Background Is Weebly Any Good
With More than 40M websites under its belt, Weebly is one of the world’s most popular web builders out there. Unlike certain competitors, they seem less interested in flashy marketing campaigns than improving their platform’s technology. Is Weebly Any Good
This all sounds fairly good on paper, right? Well let’s figure out how it looks in practice. In this review, we will have a look at their drag and drop editor and see if it is any good for creating a web site, blog or online store.
What Is Weebly?
On The wide spectrum of website building alternatives, Weebly resides on the finish that’s all-inclusive and provides everything you need to begin and develop your site. It’s compared to solutions where you buy, set up, and handle all of the”pieces” of your site separately.
It’s Like trading off some control for more convenience.
Using Weebly is kind of like renting and customizing an apartment in a wonderful development instead of buying and owning your own house. You’re still in charge of decoration, cleaning, and everything living-wise — however you leave the building, plumbing, security, and infrastructure into the house owner. That point is critical because there’s typically a direct tradeoff between control and convenience.
All The functionality and design which are contained with Weebly work together collectively as a platform. That is what lets them have drag and drop layout, layout, and articles.
As Far as competition, Weebly competes directly with all-inclusive website builders such as Squarespace, Wix, and WordPress.com.
Website Builders as a group compete with options like WordPress.org (that provides the free software to build a website which you have & control — visit my own WordPress setup guide here) all the way to options like typing actual HTML code into a text file. Make sense? Awesome, let us dive into the Weebly review.
One Other quick aside — a disclosure — I get referral fees from all of the companies mentioned in this informative article. My opinions & study derive from my experiences as either a paying customer or consultant to a paying customer.
Weebly’s Business Travels.
What Makes Weebly So Easy to Use?
Fantastic question. First thing you’ll notice Is how nicely the drag and drop interface is designed. Just select the element you need on the left, and set it upon your layout on the rightside.
You might find that elements snap into place And arrange themselves perfectly on the webpage. Other solutions, such as Wix, forego the grid , so it is quite possible to end up with overlapping elements. Together with Weebly, no risk of that happening.
Working with text is also a breeze in Weebly. You just click what you want to edit and type your words from the box. A few other options use”entry masks” that are a bit more abstract and not always easy to work with.
The navigation system also works wonders. You can dig deep into menus and submenus. Weebly handles them like a charm.
Ultimately, if you get stuck everywhere, the Weebly knowledge base can answer a lot of questions through clear tutorials and step-by-step guides. Failing this, the service is excellent, whether by email, chat, or telephone. Is Weebly Any Good
So are there Any downsides? That is different. If you would like 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 competition also has an automated solution (Wix ADI) that may build the web site for you pretty much by itself. You can 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 worldwide reverse button. It is possible to undo what you type in text boxes, but it would be wonderful to erase mistakes once you move or add elements. Secondly, Weebly doesn’t have a general media database which keeps all of your pictures. You’re going to need to re-upload pictures for every element that needs them.
Which Weebly Pricing Plan is Best for Me?
We would say the primary question to ask yourself is. Do I want to sell online? Quite simply, if you really do, we recommend you go for Weebly Business.
For other kinds of websites, Weebly Starter Is usually enough. It provides everything you will need for displaying information about your services, portfolio or company details. However, the Starter plan overlooks a few Pro features.
· Fancy header using slideshow or movie background.
· Integrated video / audio player
· Password-protected webpages
· Membership module to allow users sign in and access private sections of the Site
If some of the Above are must-haves for your site, you will have to update to Weebly Pro. And for a more comprehensive breakdown, please consult with our full Weebly pricing comparison page.
SEO. How Can My Weebly Website Rank On Google?
Let us get one thing out of the way . if You are an advanced SEO specialist who absolutely needs to rank #1 on search engines to get a very competitive keyword, you may have a difficult time using Weebly. It’s not impossible, but there are limitations.
· Your headings are limited to H2. There’s a free program that lets you insert headings from h1 to h6, but it messes somewhat with your formatting. We wonder Weebly doesn’t integrate it into their system.
