What if I told you… you can build a professional-looking website in a day without paying a professional designer or spending hours yelling at your computer, wondering why nothing seems to work how you want it to?
Better yet. What if I told you you can get started for free and build your entire website before ever spending a single penny?
If you’re thinking, “What! No way, that’s too good to be true,” you’re in the right place.
Weebly’s website builder takes the headache out of DIYing your business website (even if you want to sell products online). Their drag-and-drop interface, paired with professional themes, help turn small business owners like you into savvy website designers in just a few clicks.
I wanted to try it out for myself, so I created a website using Weebly’s page builder and documented the process. Keep reading to learn more about what I liked and didn’t like, their pricing plans, and a deep dive into their industry reputation.
Let’s get started!
Weebly Website Review
Summary: High-Level Pros and Cons of Weebly
As I went through the process of building my own website, I documented the things I liked and the things I didn’t. Here’s a quick breakdown of my experience in case you don’t want to read the full review.
What I like (AKA the good stuff):
- Very simple pricing plans (no hidden fees + a free plan)
- Plenty of professional and responsive themes to choose from
- Free domain name for the first year ($19.95/year after that)
- Mobile app for designing and writing on the go
- 300+ add-ons to improve website functionality
- Full eCommerce suite for online shops
What I don’t like (AKA the not-so-good stuff):
- Sketchy industry reputation
- Very limited site design flexibility and customization
- Limited SEO features and capabilities
Overall, Weebly is very intuitive and easy to use. They also offer simple pricing plans and an excellent free option so you can build your entire website before spending any money.
Furthermore, you have numerous professional themes to choose from, and you can even design, blog, and edit from your phone. But (there’s always a but), Weebly offers less design flexibility than Wix, one of their biggest competitors.
Weebly’s SEO capabilities are limited, as well. And it’s hard to look past their unsatisfactory industry reputation within the last few years (since being acquired by Square).
What I Like about Weebly
There are a ton of great things about using Weebly to build your first (or next) website. Most of my experience was positive, and I was immediately drawn to how easy it was to use. I also found several other things that make Weebly great.
So, I want to walk through my favorite features and talk about what they mean for you.
1. Simple Pricing Plans (And No Hidden Fees)
Weebly keeps things simple with four easy-to-understand pricing plans. We’ll talk more about the details of each plan later, but I wanted to mention this because it makes choosing a plan and getting started easy.
You don’t have to scour through pages of information trying to figure out which package is right for you and your new website. This is one of many ways Weebly works to make the process as simple and easy as possible.
Plus, you can get started for free (no credit card required) and build your entire site before upgrading to a premium plan. So, you can try it out completely risk-free to see if Weebly’s right for your next website.
All you have to do to get started is click the “Sign up” button or “Create Your Website” button on Weebly’s home page. From there, you’ll enter your contact information, and that’s it! Super simple and easy.
2. Professional and Responsive Themes
Themes make it easy to get your website launched quickly. They’re preformatted and mobile responsive, so they look great on every device without you having to touch a line of code or make any major changes.
Weebly offers 50+ different themes you can use as a starting point for your new website. Plus, they have six different categories to look through, depending on the type of website you’re building.
This makes it easy to find a theme that’ll work for your website right off the bat without having to look through 15+ pages to find the perfect fit. Most of them are pretty simple in design, but they’re professional and look great.
After you sign up for a free account, simply choose the theme you want to use to get started.
Before finalizing your choice, you can look at a preview of the full theme to decide if it’s the one you want to use. If not, you can head back to the library to keep looking. But if so, click the “Start Editing” button to… start editing.
It’s THAT easy!
3. Free Domain Name for the First Year
Most domain name providers charge anywhere from $5 – $30 per year for a domain name. So, you’re not saving a ton of money by getting one for free (with Weebly’s Professional and Performance plans). But you are saving a lot of time.
You won’t have to worry about connecting a domain name from somewhere else (unless you already have one), and you can rest easy knowing everything is housed under one roof. This means you won’t have to switch between different dashboards to find everything you need.
Connecting an existing domain isn’t always easy, especially if you’ve never done it before.
So, opting for a free domain name through Weebly’s paid plans simplifies your entire process, saves you a bit of money, and removes the risk of annoying headaches down the road.
4. Mobile App for Designing and Writing on the Go
Weebly has a mobile app for iPhone, iPad, and Android devices, which allows you to build, edit, and manage your website anywhere you have wifi. With other page-builders, you can only work on your site from a desktop or laptop.
This makes it easy to work on or update your website while you’re waiting in line for coffee, sitting at the airport, or from your favorite coffee shop without having to lug your laptop around with you.
You can also use the app to write blog articles so you can get those creative ideas out the second they strike (rather than waiting until you can access your website on your computer).
Or check your weekly website stats to see who’s visiting and from where. Or respond to contact form inquiries or blog comments right from your phone to help reduce your business’s average response time.
Furthermore, you can create and manage your entire website on your phone. No laptop or desktop? No problem.
