Best Website Design Company For Small Business Compared (Pros and Cons) 2021
Best Website Builder for Small Business
- Wix: Quick builder with simple templates
- SiteBuilder: Good basic option
- Weebly: Popular simple site builder
- Squarespace: Popular simple builder with modern designs
- Web-Bonafide: Experts will take care of Fully Managed website
You might notice we haven’t included some popular options in our list, such as GoDaddy website builder, Shopify, Jimdo, Duda or Web Bonafide. That’s because our list is focused on just the best website builders, not the most popular ones.
How did we choose? Before we get to the website builder reviews, let’s take a look at our requirements. What makes a website builder the best?
How to Choose the Best Website Builder for Your Needs
The best tool for one business won’t necessarily be the best for everyone. It all depends on your needs when building a website.
So, how do you know which is the best small business website builder for you?
Here are a few of the most important factors to look for:
Affordability: One of the most important factors for small business owners is the price. You need a website builder that’s affordable now, and will still be affordable when your business grows. Think about how your site will evolve as your business grows. Ideally, you should be able to scale up easily when you need to
Ease of use: You’ll also need your website builder to be easy to use and learn, with a wide range of templates for all situations. You should have a hassle-free way to add:
- The basic web pages you need, such as the home page, about page, services page, and contact page
- More complex features like image galleries and video content
- Other website elements that some businesses need or want, like a blog, a booking or reservation system, membership features, or an online store
Search engine friendliness: You’ll also want a website builder that’s search engine-friendly, so your site content appears in search results for your target keywords and helps to attract your target customers.
With these features in mind, we’ve narrowed down our choices for the best website builder for small business.
Free Website Builders Are Never Really Free
Yes, almost all website builders offer free plans and that’s not to say you shouldn’t use them. Many of the best ones on the market offer free plans as a starter. Pretty much all website builders, in general, offer a free plan in order to acquire new business. It’s a great marketing strategy for them. It works, and drives millions of signups. After all, who wouldn’t want something for free?
So, why this post against free website builders?
The problem with most free website builders is that while they are a great starting place, they’re typically inadequate for fully building out a professional website.
In most cases, you’ll sign up and invest a lot of time and effort building your free site, only to find the result to be inadequate. At this point, you will either have to upgrade or switch to a new service and repeat the process all over again. Either way, you’ve caused yourself a lot of undue frustration.
This is one of many ways builder is different. They offer a free plan like everyone else, but once you decide you want to unlock additional features, it’s a seamless upgrade and all of your previous work is saved. didn’t want to come out with just another website builder. Instead they sought to improve upon what was already out there.
In reality, a business cannot—and in my opinion, should not—offer you a service for completely free. Everyone needs compensation for offering a service. Free is never free and here are some reasons why:
Limitations of Free Website Builders
Although every website builder may differ, here is an overview of some common limitations that come with free plans.
Limited number of pages
Many free website builders typically limit the number of pages you’re allowed to create. For example, they may allow you to publish up to five pages per website. Most sites will need more pages and in order to expand your content, you will be required to upgrade to a paid plan.
How is website builder different? free plan allows for six pages.
No domain name
Free plans often do not allow you to use your own URL. They will assign you a free URL to use which consists of your business name plus their own URL. For example, instead of sarahsbakery.com, you’ll be stuck with sarahsbakery.wix.com. All in all, not very professional.
How is website builder different? includes the free builder with their web hosting, so you can use the product on your own domain.
Almost always, free builders require their branding to be displayed on your web pages, either in the body of the page or in the header or footer. For example, Wix’s free plans come with branded badges that aim to direct users away from your site to purchase their own builder plan:
How is website builder different? free plan does include a default Snappy favicon (the small icon that appears next to your website name in the browser tabs), and a link to in the footer. You can remove both of these once you upgrade your plan.
This is another big one. Many ‘free’ website builders will require ad placements on your site. This is how they justify the free-ness of their offer. You pay nothing, and they get to serve their ads to your people. Some may even go so far as to inject affiliate links onto your page. You may be getting something for free, but it’s taking you down a notch or five in the eyes of your potential clientele. You may even lose a lot of people along the way who click on these ads, just because you thought you could save a few bucks.
