Top 17 best free website makers in 2020. Create your website or a free online shop
In case you are not sure if you should invest your money to set up your company’s website or maybe even start an online business from home, I would suggest you hit the ground running with a free online shop or a free website. In this post I would like to share my experience and know-how about free website builders, look at some of free website pros and cons and in conclusion give you a list of top 17 best free website makers in 2020 according to my personal experience. I hope this will help in your journey of transforming ideas into a thriving business.
A free website maker vs Custom design & development
Hiring a custom designer and developer who will do everything as you need, like and want can easily cost you 1500 EUR and that’s considering your desires are quite modest. And once you have launched your project – you still might require some additional changes and improvements that will cost you some additional chips.
Website builders on the other hand are very affordable or come free which in turn allow you to save money and save nerves managing the project. You also won’t have to worry to keep up with the latest software and security updates since website builders are maintained by their developers.
We all want customized, tailored and personalized products, but when it comes to business, money and being reasonable, it is better to start off smart. Do a research, some data analysis, create a prototype or a free website – in other words invest as little money as possible until you have a solid proof of concept. If you are not 100% sure of your online business idea – don’t go all in and burn your funds.
When and why should I use a free website maker?
A free website builder is an excellent tool when you are running on a tight budget and would like to start an online business from home or experiment with an idea that is messing with your mind. Yes, it will take you some time to set the free website up and get to know how it works but it will be a lot easier, way faster and much cheaper than hiring somebody for the mission.
Here are some of the ideas where a website builder would be a perfect tool:
- A small business you would like to start or test, for example, a small café, a restaurant to receive reservations or an online store.
- A free portfolio website for artists, musicians, freelancers and photographers.
- A short-term project or a personal event like a website for wedding. It will allow you to create a free website or a website for a fraction of the amount and time you would invest in custom development.
- A free blog when you are planning to try your hand at writing some great content and making some green with Affiliate marketing.
And as a cool bonus, after you will have launched your project using a free website maker, you will not only have a chance to make more money, you will also know a lot more on how the online business, marketing works, how to improve SEO discoverability and most importantly will allow you to understand if you really must invest in a custom development and what should your professional business website look like.
Pros and Cons of a free website maker
Now let’s look at pros and cons of free website maker and online store builder. Let’s start by looking at the pros:
- A free website with a free website hosting. What’s not to love when you can present yourself or your business and save some ching ching.
- Simplicity and speed. Online website builders are very easy to grasp and allow to create your free online shop or website in a couple of hours.
- No development skills required. Website builders have an easy to use drag & drop interface
- Free website design. Website makers come with a lot of beautiful and free web design templates you can choose form.
- A free ecommerce website. Majority of website makers offer an easy to setup and use ecommerce platform to start selling right away.
- Security and updates. The best free website builders are safe and secure since their development teams invest a lot of time and effort maintaining the product and keep it in line with the latest security requirements.
- SEO friendly. SEO has always played a major role online business and driving traffic to websites. Website builders usually come with a SEO friendly design meaning that you won’t have to fight with your hired developer over these issues.
- Ability to grow and learn along the way. With a free website you will be able to slowly dive into the world of internet and get acquainted with how it all works.
- Use your domain name. For a small fee you will be able to connect your custom domain name, so you don’t have to use a subdomain.
And now let’s look at the cons of a free website maker:
- Limited customization. Even though website makers are advanced and have greatly evolved, they still can only go as far as their product features allow. If the functionality you require isn’t in the list – you will have to figure out an alternative solution using the existing construction blocks of the product.
- Website design based on a template. If you can see use the free web design template – so can everybody else. This means that somebody else’s website may look and feel the same as yours.
- Mandatory ads. If you choose to create a website for free, you may see ads on your website. This is how the free website maker earns money if you choose not to pay for the services they provide. This can be avoided if you select a paid plan.
- Requires setup time. As with anything that’s new – you will have to invest some of your time to learn, get acquainted with the tool and input your information, images, videos etc.