· Particular pages (categories and product pages) add a compulsory string to your URL. You get things like www.yoursite.com/store/p1/my-product/yellow. Not a huge issue unless your site isn’t in English. Same with the website posts, they’ll have’/blog/’ in the URL structure, which can not be changed.
· Adding structured data ( Rich Snippets) is performed via code. But you’re on your own as Weebly does not help.
On the plus side, Weebly does things actually Well when it comes to.
· URL, Title tags & meta-descriptions. You can customize them, along as Alt texts for pictures. This is especially important to position your images. Is Weebly Any Good
· 301 redirects. You can command them to prevent broken links when a page URL was changed. Google deeply dislikes 404 pages.
· Picture optimization. Weebly does a great job at compressing the pictures you upload. This improves speed, always a blessing for SEO.
Still a bit Curious about SEO? Don’t forget that we have a full guide on the topic here.
Security & Backups. How Safe and Secure is a Weebly Site?
Just as we Know, very secure. The company takes safety very seriously. They market strong passwords, and supply SSL encryption on all programs. Even the free tier will run on https which offers an extra layer of safety. Especially crucial for on-site personal data exchange (e.g. charge card or email address).
Unfortunately, we wish Weebly offered more in the way of backup and restore systems. You’ve got to look after it manually by saving your site as a .zip file regularly. And there’s no restore function if disaster strikes. Wix, for instance, tracks new changes and allows you to 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 a quick overview of the key features here.
The First thing to notice is that Weebly doesn’t have a whole lot of template designs (around 50), but you should easily have the ability to find one that you like. There are various categories available. Online Store, Business, Portfolio, Personal, Event and Blog.
They mechanically look great on each Apparatus (by being responsive), and they may be adapted to match your personal needs, using the templates as a base. No need for you to receive a web design degree!
Of course, if You are all about layout, and absolutely have to be able to customize it down to the last pixel, you need to have a look at Wix also. Their template selection is unmatched and they have an even more elastic editor…
… unless you are confident with coding. This Is because Weebly, contrary to other builders, gives 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, as you can see in the picture above.
Ecommerce. Can be a Weebly Online Store Worth it?
We would say yes, with a caveat. It is great to Sell physical and digital products for small and medium-sized stores, but not for big ones. Although you may use the export and import function to handle many things, you might find Weebly lacking in features such as enormous stores.
For Example, we don’t like this there Are not any offline payment choices (only credit card, PayPal, etc). At $30 CAD per month it is also rather expensive. Wix’s Online Store is just $20 US for example (but also has less features). Is Weebly Any Good
Finally, it’s worth noting that although You can create a store using the Starter and Pro program, updating to Business and greater makes more sense. You’ll find the automatic shipping and sales tax calculator, which is extremely helpful for serious shop owners. What’s more, you won’t have to pay an additional transaction fee of 3%.
Still confused About the various online store plans? You may find detailed information in our Weebly Online Shop review.
App Store. Can I Enhance My Site with Add-Ons?
You bet! There are no less than 300 programs in Quite a few categories like eCommerce, Communication, Marketing, Social, or Site Tools. Some are free, some are paid. Some are built by Weebly, some by third-party developers. For the latter, there’s always an (unlikely) chance that it may shut down one day. Additionally a pity the programs produced by Weebly are rather restricted.
However, one thing all of the apps have in Common is a super simple installation feature. One click and bam! All apps are tested and will work instantly on your site. We tried some cool ones such as a way to add tables, event calendars, and data bars to display special information. Our only qualm is that the quality and quantity of apps is a slightly inferior those in the Wix App Store.
Benefits of Utilizing Weebly
Here is What I found to be the pros of Weebly — not just in comparison to Squarespace and Wix or WordPress, but also as an general online site solution.
Speed & Security
Weebly supplies Hosting for all of the sites that are built in their platform. That may be good or bad, but in Weebly’s case, it’s a pro. They have fast load speeds. Their sites are optimized for their hosting. They take care of security 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 risks, but it’s an advantage for many website owners to have someone else care for speed, security, backups, etc.. The price tag is bundled with expert and free accounts, so it is a good value-add.