How is website builder different? With the exception of the two branding elements mentioned above, none of builder plans place ads on your site. The only ads you’ll have will be the ones you place there of your own volition.
Both free and paid builders will limit your allocation of bandwidth and storage, but with free builders you’re given much less. You may only have a couple megabytes of storage to use, which will severely limit you in terms of content and prevent you from hosting high quality images or other media.
How is website builder different? Because free builder is included with your hosting plan, you can enjoy the unmetered bandwidth that comes with all of their plans.
Limited or no customer support
You might not even get any customer support at all with a free builder (which is understandable—after all, it is free), so if your site is having issues, you’re pretty much on your own.
How is website builder different? provides 24/7/365 Live Chat and telephone support for all of its products, including the free builder plans.
Free builders limit the variety of nifty features that you might find useful or want to have. These might include an SSL certificate, access to an online store (ecommerce), website analytics, plugins, add-ons and domain-based email accounts, or it may be as basic as not being able to use the fonts you like or being stuck with a site template that you don’t like. Frustrating, either way.
How is website builder different? free builder plan comes with PayPal integration, SEO markup tools, and 100+ mobile-friendly templates. Since the free version comes included with hosting, you’ll also receive unlimited domain-based email accounts, $100 credit offers for Google AdWords and Yahoo/Bing, and more depending on which hosting package you choose.
So Free is Not Best. What Now?
Now that you know what the limitations are on free, it should be easy to understand why the value just isn’t there as a long-term solution. Free website builder plans are great for trying out different site builders and getting the hang of how they work. Once you’ve found one you like, you can upgrade to unlock all the features you’ll need to fully build out a professional site.
Website builders are complicated and sophisticated tools. They undoubtedly took a lot of time and resources for the company to create and manage, so it’s understandable that these free builders are limited. It is rather unfair to expect a company to provide a complex service such as this, for free.
Keep this in mind: you get what you pay for.
It’s unrealistic when people say they want a website, but they don’t want to spend any money on it. If you have a budget, even a small one, there are professional website building solutions that are easy enough, affordable enough, and accessible enough that you shouldn’t have to think twice.
How Much Should You Pay?
Hiring a professional web designer could cost thousands. Doing it yourself will cost significantly less, but 1) you’re not a web designer and 2) you will need to allocate enough time to get the job done.
It’s true, website builders can be more expensive than hand-coding it yourself, but keep in mind these are complex, feature-rich tools that provide an all-in-one service and hosting platform. Aside from their monthly or yearly subscription fees, you won’t likely need to pay much more than their nominal fee to get your site up and running. Just pick a template, customize it with your branding and away you go.
Depending on the plan you choose, a website builder can cost anywhere from $10/month to $20 or more. Options such as eCommerce, email hosting, and bandwidth, are some of the things that might drive your cost up. At $6.99 and $15.99/mo, respectively, both of plans are especially affordable, given the marketplace.
The most important thing here is not to skimp out on your budget. Already, you’re going to save yourself a significant amount by doing it yourself, but it’s still going to be challenging. It takes time and it takes money. And as a new business owner, you’re probably already realizing what a precious commodity those two things are.
Hopefully, this article has given you a little insight as to the potential pitfalls of free website builders. Sure, they might be great for your personal page or for that zen dog yoga blog you’ve been thinking about starting, but if you’re serious about what you do, you probably want to appropriately convey that to your customers. Ultimately, you want to look professional, and building your site with a free website builder is just not going to get you there.
If you feel confident that a website builder is what you need (and there are some pretty cool ones out there), bypass the ‘free’ options and sign up for a premium builder offered by a well-known company. You will need to invest in something that will deliver the design tools, as well as the functionality required, to support your business practices.
So put aside some time, because you’re going to need to do some planning. You’ll definitely learn a lot about web design best practices and current trends along the way, but the time you invest into your website now will pay dividends in the future.
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Jay Douglas is an entrepreneur & digital marketer with over a decade of experience. He is founder of Link-able, a unique platform that connects businesses with elite authors who can build relevant backlinks for SEO and PR. He is also founder of How To Get Online, an educational resource for helping small businesses learn about making websites and getting their business online. Jay loves learning and he loves teaching. That’s what the Web is all about for him!
