With More than 40M websites under its belt, Weebly is among the world’s most popular web builders out there. Unlike particular competitors, they seem less interested in flashy advertising campaigns than improving their platform’s technology. Weebly
This all sounds pretty good on paper, right? Well let’s find out how it appears in practice. In this review, we will have a look at their drag and drop editor and see if it’s any good for producing a web site, site or online shop.
On The broad range of site building alternatives, Weebly resides on the end that’s all-inclusive and provides all you want to begin and develop your site. It’s compared to options where you purchase, install, and handle all of the”pieces” of your site separately.
It’s Like trading off some control for greater convenience.
Utilizing Weebly is kind of like leasing and customizing a apartment in a wonderful development rather than buying and owning your own residence. 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 key since there’s typically a direct tradeoff between convenience and control.
All The functionality and design which are included with Weebly work seamlessly together 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 choices like WordPress.org (which provides the totally free software to construct a website that you have & control — visit my WordPress setup guide here) all the way to options like typing real HTML code into a text document. Make sense? Awesome, let’s dive to the Weebly review.
One Other fast aside — a revelation — I get referral fees from all of the companies discussed in this informative article. My opinions & study are based on my experiences like a paying client or consultant to a paying customer.
Weebly’s Business Travels.
What Makes Weebly So Easy to Use?
Fantastic question. The first thing you’ll notice Is how well the drag and drop interface is designed. Just select the element you want on the left, and set it on your layout on the right.
You’ll Discover That components snap into position And organize themselves flawlessly on the webpage. Other options, such as Wix, forego the grid , so it is quite possible to end up with overlapping components. Together with Weebly, no probability of that occurring.
Working with text can also be a breeze in Weebly. You simply click what you would like to edit and sort your own words from the box. A few other options use”entry masks” that are somewhat more abstract 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 just like a charm.
Ultimately, should you get stuck anywhere, the Weebly knowledge base can answer a lot of questions through tutorials that are clear and step-by-step guides. Failing that, the support is excellent, whether via email, chat, or phone. Weebly
So are there Any drawbacks? That depends. If you want more freedom with your layouts, then you might feel frustrated with the rigid grid system. You ought to go for Wix. This competitor also has an automated solution (Wix ADI) that may build the website for you pretty much by itself. You can perhaps shave a couple of minutes of your website building time.
Additionally, there are two things we’d love to see. First is a global reverse button. It is possible to undo everything you type in text boxes, but it would be wonderful to erase mistakes once you move or add elements. Secondly, Weebly does not have an overall media database which keeps all of your pictures. You’ll have to re-upload images for every element that requires them.
Which Weebly Pricing Program is Ideal for Me?
We’d say the main 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 all you need for displaying information about your services, portfolio or company details. However, the Starter plan overlooks a few Pro features.
· Fancy header with slideshow or video background.
· Integrated video / audio player
· Password-protected webpages
· Membership module — to let users sign in and get private sections of the Site
If some of the Above are must-haves for your site, you will have to upgrade to Weebly Pro. And to get a more complete breakdown, please refer to our complete Weebly pricing comparison page.
SEO. How Will My Weebly Website Rank On Google?
Let’s get one thing out of the way first. if You’re an innovative SEO expert who certainly must rank #1 on search engines for a really competitive keyword, you may have a tough time with Weebly. It is not impossible, but there are limitations.
· Your headings are limited to H2. There is a free app that allows you add key words from h1 to h6, but 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 mandatory 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 will have’/blog/’ in the URL structure, which can not be changed.
· Adding structured data ( Rich Snippets) is done via code. But you are on your own as Weebly doesn’t help.
On the other hand, Weebly does matters really Well in regards to.
· URL, Title tags & meta-descriptions. It’s possible to customize them, along as Alt texts for images. This is particularly important to position your own images. Weebly
· 301 redirects. You can command them to prevent broken links when a page URL was changed. Google deeply admires 404 pages.
