The question ‘what is the cheapest website builder?’ seems straightforward… And yet, there are lots of inaccurate articles you can find on this topic.
It’s strange because it’s not really a subjective question. To me, the cheapest website builder is not the best website builder or even the best free website builder— it’s the website builder with the lowest cost plan.
However, I can’t end this article by mentioning Carrd is the cheapest website builder. Objectively, it’s true, but its use cases are very limited. Hence, I’ll be mentioning many other cheap website builders (in ascending order of price).
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What is a Website Builder?
A website builder is a platform or tool that helps you build a website without having to code it manually. Typically, site builders include pre-made templates and a drag and drop editor for ease of use.
In other words, you don’t need to know HTML, CSS, JS, etc., to build your own website. What’s more, you don’t even need to get web hosting — typical site builders are self-hosted.
The best part about it? It costs way less than what a professional web designer would charge!
Cheapest Website Builder Plans
There is a difference between cheap and unusable— so watch out for the following:
- Plans that put advertisements on your website.
- Plans that don’t include SSL certificates (necessary in 2021).
Moreover, to keep all on an equal footing, I’ve used regular (not introductory) yearly pricing of the cheapest paid plan that lets you use a custom domain name.
Plus, I used (rounded up) US pricing for simplicity — many of the website builders have different pricing (and sometimes even plans) for different regions.
I have also mentioned if the plan includes a free domain name (at least for the first year).
This is the list of the best cheap website builders of the popular ones out there:
|Website Builder||Plan||Yearly Price||Ad-Free||Free Domain|
- If the plan doesn’t include a free domain name, it will cost you an extra $10-$20 per year.
- You can install a free SSL certificate from Let’s Encrypt if the site builder doesn’t pre-install it for you. However, some builders don’t allow third-party SSLs, leading to extra costs.
Building a one-page website? Check out Carrd.
At $19/year, Carrd has by far the cheapest plan of any top-rated site builders. However…
Unlike other website builders, it’s only for one-page websites. So you can’t use it for more than a simple website or landing page.
Common Limitations Of Cheap Plans
You get what you pay for!
Most cheap plans are cheap because:
- What the website builder can do is very limited. E.g., You can only make a one-page website with Carrd.
- The site builder company runs advertisements on your website. E.g., Wix’s $60/year Connect plan isn’t ad-free.
- They don’t include value-added features like a pre-installed SSL certificate or free domain name.
- Some essential features & customization options are missing. E.g., You can’t add Google analytics code, multi-lingual support, contact forms, widgets, etc., on many of the mentioned plans.
- Server resources are limited. E.g., Wix’s Connect plan includes a mere 500 MB bandwidth. Similarly, Webnode’s Limited plan is limited to 100 MB storage.
- The customer support is mediocre.
Overall, most cheap website builder plans are a ploy to upsell. Here’s their master plan: Once you are in, you will grow dissatisfied (thanks to all the limitations!) and upgrade to a more expensive plan.
Cheapest Ecommerce Plans For Online Stores
Most cheap plans don’t include e-commerce features. You’ll have to go with an expensive plan of a general-purpose website builder that offers e-commerce functionality or choose an eCommerce builder.
I have considered both for this list.
A couple of notes before starting:
- Ecommerce website builders are priced higher than a general-purpose website builder.
- I only compared plans with no transaction fees. Transaction fees (typically around 3%) are charged in addition to credit card processing fees (credit card processing fees are unavoidable). You really should not be paying transaction fees— will get expensive fast.
- Credit card processing fees have become a standard 2.9% + 30¢ across all e-commerce builders. Just keep that in mind.
|eCommerce Site Builder||Plan Name||Yearly Price||Ad-Free||Free Domain|
I already mentioned the limitations of cheap website builder plans. All those apply to free plans + some limitations like not having a custom domain option, site builder's ads on the site, etc., are standard.
If you are okay with trade-offs, you can certainly build a website with free website builders like:
- Square Online
Frequently Asked Questions
Which website builder is cheapest?
Carrd. At only $29 per year (not per month), Carrd is significantly cheaper than other website builders. The caveat? Carrd is a website builder for one page websites.
Which free website builder is best?
Square Online. See our roundup of the best free website builders for more info.
Is Wix really free?
Wix is free but there are ads on your website and you can't add a domain name.
How can I get a free domain?
There are no free domain names. Most website builders will give the first year of your domain name for free if you are on a paid annual plan— but there are no free domain names.
What about WordPress?
WordPress is not a website builder— it's a CMS or content management system. There are key differences. For example, WordPress needs to be installed on a web host while website builders include hosting. It is also open source, while website builders are not. Moreover, you’ll need to install plugins to add functionalities — website builders include most of the needed features. Generally, bloggers use it (WordPress.org, not WordPress.com) for website building & blogging.
What about customer support?
The cheaper the website builder, the less the chances of getting fast & quality customer support.
What is the cheapest website builder with unlimited storage?
Of the cheapest plans, uKit’s $84/year Minimal plan mentions “unlimited disk space.” However, remember: there’s no such thing as “unlimited storage” — if you use over a specific limit, the company will likely ask you to upgrade.
Should I buy SEO tools for search engine optimization?
It’s not necessary to buy SEO tools to rank on Google, but tools do help. However, most SEO tools website builders sell are not worth it. I’d recommend going with external tools like Ahrefs or SEMRush for SEO research or something like Clearscope or SurferSEO for SEO content.
Do website builders offer discounts for professional website design?
Many website builders give discounts to professional website designers. E.g., You can get a 20% discount + perks with Squarespace Circles. Similarly, you can partner with Wix for a 20% revenue share.
What kind of add-ons do website builders offer?
Typically, website builders allow you to add tools for email marketing, online presence, social media, SEO, etc.
Best business website?
Most general-purpose builders are built for business websites. These are the ones we found to be best for business owners.
What's the best website builder?
What’s best for you depends on your needs. This article mentioned the best cheap website builders. Similarly, we have small business website builders, e-commerce website builders, builders for photographers, and more listicles on this site. You can also read our best website builders roundup.
Most website builders offer a 14-day or 30-day money-back guarantee.