5. 300+ Apps to Improve Website Functionality
Looking to add extra functionality and features to your new website? Weebly apps make this easy. You can either search the Weebly app center for what you want to achieve or browse through their different categories to explore exciting new opportunities.
Plus, it only takes one click to install them directly onto your website. From there, you can edit the design, behavior, and functionality of each app from your website’s dashboard. Some of the most popular apps include:
- Scroll to top button
- Table formatting option
- Add a background color to a block of text
- Display your Instagram feed
- Create a custom FAQ section
- Social sharing buttons
If there’s something you want to do with your site but can’t do with Weebly alone, odds are there’s an app for it. Which… makes it incredibly easy to enhance the functionality of your website in just a few clicks.
6. Full eCommerce Suite for Selling Products Online
Building and managing an online store comes with its own set of challenges and complications. However, Weebly helps you overcome these challenges by offering a full suite of features specifically built for eCommerce businesses.
Weebly has everything you need to successfully manage your online store, from special customizable themes to inventory management to customizable email templates. Plus, the drag and drop interface makes it easy to build beautiful product pages in minutes rather than hours.
Weebly’s specialized eCommerce features include:
- Emails (i.e. abandoned cart or welcome sequences)
- SEO and site analytics
- Shipping management
- Inventory tracking
- Coupons and gift cards
- Product search function
- Customer reviews
- Customizable checkout pages
What I Don’t Like About Weebly
While there are a lot of great things about Weebly, there are a handful of things I didn’t like about my experience as well. So, I want to walk through them and talk about what they mean for business owners interested in creating their own websites.
1. Sketchy Industry Reputation
Most businesses don’t come without their fair share of haters. But in Weebly’s case, they seem to have more than their fair share, especially after Square, the online payment processor acquired them.
I found countless reviews and complaints mentioning their lack of customer service and support since 2018 (despite them excelling in this area prior to that). Is it because Square has other businesses and ventures on its plate?
But customers are still frustrated at how hard it is to contact support and get help. Many of them say they’ve waited weeks for an answer, which is unacceptable (in my opinion). After a few years of reading reviews like these, you would think they’d do something to improve.
Perhaps they’re working on it. And if not, they should be.
2. Very Limited Site Design Flexibility
Weebly offers several pre-built template options, but you don’t have as much control or customization ability as you do with Wix (read the full review). And you can’t change how your website looks on mobile devices.
When you switch to the mobile view in your dashboard, you’re no longer able to edit or change anything on your site. So, you’re stuck with the layout Weebly automatically generates for mobile devices.
Furthermore, you can’t move things exactly where you want them, so you’re limited in what you can create with the Weebly page-builder. With that being said, it’s still completely possible to create professional, well-designed websites.
And many people actually find it easier to use because there aren’t as many options. So, if you’re looking for quick, easy, and simple… Weebly is a great choice.
Just keep in mind you may not be able to customize things as much as you’d like to (unless you’re comfortable with coding things yourself).
3. Limited SEO Features and Capabilities
One of the biggest (and oddest) limitations I’ve found using Weebly is only being able to use the H2 tag (not H1, H3, etc.). So, adding subheadings and structure to your page (from a header tag standpoint) isn’t really possible.
With that being said, there are Weebly apps you can install that add this functionality. I’m just not quite sure why they would limit which heading tags you’re allowed to use. Furthermore, they add extra strings to site titles and URLs, which can be annoying and bad for SEO.
Unfortunately, you don’t have any control over this.
But aside from these two issues, everything else seems to be okay with regards to SEO. You can edit meta descriptions and SEO titles at the page level, and most sites load pretty quickly compared to other page builders.
Plus, you have access to your theme’s source files, so you can manually add structured data and other SEO-friendly features if you want to.
Weebly Plans & Pricing
Unlike a lot of other website builders, Weebly’s pricing plans are simple and straightforward. You have four options ranging from free to $26/month (when billed annually). This means you can pay for the features you need without paying for what you don’t need.
Tier 4: Free Plan — $0/month
Weebly offers a free starter plan, which means you can start building your website and see if the platform has everything you need before giving them your credit card information. If you like it, you can upgrade your account whenever you’re ready.
And if you don’t, simply delete your account and move on.
I recommend starting here and building your website in its entirety (or at least as far as you can on the free plan) before upgrading to save money. This also lets you take Weebly for a test drive to see if it’s the right page builder for your next website.
The free plan includes:
- SSL security (for free)
- Advanced site stats
- Site-wide search
- Ability to embed third-party codes
- Shopping cart
- Items (eCommerce products)
- Quick shop option
- Inventory management
- In-store pickup option
- Automatic tax calculator
- Gift cards
- SEO tools
- Lead capture tools
- Instagram feed
- Community forum, live chat, email, and phone support
It’s important to note that this plan includes Square ads, you can’t connect a custom domain name, and you have limited file storage. So, this isn’t suitable for most businesses unless you’re just getting started. I recommend upgrading as soon as you’re ready to launch.
