Weebly offers four plans for websites:
While the Free plan is pretty good for a free plan— it lacks when compared to the paid plans. The two big challenges are you can't add a custom domain name (yourdomain.com) and it includes an advertisement for Weebly that scrolls alongside your website— the ad makes it unsuitable for professional websites.
Weebly's free plan includes this ad that scrolls alongside your website.
At the low-price of $7 / month (or $4 / month on annual billing) the Connect plan might be enticing, but it's not a big step up from the free plan— in fact, Connect is really just Free plan, but with the ability to add a custom domain name (the "Connect" in the name literally refers to "connecting" a domain name). This means that the Connect plan still has the Weebly ad from the Free plan (above). This makes it impractical for most professional websites.
The Starter plan is the right choice for most websites. It removes the Weebly ad and lets you access Weebly analytics (though note you can still add Google Analytics in cheaper plans).
The reason to upgrade from the Starter to Pro plan is for better support (Pro offers phone and priority support) and a few advanced features: site search, password protection on pages, video backgrounds, audio and video embedding and a basic version of Weebly's membership system (you'll need to upgrade to the Business plan for the full membership system).
All Weebly plans include ecommerce— even the free plan, though at the time of writing, Weebly doesn't advertise this fact. Despite that, you'll still want to upgrade to one of the online store plans (Business and Performance) for two reasons:
- The online store plans (Business and Performance) are the only plans that don't add a 3% transaction fee on top of your sales.
- The online store plans (Business and Performance) are the only plans to include checkout on your domain name— otherwise checkout is on checkout.weebly.com.
The Business plan will work for most online stores. The upgrade to Performance is to unlock specific features (gift cards, real-time shipping rates, abandoned cart emails) and to add a small amount of email marketing with Weebly Promote. It only includes a maximum of 2,000 free emails per month— so it's hardly a reason to upgrade (a growing store will use those free emails quickly).
Save Money: Annual Plans
Website builders want you to sign up for an annual plan— it signals a commitment that you'll be a customer for a long time. It's why they strongly incentivize annual plans with cheaper pricing and a free domain name (at least for the first year).
So choosing an annual plan can save money— for example, the annual Starter plan is 96% cheaper while the annual Business plan is 46% cheaper:
|Starter||Monthly||$19.95||$14 / Month||$187.95|
|Starter||Annual||$96 / Year||First Year Free||$96||95%|
|Business||Monthly||$19.95||$35 / Month||$439.95|
|Business||Annual||$300 / Year||First Year Free||$300||46%|
Email & Domains
Like most website builders, Weebly is partnered with Google's G Suite to power custom email addresses.
If you'd like to have custom email addresses on your domain (firstname.lastname@example.org) I'd highly recommend G Suite. It's the industry standard. Basically it provides the Gmail interface for your custom email address.
Weebly's pricing on email is the standard G Suite price:
|Term||Price Per Email Address|
|Annual Billing||$50 / €40 / £40 / A$66|
|Monthly Billing||$5 / €4 / £4 / A$7|
Domain names on Weebly are more expensive than you would find at a domain name provider such as Namecheap. Weebly charges $19.95 / year for a domain name, while Namecheap costs around $15 / year.
On top of that, Weebly charges $10 / year for domain privacy and Namecheap includes domain privacy for free. What is domain privacy? Domain names are required to have someone's contact information publicly available— domain privacy allows you to anonymize that information.
The upside of buying your domain name through Weebly is that everything just works automatically— no configuration necessary. But if you'd like to save money, this tutorial outlines the steps for connecting a Namecheap domain name to Weebly.
The prices on Weebly's pricing page are not monthly prices. Instead they are the annual prices divided by twelve. The actual monthly prices can be surprisingly hard to find— so here's what Weebly costs per month:
In higher level plans, Weebly includes membership features that lets users log in to access hidden content. You can manage members in groups and support access based on group. Unfortunately members can't add or edit content on your website— they are limited to viewing only.
The Pro plan allows up to 100 registered members, but you have to add them manually— members can't register themselves.
To unlock member registration you need to upgrade to the Business plan. It includes member registration. You can automatically or manually approve members. It also supports unlimited members.
Phone & Priority Support
If phone support is important to you, Weebly offers it for the Pro, Business and Performance plans.
Is Weebly Free?
In fact, Weebly has the best free plan of any website builder— but be aware, it's free plan is still very limited: you can't add a custom domain name and it includes an advertisement for Weebly that scrolls alongside your website.