Background Weebly Logo
With More than 40M sites under its belt, Weebly is one of the world’s most popular web builders out there. Unlike particular opponents, they seem less interested in flashy marketing campaigns than improving their platform’s technology. Weebly Logo
This all sounds pretty good on paper, right? Well let’s figure out how it appears in practice. In this review, we will have a look at their drag and drop editor and see if it is any good for producing a web site, site or online store.
What Is Weebly?
On The wide spectrum of site building alternatives, Weebly lives on the end that is comprehensive and provides everything you need to get started and develop your site. It’s in contrast to solutions where you purchase, set up, and manage all of the”bits” of your site individually.
It is Like trading off a few control for greater convenience.
Using Weebly is sort of like renting and customizing a apartment in a wonderful development instead of getting and owning your own house. You’re still in charge of decor, cleaning, and what living-wise — but you leave the construction, plumbing, security, and infrastructure to the house owner. That point is critical because there’s usually a direct tradeoff between convenience and control.
All The design and functionality which are included with Weebly work seamlessly together as a platform. That’s what lets them own drag and drop layout, design, and articles.
As Far as rivalry, Weebly competes directly with comprehensive website builders such as Squarespace, Wix, and WordPress.com.
Website Builders as a group compete with options like WordPress.org (which provides the free software to build a website which you own & control — visit my own WordPress setup guide here) all the way to choices like typing real HTML code into a text file. Make sense? Awesome, let’s dive to the Weebly review.
One Other quick aside — a disclosure — I receive referral fees from all of the companies discussed in this post. My opinions & research derive from my experiences like a paying client or consultant to a paying customer.
Weebly’s Company Pitch.
What Makes Weebly So Easy to Use?
Fantastic question. First thing you’ll notice Is how well the drag and drop interface was created. Just choose the element you want on the left, and set it on your design on the rightside.
You might Discover That components snap into position And organize themselves flawlessly on the webpage. Other solutions, such as Wix, forego the grid system, so it is very possible to end up with overlapping components. Together with Weebly, no risk of that happening.
Working with text is also a breeze in Weebly. You just click what you would like to edit and sort your own words in the box. Some other options use”entrance masks” which are somewhat more subjective and not necessarily easy to work with.
The navigation system also works miracles. It’s possible to dig deep into menus and submenus. Weebly handles them like a charm.
Ultimately, if you get stuck anywhere, the Weebly knowledge base may answer a great deal of questions through tutorials that are clear and step-by-step guides. Failing that, the support is exceptional, whether by email, chat, or phone. Weebly Logo
So are there Any drawbacks? This is different. If you would like to have more freedom with your designs, then you may feel frustrated with the rigid grid system. You should go for Wix. This competitor also has an automatic solution (Wix ADI) that can build the website for you by itself. You may perhaps shave off a few minutes of your website building time.
There are also two things we’d love to see. First is a global reverse button. It is possible to undo what you type in text boxes, but it will be wonderful to erase mistakes once you add or move elements. Second, Weebly doesn’t have an overall media database that keeps all your pictures. You’re going to need to re-upload images for each and every element that needs them.
Which Weebly Pricing Program is Ideal for Me?
We’d say the main question to ask is. Do I wish to sell online? Quite simply, if you do, we advise that you go for Weebly Business.
For other kinds of websites, Weebly Starter Is usually enough. It will offer everything you need for displaying info about your services, portfolio or business details. However, the Starter plan misses out on a few Pro attributes.
· Fancy header using slideshow or movie background.
· Integrated video / audio player
· Password-protected webpages
· Membership module — to let users sign in and get private sections of the website
If any of those Above are must-haves for your site, you will need to upgrade to Weebly Pro. And to get a more complete breakdown, please consult with our complete Weebly pricing comparison page.
SEO. How Will My Weebly Site Rank On Google?
Let’s get one thing out of the way first. 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 may have a difficult time using Weebly. It is not impossible, but there are limitations.
· Your headings are limited to H2. There’s a free program that lets you insert key words from h1 to h6, however, it messes a bit with your formatting. We wonder Weebly doesn’t integrate it into their system.
