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Squarespace is an all-in-one solution you can use to build a website, sell online and build your brand.
Starting price: $16 per month
Drag and drop editor: Yes
Standout features include:
If you are looking for a beginner friendly site builder for small business, this is it. Wix ease of use and large collection of professional tools and templates makes it a great website builder for small businesses of all sizes.
Standout features include:
Zyro has the cheapest website builder plans, and is the perfect low-cost solution if you want a website you can build and update yourself.
- Lowest entry level pricing to get started creating your website.
- Easy to use, no coding required.
- Import existing websites easily.
- Great for first time website creators.
If you want the easiest web builder as a beginner, Weebly’s simple website creation tool will help you get started quickly and easily.
- Easy to use for beginners.
- Free of cost plan to create a free website.
- Robust ecommerce.
Originally an online store creator, this website builder is best for building ecommerce websites. Shopify is the best platform to set up, design, and manage your online store to sell your products and services online easily.
- All-in-one ecommerce website building solution.
- Easy to setup and manage.
- Suitable for all industries.
What is a website builder?
Website builders are the simplest tools to create, design and host your website, especially if you’re a beginner looking to build your own website with no coding required.
With a good website builder, you can create everything from clean, simple and business websites to robust online stores. There are even site builders meant for specific uses, such as e-commerce stores and blogs. The best website builders are easy to use, affordable and packed with useful tools for business.
How we tested and picked
To select the best website builder, we examined tons of website creation tools based on cost, ease of use, features, user reviews, bandwidth allowances and more. Our top picks are a range of trusted website builders you can use to create everything from clean, simple and professional business websites to robust online stores.
On squarespace website
On wix secured website
On weebly’s official site
There are tons of website builder platforms all claiming to be the best, but I wanted to find the one that fits the best for different use circumstances, so I set out to test some of the most popular website creation tools on the market.
The most popular options are all-in-one solutions that include web hosting, domain registration, a built-in editor, and responsive templates or themes. You can simply customize these templates by adding your own text and images and then publish quickly.
Comparison: Compare the Best Website Builders
We examined over 20 site builders. Compare them against each other to find the best option for your site and budget in our review of the best website builders.
|Company||Best for||ITT VIS Advisor Rating||Starting Price||Drag-and-Drop Editor||Ecommerce Plan|
|Wix||Best small business website builder for creating professional websites||4.5||$12.50 per month||Yes||Yes|
|Squarespace||All-in-one solution for creating beautiful sites||5.0||$12 per month||Yes||Yes|
|Weebly||Easiest website creation tools for beginners||4.0||$6 per month||Yes||Yes|
|GoDaddy||Building static simple sites for an organization||3.0||$10 per month||Yes||Yes|
|Shopify||Ecommerce site builder for building an online store||5.0||$29 per month||No||Excellent|
The Best Website Builders of 2023
- Squarespace: Best overall/Best template designs.
- Zyro: Best platform for building your website at low costs.
- Wix: Best for building a professional website for your small business.
- Weebly: Easiest website builder for beginners.
- Shopify: Best for selling products and services online.
Best site builder with quality site template designs for artists.
Squarespace gets the top spot for one of the best website builders because it’s packed with useful features and well-made templates you can use to create any type of website.
You can create an online store, blog, portfolio site, build a small business website or manage a membership site using squarespace.
|Best for||Creatives, small businesses, and artists|
|Starting price||$12 per month|
|Drag and drop editor||Yes|
|Free of cost plan||No (14 Days free trial)|
Although Squarespace is an all-in-one website building solution, we found it to be particularly great for building visually enhanced websites.
Squarespace is a great website builder for small businesses and people in the creative industry such as artists, photographers, restaurants and decor enthusiasts for a lot of reasons. First off, this is a website maker that lets you create personal or business websites with a host of features and creative designer templates, stunning visuals, ease of use and low-cost pricing.
In addition, if you wish to sell your products on your website, it allows you to add ecommerce functionality and a host of other features to help you also sell online.
Who is squarespace website builder best suited for?
- If you want to create a standard website for your creative business, arts or crafts.
- If you want to sell your products online on your website with ease.
- Events and wedding planners who are looking to build a wedding website to showcase their work and connect with customers.
- Photographers, artists, musicians and restaurant owners who want to build a personal or brand website without hiring a developer.