· Picture optimization. Weebly does a fantastic job at controlling the images you upload. This improves speed, always a blessing for SEO.
Still a bit Confused about SEO? Do not forget that we have a full guide on the subject here.
Security & Backups. How Safe and Secure is a Weebly Website?
As far as we Know, very secure. The company takes safety very seriously. They market strong passwords, and supply SSL encryption on all programs. The free tier will operate on https which delivers an extra layer of safety. Especially important for onsite personal data exchange (e.g. charge card or email address).
Regrettably, we wish Weebly offered more in the method of backup and restore systems. You’ve got to look after it manually by conserving your website for a .zip file frequently. And there is no restore function if disaster strikes. Wix, for instance, monitors new changes and allows you to jump back in time to a previous version of your website.
Weebly Design Options and Templates. Making it Look Good
We have a Detailed post about Weebly’s templates where you are able to read the key pros and cons. However, we want to give you here a quick summary of the key features here.
The First thing to notice is that Weebly does not have a ton of template designs (approximately 50), but you should easily be able to find one that you like. There are different classes available. Online Store, Business, Portfolio, Personal, Event and Blog.
They automatically look great on each Device (by being reactive ), and they may be adapted to match your personal requirements, together with the templates as a foundation. No need for you to receive a web design diploma!
Obviously, if You are all about layout, and absolutely need to be able to customize it down to the last pixel, you need to check out Wix also. Their template choice is unmatched and they have an even more flexible editor…
… unless you’re confident with coding. This Is because Weebly, unlike other builders, gives you access to the template source code.
Want to dig beneath the hood and modify the CSS and HTML? You will 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’s great to Sell physical and digital products for small and medium-sized stores, but not for huge ones. Although you may use the export and import function to handle many things, you might find Weebly lacking in features such as massive stores.
For Example, we do not like this there Aren’t any offline payment choices (only credit card, PayPal, etc). At $30 CAD per month it’s also rather pricey. Wix’s Online Store is only $20 US for instance (but also has less features). Weebly
Ultimately, it is worth noting that although You can create a shop with the Starter and Pro program, upgrading to Business and higher makes more sense. You’ll find the automated delivery and sales tax calculator, which is extremely useful for serious shop owners. Furthermore, you won’t have to pay an additional transaction charge of 3 percent.
Still confused About the many online store strategies? You may find detailed information in our Weebly Online Shop review.
App Store. Can I Boost My Site with Add-Ons?
You bet! There are no less than 300 programs in Quite a few categories such as eCommerce, Communication, Marketing, Social, or Site Tools. Many are free, some are paid. Some are constructed by Weebly, some by third-party programmers. For the latter, there’s always an (unlikely) chance that it might shut down a single day. Also a pity the apps made by Weebly are rather restricted.
However, 1 thing all the apps have in Common is a super easy installation attribute. Click and bam! All apps are tested and will work immediately on your own website. We attempted some cool ones like a way to add tables, event calendars, and info bars to display special information. Our only qualm is the quality and amount of programs is a marginally inferior those from the Wix App Store.
Advantages of Using Weebly
Here is What I discovered to be the experts of Weebly — not just in comparison with Squarespace and Wix or WordPress, but also as an overall online site solution.
Speed & Security
Weebly supplies Hosting for all the websites that are constructed in their own platform. That may be good or awful, but in Weebly’s situation, it is a pro. They have rapid load speeds. Their sites are optimized to their hosting. They treat safety against hackers and spam. With company plans, they even install and keep SSL across your whole site. Here is my speed test.
There Are still pace and security dangers, but it’s an advantage for many website owners to have somebody else take care of speed, security, backups, etc.. The price tag is bundled with pro and completely free accounts, so it’s a solid value-add.
Onboarding & Education
Whenever You begin any piece of software — no matter how instinctive — there’s that moment where you think”ok, what can I do today?” This process is known as onboarding, and it is also incredibly tough to execute well.