- Limited support. Not with all the free website constructors, but some provide support only if you sign up for a premium plan.
- Limited online store products. If you have setup a free online shop to run your online business from home, chances are you will only be allowed to display 5 products. You will be able to remove this limitation by upgrading your plan.
As you can see, there are some positive as well as negative features in using a free website maker. You must decide if this is something you can go along with or if you would prefer a custom developer and designer hired. And now allow me to present you a list of top 17 best free website makers in 2020 according to my own judgement.
Top 17 best free website makers in 2020
I have assembled a list of the best tools available in 2020 to create a free website using online tools. I may earn a commission if you end up purchasing a website maker using these links but there is no extra cost in it for you. I have tested each tool myself and present only those that I have found feature full, easy to use and free or cheap.
According to builtwith.com, WordPress is the number 1 content management system used today and it’s easy to see why. It’s an open source solution with a community exceeding one million active developers who create new free and premium plugins, free web templates as well as premium ones and offer custom development solutions daily.
At this moment there are more than 55 000 free plugins that will enable you to create almost any website you might require be it a restaurant, portfolio, hotel website, or online ecommerce business. The plugins are free, ready made solutions allowing you to get the required functionality fast (install and activate) and without the requirement for any development. Getting started with WordPress is a piece of cake since there’s tons of information, documentation and video tutorials available online and the platform itself is user friendly and intuitive. In my opinion this is the best free website builder out there today.
Webnode offers to create a website for free in just a couple of hours. I know that they are saying that you can do it in minutes, but it took some time for me to enter all my data, content, images, create pages etc. Anyways, the visual website building tool is very nice and user friendly – forget about hiring a custom designer and developer with this free website maker.
Strikingly allows to create your own website using multiple different design templates. This free website maker will allow to use their hosting and provide you with a subdomain that you will be able to upgrade to a domain of your own for free during the first year. Here you will also be able to create a free online shop with a limit of 5 products. If after some point you reach a certain clarity if your business idea is worthwhile – you can easily upgrade your account to a premium one and remove all of the limitations the free version has.
Main advantage and difference of Constant Contact their use of Artificial Intelligence or AI in the website builder. It will take advantage of your answers and try to provide you with the best design solution, images and content that you will be able to easily adjust and customize where necessary. A free SSL certificate, free hosting, 24/7 support, unlimited disc space and many more features you can use to create a website for free. Besides, they also offer a great feature – design protection which makes sure that your website always looks great across different devices. Oh, and if ecommerce is what you are looking for – they’ve got you covered here as well 😊
Site123 free website maker allows to use their constructor that has some awesome and easy to use drag & drop features. Even though the free version is a bit limited, you will still be able to understand what it holds and launch your online business from home. They also come with a database of more than 200 different web design templates that you can pick and quickly apply to add some flavor to your website. All design templates are said to be responsive design ready meaning they will automatically adapt to different screen sizes and will look amazing even on your phone.
Webstarts offers to create and setup a free website, blog or ecommerce store by picking a ready-made design template. This will allow you to hit the ground running quite quickly and in case you stumble upon something – you can take advantage of their support who will help you in solving your issue.
Voog is a startup that originates in Estonia and offers to create both websites and online stores. It’s a CMS that is very easy to learn and use and is said to be one of the best website builders for websites with multiple languages. They have made sure also that the result you create is SEO friendly and ready to be boosted for good search results. All in all – an excellent and very beautiful website builder that empower you to start online business from home.
Jimdo comes with a beautiful website of their won and offers a product that is beautiful and user friendly so you wouldn’t worry about finding designers nor developers. You will be able to quickly create a free website with Jimdo subdomain to see if this is something you feel comfortable with going further.
Besides feature rich website customization and building options Jimdo also offers to use another great feature they have developed – create your logo using smart and easy to use logo builder. A great place to start experimenting with your brand and building your online business.