Things we like:
- Free domain with website builder.
- It has a robust line of e-commerce and CRM (customer-relationship management) tools and features.
- The Basic commerce plan allows for an unlimited number of products.
Things we did not like:
- It’s not the easiest drag and drop website builder to use, especially for beginners. You will need to get play with the visual WYSIWYG page editor a little to master it.
Squarespace basic personal plans start at $12/mo. and its basic commerce plan starts at $26/mo. You will have a 14days free trial to familiarize with the visual editor, after which you will be required to choose a website plan.
Some outstanding features of squarespace that makes it stand out include: design flexibility, template customization, blogging, photo galleries (very useful for portfolio sites), scheduling software, and even more unusual features like podcast hosting and ability to receive donations from your website.
Stunning media focused mobile responsive design templates.
Elegant, clean themes are the hallmark of Squarespace. Stunning would be a word to use when describing their templates. The website templates are high quality and creatively designed for various creatives ranging from small businesses to photography, musicians, weddings, blogging and crafts templates for Esty sellers.
Their websites are beautifully designed, attractive, and on target with modern day examples of website standards. Partly they achieve this with their highly visual, minimalistic style. You’re also given the option of beginning with a cover page for your website, which can give that important first impression.
Robust ecommerce and storefront features.
In our ecommerce feature testing, we found Squarespace has the most extensive set of product-management features around.
Squarespace is a good choice if you’re looking for an eCommerce option that isn’t overly complicated. You’ll find built-in functionality for shipping, taxes, accounting (Xero), chargebacks, discounts, checkout, customer resource management and other product specific additional info.
What you should know: Possible drawbacks and points to consider
There’s a bit of a learning curve.
Squarespace does have a bit of a learning curve and may not be the ideal choice for a person who is just starting out. This is not entirely a con, but because Squarespace offers so much customization and control over fine details, it takes longer to learn how to use their program.
Is Squarespace easy to use?
Yes! Although you might find it challenging as a first timer, their walkthroughs and guides simplify the whole thing for you.
To edit certain aspects of the page that you’re currently viewing in the editor, like the page title or a content block, simply hover your cursor over the item you’d like to adjust and another set of menu options will appear.
Comparison: How Squarespace measures against other website builders in the same category of performance
Squarespace vs Wix vs Weebly
- Compared to Wix, Squarespace has well designed templates which makes it the best website builder for creatives. You would find Squarespace to be a more fitting website creator if you own a restaurant, design business or portfolio. Whereas, you would find Wix to be a more suitable option for you if you just want to build a co-operate website that looks professional.
- Many users agree that Squarespace Appstore selection is well tailored towards the creative minds as compared to Wix, Weebly and GoDaddy site builder which are more centric to small businesses.
Squarespace vs GoDaddy website builder
Unlike GoDaddy, which required us to use a separate website editor to create an ecommerce site, with Squarespace, you can create a blog, eCommerce or general website without limitations.
Overall, Squarespace is a great website builder for creatives across various levels of interest. The features are unique and the tools are very helpful. If you are an artist, a restaurant owner, photographer or musician, Squarespace’s designs and tools are guaranteed to meet your every need. But if you are a small business owner offering professional services, you are better off using Wix website builder.
Best platform for building your website at low costs
Zyro gets a top spot as one of the cheapest website builder for businesses on a budget.
per month (for the first year, paid annually)
E-commerce in entry-level plan
Zyro is a simple website builder with one of the lowest introductory prices I’ve ever seen. But to take advantage of this impressively low-cost site builder, you have to agree to its longest plan duration.
Here’s the standout feature that sets Zyro apart from the other site builders we tested:
Zyro offers a new tool that lets you import an existing website to its platform. This is something most website makers do not have.
It’ll pull in the content of your site from your previous host to its site builder, and automatically adjust so you can essentially organize your site content into a new design quickly and easily.
Best for building a professional website for your small business
E-commerce in entry-level plan
Wix tops our list as the best beginner friendly website builder for small business owners because of its ease of use, professional templates, tools and features to set up and manage a business website.
|Best for||Small business, building professional websites|
|Starting price||$14 per month|
|Drag and drop editor||Yes|
|Free of cost plan||Yes|
With Wix, you can create a professional small business website easily by just customizing or editing texts and visuals in any of the over 500 professional templates readily available.
