for some reason (don’t trust them, can’t find a reliable one, don’t know how to communicate with them or pay them due to restrictions of payment methods in their countries if they differ);

  • Users who value their scarce resources (time, money, efforts) and thus, have no other option than to choose site builders (online platforms) because they are fast and simple (even if eventually it will make them abandon some part of their requirements to a website);

  • Users who can master site builders pretty fast – and these subdivide into two categories: 1) ones who are far from coding and 2) experienced professionals who don’t see why they wouldn’t change the code into their favor;

  • ‘Players’ – people who have enough free time and interest attempting to build a website on their own. If they will have some good result, they may become in the future either professionals in building websites (through deep study of code) or either just to be proud of the fact that they were able to launch their website.

 

Features to search for in a website builder

  1. Pre-made themes (they are also called templates). The more of them are presented on the site builder’s site, the bigger are the chances that you will find closely suitable to you, so to economize time for its fine-tuning. Pre-made templates allow you not to start work from scratch, thus having the biggest part of work already done and tested for smooth and error-free work.

  2. Rely on the site builder’s capabilities depending on your level of coding knowledge. If you don’t have such knowledge at all, then the best choice for you will be ones that allow doing a website only in a visual editor, with a possibility to input your data with a mouse or keyboard directly into the pages.

  3. Drag-and-drop is the core of a visual builder. Using it, you can add and remove elements to/from pages, alter their properties, and build processes of interaction with users (payment, feedback, cart management, delivery, subscription to a newsletter and others).

  4. A possibility to choose from the existing base of apps to integrate with your website (like, for instance, adding possibilities of paying with Master Card or Visa if initially, a site builder offers you only PayPal or other e-money) and pictures to add to pages. Altogether, this will significantly increase the usefulness of your website.

  5. Free trial or money back guarantee during some definite time. Usually, around 2 weeks are given and it is perfectly enough to become acquainted with all functionality of a site builder. If you will not be satisfied with this or that site builder by the end of this time, you are free not to pay (but remember that after some period of time, your entire website will be deleted if you won’t pay for that and if there is no possibility to continue for free. Also, the features, which you’ve added to the site (that are only inherent to its costliest plan) may be removed or won’t work when you shift to lowest plan).

  6. Support. Nobody wants to be left alone with own troubles and unanswered questions. Any good enough site builder shall have a support service, which will be answering your questions in hours (not in days) through a number of channels (phone, live chat, e-mail, Skype and so on), providing you concise and deep answers. Also, a good FAQ is important.

  7. Domain name. Everyone is able to receive a domain name for own website. Depending on the subscription plan of each site builder, this name will be either branded with the name of a site builder or the one that will not be branded and thus, will look more professional. The latter usually costs additional money (10-20-30 bucks for 1 year) or goes as given in one of the high-cost subscription plans. Also, if you will want to refund your money for whatever reason from a site builder, the cost of a domain name is usually not compensated.

 

Pieces of advice to choose a website builder

  • You can’t expect to have all the possible features in the free plan. It is usually so minimal that it won’t allow you to do nearly anything (a few pages, some small storage space and not too good bandwidth, the absence of support or one with very long answers, branded banners all over your website and that’s nearly it). Also, some free trials won’t give you all features as well, telling you each time that you can have those after migrating to some paid plan. So if your goal is just to play with the possibility of creating your own website, then a free-of-charge subscription is well enough.

  • Load times. It stands for how many seconds your website loads on the screen of a user and matters for SEO.

  • Uptime. It is important to have this indicator as close to 100% as possible – this will make sure your website is constantly available for the visitors.

  • Ease of customization. You have to work in a site builder smoothly and effectively. If you can’t or feel uncomfortable – search for another tool.

  • Cost. It matters for you personally – how much money you’re ready to give out.

  • Backup. You can’t run a website effectively if it won’t be backed up, as the risk of losing everything is too high.

  • E-mail addresses attached. Ideally, you must have at least 1 e-mail address coinciding with the domain name of your website – to add solidity to your business.

  • Suitability for your specific area of activity. If some tools that a site builder offers will not work great for your territory (such as a means of payment for your merchandise that is unacceptable in your country), then it is not a good choice to continue with such a tool.

  • Customer feedback. Read first what people tell about this or that site builder.

 

Industries’ best options of website builder software

It is impossible to argue that every industry has its own peculiarity and each type of website is best for some purpose. As an example, a landing page is best for converting visitors into clients or prospects (by giving them concise information, stimulating to make a purchase right now and here). The educational website is meant to tell its visitors about educational process in the given establishment, tell about its student programs, the process of submission of documents, ways of socialization for students from abroad, and also its specialties and prices for education for the semester or a year, amongst other things. The web store must have a powerful engine to accept payments, register purchases, track delivery, have an opportunity to add items to the cart, also allowing the customers to leave feedback about the purchased merchandise. While sites of a transport or delivery company shall have a possibility to track goods, tell about the cost of sending and delivery times and methods.

These discrepancies in each type of business (considering that we’ve only told about a few, representing a drop in a sea) lead to a necessity to choose a proper simple website builder from the existing ones on the market. It’s not a secret that site builders in their diversity are divided into specialized ones and ones of the general character. You should always gravitate towards selecting a specialized site builder in your industry due to much higher chances to meet software that will be perfectly tuned for your needs and having ample opportunities of making a website of proper power and beauty.

