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Angelfire Review

Angelfire is an abandoned product. The "team blog" and the Angelfire Twitter haven't been updated since November 2012— and the core product is extremely outdated.

My work is supported by affiliate commissions. Last Updated Aug 14 2018

User Experience

I knew something was wrong with Angelfire as soon as I logged in. The control panel (right) is jammed with superfluous (and weird) information. How long does it take you to find the “edit" link that opens the website editor?

Control panel new.png?1456933566?ixlib=rails 2.1

Right: I’m being a bit cheeky, but this control panel could really be cleaned up.

The website editor feels outdated but is at least simple. Pages are built by dropping in Add-Ons— of which some are fairly typical (forms, youtube videos etc.) and others are just weird (Poker Game, Lycos Search, a weather widget with zombies … )

Add ons.png?1456933161?ixlib=rails 2.1

Right: Add-Ons

Some of the add-ons look really outdated or are just too simple. The photo gallery (right) doesn’t exactly make your photos shine does it? And there’s no style configurations, so you’re locked into this text based navigation. This feels like the bare minimum.

Photo gallery.png?1456933163?ixlib=rails 2.1

Right: Photo gallery

I often found the editor to be poorly organized. For example, I wanted to create a page without a sidebar. Rather than go to the Pages section to do that, you have to go to the Styles section (which is for choosing a theme) and choose the “2 Column” select box. There are no instructions explaining this— instead you’re just supposed to figure this out on your own.

Sidebar.png?1456933234?ixlib=rails 2.1

Right: Sidebar

Here’s one more example of how the editor is just … not very thoughtful. The photo gallery editor tells me “Click the upload button to upload media” but the upload button is disabled!

Upload.png?1456933236?ixlib=rails 2.1

Right: These instructions are just bad.

Over all there is signs of staleness everywhere in Angelfire. Most of Angelfire’s social media accounts have been abandoned. The often promoted “team blog” and the Angelfire Twitter haven’t been updated since November 2012. It’s pretty weird and gives off a feeling no one is taking care of this product.

Angelfire twitter.png?1456933238?ixlib=rails 2.1

Right: The last tweet from Angelfire is from November 2012.


  • Blog


  • Ecommerce

    You can include a Paypal buy now button, but that's not full ecommerce (it requires your customers to checkout off of your website, doesn't allow for email receipt customization etc.).  

  • Form Builder

    This is barely a form builder. It's very simple. You can only create text inputs, paragraphs or select boxes (no radio buttons or checkboxes). Forms look very basic (see screenshot) and the Captcha is especially rough looking. Form results are sent to an email address but not stored elsewhere (so you're out of luck if you accidentally delete the email). You're not able to customize the success message (or customize the URL that successful form submissions are sent to).  Show Screenshot

  • iOS & Android Apps


  • Retina Ready


  • Newsletter


  • Membership System


  • Design from Scratch


  • Multi-lingual


  • Restaurant Menu


  • Donations


  • Audio Player


  • Podcasts



Angel fire’s themes are really outdated. Part of the problem is that these themes haven’t been updated in a long time (but even back then, was this theme (right) ever considered nice?).

Example theme.png?1456933378?ixlib=rails 2.1

Right: Example theme

Another part of the problem with Angelfires themes is that they don’t have any webfonts. They just allow you to use boring system fonts such as Arial, Georgia, Times New Roman. Webfonts have been around for a long time now— not offering them in a website builder is really ridiculous.

Example theme 2.png?1456933380?ixlib=rails 2.1

Right: Example theme

Especially frustrating is that my website often looked different when I actually published it. For example, the theme in the previous screenshot actually looks like this when I published it!

Undefined.png?1456933472?ixlib=rails 2.1

Right: Why is there a turquoise bar and an undefined error?!?

Unfortunately there are no style customization options (unless you use their CSS editor) and there is no mobile version of your website.

Add ons.png?1456933474?ixlib=rails 2.1

Right: No style customization options

Not Ideal Billing Practices

They don't let you cancel from a web-based interface— instead you have to submit a support ticket.