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Website Builders

Comparison Table

Side-by-side comparison of the four most popular website builders: Squarespace, Weebly, Wix and GoDaddy.

Last Updated Sep 19 2019

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Written By Steve Benjamins

Overview

Beautiful themes, an intuitive editor and powerful themes— Squarespace is an excellent website builder and my high top recommendation.

Weebly isn't as flexible as Wix and it isn't as sophisticated as Squarespace— but it's easier to use than both.

Wix is all about freedom: the editor is a blank canvas, there's a huge library of elements and you can even design your own theme from scratch— occasionally Wix can feel disorganized and chaotic.

GoDaddy’s website builder is all about designing a website fast. So they built a really simple website builder— unfortunately it’s often too simple and lacks customization options.

Editor

Page Editor

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Pages are built by dropping Content Blocks into pages and dragging them into columns and rows. You can’t just drag anything anywhere— instead there are thoughtful limits.

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Weebly is what I recommend to anyone looking for something easy to use— the page editor is really intuitive, simple and clear. The interface seldom overwhelms or intimidates.

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Wix’s editor is all about freedom. You can drag any element any where on the page— it’s up to you. This can lead to unexpected issues (especially with responsive websites) but will work for users who want freedom.

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Pages are made up of 52 stackable sections— for example a Contact Form section or a Photo Gallery section. Unfortunately sections can be frustratingly cookie-cutter and there are very few customization options.

Screenshot

Website editor.png?1548703261?ixlib=rails 2.1 Dragging elements into page.png?1549553284?ixlib=rails 2.1 Move element anywhere.png?1544039736?ixlib=rails 2.1 Sections.png?1554405814?ixlib=rails 2.1

Ease of Use

Squarespace is easy to use but among website builders it’s not the easiest— Weebly is the easiest. Instead I’d describe Squarespace as intuitive. Everything is thoughtful. If you were to think of Wix as Microsoft Windows, Squarespace would definitely be Apple.

Weebly has always managed to stay easy to use— even as they've added new features, the interface has stayed simple and clean. This is an impressive balancing act. Simple is easy to do if you don't have powerful features but Weebly manages to be easy to use and have powerful features.

Wix is overall easy to use but the editor can become overwhelming and disorganized at times. It can be difficult to know where to look for specific options.

GoDaddy’s editor is simple— so like bumper bowling, it’s easy. But simple is not the only way to make something easy to use— Weebly is an example of a website builder that's just as easy to use as GoDaddy without being limited.

Themes

Overall

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Squarespace offers the best templates of any website builder. This is admittedly subjective— but there's honestly no other website builder that can compare to the clean, modern templates of Squarespace.

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Theme customization is limited. For example, customizing the colors of your website is surprisingly limited— you’re limited one color that’s applied in several different places (you don’t get to choose!)

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Wix has a large selection of themes— though the quality can be inconsistent. Some themes are clean and modern while others feel outdated.

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Unfortunately there is very little variation between themes. In fact there is no variation between the body fonts of the templates. Every theme uses Open Sans for the body font. That's kind of crazy. All themes also share a very similar layout.

Examples

Theme1.png?1516723290?ixlib=rails 2.1 Theme2.png?1541609323?ixlib=rails 2.1 Theme2.png?1549553445?ixlib=rails 2.1 Theme1.png?1549553408?ixlib=rails 2.1 Theme2.png?1554129697?ixlib=rails 2.1 Wix3.png?1554129729?ixlib=rails 2.1 Theme2.png?1554403948?ixlib=rails 2.1 Theme3.png?1554403969?ixlib=rails 2.1

Customization

Excellent style customization. Squarespace's style editor is the best theme customization tool of any website builder— it’s intuitive and powerful.

Theme customization is limited. For example, customizing the colors of your website is surprisingly limited— you’re limited one color that’s applied in several different places (you don’t get to choose!)

Customizing themes can be tedious— especially if you’ve spent a lot of time individually styling elements. But Wix is highly customizable so you can make just about any change you want.

Little meaningful theme customization. For example you can’t change the paragraph font and there is only one "accent" color which is used throughout your website theme. Unfortunately you have no control over where this color is applied.

Themes

70 70 500 18

Mobile Ready

Yes Yes Yes Yes

Design From Scratch

No

You can’t design your own theme from scratch without coding.

No

You can’t design your own theme from scratch without coding.

Yes

Wix provides enough flexibility to let you design your own website from scratch.

No

You can’t design your own theme from scratch without coding.

Pricing

Monthly Plans

  • Personal · $16

    Good enough for most websites.

  • Business · $26

    Adds marketing tools, integrations and ecommerce with a transaction fee.

  • Basic Commerce · $30

    Good for most online stores.

  • Advanced Commerce · $46

    Adds gifts cards, real-time shipping rates and other features..

  • Starter · $14

    Good enough for most websites.

  • Pro · $18

    Adds phone and priority support. Few extra features.

  • Business · $35

    Good enough for most online stores.

  • Business Plus · $46

    Adds specific ecommerce features: gift cards, real-time shipping rates..

  • Combo · $17

    Limited to 2 GB of bandwidth— may not be enough for some websites.

  • Unlimited · $22

    First plan with unlimited bandwidth— good enough for most websites.

  • Pro · $27

    Includes Wix logo maker.

  • Business Basic · $28

    Good enough for most online stores.

  • Business Unlimited · $33

    Ecommerce + Wix logo maker.

  • VIP · $47

    Ecommerce + priority VIP support.

  • Business VIP · $56

    Best for small business.

  • Basic · $15

    Good enough for most websites.

  • Standard · $20

    Adds marketing tools.

  • Premium · $25

    Adds appointment scheduling.

