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  1. 1. User Experience
  2. 2. Features
  3. 3. Themes
  4. 4. Billing Practices
  5. 5. Examples
  6. 6. Pricing
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Moonfruit Review

Terrible mobile themes and an outdated user experience.

By Steve BenjaminsLast Updated Sep 6 2016

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Review Updates

  • Feb 19 2016 New review published.
  • Sep 6 2016 Updated review and screenshots to reflect new UI.

User Experience Info

Moonfruit's interface is outdated. It looks like it was built 15 years ago (which is incidentally when it launched). One reason why it looks outdated is because the website editor is built in Flash— an outdated technology with plenty of it’s own problems and quirks (which you’ll notice when you scroll, select text and enter inputs in Moonfruit).

Website Editor

Right: Website Editor

Moonfruit is a blank canvas editor— which means you can drag elements anywhere on a page. Unfortunately the blank canvas editor is not well done. For example, there is no snap to grid— which can make aligning elements a pain. Other website builders such as Wix and WebsiteBuilder.com have made much better blank canvas editors.

This paragraph became misaligned after I nudged it and now it’s a pain to re-align.

Right: This paragraph became misaligned after I nudged it and now it’s a pain to re-align.

Here’s an example of how the blank canvas editor works poorly. When I added another page (‘Blog’) to my website, the navigation overflowed into the right margin— making my website completely out of alignment!

After adding a page, the navigation became misaligned.

Right: After adding a page, the navigation became misaligned.

In order to fix my overflowing navigation I had to go into support and search (I couldn’t figure out how to fix it!). It turned out I needed to turn on something called Page Master in order to move the nav. So I did. But the problem is Page Master turned off my page so I could no longer know where the margin was! Gah!

Page Master is turned on— but where did the rest of the page go? Now I can’t align elements!

Right: Page Master is turned on— but where did the rest of the page go? Now I can’t align elements!

Overall Moonfruit just feels unpolished. For example, here’s one of my pet peeves: in this screenshot there are what looks like radio buttons— but they actually function like checkboxes. This is so unnecessarily confusing— it’s design 101 stuff!

Checkboxes that look like radio buttons.

Right: Checkboxes that look like radio buttons.

Overall Moonfruit’s user experience is outdated and lacks thoughtfulness. This makes it unnecessarily challenging to understand and use.

Website Editor

Right: Website Editor

Features Info

  • Blog

    You can write posts, save drafts, tag posts, set publishing dates for posts, allow comments and more. So there’s features and functionality to create a blog. Unfortunately the blog looks pretty poor.  Show Screenshot

  • Ecommerce

    Moonfruit provides the basics, but not enough for me to say it offers full ecommerce. For example, you can create products with variations, put those products in categories, set promo codes and customize basic shipping settings. But unfortunately there’s not much beyond that— for example you’re limited to Paypal Express for payment gateways (which means the checkout system will always be off of your website) and you can’t customize the email receipts customers get.  Show Screenshot

  • Form Builder

    It’s a bit confusing to use (took me a few minutes to figure out how to add new fields) but it works. You can add text fields, checkboxes, radio buttons, dropdowns and even let users upload files. Forms are sent to an email address (but don’t delete that email because form submissions aren’t saved elsewhere) and there isn’t a way to customize the form success message.  Show Screenshot

  • iOS & Android Apps

    No.  

  • Retina Ready

    No. (Example: photo gallery images appear blurry on retina screens.)  

  • Newsletter

    No widgets that integrate with mailing list services such as Mailchimp or Constant Contact.  

  • Membership System

    No.  

  • Design from Scratch

    By deleting everything from the Page Master, you can start a website from scratch. Moonfruit includes 12 navigation menus that you customize as a starting point.  Show Screenshot

  • Multi-lingual

    No.  

  • Restaurant Menu

    No.  

  • Donations

    No.  

  • Audio Player

    There is a Soundcloud widget but no official Moonfruit audio player.  

  • Podcasts

    No.  

Themes Info

The first step in building a Moonfruit website is selecting a theme. Unfortunately the only way to change your theme once it's selected is to delete your site and start again! This is a poor workflow ... most people will want to test several themes before choosing one, but Moonfruit locks them into one!

Example Theme

Right: Example Theme

Most themes are pretty typical. There’s around 50 different themes to choose from.

Unfortunately all images were broken when I tested this theme…

Right: Unfortunately all images were broken when I tested this theme…

None of the themes are responsive. Instead Moonfruit has a mobile theme that they looks the same for every template— unfortunately this mobile theme looks really bad. It’s really bare-bones and only has 6 color options to choose from if you want to customize it.

Editing the mobile theme.

Right: Editing the mobile theme.

Billing Practices: Good


I was able to pay and cancel Moonfruit with ease using a quick, simple web-based interface.



Examples Real, live Moonfruit sites.

Pricing


Plan Term Domain Name Total info

By Steve Benjamins

I founded Site Builder Report in 2012 to help people find the best website builder. In my spare time I make music (check it out!). You can also follow me on Twitter here.

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