Introduction Easy Personal Website
With More than 40M sites under its belt, Weebly is one of the world’s most popular web builders out there. Unlike particular competitors, they seem less interested in flashy marketing campaigns than improving their platform’s technology. Easy Personal Website
This all sounds pretty good on paper, right? Well let’s figure out how it appears in practice. In this review, we will look at their drag and drop editor and see if it is any good for producing a web site, blog or online store.
What Is Weebly?
On The wide spectrum of site building alternatives, Weebly resides at the finish that is comprehensive and provides all you need to get started and grow your website. It is in contrast to options where you purchase, install, and handle all the”bits” of your site separately.
It is Like trading off some control for more convenience.
Using Weebly is sort of like renting and customizing an apartment in a nice development instead of getting and owning your own residence. You are still in charge of decoration, cleaning, and everything living-wise — but you leave the building, plumbing, safety, and infrastructure into the property owner. That point is key because there’s typically a direct tradeoff between control and convenience.
All The functionality and design that are included with Weebly work together collectively as a platform. That’s what allows them to have drag and drop layout, layout, and content.
As Far as rivalry, Weebly competes directly with comprehensive website builders like Squarespace, Wix, and WordPress.com.
Website Builders as a team compete with options like WordPress.org (that offers the totally free software to build a website that you own & control — see my WordPress setup guide here) all the way to options like typing real HTML code into a text document. Make sense? Awesome, let us dive into the Weebly review.
One Other quick aside — a disclosure — I receive referral fees from all the companies discussed in this informative article. My opinions & study are based on my experiences as either a paying client or adviser to a paying client.
Weebly’s Business Travels.
What Makes Weebly So Easy to Use?
Good question. First thing you’ll notice Is how well the drag and drop interface was created. Just select the element you need on the left, and set it on your design on the rightside.
You might Discover That elements snap into position And organize themselves perfectly on the webpage. Other solutions, such as Wix, forego the grid system, so it’s very possible to end up with overlapping elements. Together with Weebly, no risk of that occurring.
Working with text can also be a breeze in Weebly. You just click what you want to edit and sort your words in the box. A few other options use”entrance masks” that are somewhat more abstract and not always easy to utilize.
The navigation system also works wonders. It’s possible to dig deep into menus and submenus. Weebly handles them like a charm.
Finally, if you get stuck everywhere, the Weebly knowledge base may answer a great deal of questions through clear tutorials and step-by-step guides. Failing that, the support is exceptional, whether via email, chat, or telephone. Easy Personal Website
So are there Any downsides? That depends. If you want to have more freedom with your layouts, then you may feel frustrated by the rigid grid system. You ought to go to get Wix. This competitor also has an automated solution (Wix ADI) that can build the website for you by itself. You may perhaps shave off a couple of minutes of your site building time.
There are also two things we’d love to see. First is a global undo button. It is possible to undo everything you type in text boxes, but it would be nice to erase mistakes when you move or add components. Second, Weebly doesn’t have a general media database which keeps all of your pictures. You’re going to need to re-upload pictures for each and every element that requires them.
That Weebly Pricing Program is Ideal for Me?
We’d say the primary question to ask is. Do I wish to market online? Quite simply, if you do, we advise that you go for Weebly Business.
For other Sorts of websites, Weebly Starter Is usually enough. It provides everything you will need for displaying info about your services, portfolio or business details. However, the Starter plan overlooks a few Pro attributes.
· Fancy header with slideshow or movie background.
· Integrated video / audio player
· Password-protected webpages
· Membership module to allow users sign in and access personal sections of the Site
If some of the Above are must-haves for your website, you will need to upgrade to Weebly Pro. And for a more comprehensive breakdown, please refer to our full Weebly pricing comparison page.
SEO. How Will My Weebly Site Rank On Google?
Let’s get 1 thing out of the way . if You are an innovative search engine optimization expert who certainly needs to rank #1 on search engines for a really competitive key word, you might have a difficult time using Weebly. It is not impossible, but there are limits.
· Your headings are limited to H2. There’s a free app which allows you add headings from h1 to h6, but it messes somewhat with your formatting. We wonder Weebly doesn’t incorporate it in their system.
· Certain pages (groups and product pages) include a mandatory string for your URL. You get things like www.yoursite.com/store/p1/my-product/yellow. Not a massive issue unless your website isn’t in English. Same with the website articles, they will have’/site /’ in the URL structure and this can’t be changed.
