Curious about trying out a few new website builders?

Whether you’ve grown tired of the same old site website builder you’ve been using, or you’re looking to launch a fresh new website, there are some amazing free and paid options out there for you.

Each website builder comes with its own share of pros and cons, and we’ve put together this website builder guide to save you time and help you find the best platform to launch your site.

In this guide, we’ll cover the benefits and drawbacks of top website builders out there, and we’ll also take a look at some examples of sites built on those platforms for quick way to demo the performance.

Website builders are growing in popularity

The great thing about website builders is that almost anyone can use them to launch a website. It isn’t just the domain of programmers and designers. This has opened up the web to a huge number of websites and an endless supply of content.

To give you glimpse at just how many websites there are, just wrap your head around this:

There are 1,295,973,827 websites in the World as of January 2020. Every 24 hours we get 547200 increase in the total number of websites worldwide!

millforbusiness.com

Before we head over to our reviews, we’ll briefly explain how we evaluated the website builders on our list. We rated these tools from 1 – 10 according to the following criteria:

  • Price
  • Value for money
  • Features
  • Support
  • Ease of use
  • Strengths and weaknesses the platforms
  • What types of businesses are best suited to each platform (e.g. e-commerce versus brochure or hobby sites)
  • Verified customer reviews on site such as Capterra.com and G2.com.

The Best Website Builders for 2020

1. BigCommerce

The company was founded in 2009 as a 2-person startup and has grown into an industry leader with offices in the US (headquarters in Austin, Texas), Australia, United Kingdom and Ukraine. BigCommerce now powers some of the world’s biggest retail brands.

If you’re looking for a truly powerful e-commerce website builder and fully hosted solution, BigCommerce is the answer.

Pricing: Standard plan: $29.95 p/m, Plus plan: $79.95 p/m, Pro plan: $299.95 p/m

Free trial: 15 Days

Our rating: 9/10

Main Features:

  • Responsive templates
  • Social media integration
  • Single Page Checkout and customisable checkout experiences
  • Blog
  • Customer segmentation
  • POS integrations
  • Mobile optimisation
  • WordPress integration
  • Out-of-the-box SEO tools
  • Discounts and coupons
  • Reporting and analytics

Pros:

  • Extremely powerful e-commerce website builder.
  • No transaction fees on certain payment gateways.
  • Works for multiple storefronts.
  • Fast and secure.
  • 99.99% uptime guaranteed.
  • Integrates with all major payment gateways.
  • A huge range of out-of-the-box features.
  • Geared specifically for merchants.
  • Scalable to support any sized business.
  • Works for both B2B and B2C customers.

Cons:

  • The price point doesn’t really cater for smaller businesses.
  • Not very user-friendly at first, there’s a steep learning curve.
  • Requires a certain level of technical knowledge to comfortable use this website builder.

Sites using BigCommerce: http://shop.toyota.com.au/, https://www.woolrich.com/, https://www.skullcandy.com/

Website: www.bigcommerce.com

2. Shopify

Video via Shopify

Now here’s a friendly all-in-one e-commerce solution for businesses without an overload of unnecessary features. Shopify is clean, easy to use and is loved by small businesses around the world. However, you shouldn’t be fooled by their simplicity, Shopify is designed for scalable online stores and has a large library of premium built-in features.

Founded in 2004, Shopify has since grown into becoming the most popular e-commerce website builder for startups. They now power over 1,000,000 businesses and employ over 5,000 people worldwide.

Pricing: They’re on par with BigCommerce when it comes to pricing. Basic: $29 p/m, Shopify: $79, Advanced Shopify $299 p/m. There is a very basic Shopify Lite plan for users who just want to sell on Facebook with basic product listings.

Free trial: 90-Day free trial

Our rating: 9/10

Main Features:

  • Online website builder with over 70 professional, customisable themes
  • Storefront
  • Blog
  • Unlimited Products
  • Social media integration
  • Discount codes
  • Point of Sale (POS) Integration

Pros:

  • Very user-friendly.
  • Mobile commerce ready.
  • Build-in SEO features.
  • Unlimited bandwidth.
  • Free SSL certificate.

Cons:

  • Additional fees when using third-party payment providers.
  • Professional reports only available on the Shopify plan, and not for the basic plan.

Sites using Shopify: https://www.taylorstitch.com/, https://brilliant.org/, https://www.kyliecosmetics.com/

Website: shopify.com

3. Wix

Wix is a leading cloud-based website builder that is quickly rising up the ranks to stand alongside heavyweights like Shopify.

What makes Wix a great option for small businesses and bloggers is that they offer a free solution to get you up and running quite quickly.

This website builder is aimed at non-technical people and offers a range of easy to use templates that can be customised with simple drag and drop editors.

For those with more creative flair, you can also start your design from scratch, which is a great option if you want upskill along the way and want to customise your site even more. Wix even offers a free logo maker!