Our Experts understand the unique nature of each industry and specialize in making your industry specific Website. With 12 years in marketing, website development and hands on experience with small to large businesses in diverse industries we developed a systematic approach to making websites. With our acquired expertise, from working with business owners as well as with end users, we know how to write a unique website content that will effectively connect you with your audiences.
Now No more Hassle of Building the Websites on Website Builder. You just need to order and Our Experts will call you study your case understand your business website your content and will Get a website for you.
We know that your time is more valuable running your business. We Creating unique and successful content and our web & marketing experts with insight in diverse industries. We will learn about you, your needs, challenges & attributes. We will do the research and become your best advocates. We know how to tell your story and make you the best option
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Web Bonafide makes it easy for anyone to get a mobile-friendly and professional-looking website in just a few minutes, even if you’re not technically inclined. With the drag and drop builder, you can join us our experts will help you to get a website, no code needed.
Constant Contact websites will also load quickly thanks to their super-fast content delivery network (CDN). This, in turn, will help your SEO and can boost your search engine rankings, generating more traffic for your website.
Your site will also be extra secure thanks to a free SSL certificate that keeps your customers’ data safe from hackers.
Constant Contact is well known for its customer support. They’re ready to help you 24/7 by phone, email, or live chat.
Best of all, you can get started with Constant Contact’s website builder for free.
The Constant Contact website builder does offer a generous free plan that even includes an online store and 24/7 support. But if you want access to more advanced features like a custom domain name or advanced analytics, you’ll need to upgrade to a paid plan which starts at $10 per month.
Since their website building tool is newer than WordPress, there aren’t any third-party extensions you can install on your website to add new features. So, if you need more advanced features, or think you might want to add them later on, then WordPress is probably the better choice for you.
You can use Constant Contact’s free website builder to create and publish your website for free. The free plan even includes an online store with up to 3 products. If you want to sell more products or unlock more advanced features, the paid pricing plans start at $10 per month.
Once you sign up, you may be interested in the following article: How to Create a Constant Contact Popup for WordPress. This resource will help you grow your Constant Contact email list.
Wix is a well-known brand in the website builder product type. They’ve been around for quite a while (since 2006!), and they offer a very simple and straightforward website builder.
Wix has more than 500 templates available for you to use. All you need to do is pick the one you like and replace the pre-populated content with your own. And, the templates are easy to customize.
With Wix Artificial Design Intelligence (ADI), you can quickly build a simple website in minutes.
Wix has limited editing tools, and doesn’t have the same advanced customization features of most of the choices above. However, you can replace the text and images to customize the templates for your site.
There are a couple of issues with Wix to consider.
First, once you’ve selected a template, it’s hard to change it. With so many templates available, this may cause some headaches for business owners who find that they have to add their content over and over again just because they want a different look to their site.
Also, if you do end up moving your site away from Wix, it can be quite complicated to make it happen.
This can be a deal-breaker if your site grows and you want to add more features later on. Their premium plans can get quite expensive.
Really, Wix is best for hobby or personal websites and not a great choice for small businesses.
Wix monthly plans start at $11 for the Combo Plan, $14 for the Unlimited Plan, and $29 for the VIP Plan. Business Plans are available at $20, $25, and $35 per month.
SiteBuilder is an all-in-one website builder that gives you all the tools you need to create a professional website for your business, at affordable prices.
SiteBuilder makes it really easy to create a website that looks professional. You can choose from dozens of beautifully designed templates, and then customize it with their drag and drop editor. All their designs are mobile responsive so they’ll look great on any size device.
They also offer:
- Domain name and hosting included with all plans
- eCommerce option so you can start an online store
- Website statistics so you can see how much traffic you’re getting
- Phone support if you get stuck or have a question
SiteBuilder is great for building a basic online presence for your business, starting a blog, and even selling products online. But if you want to add more advanced features, the options are a bit limited. For more advanced websites we recommend WordPress instead.
Also, SiteBuilder doesn’t offer any free plans. However they do have a 14-day money-back guarantee, so you can try it out at no risk.
SiteBuilder starts at just $5 per month for their basic plan. The eCommerce plan starts at $9 per month.
Weebly is often listed among the best free website builder software. It’s true; it’s hard to argue with the price tag, but as with most things, you get what you pay for.
Weebly’s fully hosted, so you won’t get bogged down in the technical details of running your site.