· Adding structured data ( Rich Snippets) is done via code. But you are on your own as Weebly doesn’t help.
On the plus side, Weebly does things actually Well in regards to.
· URL, Title tags & meta-descriptions. You can customize them, along as Alt texts for images. This is especially important to rank your images. Easy Personal Website
· 301 redirects. It is possible to control them to avoid broken links when a page URL was changed. Google deeply dislikes 404 pages.
· Picture optimization. Weebly does a great job at controlling the images you upload. This enhances speed, always a blessing for SEO.
Still a bit Confused about SEO? Don’t forget that we have a full guide on the topic here.
Security & Backups. The Way Safe and Secure is a Weebly Site?
Just as we Understand, very safe. The company takes security very seriously. They market strong passwords, and offer SSL encryption on all programs. Even the free tier will run on https that delivers an extra layer of security. Especially important for on-site personal data exchange (e.g. charge card or email address).
Unfortunately, we wish Weebly provided more in the way of backup and restore systems. You have to take care of it manually by conserving your website as a .zip file regularly. And there is no restore function in case disaster strikes. Wix, for example, monitors new changes and lets you jump back in time to a previous version of your site.
Weebly Design Options and Templates. Making it Look Great
We’ve Got a Detailed article about Weebly’s templates where you can read the key pros and cons. But, we wish to give you here a quick overview of the main features here.
The First thing to note is that Weebly does not have a whole lot of template layouts (approximately 50), but you should easily be able to find one that you like. There are various classes available. Online Store, Business, Portfolio, Personal, Event and Blog.
They automatically look great on each Device (by being reactive ), and they can be adapted to match your personal needs, using the templates as a foundation. No need for you to get a web design degree!
Obviously, if You are all about layout, and absolutely have to have the ability to personalize it down to the last pixel, you should check out Wix in addition. Their template choice is unmatched and they have a much more flexible editor…
… unless you’re confident using coding. This Is since Weebly, unlike other builders, provides you access to the template source code.
Want to dig under the hood and modify the CSS and HTML? You’ll have free reign here, because you can see in the image above.
Ecommerce. Can be a Weebly Online Store Worth it?
We’d say yes, with a caveat. It is great to Sell physical and digital products for small and medium-sized stores, but not for huge ones. Although you can use the import and export function to manage many things, you might discover Weebly lacking in features such as massive stores.
For instance, we do not like that there Are not any offline payment options (only credit card, PayPal, etc). At $30 CAD a month it is also rather expensive. Wix’s Online Store is just $20 US for instance (but also has less features). Easy Personal Website
Finally, it is worth noting that even though You can create a shop using the Starter and Guru plan, updating to Business and higher makes more sense. You are going to find the automatic delivery and sales tax calculator, which is extremely useful for serious store owners. What’s more, you won’t have to cover an additional transaction charge of 3%.
Still confused About the many online store plans? You may discover detailed information in our Weebly Online Shop review.
Program Store. Can I Enhance My Website with Add-Ons?
You bet! There are no less than 300 apps in A number of categories such as eCommerce, Communication, Marketing, Social, or Site Tools. Many are free, some are compensated. Some are constructed by Weebly, some by third party programmers. For the latter, there is always an (unlikely) possibility that it may shut down a single day. Additionally a shame the apps produced by Weebly are quite restricted.
However, 1 thing all the apps have in Common is a super simple installation attribute. Click and bam! All programs are analyzed and will work instantly on your own website. We tried some cool ones such as a way to include tables, event calendars, and info bars to display special information. Our only qualm is the quality and quantity of programs is a slightly inferior those from the Wix App Store.
Advantages of Utilizing Weebly
Here is What I discovered to be the experts of Weebly — not only in comparison to Squarespace and Wix or WordPress, but also as an general online site solution.
Speed & Security
Weebly provides Hosting for all the websites which are built in their platform. That can be good or bad, but in Weebly’s situation, it’s an expert. They have rapid load speeds. Their sites are optimized for their own hosting. They take care of safety against spam and hackers. With business plans, they even install and maintain SSL across your whole website. Here is my speed test.
There Are still pace and safety dangers, but it’s an edge for many website owners to have someone else take care of speed, security, backups, etc.. The price tag is bundled with pro and completely free accounts, so it is a good value-add.
