We are in the website building field for the past 10 years. We started this website with Blogger and moved to Weebly, later settled with WordPress.org. Earlier days, there were few companies like Weebly offering website builders with unique features. However, things changed rapidly in past few years. Nowadays, almost every premium hosting company out there offer free website builder as part of their shared hosting plan. They offer site builder either with their own brand or Weebly on Cloud. At this point, if you are looking for professional website builders, you should evaluate Weebly and other alternatives.
Related: Top 6 free website builder tools.
Why to Consider Weebly Alternatives?
Other than Weebly, there are many online website builders available for small business owners and individual bloggers. Each of them have unique set of features, pricing and targeting different customer base. Weebly is good with drag and drop site builder. However, it does not offer everything for building a complete website. Other companies also offer similar features like Weebly with similar pricing structure. Important point before choosing the website builder is to define your current and future needs. This will help to compare the features and choose the best website builder out there.
If you are already using Weebly or consider purchasing a plan from them, it’s time to think why you should consider other alternatives at this point:
- Square acquired Weebly in 2018 with the intention of merging their Square Online Builder. However, the direction is not clear 4 years later now. Years back, most Weebly users mights have received an email from Weebly for merging the login with Square account. However, it does not happen as of now and you can login to Weebly independently without Square account. This is annoying for old and new users as the future of Weebly site builder is not certain.
- Weebly’s primary target is to offer an ecommerce platform for small business owners. It may not fit for your shop or if you want to run a blog.
- Weebly’s blogging capabilities are nothing when compared to WordPress which you can use with WordPress.com.
- There are no new themes and updates from Weebly for the past many years leading many of their customers to leave to other platforms. If you check the code of themes, each theme has its own custom code with no uniform structure. For example, some themes will have a search box on the navigation while many themes do not offer this even though search box itself is a pro feature.
- Weebly site editor and Apps from App Center has lot of unfixed bugs for many years. For example, you can check the user rating of their own Simple Table app to understand the quality of the apps.
Most importantly, Weebly has completely different set of pricing plans for Europe and US as well as for old and new users.
Hosted Website Builders
Weebly offers free hosting while charging for using their website builder online. This is one of the successful business model for capturing small business owners. Many other companies follow similar model that you can consider as alternatives to Weebly. Therefore, we primarily list the alternatives from hosted companies and not from the premium hosting.
We have written a comparison of Weebly Vs WordPress.com to give you an overview of both these platforms. WordPress.com is an excellent blogging platform that uses open source WordPress software. Pricing is higher compared to Weebly for building an online store and removing footer advertisements. However, you have variety of themes and plugins to customize the site for your need. WordPress powers more than 40% of websites and hence you will get plenty of support and customization options. There are state of the art plugins like Jetpack, Akismet, Yoast SEO and WooCommerce to build any type of site you want.
The only problem is that WordPress has long learning curve compared to Weebly. This will be a hurdle if you are managing your website as well as physical business. But it’s worth spending some time in learning the basics so that you do not need to limit yourselves with Weebly.
Wix is a NASDAQ listed company that offers large number of templates to build your website. It supports more than 200 million websites to display themselves as a strong player in free hosting website builders. Starting from logo to custom blog, you can get everything under single umbrella. Pricing is much higher than Weebly with the lowest “Combo” plan costing $14. All plans include free SSL and 14 days money back guarantee. You can safely try Wix and cancel the subscription within 14 days if you are not happy. Checkout the complete comparison of Weebly Vs Wix.
If you want to get rid of the word “free”, but still do not want to worry about hosting then Squarespace is for you. There are no free plans available with Squarespace. The lowest premium plan is “Personal” that will cost you more than $14 without any ecommerce features. You can easily subscribe to Weebly Pro for this price with full of ecommerce features. However, Squarespace offers brilliant themes and customization features that you can’t get with Weebly site builder. Another good part is that you can start with a free trial and drive through the features before you decide to purchase. They also offer end-to-end services from domains, emails, website builder and online store to manage all your site related stuffs in single place.
Yola is also one of the oldest website builder company available from 2007. It offers pricing plans with completely different approach based on number of pages and storage. Unfortunately, the free plan offers only 2 pages with 1GB storage. Weebly’s free plan at least includes unlimited pages with 500MB storage. The lowest premium bronze plan will cost you $4.95 with 1000 pages and 2GB storage limit. This essentially means you cannot upload large PDF or files and offer downloading option for users. In order to remove the Yola footer ads, you have to upgrade to silver plan that will cost you $11.95. This is similar to Weebly Pro that will cost $12 for removing footer ad.
Yola uses Ecwid (ECommerce WIDget) to integrate online stores and you need to pay additional $10 per month for this. So, if you are looking for Weebly alternative to host your online store then Yola is not an option for you. Checkout the complete comparison of Weebly and Yola website builders.
Jimdo is another platform you can check out as a Weebly alternative. The free plan is limited with 500MB storage and 2GB bandwidth. The premium plans are costlier than Weebly with similar range of features. You have to sign for minimum 12 months contract with an option for 14 days money back guarantee. The VIP plan for online sellers is similar to Weebly’s business plus with additional options like business listings. However, basic and business plans have restriction on storage, which is not the case with Weebly.
Webs offer one of the simple pricing plans among all website builders out there. They do not even list their free plan as part of the pricing plans table. However, you can create free website with a subdomain that shows Webs ads. The lowest premium plan is “Starter” that will cost you $5.99 per month with 1GB storage space. You can consider Webs as Weebly alternative only for building a content website or blog. Webs unlimited ecommerce plan will cost you $22.99 which is not comparable with the online store features available with Weebly.
Other Weebly Alternatives That Needs Hosting
As you can see, almost all the alternatives are having one or other problems when comparing with Weebly. You can even use Bootstrap website builders like Mobirise for having a small business sites. Though you need to purchase a separate hosting service for publishing Bootstrap sites online, the biggest advantage is that you can build your site completely offline using a desktop app. However, the best Weebly alternative in our opinion is to move on to premium hosting platforms using WordPress.org setup. WordPress.org is an open source platform which has plenty of benefits like complete backup, large online resources and custom features. Also, you can purchase a hosting plan from Bluehost, HostGator or SiteGround for few dollars per month. This will also be a big cost saving move when compared to purchasing Weebly’s premium plans.
As mentioned, Square will merge Weebly and Square Online Builder any point of time as that was the ultimate purpose of acquiring Weebly. Therefore, at this point we strongly recommend consider moving out of Weebly to one of the above options or WordPress.org. If your sole purpose of having a website is to host an online store, then platforms like Shopify is also a good option.