Price: Free plan with limited features or you can connect your own domain for $4.50 p/m. Combo plan: $8.50 p/m, Unlimited (their most popular plan): $12.50 p/m, VIP plan $24.50. E-commerce plans start at $17.00 p/m.

Our rating: 8/10

Main Features:

  • Wix Editor: a simple drag and drop editor with over 500 templates
  • E-commerce features such as storefronts, product pages, payment and shipping
  • Blog
  • Build in SEO features
  • Unlimited fonts
  • Media galleries
  • Free hosting
  • Social media integration
  • Wix Chatbot
  • Analytics

Pros:

  • The free option is a decent starting point for small websites.
  • Very user-friendly and fun to use.
  • Large library of really beautiful templates.
  • Great widgets for different types of businesses: Wix Events, Wix Bookings and others.

Cons:

  • No email addresses included in the free option.
  • The free option is ad-supported.
  • Those who are looking for more flexibility might feel a little boxed in by the limitations of the drag and drop editor.
  • Not very well suited to larger sites, complex online stores or content-heavy blogs.

Sites using Wix: https://www.copperbaycandles.co.uk/, https://www.iamnono.com/, https://www.hanaipoke.com/

Website: www.wix.com

Shopping around for the right website builder for your online course website? You might want to check out our guide to the best online course platforms.

4. Weebly

Often touted as a Wix alternative, Weebly has carved its own share of the website builder market and is a fairly good option for anyone looking to build a professional looking website quickly and easily without any coding experience.

The company was acquired by Square Inc in 2018 for $350 million which opened up a larger set of solutions for entreprepreneurs with the combined offering of both companies.

Easily build yourself a website or set up an online store, customise their pre-made themes with a simple drag and drop editor, or take it a step further with custom HTML/CSS and JavaScript to give it your own personal touch.

Price: Free option (with a branded domain), $5.00 p/m for a custom domain, Groups and Organisations: $12.00, small Business and online stores: $25.00 . Business packages start at $25.00.

Our rating: 8/10

Main Features:

  • Drag and drop editor
  • Blogs
  • Forms and surveys
  • Hosting
  • Fully customisable themes with an advanced theme editor
  • Custom fonts
  • Third-party app integration
  • Image editor
  • E-commerce offering includes storefronts, payment gateways, shipping, and coupons and much more.
  • Analytics

Pros:

  • Free option with free SSL Security and 500 MB Storage and contact forms.
  • Templates are responsive, modern and beautiful.
  • Free web hosting.
  • Very user-friendly with a simple, clean interface.
  • Great for beginners.
  • Fast and secure.

Cons:

  • Those who need more control over themes and templates might find the editor lacking in features.
  • Getting your email address linked requires use of GSuite which is even more expensive than the lowest paid plan ($5).

Sites using Weebly: http://www.thewhiskeyball.com/, http://flamingpear.com/, https://www.justcomfortshoes.com.au/.

Website: www.weebly.com

5. Sellfy

Video via Sellfy

Sellfy is a simple yet powerful website builder specifically for e-commerce. With over 100,000 businesses and growing, this newcomer is creating some serious competition in this space. Geared towards creatives and creators, Sellfy is well suited to those who want to sell digital subscriptions online as well as products.

Price: Starter: $19 p/m (annual subscription), $29 p/m (monthly subscription), Business: $39 p/m (annual subscription), $59 p/m (monthly subscription).

Our rating: 7/10

Main Features:

  • Customisable layouts
  • Custom domain
  • Shopping cart
  • Multiple languages
  • Supports PayPal and Stripe payments
  • Email marketing
  • Analytics
  • Multimedia integration
  • Zapier integration

Pros:

  • No transaction fees.
  • You can sell products of all kinds both physical and digital.
  • Easily set up and sell subscription-based products.
  • Simple, clean templates are easy to customise in a few clicks.

Cons:

  • Customer support is less than perfect, users reported quite a long response time.
  • Not the best value for money if you’re looking at features vs costs (but keep in mind that some people prefer to pay for the convenience of using Sellfy).
  • Some users might feel limited by the website builder and editor if they’re looking to edit the finer details of their websites.

Sites using Sellfy: https://sellfy.com/danmumm, https://sellfy.com/askadam/

Website: sellfy.com

6. 3dcart

If you need to get an online store up really quickly with a simple, fuss-free template, then 3dcart might just be what you need.

This fully hosted solution is customisable and great for both online and bricks and mortar stores as well as physical or digital products. 3dcart is best for those who need a quick start and plan to grow their online stores quickly.

Free Trial: 15 Days (no credit card required)

Price: Startup Store: $9.50 p/m, Basic Store: $14.50 p/m, Plus Store $39.50 p/m, Power Store $64.50 p/m, Pro Store: $114.50 p/m.