  • Ecommerce · $30

    Adds ecommerce.

Features

Screenshots

Website editor.png?1548703261?ixlib=rails 2.1 Increase 2.png?1541513357?ixlib=rails 2.1 Increase style editor 2.png?1541513540?ixlib=rails 2.1 Product page.png?1541536670?ixlib=rails 2.1 Spotlighting.png?1549554010?ixlib=rails 2.1 Spotlight footer.png?1549553969?ixlib=rails 2.1 Customize fonts.png?1549553785?ixlib=rails 2.1 Weebly promote.png?1549554040?ixlib=rails 2.1 Repeaters.png?1544036334?ixlib=rails 2.1 Blog layout options.png?1544038101?ixlib=rails 2.1 Wix3.png?1554129729?ixlib=rails 2.1 Theme2.png?1554129697?ixlib=rails 2.1 Second editor.png?1554405780?ixlib=rails 2.1 Product editor.png?1554404157?ixlib=rails 2.1 Theme3.png?1554403969?ixlib=rails 2.1 Theme2.png?1554403948?ixlib=rails 2.1

Blog

Yes

Some of the best blogging of any website builder— it really only competes with Wordpress.com. There's a long list of features, a beautiful post editor and excellent contributors support.

Yes

In terms of features, Weebly offers everything you need for a blog. Unfortuantely you are locked into a single layout— which is often far too wide for comfortable reading.

Yes

Good blog design options, a beautiful post editor and strong blogging features: you can schedule posts, tag and categorize posts, save as drafts and add Disqus and Facebook comments.

No

GoDaddy offers blogging but it's really too basic. There's no draft posts, no saving posts, no publishing posts in the future, no customizable URLs, no comments and no RSS feed.

Ecommerce

Yes

Squarespace has the best ecommerce of any website builder— but remember, there's an entire class of ecommerce builders like Shopify that have more features.

Yes

Weebly has aggressively moved into ecommerce over the last few years— and the results are impressive. The only other website builder with a comparable package is Squarespace. Weebly has managed to keep the interface easy to use even though ecommerce usually requires sophisticated, abstract interfaces.

Yes

Wix has included everything you need for ecommerce: you can create coupons codes, set shipping and tax rules, products options and much more. The only thing missing? There's no way to edit the email receipts customers will receive— which both Squarespace and Weebyl let you do (and is important).

Yes

GoDaddy has a simple store builder that covers the basics of ecommerce. There are not many features for more sophisticated stores— for example you can't create gift cards or customize the emails your customers receive.

Form Builder

Yes

Google Docs and Mailchimp integrations, 19 different form field options, custom post-submit HTML and lightbox mode— a way to create a button that loads your form in a lightbox.

Yes

Plenty of field options, form submissions can be confirmed with a message or by sending the user to another URL and results are sent to an email address— though a database also stores results (so you don't have to worry about accidentally deleting a form submission).

Yes

By default, Wix only includes the Contact Form element— which is not a full form builder. To access Wix's full form builder, you need want to install Wix Forms from the App Market: it includes a wide variety of fields and submission options.

No

There's a Contact Us section that has an email form but it's not really a form builder. Instead it just lets you add single-line or paragraph text inputs— no file uploads, radio buttons or checkboxes. Existing GoDaddy users may find this frustrating as older versions of the website builder included a full form builder.

iOS & Android Apps

Yes

There are a suite of beautiful apps: Commerce lets you manage your store. Blog lets you compose blog posts and manage your blog. Metrics gives you website analytics. Portfolio lets you manage photos and galleries— but it's iOS only. Having a suite of apps is great— rather than stuff everything into one app, they're able to make a beautiful interface for each use case.

Yes

Weebly has iPhone, Android, iPad and Apple Watch apps. The tablet and phone apps are fully featured— meaning you can design your entire website using them. This is awesome— no other website builder offers this on both phones and tablets.

Yes

The Wix Mobile App (iOS and Android) let's you manage your website on the go in three main ways: you can chat live with visitors, manage products and manage bookings. It doesn't let you make changes or add content to your website.

No

GoDaddy doesn't have any iOS and Android apps for their website builder.

Members Only

Yes

Squarespace itself doesn't offer membership sites but Memberspace is a 3rd-party company that lets you build Squarespace membership sites.

Yes

The best membership features of any website builder. If you need to build a membership site, Weebly has you covered. You can create private pages that require people to register with your site (this is handy for creating an intranet, or a conference portal for registered members). Other helpful features include: groups and email customization.

Yes

The Member Login App lets members login and register to access hidden content. It was launched 4 years ago and the most recent reviews from users all ask for things that users were also asking for 4 years ago. This may not be a critical feature for Wix.

No

GoDaddy doesn't offer a membership system.

Donations

Yes

Squarespace has the best donation system in any website builder. It’s not even close. They’ve done the hard work to understand the fundamentals of a great donation system: customizable email receipts (donors shouldn't receive the same email as an ecommerce customer after all— a detail too many website builders over look), suggested contributions and a customizable donation checkout.

No

Despite having a full ecommerce system Weebly doesn't include official donation support— instead they suggest users create a donation "product"" in their store... which is not a real donation system. Otherwise users can install the DonorBox app. The app has received strong reviews and lets you accept recurring donations, set suggested amounts and collect donor information. (I don't consider this donation support as DonorBox requires you to register seperately with them.)

No

Technically there are two apps you can install for donations: Paypal is a simple Paypal button that lets donors give directly to your Paypal account and Get Funding is a crowdfunding tool. Neither is a real donation system.

No

You can add a Paypal donation button but this is not a full donation system— it sends visitors to checkout on a different website and doesn't allow you customize email notifications.