The Wix editor is beginner friendly, and the platform is pretty much easy to navigate.
As one of the most popular platforms for building sites, and with a customer base of over 110 million users in 190 countries, Wix website creation platform has tools and templates for every industry. Whether you’re a business owner, musician, student, passionate blogger, or eCommerce entrepreneur, they provide all the tools and features you need to start your website from scratch and grow.
But you will find Wix particularly a great option if you own a small business or a solopreneur and want to build and design a simple personal or professional small business website to take your brand online fast and easily.
Who should use Wix website builder:
- If you are just starting out learning how to build a website
- If you are a small business owner in need of a basic DIY website builder to build your website.
- Beginners and starters.
- People who want to create professional looking websites without code or hiring a website developer.
- Free domain name with website builder.
- Easy to use.
- Lots of professionally designed website templates.
- Beginner friendly user interface.
- Artificial website design intelligence lets you create your website with the click of a button.
- Locked template means you cannot change website template once you publish your website.
The basic plan of Wix web builder tools starts at $9/month and its basic ecommerce plan starts at $17/mo. You can start for free (if you are comfortable with Wix ads running on your site) and upgrade later if you want to connect to your own custom domain name.
Is Wix easy to use?
Yes! Many customers agreed that Wix is easy to use. Online reviews also confirm that the website setup process is great for beginners.
How Wix compares to other website builders in the same category of performance:
How does Wix compare to the rest of the other website builders in our test?
Wix vs Squarespace.
- You can create professional looking business websites with Wix, whereas Squarespace templates are primarily designed for creatives.
Wix vs Weebly.
- While Weebly has got the easiest website builder user interface for starters, you would find Wix more appealing if professionalism is of concern to your business.
Real life user reviews and ratings
“WIX was the first site creation platform I ever used to start up my business. They have multiple templates to choose from and provide many different tools for your website. It can be very confusing especially if you’re new to the whole website creation thing and WIX’s support team is pretty unreliable. Besides that, I was able to make a great website with them.” Says Michael G, a reviewer on Trustpilot
“Wix is a simple website creator with lots of preset options. I used Wix free to create a website for a small art club, it was one of the easiest creators I have used. Once I had gotten used to some quirks, which are now just normal learning process, the rest of my website building process was easy. However, I was required to pay for a premium plan when I decided to connect my own custom domain.” Saya, Benjamin Davis, a Trustpilot reviewer
Why we picked wix as the best overall small business website builder
Lots of professionally designed templates.
Wix has over 500 templates that cross many interests and industries. You can also create a design yourself using their blank templates.
The templates are well designed, sophisticated, and match current design standards. In fact, Wix often comes out with new features and designs that are intuitive and easy even for beginners.
Great features for photography, portfolio websites and artists.
For those interested in photography or sharing lots of images, you can create image galleries with 40 different layouts. You can also create private sections of your website that you only allow selected people to view.
For music lovers, you can share music through Spotify and Soundcloud integration, or sell your own music through Wix Music.
Ease of Use.
With the design drag-and-drop features, you don’t need extensive knowledge of coding. It runs right in your web browser and doesn’t require downloading any additional software.
Wix ADI (Artificial design intelligence).
Wix also has something truly unique called ADI – Artificial Design Intelligence. It’s like a design assistant. Once you’ve put in your content, it will create a polished looking website for you. Afterwards, you can continue to customize and change based on your own choosing.
Impressive ecommerce functionality.
In terms of ecommerce, Wix has a lot to offer. Their builder includes many features like customer email subscriptions, customer reviews, Google maps integration, contact forms, and more. Customers can also schedule bookings through your website.
Small business tools (App Market).
More recently, Wix has incorporated an App Market to allow for more functionality for site. Among these apps are things like a “comment section,” an “online store,” a “forum”, etc. You can even include Google AdSense and start making money online through advertisements.
Possible drawbacks, What you should know, and things to consider
If you’re looking for a LOT of storage, you may be disappointed with Wix. While some competitors offer unlimited storage, Wix starts a 500MB for their cheapest plan and caps out at 20GB with their most expensive plan.
Another major downside to Wix’s customization is that templates can’t be changed. To change a website template, you would have to create a new website from your dashboard to choose the new design you like and probably start copying and pasting.
Overall, Wix is one of the most popular, highly rated and best website builder right now for small businesses and beginners. The Wix website building platform is a great place to start if you want to build professional websites or create everything from simple websites to online stores.