Our rating: 6/10

Main Features:

  • Simple, hassle-free website builder for e-commerce
  • Multiple languages
  • Over 200 built-in features including blogging
  • Responsive core themes
  • Over 60 Customisable designs for both desktop and mobile
  • HTML and CSS Editing
  • SEO Friendly
  • Over 150 payment methods
  • Access to their large app store
  • Free email hosting

Pros:

  • No transaction fees.
  • Seamless integration with E-bay, Amazon, Quickbooks and others.
  • Unlimited products (even on the lowest plan).
  • Unlimited bandwidth.
  • API Access.
  • No hidden fees or contracts – cancel any time.

Cons:

  • The designs are quite templated and tend to look very similar to each other.
  • The advanced features are only available on the premium+ plans.

7. Site123

Video Source: Site123.com

Site123 is the “do-it-yourself website builder” and it really as simple as 123! Founded in 2015, they’re a relative newcomer but growing in popularity. One of their stand-out features is the intuitive website builder that make it a breeze to set up and is really a pleasure to use for those who have no coding experience.

We’re also really impressed with the great level of customer service and we hope they keep it up as they grow.

Best for: Individuals, blogs or small businesses who need a simple storefront.

Price: Free plan with a subdomain. Premium plan: $7.80 p/month

Our rating: 8/10

Main Features:

  • Easy-to-use drag and drop website editor
  • Customisable templates
  • App market
  • SEO tools
  • Custom domain
  • Free hosting
  • Online storefront
  • 24/7 live chat support

Pros:

  • Free plan.
  • Very user-friendly – really no coding needed.
  • Built-in SEO tools.
  • Online store builder is great for small businesses.
  • Responsive templates.
  • Access to a great suite of apps.
  • Great customer service.

Cons:

  • Branded subdomain on the free plan (floating tag).
  • No multi-language support.
  • Not built for scaling a larger business.
  • The templates are quite basic, don’t expect to get too creative with customisations.

Sites using Site123: https://www.lynnsflowerpot.com/, https://www.lilleywilding.com/.

Website: www.site123.com

8. Volusion

Volusion is one of the top e-commerce website builders and has been around since 1999. Their impressive list of clients includes over 180,000 entrepreneurs who have reported amazing increases in revenue, so if you’re looking to step up your sales, consider switching over to Volusion.

Volusion is really geared for users with no coding experience. Their support team includes e-commerce, design, and marketing experts who are focussed on helping you succeed on their platform and we like seeing this kind of support being offered.

Best for: E-commerce businesses.

Price: Personal: $29 p/m, Professional: $79 p/m, Business: $299 p/m.

Free trial: 14 days

Our rating: 9/10

Main Features:

  • Drag and drop website editor
  • Responsive themes
  • Full e-commerce solution
  • Custom domain
  • Advanced search functionality
  • Multiple product and category levels for more complex websites
  • Supports multiple payment providers such as Amazon Cash, Stripe, and PayPal
  • Powerful advanced features for SEO and ROI tracking

Pros:

  • No transaction fees.
  • Unlimited bandwidth.
  • Complete end-to-end e-commerce solution.
  • Very user-friendly website editor.
  • Great customer service.
  • Great analytics and customer data.

Cons:

  • Doesn’t allow for digital products such as subscriptions.
  • No blog functionality.
  • Design limitations – those with who want to exercise more creative flair will find the editing options restrictive due to its simplicity.

Website: www.volusion.com

Choosing the right website builder for your business

When it comes to choosing between website builders, you should consider the following:

  • The purpose of your website and what you’d like to achieve with it. Do you want to sell products, showcase your business, share your art, create a blog, or just create a personal portfolio?
  • How much you’re willing to spend each month and if you can afford an annual subscription upfront to save costs down the line.
  • What kind of features are important to you. This differs considerably between people as some require a lot of editing freedom with templates and designs, while others just need something simple and fast.
  • What your future plans are. Think about how your business and website will grow over the next year or so and if the platform and price plan fit those needs.

Conclusion

Each website builder has their fair share of world-class features, integrations, plugins, templates and tools, it’s worth trying them out if you can. Download and experiment with free trials, book demos or look at other websites on these platforms to give you a good sense of their performance and aesthetics.

Our top picks:

Shopify: for those who are looking for a very easy website building experience for their online stores and can afford the price that comes with the convenience.

Site123: for the best free option. You might not get a custom domain on the free plan but it’s still a very powerful and robust option at no cost, with excellent customer support that is perfectly suited for users with no coding experience.

References

How to Choose the Best Website Builder in 2020 (Compared): https://www.wpbeginner.com/beginners-guide/how-to-choose-the-best-website-builder/

Website Builder Expert: https://www.websitebuilderexpert.com/

Capterra | Find and Compare Software‎: https://www.capterra.com/

G2: Business Software and Services Reviews: https://www.g2.com/

The best website builders for 2020: https://www.pcmag.com/picks/the-best-website-builders

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