Shaun is a Growth Marketer at Lean Labs, working with deserving brands to create, implement, and optimize proven growth strategies.
7 Best Wix Alternatives for Building Profitable Websites
It’s no secret that Wix is one of the most popular website builders for creating a website without knowing how to code (phew). Wix even hosts your site.
Because it’s user-friendly and offers a range of free and premium plans to suit any sized business, it’s the platform of choice for people who don’t want to get involved in the technical side of things.
However, Wix is not the only solution for your company—depending on your needs, it may not even be the best choice. This post will look at alternative website builders so you can make an informed decision and build a profitable website.
Related: Six Best Tools for Creating Websites That Convert
Building a Profitable Website: 7 Top Wix Alternatives
If you need a website and want to control what it looks like and how it’s built, but you don’t have coding skills, Wix might just be for you.
Wix is an all-in-one platform that provides the tools and software to build a great website. It’s hosted on the cloud, so you won’t need to install any software, and you don’t have to buy hosting.
Wix is flexible, and you have a lot of control. There are numerous widgets and hundreds of templates for specific business use cases. Uptime and customer support are excellent. There are e-commerce tools, and they even have a free service tier.
There are some drawbacks to Wix too. The drag and drop designs limit creativity, and once you’ve chosen your initial Wix template, you can’t switch to a new one. There are quite a few complaints of slow site-loading and less-than-ideal mobile responsiveness. While Wix is simple and easy to use, it doesn’t scale well.
Wix isn’t the only intuitive and customizable website builder out there. We’ll break down the alternatives by features, pros and cons, what customers say, and pricing so you can decide which one is the right fit for your business.
The Best Wix Alternatives
- HubSpot – best for marketers and SMBs
- Squarespace – best for simple design
- GoDaddy – best for ease-of-use
- WordPress – best for people with coding experience
- Weebly – best for beginners
- Shopify – best for e-commerce businesses
- Google Sites – best for businesses on a budget
Hubspot's Free CMS Tools
HubSpot describes its website builder as “a fully integrated proprietary content management system”. It’s designed for marketers, developers, and IT professionals who want to build more complex, secure sites than Wix.
You can easily create and manage website pages personalized for different visitors. Developers can be creative with flexible themes and content structures, and marketers can easily create and edit pages independently.
There are conversion-optimized and customizable templates to build a website quickly, and it seamlessly integrates with the HubSpot CRM so you can leverage customer data.
- An easy-to-use drag-and-drop editor
- Access to Marketplace for themes and apps
- SEO recommendations
- A CRM platform to deliver a personalized digital experience to your users.
The Hubspot team recognizes that WordPress is the most popular website builder. A free WordPress plugin lets you combine the power of HubSpot’s marketing tools with WordPress, so you get the best of both worlds.
Hubspot Starter is more expensive than Wix and other platforms due to advanced functionality and security features. Advanced functionality also comes with a steep learning curve that people without HubSpot experience might find overwhelming.
Fortunately, Hubspot recently came out with a free version of their powerful CMS, called “Hubspot Free CMS Tools”.
What customers say:
Ease of use: “Intuitive drag & drop webpage modules that are easy to configure. I used a free theme that I can easily build on. I have been using WordPress for many years, and I find the Hubspot CMS far easier to set up and customize.”
Support: “The HubSpot support and the forums are extraordinarily beneficial. I can find answers to almost everything, and when I can’t, HubBot helps, and I get a phone call from a support engineer in 5 minutes or fewer.”
Overwhelm: “HubSpot CMS is very, very powerful. There is a learning curve, so we hired a consultant.”
- CMS Hub Professional: $300 per month
- CMS Hub Enterprise: $900 per month
- Hubspot Free CMS Tools: Free!
- There are more products available at various tiers and prices
If Wix is the market leader for DIY websites, Squarespace comes a close second. It’s similar to Wix in many ways, including its functionality as a drag-and-drop editor, but Squarespace is slightly more advanced and has a steeper learning curve.