It combines ease of use with a powerful set of features and responsive templates you can customize easily to design and host your website. If you are looking for a simple site builder with lots of features to create a website for your small business, Wix is the best website builder for building basic small business websites.
Our experience using Wix website builder:
We enjoyed using the Wix dashboard. All of the menus were intuitive, and there were dedicated hubs for almost everything including email, customer management, newsletters, Wix stores, SEO, and domain management.
Simplest website creation tool for beginners.
Weebly gets the top spot for one of the best website builders for a lot of reasons. First off, this website creation tool is very simple, and easy to use.
Although its simplicity can pass for being too basic, especially if you like things a bit professional, it is also one of the cheapest website creators I tested.
Weebly is one of the most popular website builders today because it offers something for everyone, even if you are a novice user. You can use the free plan to create a website free of cost, but you won’t have your own custom domain name.
- Weebly is an extremely easy to use web builder for novice users.
- Cheapest plans to get your website online for cheap.
- Powerful ecommerce by square.
What the experts have to say about Weebly:
“With simple customizable designs, blogging features, domains and really robust eCommerce tools that are perfect for any online venture, Weebly’s simple yet powerful site builder makes it easy to create a professional website for business or online store.” Says Craig Macaulay, a certified business strategist
Best for selling products and services online
E-commerce (low-priced plan)
Shopify is primarily an ecommerce website builder for building and running an online store. All of the paid plans come with fully functional built-in shopping carts and a host of marketing features specifically designed to help you sell online.
Here’s why we picked Shopify as the best Ecommerce website builder for online store
When it comes to building online stores, Shopify beats every other website builder hands down as the best website builder for online stores. The obvious reason for this is because unlike the other website builder tools who try to be the all-in-one website building solution, Shopify was originally built as a small business ecommerce website builder.
Who should use Shopify:
Only use Shopify if you are serious about creating and growing an ecommerce website.
Overall, Shopify is a great option if you want to:
- Create an online store.
- Businesses or individuals who wants to build a basic or full fledge ecommerce business.
- People who want to start drop shipping.
- People who need a low-cost ecommerce platform to start selling online.
- Entry level ecommerce plan to encourage small business owners.
- Lots of inbuilt ecommerce features to help you sell online.
- It’s not as cheap as the other website builders.
Shopify’s basic ecommerce plan for new businesses starts at $29/mo. and gives you everything you need to launch and manage your online store.
Is Shopify easy to use?
Yes! The Shopify ecommerce site builder user interface is pretty easy to use. Even as a beginner, you can set up an online store with Shopify ecommerce site builder.
Are there free online store templates that I can use?
Shopify has a library of well-crafted ecommerce templates to fit any kind of online store you want to start, from fashion, style and crafts to the more professional stores like digital products, visual designs and health. There are free and premium templates you can choose from.
What sets Shopify apart from the other website builders
- Shopify is a small business ecommerce website builder period!
- While the other website builders are primarily made to cater for individuals and small businesses who want to create their own website without code, Shopify was created with the sole aim of helping local store owners take their trade online.
Shopify vs Wix vs Weebly vs Squarespace
To compare Shopify with the likes of Wix, Squarespace and Weebly is like comparing MS Excel to MS word. The main difference between Shopify and other website builders such as Wix and Squarespace is: Shopify is a full fledge ecommerce website builder, while Wix, Squarespace and Weebly are website builders for small businesses of any kind.
Shopify is best compared against other full-fledged ecommerce site builders such as WooCommerce, BigCommerce, Squareup and Volusion.
Other website creation tools we tested
The following website builders offers both free of cost and paid plans to help you get started.
- WordPress (wordpress.com) is one of the most popular website builders on the market. If you need a complete CMS-type (content management system) solution and have a little more technical aptitude (or access to folks that do), WordPress is hard to beat.
- Jimdo (jimdo.com) is a close second to the best free website builder, Weebly. However, its lackluster templates and lack of live chat support made us think twice about pinning a ribbon on it.
- Zoho Sites offer an extensive degree of customization options for those who have a basic knowledge of code. However, it handles images poorly (which is a big no-no these days) and the templates are littered with cheesy stock photos.
What is a Website Builder?