· Certain pages (groups 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 website isn’t in English. Same with the website posts, they’ll have’/site /’ in the URL structure and this can not be changed.
· Adding structured info ( Rich Snippets) is performed via code. However, you’re in your as Weebly does not help.
On the other hand, Weebly does things actually Well in regards to.
· URL, Title tags & meta-descriptions. It’s possible to customize themalong as Alt texts for images. This is especially important to rank your images. Weebly Logo
· 301 redirects. It is possible to control them to prevent broken links when a page URL has been changed. Google deeply admires 404 pages.
· Picture optimization. Weebly does a great job at compressing the images you upload. This improves speed, always a blessing for SEO.
Still a bit Confused about SEO? Don’t forget that we have a complete guide on the topic here.
Security & Backups. How Safe and Secure is a Weebly Site?
Just as we Know, really secure. The company takes safety very seriously. They market strong passwords, and supply SSL encryption on all plans. The free tier will operate on https that offers an extra layer of safety. Especially important for onsite personal data exchange (e.g. charge card or email address).
Regrettably, we wish Weebly provided more in the way of backup and restore systems. You’ve got to take care of it manually by saving your site for a .zip file regularly. And there’s no restore function if disaster strikes. Wix, for instance, tracks new adjustments 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 are able to read the key pros and cons. But, we wish to give you here a quick overview of the key features here.
The First thing to note is that Weebly does not have a ton of template layouts (around 50), but you should easily be able to find one you like. There are various categories available. Online Store, Business, Portfolio, Personal, Event and Blog.
They mechanically look great on every Apparatus (by being responsive), and they may be adapted to match your own personal needs, using the templates as a foundation. No need for you to get a web design diploma!
Of course, if You’re all about design, and absolutely need to have the ability to customize it down to the last pixel, so you need to check out Wix in addition. Their template choice is unmatched and they have an even more flexible editor…
… unless you’re confident with coding. This Is since Weebly, unlike other builders, gives you access to the template source code.
Want to dig under the hood and modify the CSS and HTML? You will 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’s great to Sell digital and physical products for small and medium-sized shops, but maybe not for big ones. Even though you can use the export and import function to handle large number of items, you might find Weebly lacking in features such as massive stores.
For instance, we do not like that there Aren’t any offline payment options (just credit card, PayPal, etc). At $30 CAD per month it’s also rather pricey. Wix’s Online Store is just $20 US for instance (but also has less features). Weebly Logo
Finally, it is worth noting that even though You can create a store with the Starter and Guru program, updating to Business and greater makes more sense. You’ll get the automated delivery and sales tax calculator, which is extremely useful for serious store owners. What’s more, you won’t have to pay an additional transaction charge of 3 percent.
Still confused About the various online store strategies? You can find detailed information in our Weebly Online Shop review.
Program Store. Can I Enhance My Site with Add-Ons?
You bet! There are no less than 300 programs in Quite a few classes like eCommerce, Communication, Marketing, Social, or Site Tools. Many are free, some are compensated. Some are constructed by Weebly, some by third party developers. For the latter, there is always an (unlikely) chance that it may shut down a single day. Also a shame the apps made by Weebly are quite restricted.
However, one thing all of the programs have in Common is that a super simple installation attribute. One click and bam! All programs are tested and will work instantly on your own site. We tried some cool ones such as a way to include tables, event calendars, and info bars to display special info. Our only qualm is the quality and amount of apps is a slightly inferior those from the Wix App Store.
Advantages of Utilizing Weebly
Here’s What I discovered to be the experts of Weebly — not only in comparison with Squarespace and Wix or WordPress, but also as a overall online website solution.
Speed & Security
Weebly provides 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 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 company plans, they even install and keep SSL across your whole website. Here’s my speed test.
There Are still pace and safety risks, but it’s an advantage for many website owners to have somebody else care for speed, security, backups, etc.. The price tag is bundled with expert 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 can I do today?” This process is known as onboarding, and it’s also incredibly tough to execute well.