Are you looking to start your restaurant, catering service or a cafe? This online website creator is made exactly for you by a dedicated team specializing in this industry. Creators of LetsEat have extensive knowledge in the restaurant business, they know what the main challenges are each company starting off in this niche faces. They understand that a person running this business doesn’t have the time and money to hire custom development team for something that has been made over and over again for every cafeteria and restaurant in the world. Why spend that much money if you can simply use a website builder that comes with all of the essential features that a catering business might need?!
LetsEat allows to accept online reservations, publish your menu, promote events, accept online orders, collect customer feedback, integrate Google maps, add coupons, add image gallery and more. Everything is very simple and in the same time functional. Nothing more, nothing less. The only unfortunate thing about them is that they do not offer a free plan, only a 14-day free trial.
As was the case with the previous website builder, Moonfruit also offers a free trial to test out their proposed version of website development. As many in our list, Moonfruit is offering responsive design out of the box meaning whatever you create will look great across different screen sizes including your mobile. Beautiful design templates come included as well as option to modify them. You may take advantage of Google web friendly fonts which will allow you to stand out a bit more and add a pinch of character to your business. Besides that, you can animate parts of your website. They have quite long list of cool features, so I suggest you to check them out yourself.
Yola is in the free website maker business for over a decade and that says a lot about a company. The free plan will allow you to create up to 2 free websites each having up to 3 unique pages. They will be SEO ready and prepared according to the guidelines available online. You can choose to create each of your free websites in up to 6 different languages and pick from a gallery of free web templates. And once you feel that you are on the right track with your online business – you can upgrade your plan and extend available features.
12. Google sites
Google is one of the best-known brands in the world with so many products on the market it hard to keep up with them. And for many years now they allow to create a website for free using their website constructor service. Maybe it is not super fancy and filled with many cool features, but it gives you the essentials – a user friendly interface where you can drag and drop blocks, add content, images, links, change colors and fonts and launch a free wedding website or host an event for your friends if you will.
Webs launched by 3 brothers in the early 2001 with a mission to make website development simpler, cheaper, faster and more accessible to anyone without the requirement coding skills. Since those days they have gone a long way and have evolved into a great free website maker with drag and drop blocks, free design templates, customization options and a simple to user interface.
If you are a student, an artist or a non-profit organization then this free website maker is an excellent choice for you. It not just allows to construct your own website – they allow to connect your first level domain name which is something you don’t get anywhere else for free, offer a free hosting server, no ads, option to start selling using their online store module and access to all design themes. Really impressed by this constructor.
Weebly is a professional website development tool allowing to create a free website as well however it will be a bit limited and will hold only basic tools, but this way you will be able to understand what it provides. If you decide to go with a premium version after some time – you will have a vast amount of customization options and possibilities here including detailed documentation, tutorials and manuals, professional design templates which are organized in various categories (online store, business, portfolio, personal, blog, event). It’s also SEO friendly option to start your online business from home.
Mozello is a small company based in Latvia that specializes in website development and believes that everyone should have a chance of having a business website or an online store without having to spend a lot of money on developers or time learning to code. I love the ascetic design they are presenting themselves as well as their free website maker. The free plan offers to sell up to 5 different products, use their hosting and a free subdomain.
I’m quite sure you have noticed Wix ads online before your YouTube videos at some point and they definitely are throwing a lot of green in marketing, but they definitely are a big player in this website constructor game as well as Shopify. Wix is in this game since those days when Flash was still a thing and every cool website had to be built with it. Since then they have transformed their website maker and now it follows the best web development practices. Thanks to its marketing investments this is one of the most known brands in website construction with rich features and impressive design templates with background video usage, animations etc. And for those who are looking for a new logo or logo improvements, Wix has it covered.
And this concludes my list of 17 best free website makers in 2020. I strongly suggest you check them out and decide for yourself which works best for you. Before you go all in it’s better to play around with your ideas and to get a proof of concept. This way you will have both knowledge how things work and confidence in your business potential.
You’re welcome to share your thoughts and comments below.