A website builder (also known as “website maker”, “website creator” or “web builder” for short), is a website creation tool that allows the construction of websites without manual code editing.
They are typically online tools and software services provided by web hosting companies with drag and drop features to build your website online. Offline website builder software (known as “website design software”) runs on a computer to create and design pages, that can then be published online via a webhost.
How to pick a good website builder
After testing different website makers to find and compare the best that you can use to create your website, we’ve also taken time to also show you important factors you need to consider in your evaluation process.
Consider your website and business needs.
Some web builders are best suited for making professional small business websites, some for robust online stores and the rest are fit to create a simple portfolio or blog. Consider your site type and pick a builder for that purpose.
Your budget and time saving.
Many site builders offer free web builder plans or trials depending on the type of website you’re creating. Choose a builder with plans you can afford. To save time, consider using free templates to get started quickly.
Ease of use and technical ability.
Choose a beginner friendly website creator you can use with less complications. Some builders are specifically designed for beginners and novice users, while others require some sort of mastery or experience.
Other important considerations and checklists
Checklists and things you should consider when evaluating a website builder to use
Here are some other common considerations to think about when choosing a site builder. Order these in the priority that makes sense for you and your business, and keep them in mind as you consider your options:
- Ease of Use
- Free plan
- Design flexibility
- Mobile site optimization
- Newsletter creator
- Membership creator
- Mobile app
- Web hosting
How to start building your website (Using a site builder)
- Choose a web builder and sign up for free. Click on the get started button and choose what type of website you want to create.
- Customize a template or start from scratch. Choose your website starting point, pick a template and customize with your own text, designs, images, and more. OR start building your site from scratch.
- Drag and drop design features. Add your own text, galleries, images, videos and more.
- Add everything else you need for business. Add tools and apps you need for your website. You can add an online store, booking system, a blog and more.
- Find your custom domain and connect it. Find the perfect domain name for your website if you don’t have one already, register it or transfer your already existing domain.
- Publish your website and go live online. If everything looks good, click “publish” to take your website live and start building your online presence.
Learn how to create a business website, OR learn how to create a free website.
Web building essentials
ITTVIS website solutions has compiled a list of other services that you may need in order to get your website and build your online presence. Check out these guides for more essential information:
- Best website hosting services.
- Best ecommerce website builders.
- Best free website builders.
- How to create a blog.
Discover best practices and get your questions answered
Our unique research methodology is a combination of user testing, experts’ recommendation, in-depth feature analysis, and first-hand experience. We only recommend the top performers.
The most important factor when reviewing these website builders was how effective they were at building a website, in both site design and web hosting.
We also looked at functions such as ease of use, storage space, SEO ability and of course, price.
Our rating system: How we researched, reviewed and compared the top web builders
To test out their features, I kept it simple and created my own test website across each platform. This way, I was able to know firsthand how each web builder tool works in real life, if you decide to build your website with them.
To help you make an informed decision on which website builder to use, myself and the other team members tried over 15 popular website makers on the web, created test websites ourselves and did a comparison of the top-rated website building sites across various categories of performance and use circumstances.
We extensively tested each website builder based on speed, ease of use, uptime, mobile responsive design flexibility, pricing and other features like blogging, ecommerce and web hosting.
Website Creators FAQs
The Top Website Builders in Summary
Whether you’re a small business owner, an artist, a photographer, a writer or a consultant wanting to build your own website, there’s a website builder out there for you.
All in all, website builders are a fantastic option for tech beginners and small businesses who need an affordable and professional website that can be up-and-running quickly.
If you don’t have the budget to hire a professional web team and don’t want to mess around with complicated customization: Website builders make getting online quick and painless.
Gone are the days when creating a website would require you to code, or otherwise employ the services of a website designer to help you make your website.
Today, with tons of available new site building tools, software’s and online sites to create websites, building and designing a website now simply requires a good online website builder and your creative ideas to design and customize your website as you like.
Having reviewed various website builders to aid an easy site creation without any coding knowledge, choose the best website builder well suited enough for your website creation and get started building your website today.
References and Resources
- Smartphone internet access stats – retrieved from CNBC.
- Leader in website creation – retrieved from Wix.
- What to look for in a website builder – retrieved from HostGator.
- Tools we used: Google web performance tools.
- The basics of website building – retrieved from HostGator.
- Checklist for creating a website – retrieved from smallbiztrends.