You can create your Weebly site with its drag and drop builder, choosing from dozens of mobile-responsive templates with modern designs.
Weebly offers features to make your site search engine friendly. Weebly includes some lead generation features, though these are limited in the free version. Site storage is restricted to 500MB in the free version, which means if your website files take up more than that amount, you’ll need to upgrade.
Upgrading lets you use Weebly with your own domain, which is a must for the professional reputation of any small business. Domains are available free with the upgrade, along with a $100 credit to promote your business with Google Ads.
With different plans, you also get access to site analytics, site search, HD audio and video, and the ability to run a membership site.
Weebly also has a number of plans designed for businesses with online stores, though these aren’t free. Depending on the plan you choose, you can benefit from:
- The ability to sell digital goods
- Reduced transaction fees
- The ability to offer coupons and gift cards
- Abandoned cart emails
- Additional shipping functionality
While Weebly’s often included among the best free website builders for small business, it’s probably more accurate to call it freemium. That’s because you have to pay if you want your own domain and more extensive site options. Small businesses running eCommerce stores will also have to pay.
Not everyone finds Weebly’s drag and drop builder easy to use, either. And it doesn’t have many SEO features. Under the hood, there’s some unnecessary code, which can hurt your SEO.
Finally, the main disadvantage of using Weebly is that you get locked into their platform. If you want to change website platforms later, you’ll find it difficult to move without having to recreate your entire site from scratch.
Weebly’s pricing for a regular website starts at $0 and ranges up to $25 per month. Its eCommerce pricing is between $8 and $38 per month.
One of the reasons Squarespace made our list is because sites built with Squarespace look great! Squarespace users love its beautiful designs and ease of use.
Squarespace is user-friendly even if you’re a complete beginner, with dozens of designs and templates to choose from.
It’s not free, but its basic plan will let you set up a 20-page website, which is a good way for a small business to get started. You can use Squarespace with a custom domain, available for free for the first year. It’s fully hosted, which means Squarespace keeps your site updated for you.
Squarespace provides a lot of functionality at an affordable price. Small business owners can get an SSL certificate, web analytics, and eCommerce features within the basic package. You can also sell unlimited products, and accept donations.
If you want more robust features for your online store, Squarespace has more advanced functionality via its online store plans. Depending on the plan, you’ll get access to inventory management, accounting, checkout, abandoned cart recovery, and eCommerce reporting.
One disadvantage for small business owners is that this website builder isn’t free. And if you get your domain name through Squarespace, you’ll have to pay renewal costs after the first year.
Some people find there’s a learning curve for building your site, though Squarespace’s excellent support will help solve any issues.
And if eCommerce is important to your business, you’ll need to spring for one of the more expensive plans to get the features you need.
Squarespace websites are available at either $12 or $18 per month. Their online stores cost either $26 or $40 per month.
What Is the Best Website Builder for Small Business?
So, now that we’ve narrowed down our choices, which builder wins?
Best Overall Website Builder
WordPress is our all-around pick for the best website builder for small business. That’s because it’s flexible, extensible, scalable, and easy to use.
And with a quarter of the web running on WordPress, there’s a strong community to help provide the resources and help you need.
Best AI Website Builder
If you want to quickly build a simple, beautiful website in minutes, then Constant Contact Website Builder is the best choice by far.
That’s because of its advanced AI technology that creates the website for you based on your Facebook Business Page.
Best eCommerce Website Builder
BigCommerce wins our vote for the best eCommerce website builder. We love its user-friendliness, professional designs, and expert tools so you can create a high-earning online store your customers will fall in love with.
Once you’ve chosen your website builder, we recommend that you start growing your email marketing list and building an audience even before you launch your site. The sooner you start building your list, the more value you’ll see in terms of leads and conversions.
To unlock this value, it’s essential to choose a marketing tool that integrates with the website builder of your choice. OptinMonster has advanced targeting features that will help you market to the right audience at the right time, no matter which website builder you choose. Our targeting features include:
- Our signature Exit-Intent Technology, which grabs your visitors’ attention just before they leave your site
- Page-level targeting, which lets you create page-specific offers that are more relevant to your customers
- Onsite retargeting, to show different offers to people who’ve already seen previous marketing campaigns
August 16, 2022
May 18, 2021