The Software maker does not wish to be bothersome, but they also wish to help. I really like how Weebly builds in solid onboarding and instruction not only via email drip sequence but also via small info buttons constructed with their platform.
Once You join, it is straightforward to dive right in. Weebly Logo
Site Building Process
One Advertised benefit of using a comprehensive site builder is you won’t need to write HTML or CSS code. You only have to drag and drop elements. What you see in the builder is exactly what you get on the site.
It’s Not necessarily that easy. There is a whole lot of nuances to”drag and drop.” The majority of us really mean”I want to click and drag this component and transfer it to a general area where it’ll look good — you know, automatically centered, etc.” In other words, it’s like playing tee-ball instead of baseball…or bowling with up gutter guards. You want to do the thing, but also have a little bit of assistance.
For The most part, Weebly pulls off this. Their drag and drop actually works. As well as for the control freaks among us, they provide access to some custom CSS module, so which you may edit the template to precisely your choosing.
For Free of charge accounts, Weebly provides an email service option along with a well-done Knowledge Base. For paid accounts (even newcomer ), they provide email, chat, AND telephone number. Response times for me were solid.
With An all-inclusive system, client support can troubleshoot and correct any issue. This is a huge advantage of website builder platforms in general, but especially with Weebly because they have phone support.
If You conduct your own site, you’ve got to work out just who will correct a problem prior to getting in contact with them. With Weebly, you just get in touch with them.
Built-in Feature Set + Extensions
The Big advantage of building your own site on your own host is you don’t need to depend on a platform’s feature set. If you go the stage route, it’s essential to be sure they have all the qualities you want and need.
Weebly’s Feature set is powerful. They’ve got all the fundamentals — such as website functionality, contact forms, etc, but also the necessary innovative features like URL redirects and page-level custom code placement.
Even Past the complex necessities, Weebly even includes features like forums, subscription choices, integrated marketing options, file uploads, etc.. In addition they have eCommerce options, which I will cover separately below.
If You proceed the comprehensive site builder course, Weebly’s feature set must offer everything you need for typical personal/business websites (though as we will see in the Cons section, you do need to be especially aware of advanced options).
Additionally — Weebly has plenty of built-in attributes, but it doesn’t have everything. Platforms overcome it by allowing 3rd Party programs (believe the App Store or Shopify’s App Store).
With your Own WordPress site, adding performance is as easy as installing a plugin. Together with Weebly — you can browse their climbing (though still somewhat limited) app centre.
Anybody who retails online
Why? Square is a payments processor. They’re enormous offline and want to be larger in the on/offline arena. That’s the reason why they purchased Weebly — and why the future is really bright for Weebly’s ecommerce features.
If You’re starting a site and plan on selling a couple of things here and there or in case you have an offline presence (ie, pop-up shops) and you want to market online, the Weebly offers a ready-made alternative with closely integrated ecommerce features which should just get better.
Product Investment & Company Construction
I’ve Been using site builders for 20 years because the Homestead.com times and have been paying attention to the sector for the previous 5 decades. One overarching trend is that a company’s structure pushes product investment more than the marketing group or the product team.
Even In a fast-growing marketplace, a organization’s construction and finish goals will dictate how it acts and what investments it makes. As I outlined in my Wix vs. Weebly vs. Squarespacestructure can vary tremendously among direct competitors.
For Years, Weebly was an independently owned and operated firm going for organic growth. However, in 2018, they offered to Square — the big player in payments processing. Weebly now functions as an independent subsidiary of Square.
On One hand, that could be a big drawback. Acquisitions are renowned for ruining companies and value. However, this purchase has a huge upside for a single market segment —
If You really do not mind your website on a subdomain (ie, http. //yourwebsite.weebly.com) afterward Weeblyis free with no expiration. A fairly good deal — especially for temporary sites.
Overall Pricing is very aggressive not only in contrast to other all-inclusive site buildersbut also with purchasing your hosting. Their Starter plan begins around $8/mo when paid up front. Plus they don’t possess the common caps of other website builders. The Pro plan adds solid features and still stays under $12/mo.
