Website builders make it easy to create an online presence for personal or professional needs. There is no need to know coding or advanced website building techniques with these platforms. Just upload your content, plug it into a template, and you’re ready to go. The pros and cons of website builders will need to be fully evaluated, however, to determine if this is the right platform to meet your current needs.
What Are the Pros of Website Builders?
1. You can have a great website without needing to know web design or coding.
If creating a website on your own isn’t an option, then a website builder is your best solution. It’s an easy way for a small business or a personal website to get online without a high cost. Many solutions in this category are either free or priced below $10 per month.
2. You can fully customize your website.
Just because you’re using a template with a website builder doesn’t mean you have zero customization options. It only takes a minimal knowledge of coding to change how the template looks so you can match the website to your brand image. Some drag-and-drop editors will even allow you to place any content at any location on the page.
3. Many website builders offer responsive designs.
Because mobile internet traffic is continuing to expand, it is necessary for a new site to have modern features, such as being responsive. Many templates from the best website builders are responsive, which means your site will adapt to the browser and device being used to access your site. That way you don’t have to worry about canonical issues from running a separate mobile site with duplicate content in a different design.
4. It’s easy to take advantage of SEO options in a DIY effort.
There are several SEO add-ons, plugins, and widgets that work with today’s website builders so you can market your site without much industry knowledge. You can also use these features for in-depth long-term marketing efforts if you do have some experience in this area of running a website.
5. Many website builders have additional features offered for free.
You’ll find everything from a logo maker to landing page creators and everything in-between offered with the best website builders today. These features are often added for free, though they may be restricted to certain premium plans on some builders.
6. Most website builders are hosted off-site.
Instead of a need to host your own site or pay a third-party for hosting while you use the website designer, most builders offer all-in-one packages today. This allows you to make sure everything is hosted and built on the same platform so you have a one-stop solution for all your needs. It’s a big time-saver to deal with just one company instead of several if something goes wrong with your site for some reason.
7. You receive a quick deployment.
Although most website builders are more complicated than a point-and-click process, the average person can design a website from scratch with a modern builder in 2 hours or less in many instances. This makes it easy to deploy a new concept, product, or service.
8. All of your updates are usually automatic.
Most website builders are constantly improving their processes, templates, and dashboards so that you can have the most effective solution possible. You don’t have to worry about downloading new updates on a regular basis because everything is built into the all-in-one solution.
9. Most website builders let you try before you buy.
Although there are monthly fees to pay, most website builders will offer a free trial period to see if their platform can meet your needs. The trials may last from 7-30 days. If you don’t like the results, then you don’t have to pay anything, though you may also lose whatever content you may have uploaded during the free trial period.
What Are the Cons of Website Builders?
1. In many instances, you don’t actually own the website.
When you use a website builder, you may own the domain name that is being used, but you usually do not own the site itself. This means the content you upload and use is at the mercy of the company you’ve chosen. If they decide that your content doesn’t meet their standards or policies, they can remove it at any time. That can make it tough to run a business.
2. You have to keep paying the monthly fee.
Most website builders are offered on monthly plans. This means if you stop paying the monthly fee, you lose all of the work that you’ve put into your project. The website builder doesn’t care if you make money or don’t make money with your site. Some plans are annual or go up to 36 months, but that means a much higher initial start-up cost as well.
3. Not every website builder allows for customization.
If you create your site on a website builder and decide that you need something that’s a little more technical in nature, there’s a good chance you won’t be able to make the changes you need. Although you can change the template coding at a basic level, in-depth changes are usually not allowed. This makes it difficult to design an effective website for some users.
4. Some website builders do not allow for e-commerce.
If you want to sell products or services directly through your website, you must be picky about the website builder you choose. Not every builder allows you to implement an e-commerce solution on their platform. For those that do allow for this, expect to pay a premium cost with a top business plan that may not include credit card processing costs.
5. You are limited based on the limitations of the builder.
You can only go as far as a website builder will allow you to go when you use this type of platform to get online. If there isn’t a way to implement third-party apps or plugins and that’s what you need to have for your customer or reader base, then you’re going to be out of luck.
6. You must learn how to use the builder before you can build a site.
Most builders have a simple interface, but you must still learn how to use it before your site can go online.
The pros and cons of website builders show that this can be a simple and effective solution for virtually everyone to get online. There are often customization and commerce limitations put in place and monthly costs to consider, but from an overall perspective, this type of platform makes it easier for everyone to go global with their ideas.