I’ve always been curious about building my own website for personal use. I see commercials and banners saying how “THEY” are ‘free’ or ‘are easy to use’ or ‘best web builder around’, etc, etc. Not knowing who to believe, I, like many others, used the best resource that money can buy… i Googled! Your site was one of the links that I decided to explore and was impressed off the back. I liked your unbiased thoughts and personal 10+ experience in the field so you know what you’re talking about. So thank you for making our research, any potential pitfalls, future headache, possible regrets that we could’ve suffered by making the the selfless sacrifice by exploring these website building companies for the masses. 

Great comparison! But did you compare these website builders from the search engine friendless point of view? Which builder creates the better SE-optimized pages? I tried to make some pages on Wix but it generates a really mess JS code, w/o normal HTML and very strange page urls like domain.com/#!toasp/c1f7gfk. What do you thinks about it? Also is the mobile-first approach so important for good SE ranking as mentioned all over the web?
Beaver Builder is a great WordPress plugin that allows us to have a lot more flexibility in design. We're no longer stuck with using a theme or going through costly code revisions to make design changes on a site. In addition, our clients now have a front-end editor where they can see what they're changing, and make edits easily without risking breaking code or the structure of the site. It's a huge time saver for them, too!
Site123 claims to be “by far” the easiest website builder, and while their tool is certainly not too difficult to use, we’d say that there are even more user-friendly ones. What’s great about their builder is that they have some pretty good looking themes that are all responsive. Paid plans start at $9.80 per month and include a basic ecommerce store as well as an email marketing tool. Be prepared to receive multiple daily emails after signing up. Free websites show a little banner stripe at the bottom of the page.

The creative talent pool at OuterBox is impressive. Their partnership approach to project management truly has clients thinking ‘out of the box’. They quickly become part of the ‘team’. As a client, I have genuinely appreciated their thorough evaluation of each project, their fresh creative perspective and original solutions. All-in-all, just a wonderful team. - Anchor Hocking

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They are also currently running a massive 50% discount. So if you purchase a 12 or 24-month plan, you’ll not only get a free domain for 1 year, but a lot of savings, too. For example, we paid $143.76 for two full years. The $16 domain was free as well. Just keep in mind that renewal prices will adjust back to the normal rate. That means you’ll often lose the initial discount. You’ll notice below that pretty much all website builders do this. Therefore, try to lock in a longer term if possible to save the most.
You have probably heard about the Wix web builder, when the company advertised their product during the 2015 SuperBowl games. As a publilcy traded company and market leaders, they aggressively advertise their product, neglecting the fact the the main product is free of charge. If the name Weebly rings a bell, it could be the fact that Tim Ferris, publisher of several best selling books and a top tier consultant recommends it with passion, stating it is one of the top website builders available, helping him build a fully functional web site in less than 2 hours. The rest are widely known as well, may it be for Ecommerce uses, or being a leading internet services company like Web, which is publicly traded at the NASDAQ stock exchange.
It’s not easy to pick a web design agency as a partner when you’re looking to improve your business’s site. It takes a lot of research and patience, and it’s critical that you contact a potential partner and speak to them before you set up any kind of contract. With these design firms, you can at least find a good starting point on your search for a web design partner.
Site123 has everything you need – excellent uptime, decent speed, competent customer support, and really good pricing options. The usability is good enough to start with for novices. More experienced users will find plenty to tinker with as well. The intuitive editor is easy to use and you’ll be pleasantly surprised with the quality of their templates.
Blennd created a website for me and they did a fantastic job. They were able to walk me through the process, take the information I wanted on the site, and create a very professional and user friendly site. And, as it has been about 9 months since they created the website, I have seen a lot of web traffic coming to the site. I would highly recommend Blennd for all your website and SEO needs.
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We are Blennd, a Denver-based web design, development, SEO consulting and digital marketing agency. Our standard is to shape the ever-changing, mobile-first digital landscape rather than conform to it. Our leaders are more than creative visionaries, we are technical marketers and business-savvy professionals. We develop results-driven digital solutions through a combination of modern website design techniques, custom website development, intelligent marketing strategies and integrated SEO services.

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Dynamic phone numbers - one of my favorite ways to track website goals is through phone tracking. Any service-based company or local business should consider installing a system where the contact phone number on your website changes according to how the user got to it. This helps you determine if you're meeting your goal by separating phone calls from your online profiles from that of paid campaigns to direct traffic, and even organic traffic.
I think you should consider mentioning some of the options available for the open source version of WordPress (WordPress.org). The most notable option we have now I think is the page builder plugin Elementor from Pojo. The free version has tons of widgets one could use to build a responsive website for free without touching a line of code. I believe the space in WordPress.org is no longer for just for Developers. Anyone in the beginner stage can build sites on WordPress with much more flexibility than anything like WIX could ever offer since they are a closed platform. Mathew from LaunchParty has provided an amazing FREE course that will guide you how to build amazing sites with WordPress and Elementor. And he even provides you with amazing Elementor templates that you can use. Lastly, please note that not every thing that is meant to be sustainable is truly free. Last time I checked, in order to have a proper website with WIX, it was only free when you use their domain extension. If you ever wanted to remove WIX from the domain name, then you would have to pay for that. On the other hand, WordPress.org is open source, meaning free. But hosting is not, neither is your own domain name. There are many WordPress plugins that are worth paying for as well, including Elementor as well as others that will handle other important features such security.

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Note that I’m not criticizing CMSs here: in fact, it’s possible to deliver these sorts of experiences via a CMS. It just takes a little ingenuity — all of the visuals from this story can be delivered via background images and videos — and careful attention to consistency across stories, as you’re writing, designing, and developing them. And yes — a content model that differs from your standard “blog posts.”
On most builders you can create your website in less than an hour. We don’t recommend being quite so quickfire about it, though. The best way to make a website is to give yourself a solid day to play around with the software and fine tune your site. It can take much longer than this to make a website site though – it depends on how many pages you have and how much customization you need to do.
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