Onboarding & Education
Whenever You start some piece of software — no matter how intuitive — there’s that moment where you think”ok, what do I do now?” This approach is known as onboarding, and it’s also incredibly hard to execute well.
The Software manufacturer doesn’t want to be annoying, but they also wish to provide help. I really like how Weebly builds in strong onboarding and education not just via email trickle arrangement but also via little info buttons constructed with their platform.
After You sign up, it is simple to dive right in. Is Weebly Any Good
Website Building Process
One Advertised advantage of using a comprehensive site builder is that you won’t need to write HTML or CSS code. You can just drag and drop elements. Everything you see in the builder is exactly what you get on the website.
It’s Not always that simple. There is a lot of nuances to”drag and drop.” The majority of us really mean”I want to drag and click this element and move it into a general place where it’ll seem great — you know, mechanically focused, etc.” In other words, it’s like playing tee-ball instead of baseball…or bowling with up gutter guards. You wish to do something, but also have a bit of help.
For The most part, Weebly pulls this off. Their drag and drop actually functions. And, for the control freaks among us, they provide access to a custom CSS module, so which you can edit the template into precisely your choosing.
For Free accounts, Weebly offers an email service alternative and 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 system, client service is able to troubleshoot and correct any matter. This is a massive benefit of website builder platforms in general, but especially using Weebly since they have phone support.
If You conduct your site, you have to work out exactly who can fix a problem prior to getting in contact with them. With Weebly, you just get in touch with them.
Built-in Feature Set + Extensions
The Significant advantage of building your own website on your host is that you don’t need to count on a platform’s feature set. If you go the platform route, it is key to be certain they have all the features you desire and need.
Weebly’s Feature set is strong. They have got all of the basics — such as website functionality, contact forms, etc, but also the necessary advanced features like URL redirects and page-level custom code positioning.
Even Past the advanced requirements, Weebly even includes features including forums, membership options, integrated marketing options, file uploads, etc.. They also have eCommerce alternatives, which I will cover separately below.
If You go the all-inclusive site builder route, Weebly’s attribute set must offer everything you need for typical personal/business sites (though as we will see in the Cons section, you really do want to be especially aware of innovative options).
Also — Weebly has plenty of built-in features, but it does not have everything. Platforms overcome it by allowing 3rd Party programs (think the App Store or Shopify’s App Store).
Together with your Own WordPress site, including performance is as simple as installing a plugin. Together with Weebly — you can navigate 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 purchased Weebly — and why the future is pretty bright for Weebly’s ecommerce features.
If You’re 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 want to market on the internet, the Weebly provides a ready-made solution with tightly integrated ecommerce features that should just get better.
Product Investment & Company Construction
I’ve Been using site builders for 20 years because the Homestead.com days and have been closely paying attention to the industry for the past five years. One overarching trend is a company’s structure drives product investment over the marketing team or the product group.
Even In a fast paced marketplace, a company’s construction and end targets will dictate how it acts and what investments it makes. As I summarized in my Wix vs. Weebly vs. Squarespacestructure can vary wildly among direct competitors.
For Decades, Weebly was an independently owned and operated company going for natural growth. However, in 2018, they offered to Square — the huge player in payments processing. Weebly now functions as an independent subsidiary of Square.
On One hand, that might be a big drawback. Acquisitions are notorious for ruining value and companies. However, this purchase has a Massive upside for a single market segment —
If You do not mind your website on a subdomain (ie, http. //yourwebsite.weebly.com) afterward Weeblyis free with no expiry. A fairly good deal — especially for temporary sites.
Overall Pricing is quite competitive not only compared to other all-inclusive site buildersbut also with purchasing your own hosting. Their Starter plan starts approximately $8/mo when paid up front. And they don’t have the typical caps of other site builders. The Guru program adds sound features and still stays under $12/mo.
And Again — you’ll see that everything is accessible and unlimited. There are no caps on webpages or storage space. And unlike competitors like Wix, they eliminate all advertisements with the initial paid grade.
Even Their business pricing, while more expensive than doing the exact same thing on your own hosting, is much cheaper than similar plans with direct competitors.
Compared To building your own website in your host and especially with other website builders, Weebly’s pricing is very aggressive. Price isn’t everything, however I really like how they structure it.