The Software maker does not wish to be annoying, but they also want to help. I love how Weebly assembles in solid onboarding and education not just via email trickle sequence but also via little info buttons constructed with their own platform.
Once You sign up, it’s straightforward to dive right in. Weebly
Website Building Process
One Advertised advantage of utilizing a comprehensive site builder is you won’t need to write HTML or CSS code. You only have to drag and drop components. Everything you find in the builder is what you receive on the website.
It’s Not always that easy. There’s a lot of nuances to”drag and drop.” The majority of us really mean”I wish to click and drag this component and transfer it to a general area where it will look great — you know, automatically centered, etc.” Put simply, it’s like playing tee-ball rather than baseball…or bowling with gutter guards up. You want to do the thing, but also have a 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 that you may edit the template into precisely your choosing.
For Free of charge accounts, Weebly provides an email support option and a well-done Knowledge Base. For paid accounts (even newcomer ), they offer email, chat, AND telephone number. Response times for me were solid.
With An all-inclusive system, client service is able to troubleshoot and correct any issue. This is a massive benefit of site builder platforms in general, but especially with Weebly because they have telephone support.
If You run your site, you’ve got to work out just who can fix a problem before getting in contact with them. Together with Weebly, you just get in contact with them.
Constructed Feature Set + Extensions
The Significant advantage of building your own website on your own host is that you don’t need to count on a platform’s attribute set. If you proceed the platform route, it’s key to be sure they have all the qualities you want and need.
Weebly’s Feature set is powerful. They have got all of the fundamentals — like website performance, contact forms, etc, but also the necessary advanced features like URL redirects and page-level custom code positioning.
Even Beyond the complex requirements, Weebly even includes features including forums, membership options, integrated advertising options, file uploads, etc.. They also have eCommerce alternatives, which I will cover separately below.
If You proceed the all-inclusive site builder course, Weebly’s attribute set must offer everything you will need for typical personal/business sites (though as we’ll see in the Cons section, you do want to be especially aware of advanced options).
Additionally — Weebly has a lot of built-in attributes, 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, adding performance is as simple as installing a plugin. Together with Weebly — you can browse their growing (though still somewhat restricted ) app centre.
Anyone who retails online
Why? Square is a payments processor. They are enormous offline and want to be bigger in the on/offline arena. That is the reason why they purchased Weebly — and why the future is really bright for Weebly’s e commerce features.
If You are starting a site and plan on selling a couple of things here and there or if you have an offline presence (ie, pop-up shops) and you would like to sell online, the Weebly offers a ready-made alternative with tightly integrated ecommerce characteristics which should only get better.
Product Investment & Company Construction
I’ve Been using website builders for 20 years since the Homestead.com days and have been paying attention to the sector for the previous 5 years. 1 overarching trend is that a company’s structure drives product investment over the marketing group or the product team.
Even In a fast paced marketplace, a organization’s construction and finish targets will dictate how it behaves and what investments it gets. As I outlined in my Wix vs. Weebly vs. Squarespacestructure can vary tremendously among direct competitors.
For Decades, Weebly was an independently owned and operated company going for organic expansion. However, in 2018, they offered to Square — the big player in payments processing. Weebly now operates as an independent subsidiary of Square.
On 1 hand, that might be a huge downside. Acquisitions are renowned for ruining companies and value. However, this purchase has a Massive upside for one market segment —
If You really don’t mind your site on a subdomain (ie, http. //yourwebsite.weebly.com) afterward Weeblyis free with no expiry. A pretty good deal — especially for temporary sites.
Overall Pricing is very aggressive not only compared to other all-inclusive website buildersbut also with purchasing your hosting. Their Starter plan starts approximately $8/mo when paid up front. And they do not have the common caps of other website builders. The Pro program adds sound features and stays under $12/mo.
And Again — you will notice that everything is accessible and infinite. There are no caps on pages or storage space. And unlike competitions such as Wix, they remove all ads with the first paid tier.