And Again — you will see that everything is bundled and infinite. There are no limits on pages 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 hosting, is considerably cheaper than comparable plans with direct rivals.
Compared To building your own site on your server and notably with other site builders, Weebly’s pricing is very competitive. Cost is not everything, however I love how they structure it.
Disadvantages + Complaints About Using Weebly
But Obviously, no Weebly review will be complete without studying the drawbacks. Each piece 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 resembles. It’s an interface which allows you to sort, filter, edit, and print different types of articles on your site. Weebly Logo
Weebly Kind of features that. It’s a Pages section that lists out all the pages on your website. It permits you to drag and drop the hierarchy and then click to edit each. Nevertheless, it’s far from a efficient system.
There is No way to add custom content types (except inside a single page). If you’re arranging a large site (such as hundreds of webpages ), the content within Weebly would need a personal system to maintain it sorted and readily reachable.
This Disadvantage can be overcome, however that I wish content could be easily handled within Weebly.
The Last big disadvantage of Weebly is that moving to a different platform is not difficult. If you would like to move somewhere else, including your own WordPress powered website, migrating your content and redirecting your URLs are going to be a difficult procedure.
Weebly lets You to export your Page content via zip file but website content is going to have to be manually copied and/or migrated via RSS.
Again — migrating platforms will always be hard, but it is something to consider if you’re planning on rapidly growing traffic and/or content.
Advanced Advertising Tools
Since Weebly allows for HTML editing, most marketing tools and features can be added to your site. But as you still don’t have 100% control on your website & server — it can be challenging and/or impossible to add advanced marketing tools such as an EV SSL, custom email collection tools, custom analytics packages, habit social shares, special Schemas and A/B testing computer software.
In The jargon — the principal issue isn’t having”origin” or”FTP” access to your server files. This is not an unsolvable problem, however it is something to be aware of if you’re arranging a long-term project.
For Most all site owners with typical 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 revealing their new eCommerce installation.
A bonus for Weebly is their eCommerce performance. It’s possible to sell products from the Weebly site without changing platforms or doing any special developments. It fits in seamlessly and contains solid functionality.
The Pricing is affordable. On lower tiers, Weebly charges transaction fees but bundles the full eCommerce package for business plans.
Ecommerce Is a nice piece of performance, but remember that it is not a full-fledged eCommerce that online shop platforms like Shopify or Bigcommerce have. Weebly includes a shopping cart, fundamental stock management, and payment approval. Here’s how Weebly matches on the eCommerce”spectrum” —
It’s Ideal for websites that are mostly lead-generation, informational, etc also wish to sell a few goods. Additionally, it is a good match for anybody testing out products before moving to a long-term stage. It is not a long-term match for websites which are eCommerce-first. For those, an online store you have with WordPress + WooCommerce or even a specialty eCommerce platform such as 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 is regular website builder features. Weebly’s incentive would be to invest in features that make it even more precious as a complete for Square. Weebly Logo
Characteristics Like appointment scheduling, blogging, etc are only valuable in so far that they gain the parent company.
If You are looking to build a long-term content or direct generation site, then I would consider WordPress.com (for articles ) or Wix (for general drag & drop) instead of Weebly. Even if Weebly meets your needs now, they may not in the future.
When we started testing Weebly many Years past, it was only another site builder. That’s completely changed. Weebly has now evolved into an outstanding site building tool that is better than most competitors. It is simple, uncluttered and simple to use — which is precisely what people with limited technical skills need in regards to creating their own internet presence.
Obviously, it’s not 100% perfect. We’d like To see a bit more templates, as an example. Finding an email address attached to your own domain is also a bit pricey, as they recommend G Suite, that costs $5 per month, per user. (Though there are workarounds, since you can see in the FAQ below).
But all in all, Weebly reaches the top of our list of website builders. Their ease of use combined with cool tools like the iOS or Android app for editing your site on the move, or the amount of add-ons out there from the app center makes it powerful, and enjoyable to use.
Enough with the concept. Try it out for Yourself and see how you like it!