1. SquarespaceTry Squarespace
If you're looking for beautiful themes... Wix actually offers more themes (500+) than Squarespace (70+) but Squarespace has some of the best themes of any website builder. Squarespace themes all share a similar look and feel: they're spacious and bold, with plenty of white-space for showcasing photography. Squarespace themes work especially well for weddings, ecommerce, blogging, fashion and music.
If you like the look of the below example— you'll probably want to check out more Squarespace themes.
2. WordpressTry Wordpress
If you need an unconventional feature... Wordpress isn't a website builder like Wix. Instead it's an open source, Content Management System (or CMS). CMS's like Wordpress have a steeper learning curve but are much more flexible.
The reason Wordpress is so flexible is the community behind it: thousands of developers contribute free plugins (50,000+) and themes (+11,000+)— so there are themes and plugins for just about anything you can think of.
The only downside? Occasionally you may need to hop into code to debug themes and plugins that aren't compatible (this is why people often hire Wordpress developers). But overall, the sheer breadth of options means that if Wix doesn't support your desired feature, Wordpress probably does.
3. ShopifyTry Shopify
If you need sophisticated ecommerce... Wix is meant for building many different types of websites— real estate, non-profits, ecommerce, photography, small business and more. Shopify is different. Shopify is only meant for ecommerce websites. According to my survey of ecommerce website owners, Shopify is the number one tool for ecommerce websites by customer satisfaction.
What really sets Shopify apart is it's App Store— which is home to thousands of apps you can install to extend your core Shopify store. I use the App Store for almost every Shopify store I build— and it's often been a lifesaver. You can find apps for just about anything.
4. FormatTry Format
For photography websites... If you're a photography you may want to check out Format. Like Shopify, Format was created for one type of website: photography websites— and it's uniquely suited for building them. Among photography website builders, Format is rated the highest in customer satisfaction.
Format is easy to use, offers LightRoom integrations, proofing features and themes that are designed to showcase photos.
Browsing Format themes.
5. WeeblyTry Weebly
If you want something free... Wix offers a free plan but it wouldn't be my first choice for a free website. It includes an advertisement that scrolls alongside your website (see below), has a low bandwidth limit (500 MB) and the free subdomain is quite clunky (
Wix includes an ad that scrolls alongside free websites.
Weebly has a much better free plan. It has unlimited bandwidth, basic ecommerce and a solid subdomain (
yoursite.weebly.com). Weebly does include an ad on free websites but it's not as intrusive as Wix (and almost all free website builders have ads, so you just have to live with that.)
This ad scrolls along free Weebly websites— it's smaller than the ad on free Wix websites.
Weebly is also what I recommend if you want something easy to use. If you find Wix to be a bit confusing and chaotic, you'll likely find Weebly a bit friendlier. The interface is clear and simple. Everything feels within arms reach. It's what I recommend to people who don't feel tech savvy.
6. WebflowTry Webflow
If you want to design your own themes... Webflow isn't a website builder and it isn't a CMS. Instead, it's in it's own category— I call it a front end design tool. Basically Webflow gives you a high degree of control over design. It's not quite coding, but it's got a code-like interface (similar to something like Photoshop).
Try Webflow if you're finding Wix too constricting.