Even Their small business pricing, while more costly than doing the exact same thing on your own hosting, is considerably cheaper than comparable plans with direct rivals.
Compared To constructing your own site in 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 + Truth About Utilizing Weebly
However, Of course, no Weebly review will be complete without looking at the downsides. Each piece of software will have complaints. Let us look at 3 unique cons I found.
Content Management System
A Content management system is precisely what it resembles. It’s an interface that permits you to type, filter, edit, and print different types of content on your site. Weebly
Weebly Sort of features that. It’s a Pages section that lists out all of the pages on your website. It permits you to drag and drop the hierarchy and then click on to edit each. But it’s far from a efficient system.
There is No way to add custom content forms (except inside a single page). If you’re planning a large site (like hundreds of webpages ), the content contained in Weebly would require a personal system to keep it all sorted and readily accessible.
This Disadvantage can be overcome, but that I wish content could be more easily managed within Weebly.
The Last big drawback of Weebly is that moving to a new platform is difficult. If you want to move somewhere else, such as your own WordPress powered website, Assessing your articles and redirecting your URLs will be a difficult procedure.
Weebly lets One to export your Page content via zip file but blog content is going to have to be manually copied or migrated through RSS.
Again — migrating platforms will remain difficult, but it’s something to consider if you are considering rapidly expanding traffic and/or content.
Advanced Advertising Tools
Since Weebly enables for HTML editing, most advertising tools and features can be added to your site. However, as you still do not have 100% control on your site & host — it can be difficult or not impossible to add advanced marketing tools like an EV SSL, customized email collection tools, custom analytics packages, custom social stocks, specific Schemas and A/B testing software.
In The jargon — the principal issue is not having”origin” or”FTP” access to your server files. This isn’t an unsolvable problem, but it is something to be careful of if you are arranging a long-term project.
For Most all site owners with average traffic — you’ll want to be aware of the limitations, particularly if you are planning for rapid expansion.
Weebly eCommerce Addendum
Here is Weebly’s advertisement showing their new eCommerce setup.
A bonus for Weebly is that their eCommerce functionality. It’s possible to sell products from your Weebly website without changing platforms or doing any distinctive developments. It fits in seamlessly and has strong functionality.
The Pricing is affordable. On lower tiers, Weebly charges transaction fees but bundles the full eCommerce package for business plans.
Ecommerce Is a wonderful piece of functionality, but keep in mind that it’s not a full-fledged eCommerce that online shop platforms like Shopify or even Bigcommerce have. Weebly includes a shopping cart, basic stock management, and payment approval. Here’s how Weebly fits on the eCommerce”spectrum” —
It’s Ideal for websites which are primarily lead-generation, informational, etc but also want to sell a few products. It’s also a fantastic match for anybody testing out products prior to moving into a long-term stage. It’s not a long-term fit for sites that are eCommerce-first. For all those, an internet shop you have with WordPress + WooCommerce or a specialty eCommerce platform such as Shopify (inspection ) or even Bigcommerce (review) are a much better fit.
Product Investment & Company Structure
Now — the purchase from Square does come with a downside. That is regular website builder features. Weebly’s incentive would be to invest in features that make it more valuable as a whole for Square. Weebly
Features Like appointment scheduling, blogging, etc are only valuable in so far that they benefit the parent company.
If You are looking to build a long-term content or lead generation site, then I would consider WordPress.com (for content) or Wix (for overall drag & drop) instead of Weebly. Even if Weebly matches your needs now, they might not in the medium future.
When we started testing Weebly many Years past, it was only another website builder. That’s completely changed. Weebly has evolved into an outstanding site building tool that is far better than many competitors. It’s easy, uncluttered and simple 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 observe a bit more templates, as an example. Finding an email address attached to a domain is also a little pricey, as they recommend G Suite, which 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 such as the iOS or Android app for editing your site on the go, or the amount of add-ons out there in the app centre makes it robust, and fun to use.
Enough with the theory. Try it out for Yourself and see how you like it!