There are fewer templates than Wix, but Squarespace’s templates are award-winning and highly customizable, allowing for a better design experience. You can create custom content types and multi-column layouts, and unlike Wix, you can install more than one temple and work on multiple designs simultaneously.
Squarespace emphasizes design, mobile responsiveness, and speed. While you can create custom templates and a faster site, there aren’t any extensions available, so you’re limited to the features that Squarespace provides.
Design: “Beautiful pre-designed templates that are ready to use. I also love how easy it is to customize the designs and make them your own.”
Ease: “Ease of use. Ease of maintenance. No headache of updates & security. Custom code/features fit great with inbuilt features.”
Too Square: “Even though the base templates have many options, I feel like every single Squarespace site I have seen has looked generally the same, which means that a website won’t stand out as much.”
- Personal: $12/month
- Business: $18/month
- Basic Commerce: $26/month
- Advanced Commerce: $40/month
- No free version (but there is a 14-day trial available)
GoDaddy Website Builder
GoDaddy has been in the internet game since the nineties, but its foray into the website building is more recent. If you think Wix and Squarespace are easy, wait until you try GoDaddy. They have hundreds of pre-designed templates ready-made; all you need to do is create the content and drop it in.
Thanks to the Over app, you can create branded content for your website and social media platforms, which is excellent for ambitious marketers and business owners planning an omnichannel approach.
If you’re an entrepreneur looking to start small and build your website quickly, GoDaddy might be the way to go.
GoDaddy also provides hosting and domains at an additional cost.
However, with simplicity comes a lack of customization and SEO features. Some features hurt SEO. For example, it will auto-generate new URLs whenever you tweak your page titles. This can create a string of redirects which hurts SEO. There are no apps or extensions available.
Beginners: “The platform is easy to use and is beginner-friendly. Also, the templates are nice looking, so your website looks professional. I can also integrate my site with PayPal and sell my products.”
Low cost: “When I first began building my website, I hired a designer who ended up being out of my budget. Godaddy website builder and hosting options allowed me to design my own site for my business within a few days, and it looks great.”
Lack of customization: “Trade-off with templates is the inability to customize. But for a quick and good-looking website, it’s a great option.”
- Basic: $9.99/month
- Standard: $14.99/month
- Premium: $19.99/month
- Ecommerce: $24.99/month
- 30-day Free Trial
WordPress is a giant in the world of website building. In fact WordPress powers almost 40% of all websites on the planet. More advanced than Wix, WordPress gives you the ability to build elaborate and fully-customized websites. It is less user-friendly, though.
More for bloggers, WordPress offers over 3,000 free blogging themes, a drag-and-drop blog editor, and with a plugin, you can edit the source code and create precisely the blog you want. It even integrates with HubSpot.
WordPress supports many third-party apps that you download and plug in, and its features are constantly expanding.
Its steep learning curve isn’t ideal for beginners and people who need a functioning site quickly. It will take much longer than Wix to create a site. Unfortunately, you also have to find and set up your hosting and domain.
Feature-rich: “If you’re looking for a multi-purpose CMS, this is for you. You can use WordPress as per your need. You can even make a static website or dynamic website. It supports 3rd party plugins.”
Flexibility: “The flexibility of WordPress is the best thing. It can be modified in any way that anyone needs. I use WordPress for an eCommerce business and use it as POS software for my store.”
Security: “One thing that WordPress doesn’t have is its own security tool built-in. As it is open-source, it’s more vulnerable to hackers. I need to purchase a security and firewall plugin to protect my site.”
- Technically free, but you’ll need to pay for a domain name, hosting, and any premium plugins or themes you want to install.
Weebly is great for shop owners on a budget. It’s another middle-ground site builder that beginners will love but will also satisfy experts with advanced features. It has basic eCommerce features, including a shopping cart, eCommerce inventory management, coupons, and an automatic tax calculator.
It does have fewer customization options, but there are still enough to build your site the way you want it. The designs do lean towards e-commerce. There are fewer templates, and it lacks key features like an undo button.