Cons + Complaints About Using Weebly
However, Of course, no Weebly review would be complete without studying the downsides. Every bit of software will have complaints. Let’s look at 3 specific cons I discovered.
Content Management System
A Content management system is exactly what it sounds like. It’s an interface which allows you to type, filter, edit, and print different kinds of content on your site. Is Weebly Any Good
Weebly Sort of has that. It has a Pages section that lists out all of the pages on your site. It allows you to drag and drop the hierarchy and then click to edit each. Nevertheless, it’s far from a efficient system.
There is No method to add custom content types (except within an individual page). If you are arranging a massive site (like hundreds of pages), the articles contained in Weebly would require a personal system to keep it sorted and readily reachable.
This Disadvantage could be overcome, however that I wish content could be more easily handled within Weebly.
The Last huge drawback of Weebly is that moving to a new platform is difficult. If you would like to move somewhere else, such as your own WordPress powered site, migrating your content and redirecting your URLs will be a difficult procedure.
Weebly allows You to export your Page content through zip file but website articles will have to be manually copied or migrated through RSS.
Again — migrating platforms will remain hard, but it’s something to consider if you are planning on quickly growing traffic and/or content.
Advanced Advertising Tools
Since Weebly enables for HTML editing, most advertising tools and attributes can be added to your website. However, as you still don’t have 100% control on your website & host — it can be difficult and/or impossible to add advanced marketing tools such as an EV SSL, customized email collection applications, custom analytics packages, custom social shares, special Schemas and A/B testing computer software.
In The jargon — the principal issue isn’t having”root” or”FTP” access to your server files. This isn’t an unsolvable problem, but it’s something to be aware of if you’re arranging a long-term project.
For Most all site owners with average traffic — you’ll want to be aware of the constraints, particularly if you’re planning for rapid growth.
Weebly eCommerce Addendum
Here’s Weebly’s advertisement revealing their new eCommerce setup.
A bonus for Weebly is that their eCommerce functionality. It’s possible to sell products from your Weebly site without switching platforms or performing some distinctive developments. It fits in effortlessly and has strong functionality.
The Pricing is affordable. On lower tiers, Weebly charges transaction fees but packages the complete eCommerce package for business plans.
Ecommerce Is a wonderful bit of functionality, but remember that it is not a full-fledged eCommerce that online shop platforms like Shopify or even Bigcommerce have. Weebly includes a shopping cart, fundamental stock management, and payment approval. Here is how Weebly fits on the eCommerce”spectrum” —
It’s Great for sites which are mostly lead-generation, informational, etc also want to sell a few products. It’s also a fantastic match for anyone testing out products prior to going to a long-term stage. It’s not a long-term fit for sites that are eCommerce-first. For those, an internet store you have with WordPress + WooCommerce or even a specialty eCommerce platform like Shopify (review) or Bigcommerce (review) would be a much better match.
Product Investment & Company Construction
Now — the purchase from Square does include a downside. That’s regular site builder features. Weebly’s incentive would be to invest in features that make it even more precious as a whole for Square. Is Weebly Any Good
Characteristics Like appointment scheduling, blogging, etc are only valuable in so far that they benefit the parent business.
If You’re wanting to build a long-term content or lead generation site, then I would consider WordPress.com (for content) or Wix (for general drag & drop) instead of Weebly. Even if Weebly matches your needs now, they might not in the medium future.
When we first started testing Weebly many Years ago, it was only another website builder. That’s completely changed. Weebly has evolved into an outstanding website building tool that is better than most competitors. It’s simple, uncluttered and easy to use — that is precisely what individuals with limited technical abilities need when it comes to creating their own online presence.
Of course, it’s not 100% perfect. We’d like To see a bit more templates, for instance. Finding an email address attached to your own domain name is also a bit pricey, as they recommend G Suite, which 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 top of our list of site builders. Their ease of use combined with cool tools such as the iOS or Android app for editing your website on the move, or the amount of add-ons out there from the app center makes it robust, and enjoyable to use.
Enough with the theory. Try it out for Yourself and see how you like it!