Hi Emily, Thanks for your input! WordPress.com is a great option for blogging websites as it's what the platform is designed for. But, as you mentioned, there are easier options out there. WordPress.org is where you can really build powerful websites but the platform itself isn't really suitable for beginners. We definitely agree with you that the price is attractive either way though. Thanks for sharing and we're glad you've found a home online with WordPress! Charlie
Stop whatever you're doing and ask yourself this simple question: "Do I need a website?" If your response was anything other than "yes," you need to think again. It doesn't matter if you're the head of a multinational corporation who employs thousands of people or a local mom-and-pop shop from around the way, you need a website to help potential customers find you online. If you have a business, failure to establish an online home is a failure to grow.
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Where they should improve: The free wireframe and blank themes aren’t very exciting if you are not a designer. Other templates are between $49-79 (one off), but it looks like the first template is on the house. The editor is very overwhelming and reminds us of Photoshop. No surprise here that they list NASA as one of their customers. And there is no SSL option for free sites.
The most important thing to consider with your website is whether or not it's meeting your goals. If you're a small business that is doing quite well with lead generation or reputation, and your website is a part of that funnel, it might be doing pretty well already even if it's not your flavor of beautiful. Break down what you want or expect your site to do: generate leads, support your message, gather data, sell products and so on: if it's performing well at its function, you may be better of investing your time and dollars at other areas of business that need bolstering first.
The best way to begin your search is to sort the themes by category. If you are opening an eCommerce store (using Bigcommerce for example), there is no reason to browse through blog-optimized themes. Most online website creation services use categories like portfolios, online shops, and blogs to differentiate their templates. Some go even further by creating more specific categories like sites designed to showcase bakeries or sell sunglasses.
“Wow! I mean WOW. Stupid easy and brilliant website builder software. How did it take so long for this to be created. I have been out of Web Dev since 2010 so maybe just being away from it all impresses the hell out of me but you guys deserve a GOOD JOB! Award. I will pass on your name to all I know. Best of luck to you and I can not wait to see what is next.”
Take time to also be aware of where they’re located. If speaking in-person is important to you, and sharing your ideas on paper, face-to-face is a game-changer, be sure to find a web designer that is located within traveling distance to avoid excessive over-the-phone communication. Some companies prefer phone and email communication, while others would rather meet in person. Regardless of what you prefer, make sure the web design agency that you’re looking for fits the bill in terms of location.
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One of the things that sets WordPress apart from its competitors is the large range of plugins available for download. There are currently over 40,000 plugins in the WordPress Plugin Directory than can be installed in just a few seconds. In most cases, all you have to do is find a plugin you’d like to install, click “Install Now”, then click “Activate”.
Take this gorgeous site Heco Partners built for the agency Black Sheep. As you scroll down, the highlighting of the “current” line helps keep you focused on the very well-written copy. Then a series of boldly designed tooltips start vying for your attention with the copy, crying out for you to stop reading and click over to another page. It’s a creative solution to the challenge of building an inline navigational system — but it can also add unnecessary tension to the experience for some users.
What we liked: It’s cool that both their website builder and WordPress are supported for website creation. You can actually connect a domain name you purchased elsewhere with the free version. They have almost 200 templates to choose from and they are categorized by industry. Although their templates aren’t responsive, you can create dedicated versions of your site that will adapt to desktops, tablets and mobiles. Interestingly, they offer a way to easily create multilingual sites. And if you are a backup paranoid, be at rest: you’ll be able to download backups and even restore them.
The international coffee chain Starbucks will make the change to an eco-friendly packaging design that allows its customers to recycle the packaging of the products. Starbucks makes a change Starbucks sells about 4 billion glasses per year. Each and every one of the drinks offered by the company are distributed through these disposable containers that…
There are a myriad of reasons to plunge into the process of redeveloping your website. But, make sure to consider things beyond just how it's going to look or work. Is the investment you're going to put into it actually return itself? Will you be able to dedicate the time and energy that's required for a successful process right now? Have you taken the time to develop your company's strategy for marketing that will then support or be supported by the new website first? Make sure you consider all options before you get started on a long, involved process for a new website.
It is important to be consistent with your blogging. You won’t acquire much of a readership if you only post once a year. Additionally, that kind of posting frequency might actually hurt your site as it could make users wonder if the page is still being tended to. Posting on a weekly or bi-weekly basis can be a really effective way to keep people interested in your work. If you don’t have the time to write something new on a consistent basis, you can schedule pre-written content to be posted automatically.
The strict responsive approach of Simvoly, uKit, and Weeby means you get no control over the mobile-only view. Gator and Wix, by contrast, offers a mobile-site preview and lets you make customizations that only apply to mobile viewing. For example, you may want a splash page to welcome mobile viewers, or you may want to leave out an element that doesn't work well on the smaller screens.
Accept online payments/set up an online store: On some builders like SITE123 and Strikingly, you can create an online store on the free plan, and sell one or two items, but to sell any more you have to upgrade. On some you can create a store, but you must be on a paid plan to actually accept payments through your website, (like Wix). Others won’t let you create a store at all unless you’re paying, such as Weebly. So it varies, but one thing remains the same: in order to have a successful and scalable online store you will need to upgrade to a paid plan sooner or later. Once you’re on a paid plan you can unlock features such as connecting different payment types, (for example PayPal, credit/debit cards etc), get rid of transaction fees, track and manage your inventory, and more!
Attract customers to your garage with this vintage website template, perfect for car, motorcycle and automotive specialists. With parallax scrolling and a slick gallery, this template is ready-to-go. Simply click edit to customize the text and images and create a website that reflects the tone of your garage. Start editing today to build your online presence.
Which isn’t to say that broken grid layouts ditch the concept of the grid altogether — instead, they allow images and text elements to drift into and across the gutters that usually serve as hard stops in more sober layouts. Here, the usual discreet boxes of images and text begin to overlap and converge, often creating beautifully unexpected juxtapositions of bitmap and letterform.
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Webstarts Complete online store Webstarts not only lets you add up to 10 products, but you can also accept credit card payments through Stripe, WePay or Authorize.net. Inventory management is included and there’s even an option to sell digital goods. The only downside is that you are limited to 20 sales per day. But hey, then you should really think about a paid upgrade.
With professional templates, customizable features, and instant responsive design, Spark Page just may be the best website builder you've never heard of - a fast and easy tool that anyone can use. Spark Page offers a variety of features to make your content look its best no matter where it’s viewed. Spark's design tools are based on the essential features of Adobe's professional tools like Photoshop and Illustrator, but you don't need to know how to use them or any other dedicated design software.
“I can't speak highly enough about Eoin and Istech Web Design, when I started my business last year Eoin designed my beautiful Website, and as I hadn't a clue about social media he helped me set up my Facebook page and got me blogging. When ever I have a problem or a query, Eoin is always so helpful and professional and never make me feel stupid. I first heard about this company from a colleague and never looked back since.”