It starts free, but it’s ad-supported, and you have to use a Weebly subdomain.
Ease of use: “The best feature is editing the website. I’ve had trouble editing websites in the past, but this makes it so much easier. I like that it shows you exactly where you can drag and drop widgets or other sections on a page.”
Intuitive: “I have used Weebly for years, have created multiple websites with their platform, and LOVE the free options. The customer service is amazing, and the ease of use for building a drag-and-drop e-commerce platform is unparalleled.”
Customer support: “There is no live support to chat with when you have an urgent issue with your page, you have to go and post a comment or request to the community and then wait for a reply, and you sometimes wait days and don’t receive a satisfactory answer to your problem.”
- Free: $0 (includes ads)
- Connect: $8/month (includes ads)
- Pro: $12/month
- Business: $25/month
Shopify is another Wix alternative that focuses on e-commerce. It has features and extensions to help your e-commerce business scale beyond standard features like secure payment options, customizable templates, and inventory management tools.
For example, Shopify Payments enables you to process credit card payments on your site with no transaction fees.
Its cloud-based infrastructure promises a 99.99% overall uptime, and your site will be fast, secure, and efficient. There are many built-in tools and integrations that you can customize. However, with so many features, you might not use all of them, and it can be challenging to learn and adopt.
Because it’s so focused on e-commerce, there isn’t a feature-rich content management system, so publishing content is less intuitive and robust.
Integrations: “All the integrations that can be acquired via Shopify and the ease of use to start an online store make it the best solution for someone who wants to start selling services or products today online.”
Support: “Shopify plus is extremely dynamic, easy to use, easy to scale, and comes with their highest tiered support team, which is an incredible asset.”
App-heavy: “Shopify does rely heavily on apps which brings additional costs. Most apps serve a specific purpose and are not customizable on the front end.”
- Shopify Lite: $9/month
- Basic Shopify: $29/month
- Shopify: $79/month
- Advanced Shopify: $299/month
As an alternative to Wix, GoogleSites is ideal for small businesses on a budget. It’s easy to learn and use if you already use Google Docs, Gmail, Drive, and Forms, and you can integrate content into your site in a few clicks.
It has free templates, and you can customize a few basic things like colors, typography, and layout using a sleek editor. Its template selection is much more limited than Wix’s, as is the built-in functionality. It also doesn’t have any add-ons or third-party extensions like Wix.
It’s secure thanks to Google’s robust security features, and it’s easy to collaborate with other Google users linked to your account.
Naturally, with less customization and limited features, those looking for more flexibility and power will be frustrated, but small businesses that need a basic site might prefer simplicity.
What customers say:
It’s pretty hard to find direct reviews of Google Sites as it’s part of the many apps included in Google Workspace. Most reviews are about Google in general. After some detective work on forums, we did find that most Google Sites users liked the simplicity of the platform, the ease of integration in the Google space, and that it’s free. Many users are frustrated with the lack of blogging or e-commerce features.
- It’s free! You just need a Google account.
Our Pick for the Best Wix Alternative
You have a range of options for creating a killer website. You might want an easy ride with a hosted site like Squarespace, a free option like Weebly, an e-commerce site like Shopify, or an all-in-one solution like CMS Hub.
The right option for your business depends on how much you want to invest, who will be using and running your site, and what technical skills they have.
We trust HubSpot and their all-in-one website and marketing platform to deliver results. The platform scales with you from Startup to Enterprise, and with the right strategy, you’ll purchase a suite of tools that you’ll actually use. With the right guidance, you’ll save money and add tools as and when you need to.
If price is something you’re concerned about, check out our HubSpot Savings Guide and save up to 60% in your first year.
Lean Labs have a lot of experience building conversion-optimized and beautifully-styled websites. We even built a Hubspot app, Sprocket Rocket, which powers the HubSpot website design tool, helping companies build their website with easy-to-assemble modules regardless of coding skills or design know-how.
Are you looking to build an effective, profitable website? Check out our Website Launch Kit to build your website with confidence.
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