Tier 3: Personal Plan — $6/month
This is the cheapest plan that lets you connect a custom domain. That’s the only difference between the Free and Personal Plans. So, if you don’t need additional storage and don’t mind Square ads on your website, this plan may work for you.
However, I don’t recommend it for businesses because Square ads tend to look tacky and unprofessional. Plus, you don’t want to send people away from your website after all the trouble you went through to get them there in the first place.
Tier 2: Professional Plan — $12/month
This is the cheapest plan without Square ads, so I recommend it for most businesses. Your website will look clean, polished, and completely ad-free. You also get unlimited file storage, so you don’t have to worry about running out of space.
This plan includes everything in the Personal Plan plus:
- A free domain name
- Unlimited storage space
- No Square ads
- Advanced site stats
- Password-protected pages
- Shipping rate calculator
Even if you’re not planning on selling products online, this is a smart choice for most business owners looking for an affordable and easy way to create a new website.
Tier 1: Performance Plan — $26/month
This plan is tailored specifically for eCommerce businesses looking to have access to the full suite of eCommerce tools. So, if you’re not going to sell products online, you don’t need this plan – the Professional Plan will work just fine.
This plan includes everything in the Professional Plan plus:
- Ability to accept PayPal payments
- Product reviews
- Shipping labels
- Shipping discounts
- Abandoned cart emails
- Advanced eCommerce insights
- Priority support
Is Using Weebly as Easy as it Sounds?
Weebly is a very intuitive and user-friendly website builder. Navigating the site editor is easy and only takes a few minutes to get comfortable with. After that, you’ll be on your way to creating a professional website in a few hours (rather than days or weeks).
Choosing one of their professional templates means you get a fully designed website waiting to be filled in with your own images, information, and copy without having to design anything from scratch.
Weebly’s drag-and-drop page builder uses a 12 column grid, so every element on the page gets spaced in an aesthetically pleasing way without you having to manually add spacing between elements.
And you can easily add or remove elements to see what different combinations look like in real-time. Which means… you don’t have to save and refresh a live page over and over to see the final result.
Furthermore, you can extend the functionality of your website with 300+ easy-to-install apps designed to make your website do what you want it to do. And you can easily access installed apps inside the site editing dashboard, so everything you need is packaged in one place.
All that being said, the ease of use severely takes away from design flexibility. So, it’s not completely customizable, but it’s very user-friendly (especially if you’ve never designed a website before).
Exploring Weebly’s Reputation
When I first reviewed Weebly they were not rated or accredited by the Better Business Bureau. According to BBB, an “NR” rating means they haven’t had time to assess the business or they don’t have enough information. There were several complaints from being unable to contact customer support to being charged for annual recurring fees the customer didn’t realize needed to be canceled.
However, in 2021, Weebly now doesn’t show up in BBB, which is probably related to recently being acquired by Square (best known for merchant processing and POS software). While there are no recent records to use in evaluating their reputation with BBB, one hope Square with its good reputation is turning things around. The reviews on TrustPilot don’t look so good…
Weebly Reviews: TrustPilot
Weebly’s reputation on TrustPilot is significantly better, with an average of 2.8 stars out of 530 reviews. Furthermore, 50% rate Weebly above average. However, most of the recent reviews aren’t so great.
They report awful customer service, lack of functionality in their new site editor, and trouble canceling paid plans. Definitely not something you want to hear about your web host provider. It seems that their customer service and business overall have steadily declined since 2018.
You can read the full list of TrustPilot reviews here or check out what some of their recent customers have to say:
“Unreliable. They don’t listen to your problem. They throw some automated answers from their Q&A to your face, and you’re supposed to get it sorted. Even if you provide them videos/screens of the problem you are experiencing, they stop responding.” – Stef Crossuite (April 22, 2020)
“So easy to use, and lots of help for novices like myself. Love how you can customize and add in extra pieces of code as well. Great free version but well worth the upgrade for a professional-looking website with plenty of options” – Liz Jeffery (February 13, 2020)
TLDR: Weebly Reviews Overview
Despite being great in the past, it seems Weebly’s customer service and support have spiraled downward after being acquired by Square. Most reviews mention issues contacting (a seemingly non-existent) customer support team.
With that being said, not all the reviews are negative. They have hundreds of five-star reviews. So, if you need something simple, affordable, and easy… Weebly may work just fine. However, don’t expect much help from their customer service team.
Hopefully, Square takes action and improves this in the future.
Final Thoughts on Weebly’s Page Builder
If you’re looking for a simple website that still looks professional across all devices, Weebly is a smart choice. Their interface is extremely easy to use and beginner-friendly (even if you’ve never designed a website before).
Plus, you can get started for free and not pay anything until you’re ready to present your new website to the world. Weebly’s premium plans are easy to understand and affordable, so you can finally give your business the website it deserves.
But do be aware their customer service team is notably hard to reach. So if you think you’re going to need a lot of help along the way (you probably won’t because it’s so easy to use), you may want to consider other options.
Click here to take Weebly for a free test drive today!