So what are the best industry’s choices? Let’s consider them below.

  1. Small business shall think about selecting uKit and Wix. They are perfect in delivering 1-200 pages’ websites to cover any type of informational need. They can give you a pretty decent web store (of a not too large amount of items to sell). They are quite simple yet effective in making pages, replicating them and changing elements inside of those pages.

  2. Bloggers should be happy with the selection of any of these: Weebly or Squarespace if you don’t want to get into the code, or Wordpress if you want to make a bigger amount of fine-tuning for your website.

  3. Photographers may like such site builders as Pixpa or uKit – these allow selecting many dozens of templates, highly visually alluring and efficient in placing and representing pictures of varying weight, with a possibility of organizing them into a gallery, photo portfolio (segregating pics into different categories if it matters for submission of your photo shooting experience), and having other tools. It is also possible to attach a sort of sales process to every one of these pictures if they are good enough to be sold.

  4. E-commerce is one of the most popular and thus, costly, types of websites. A large range of site builders today offers their users to create web stores with dozens and thousands of pieces of merchandise to sell. You should try Shopify or BigCommerce site builders to organize a powerful and effective store.

  5. Professionals will be happy to choose Wordpress as a system that allows getting deep into the code of HTML, CSS, JavaScript, and to change the way widgets and integrated apps work on the pages of your website.

  6. The mobile easiest website builder is uKit, definitely, as the first and foremost choice – as it allows you to make a mobile-oriented website right at the beginning. You will also have this feature in its free subscription plan, unlike most of the other site builders.

  7. Drag-and-drop feature is the core of any visual building functionality. It is nearly impossible to imagine any modern site builder without it. By dragging and dropping items into your page and then customizing the way they work and look, you can highly personalize your website. But even if you just throw them to the pages without changing their properties, you can reach nice workability of the website too, as every element you are managing with drag-and-drop feature has been tested before and is known to be working.

 

Consumer website builder reviews

  1. Ahmed Arturo from Cairo, Egypt, about one.com: I loved its flexibility and a nice choice of templates. They are very responsive. Also, it has very low pricing compared to some other site builders that I have explored up to this day – its lowest price is 1.99 Euros, which is definitely worth a shot. By the way, I did my site in two days from an idea in my head to find a builder and to the moment of launching the website online.

  2. Leonard from Nicosia, Cyprus, about Site123: Well, I admire its possibility to give support to multilingual websites. I am not sure how many languages maximally it can support but it was enough for my two languages. It has nice ease of use (which is important for me as for a person who doesn’t know nearly anything about coding stuff). However, I have tried several of its templates in my account and found that they were not as freely flexible as it was required by me. And, despite the availability of a free plan, I will not use it because of many banners of the site builder all over the place.

  3. Orlando from Ashkelon, Israel, about Strikingly: A good pricing (0, 8, and 16 dollars per month). I consider it a very cheap monthly offer. I didn’t have to buy the domain for an extra cost (as it was included in the 16-dollar subscription plan). I wanted to build a one-page landing and I did – with all that optimization of elements and their positioning, as my business partner and I wanted.

  4. Demetrius from Greece, about Godaddy: I wasn’t able to build an e-shop oriented to Greece, where I live, because it didn’t offer me enough payment channels to have. Greece has a special financial situation and so many of local web stores need Greece-working bank cards. Well, yeah, its layouts were responsive and I could do what I wanted – if only it gave me bigger freedom. Seems like now I have to go and find a website building studio to make what I have in mind.

  5. Morgan from San Francisco, the US, about Webstarts: This site builder has a decent free plan, which is not as far from uKit or Wix in power. Despite the fact that I had to pay extra money for SSL and didn’t yet figure out how to deal with all backend functionality (as it’s kinda tricky), I love its flexibility and many available templates. And one more thing – it charged me annually, although I wanted to pay monthly. Well, that’s another minus.

 

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Can I build my first website alone?

Definitely. They are designed to make this your need implemented as easily and fast as possible, not requiring from you the knowledge of coding and Photoshopping.

 

  • How much does it cost to launch a website from start to finish?

During a free trial, it is given for no cost. If you opt for a free subscription, then you will have your website hosted for as long as a free period is offered by this site builder, for free. But if you want to have widened functionality then you are offered many paid plans, each in a specific builder. In a very wide range, they start from 1 dollar a month and end with 350 dollars a month.

 

  • Mobile device responsiveness

Some site builders offer it from the beginning, while some give it to you only when you pay for a costly subscription. If you don’t see the option of mobile-friendliness in a selected builder, then it is outdated and we recommend it to be avoided by you.

 

  • Drag-and-drop editors

Dragging and dropping is a heart of functionality that allows anyone to make a website. Using it, it is easy and hustle-free to make things you want.

 

  • Domain names

Any website builder offers you a domain name. The question is – will it be branded with the name of a website builder itself or will it be more professional. Opt for number two if you desire to have a website with a more memorable and serious name.

 

  • SEO performance

SEO is important only in the case if you want to push your website to a high-ranking position in Google. So take care about this issue as the top priority when selecting amongst top website builders to work with – directly study their subscription plans to find out what exactly they offer you in SEO tools.

 

  • Types of website builders

They can be:

  • modern and outdated

  • allowing to get into the code, download pages and not

  • restricting your oeuvre and giving ample opportunities for creativity

  • allowing free work and not

  • for novice users and advanced.