Onboarding & Education
Whenever You begin some piece of software — regardless of how intuitive — there’s that moment where you think”okay, what do I do now?” This process is called onboarding, and it is also incredibly tough to implement well.
The Software maker does not wish to be bothersome, but they also wish to help. I love how Weebly builds in solid onboarding and education not only via email drip arrangement but also via small info buttons constructed with their platform.
After You join, it is simple to dive right in. Easy Personal Website
Website Building Process
One Promoted advantage of using a comprehensive website builder is that you won’t have to write HTML or CSS code. You can just drag and drop components. Everything you see in the builder is what you get on the website.
It is Not necessarily that simple. There is a lot of nuances to”drop and drag.” Most of us actually mean”I wish to click and drag this component and transfer it to a general place where it will seem good — you know, mechanically centered, etc.” Put simply, it’s like playing tee-ball rather than baseball…or bowling with up gutter guards. You wish to do something, but also have a little bit of help.
For The most part, Weebly pulls off this. Their drag and drop actually works. And, for the control freaks among us, they supply access to some custom CSS module, so that you may edit the template into precisely your choosing.
For Free of charge accounts, Weebly provides an email support alternative along with a well-done Knowledge Base. For paid accounts (even newcomer ), they provide email, chat, AND telephone number. Response times for me were strong.
With An all-inclusive platform, customer support can troubleshoot and correct any issue. This is a massive benefit of website builder platforms generally, but especially using Weebly because they have telephone support.
If You run your own site, you’ve got to work out just who will fix a problem prior to getting in touch with them. Together with Weebly, you just get in touch with them.
Constructed Feature Set + Extensions
The Significant advantage of creating your own website on your own host is you don’t have to depend on a platform’s attribute set. If you go the stage route, it is essential to make sure that they have all the qualities you want and need.
Weebly’s Feature set is powerful. They’ve got all of the basics — such as website functionality, contact forms, etc, but also the necessary innovative features like URL redirects and page-level custom code placement.
Even Beyond the complex necessities, Weebly even includes features like forums, subscription choices, integrated marketing options, file uploads, etc.. In addition they have eCommerce alternatives, which I will cover individually below.
If You go the all-inclusive website builder course, Weebly’s attribute set should offer whatever you need for typical personal/business websites (though as we will see in the Cons section, you do need to be specifically aware of innovative options).
Also — Weebly has a lot of built-in features, but it does not have everything. Platforms overcome it by allowing 3rd Party apps (believe the App Store or Shopify’s App Store).
With your Own WordPress site, adding functionality is as easy as installing a plugin. Together with Weebly — you can browse their climbing (though still somewhat limited) app centre.
Anyone who retails online
Why? Square is a payments processor. They are huge offline and wish to be bigger in the on/offline arena. That’s why they bought Weebly — and why the future is pretty bright for Weebly’s e commerce features.
If You are starting a website and plan on selling a few things here and there or in case you have an offline presence (ie, pop-up shops) and you would like to market online, the Weebly provides a ready-made alternative with closely integrated ecommerce features that should just get better.
Product Investment & Company Structure
I’ve Been using site builders for 20 years because the Homestead.com times and have been closely paying attention to the sector for the past five years. One overarching trend is a company’s structure drives product investment more than the marketing group or the product team.
Even In a fast paced marketplace, a organization’s construction and end goals will dictate how it acts and what investments it gets. As I outlined in my Wix vs. Weebly vs. Squarespacestructure can differ tremendously among direct competitors.
For Years, Weebly was an independently owned and operated company going for organic growth. But in 2018, they sold to Square — the big player in payments processing. Weebly now operates as an independent subsidiary of Square.
On One hand, that could be a big downside. Acquisitions are notorious for ruining value and companies. However, this acquisition has a huge upside for a single market segment —
If You don’t mind your website on a subdomain (ie, http. //yourwebsite.weebly.com) then Weeblyis free with no expiry. A fairly good deal — particularly for temporary sites.
Overall Pricing is quite aggressive not only in contrast to other comprehensive site buildersbut also with purchasing your hosting. Their Starter plan begins around $8/mo when paid up front. And they don’t have the common caps of other website builders. The Pro program adds solid features and stays under $12/mo.
And Again — you will notice that everything is bundled and infinite. There are no caps on webpages or storage area. And unlike competitors like Wix, they eliminate all advertisements with the first paid grade.
