In this day and age, creating a website as a small business owner is absolutely essential. Statistics from the World Economic Forum claim that there are currently over 1.7 billion websites on the internet, with this number constantly rising. However, out of these websites, only 200 million are currently active and attracting potential customers and readers.
To build the best website for your small business, it's worth doing research into your different platform options before committing to a monthly or yearly plan. If you're new to the process of website creation, it helps to take into account factors like drag and drop functionality, the number of design templates available, web hosting, and any e-commerce features that a website builder offers.
Some of the most popular tools and platforms used to build a business website include GoDaddy, Weebly, Wix, uKit, WordPress, and Shopify. To help you make sure that you make the right decision for your business, there are some tips and suggestions that can help you choose the best website builder to suit your needs.
Depending on your individual preferences and requirements, different site builder platforms can be free of charge or cost up to hundreds of dollars for the first year. Think about everything you need to build a website, including choosing a domain name, hosting costs, paying for specialized templates, and potentially hiring a third party to create content for your blog or online store.
Wix, Weebly, Jimdo, and WordPress currently offer some free plans if you're looking for an affordable option with limited features. However, keep in mind that further customization options can cost between $50 to $300 per month depending on how premium you want your site to be.
Before you choose a website builder, it's worth checking whether the domain registration process is integrated into the website. A custom domain name is a virtual address that leads visitors to your website, typically ending in ".com" or ".net". Popular registrars like GoDaddy typically charge up to $20 a year depending on the address you choose.
Site builders like Squarespace and Wix integrate this feature on their platform, which can be easier for beginners who want to avoid other complexities.
Creating a website from scratch can be a difficult challenge if you have no idea how to get started. The best website builders are easy to use for complete novices who want to create a professional-looking website. Consider looking at Shopify's App Market or Wix's App Store for further third party add-ons and widgets.
Look for a platform with a drag and drop editor, which can easy to use when it comes to optimizing web design. Working with preset templates can also help you visualize the overall look and feel of your site.
Depending on the type of business you run or the website you're after, it's worth thinking about what features you need and what kind of web design aesthetic you're aiming for. For instance, an e-commerce website selling fashion-related goods and other products should feature a photo gallery and include a range of payment options.
Take a look at the entire checkout process from start to finish before you use a website builder to grow your business.
Website builders make it easy to design an attractive website. They generally come with a wide selection of preset themes and templates that you can customize to your liking. Through a drag and drop interface, like Wix's you can adjust the layout and color scheme to your liking and turn the template into your own.
However, some website builders come with limited choices and might not have the theme that some users may be looking for. Having a good starting point in place can help you create a website that fits your brand identity so you won't have to migrate your data later on.
Although many website builders are designed for casual users, you might run into some technical issues and difficulties that you can't resolve on your own. Before choosing a website builder, check whether they offer a live chat option and 24/7 customer support to address any problems right away.
Having a responsive team to help you troubleshoot any issues can prevent future headaches and keep your business operating as smoothly as possible.
A good website builder should make it easy to integrate search engine optimization (SEO) features that encourage visitors to click on your website. This includes SEO features like meta description and image alt tags that can help search engines display your website more prominently in their search results.
A high page loading speed, responsiveness, and well-written content with targeted keywords can engage audiences more effectively. One website builder that offers popular social media plugins is WordPress, which enables visitors to share their finds on platforms like Instagram and Pinterest.
As your business grows, you'll want to look into building a website to cope with an increased number of page views. Too many visitors in a short time frame might cause your website to crash if you aren't prepared. This can make the checkout process frustrating for users, especially if they're in the middle of completing a transaction.
In addition, having high-level encryption in place and using strong passwords can help protect sensitive data and deter hackers. Choose a website builder that can scale with your brand as it grows while keeping it secure. Conversely, email marketing, blog posts, and SEO can help you grow your audience.
Before committing to a single platform, try testing out available features using a free plan or trial. Website builders that have free plans include Wix, WordPress, and Weebly. Often, you can save money on subscriptions by choosing a yearly plan over a monthly plan. Make the most of your savings by exploring different brands before choosing a platform that fits your needs.
For small business owners to track the success and growth of a website, installing tracking tools can measure key metrics. One of the most popular options is Google Analytics, which can track things like the average amount of time a user spends on a page, the number of clicks per month, and the number of new users.
Surveys can also be integrated with some website builders to give business owners valuable customer feedback. Audience engagement can be difficult to track without using these tools, so experimenting with different tactics can help your website reach a wider audience.
These days, ease of use on mobile should be a priority when you choose a website builder. The website design should take into account whether buttons and links are clickable on a small screen, along with fast loading speeds, smaller images, and minimal scrolling.
Not all website builders can help you create mobile-friendly websites, so testing this feature out on your mobile phone can also help you choose the best website builder for your brand.
When you choose a website builder, you should look at the cost of monthly or yearly plans, along with the features it offers. Check whether it offers a range of templates that suit your brand identity and audience, along with responsive customer service to address technical issues.
One of the most popular website builders known for its ease of use is Weebly, but it has limited options in terms of customization. In contrast, Wix has greater customization options but is slightly more difficult to get the hang of. Shopify, on the other hand, is a great website builder to use for e-commerce stores.
Wix and Weebly are the best all-round website builders for small business owners on a budget. They offer free plans that can be upgraded if you're looking into additional e-commerce features.
For those with zero experience, website builders arguably offer the greatest functionality and ease when it comes to building a website. Drag-and-drop features, attractive templates, and the lack of needing to code and program can make it easy to get started right away with website building.
The best website builder isn't necessarily a one-size-fits-all choice. Make sure to choose a reputable website builder to create create a professional site for your business. Keep in mind that your site is a representation of your brand. Website builders offer flexibility, affordability, and simplicity when it comes to creating a website.
If you're still having trouble choosing the best website builder for your brand, we can help you narrow down your choices and steer you in the right direction. Compare different web building platforms side by side in our quick and easy guide or reach out to us at PageKits for further aid in choosing a website builder!