Even Their business pricing, while more expensive than doing the same thing on your own hosting, is considerably more affordable than comparable plans with direct rivals.
In comparison To building your own website on your server and especially with other website builders, Weebly’s pricing is quite aggressive. Cost isn’t everything, but I love how they structure it.
Disadvantages + Complaints About Utilizing Weebly
But Obviously, no Weebly review will be complete without looking at the downsides. Each bit of software will have complaints. Let us look at 3 specific cons I discovered.
Content Management System
A Content management process is precisely what it sounds like. It’s an interface that permits you to sort, filter, edit, and print different kinds of content on your website. Easy Personal Website
Weebly Kind of features that. It has a Pages section that lists out all the pages on your website. It allows you to drag and drop the hierarchy and then click on to edit each. But it’s far from a efficient system.
There’s No method to add custom content types (except within a single page). If you are arranging a massive site (such as hundreds of webpages ), the articles contained in Weebly would require a personal system to maintain it all sorted and easily accessible.
This Disadvantage can be overcome, but I wish content could be easily handled within Weebly.
The Last big disadvantage of Weebly is that moving to a different platform is difficult. If you want to move someplace else, including your WordPress powered website, migrating your content and redirecting your URLs will be a difficult procedure.
Weebly lets You to export your Page content via zip file but website articles is going to need to be manually copied or migrated through RSS.
Again — migrating platforms will remain difficult, but it’s something to consider if you are considering quickly expanding traffic and/or content.
Advanced Advertising Tools
Since Weebly enables for HTML editing, many advertising tools and attributes can be added to your site. However, since you still don’t have 100% control over your website & host — it can be challenging and/or impossible to add advanced marketing tools like an EV SSL, customized email collection applications, custom analytics packages, custom social stocks, specific Schemas and A/B testing software.
In The jargon — the principal issue is not having”root” or”FTP” access to your server files. This is not an unsolvable problem, however it’s something to be careful of if you are arranging a long-term project.
For Most all website owners with average traffic you’ll want to know about the limitations, particularly if you’re planning for rapid growth.
Weebly eCommerce Addendum
Here is Weebly’s advertisement showing their new eCommerce setup.
A bonus for Weebly is their eCommerce functionality. You can sell products from your Weebly website without switching platforms or doing any distinctive developments. It fits in effortlessly and has solid performance.
The Pricing is cheap. On lower tiers, Weebly charges transaction fees but bundles the complete eCommerce bundle for business plans.
Ecommerce Is a nice piece of functionality, but remember that it is not a full-fledged eCommerce that online shop platforms like Shopify or even Bigcommerce have. Weebly has a shopping cart, fundamental inventory management, and payment approval. Here is how Weebly fits on the eCommerce”spectrum” —
It’s Great for websites that are mostly lead-generation, informational, etc but also want to sell a few goods. Additionally, it is a fantastic fit for anyone testing out products before going into a long-term platform. It is not a long-term match for websites that are eCommerce-first. For all those, an online shop you have with WordPress + WooCommerce or even a specialization eCommerce platform such as Shopify (review) or even Bigcommerce (review) are a much better fit.
Product Investment & Company Construction
Now — the acquisition from Square does include a downside. That’s regular website builder features. Weebly’s incentive is to invest in features which make it more valuable as a complete for Square. Easy Personal Website
Features Like appointment scheduling, blogging, etc are only valuable in so far that they gain the parent company.
If You’re looking to build a long-term articles or direct generation site, then I’d consider WordPress.com (for content) or Wix (for overall drag & drop) instead of Weebly. Even if Weebly meets your needs today, they might not in the future.
When we first started testing Weebly many Years ago, it was just another site builder. That’s completely changed. Weebly has evolved into an outstanding website building tool which is far better than most competitors. It is simple, uncluttered and simple to use — that is precisely what individuals with limited technical skills need in regards to making their own internet presence.
Of course, it is not 100% perfect. We’d like To see somewhat more templates, as an example. Getting an email address attached to a domain is also a little pricey, as they recommend G Suite, that costs $5 per month, per user. (Although there are workarounds, as you can see in the FAQ below).
But all in all, Weebly reaches the very top of our list of website builders. Their ease of use combined with cool tools like the iOS or Android program for editing your website on the move, or the amount of add-ons available in the app center makes it powerful, and enjoyable to use.
Enough with the theory. Try it out for Yourself and see how you like it!