The Best Places to Build Free Websites
My Favorite Free Website Platforms
While I’m not an expert on all of the free website platforms out there, I’ve tried a handful of them, and I can tell you some pros and cons of each, if you’re interested.
My favorites by far are Weebly and Wix, though recently Weebly is putting a robot on all the new free pages, so that search engines can’t find them! So my theory is…why bother? I have 17 websites on Weebly. All are free, except for one, where I pay for the domain only, but use a free site. Now Weebly is even making it so if you pay for the domain only, you’r site won’t be found, so why bother? I have one free one that is being affected by this robot, and the only time I get any traffic from it is when I update and share it on social sites. Other than that….nothing.
Some of my free Weebly sites get decent traffic, and even a few sales throughout each year, but some don’t get much at all. Keep in mind I have seen people who upgrade and use only paid Weebly sites, and many of their sites weren’t getting any more traffic or sales than mine, so really it comes down to a good topic that people want, and sharing the heck out of your work.
My second favorite that is quickly becoming my #1 favorite is Wix. Once I figured out to incorporate HTML codes into the site, I’m loving it!
I’ll tell you more about each site below, and others that I’ve tried, then I’ll share some of my site links from each, so you can see what a website can look like on some of these platforms.
And if you have a favorite platform you enjoy, please share it in the comments below.
Weebly allows 10 free sites per email address. I have two different Weebly accounts each with numerous free sites.
Here’s what Wikipedia says about Weebly.com: “Weebly is a web-hosting service featuring a drag-and-drop website builder. As of August 2012, Weebly hosts over 20 million sites with a monthly rate of over 1 million unique visitors. The company is headquartered in San Francisco. The company was founded by chief executive officer (CEO) David Rusenko, chief technology officer (CTO) Chris Fanini, and chief operating officer (COO) Dan Veltri. The startup competes with Wix.com, Webs, WordPress.com, Squarespace.com, Jimdo, Yola, SnapPages, and other web-hosting and creation websites.
PROS: 1. It’s easy to login in and out of each site.
2. Weebly is user-friendly. You simply drag the boxes to where you want them on the page, click on them, and edit them to your liking.
3. Customer services is very good. Chat online or call them, and they are usually quite helpful and accommodating.
4. The websites have a nice look.
CONS: 1. Robots on free sites block the site from being found by search engines. This is something that started in February, 2016, and it has killed traffic on new sites. Weebly has admitted they did this, because they want people to upgrade and pay for their services. I personally would rather see them advertise on my free sites than to do this. I will not build anymore free sites on Weebly, and that is disheartening to me.
2. They, like any other place, do have some glitches that make the site bounce around when editing. Not all the time, but it does happen. You just have to be patient. They usually work themselves out in a day or two.
3. Free sites are limited to 10 pages. If you need more pages on your site, you will need to upgrade.
A great way to get started. Connect your own domain, expanded statistics, and premium support.
Includes a 1 year FREE domain. $5.00 per month with minimum 6/mos. billed.
Professional multimedia features, powerful site search, and password protection to help your site stand out.
Includes a 1 year FREE domain. $9.00 per month with minimum 6/mos. billed.
Fully integrated eCommerce and shopping cart. All of our available features. The complete package.
Includes a 1 year FREE domain. $21.00 per month with minimum 6/mos. billed.
So the cheapest you’ll now get is $49.99 for 6 months for the starter. They have been raising prices regularly, though, so this could change at the drop of a hat. And I’m not sure the starter will be found in the search engines…you could ask before you order.
My Top Websites on Weebly
I have 17 websites on Weebly. These are my best performers. I do pay for the Home Focal Points URL, but the others have Weebly in the URL.
I built my first site on Wix in 2013, and just recently went back and overhauled it completely. At first I could not find any way to add HTML. I don’t know whether this was ignorance on my part, or whether they recently changed it to allow you to use code. As an Affiliate Marketer, I like to build product displays and add them to my sites. They offer products to potential customers in an organized, pretty fashion, and they make shopping easy for people, too so the HTML option is a huge plus for me.
I have not used Wix enough to know if they limit the amount of free sites per account, or if they limit the amount of pages on each site, and I cannot find that information anywhere. You could probably contact them and find out, if you feel it might be an issue or concern for you.
Here’s what Wikipedia says about Wix.com: Wix.com is a cloud-based web development platform that allows users to create HTML5 web sites and mobile sites through the use of their online drag and drop tools. Users may add functionalities such as social plug-ins, e-commerce, contact forms, e-mail marketing, and community forums to their web sites using a variety of Wix-developed and third-party applications.
Wix is built on a freemium business model, earning its revenues through premium upgrades. Users must purchase premium packages in order to connect their sites to their own domains, remove Wix ads, add e-commerce capabilities, buy extra data storage and bandwidth, and more.
PROS: 1. They offer so many GREAT options to include on your site! Shapes, Apps, Music Options, Images, Text, Various Title types, etc, etc, and you can edit each option to fit your needs. You can change the colors of shapes you choose, and more. I love the options they offer. You can make a totally fun and unique site like no other with Wix. This is the best part about them, in my opinion.
CONS: 1. It takes longer on Wix to build a website than it does on Weebly or Webs. But that’s OK…the outcome will be worth the extra time. Their websites really look nice when finished! It simply takes longer because there are many options to choose from and you can edit fonts, sizes, etc. More choices for you…so that’s a good thing.
2. Learning curve is greater. For me it took a bit longer to learn how to use Wix than it did Weebly or Webs, but well worth the effort! Play around with things until you feel comfortable. Trial and error are the best learning devices.
Upgrade Prices The cheapest is $4.08 per month paid yearly at $49.00/year. This is half the price of Weebly’s cheapest option!
Other upgrades (all billed yearly) include $9.75, $12.92, $16.58 and $24.92.
My Websites on Wix
Webs used to be my choice platform for building websites. I have since deleted all but two from there, because the last couple I built there kept losing my images. They would be there one day, and blank the next. I got tired of editing every day only to have them disappear the next, so I no longer build there, however for some they are a nice option.
Here’s what Wikipedia says about Webs.com: Webs, formerly Freewebs, is a freemium, primarily static site-only web host founded in 2001. The service offers free and premium website hosting plans, and their own templated website building service. Unusually, Webs does not offer any dynamic content support aside from their own dynamic “apps”, despite offering FTP access and allowing HTML uploads.
I know there is a page limit per free site. There never used to be when I first started writing there. I think they limit you to 10 pages, but I’m not certain about that. I also don’t know if they limit the amount of free sites per email address. You would have to check with them, but good luck, because their customer service stinks!
I do like that they allow a monthly payment for their upgrades! The others make you pay 6 months at a time or a year at a time, and Webs offers those options, too, but they also allow for a monthly payment plan.
Their Starter Package is $4.95/month with a $5.00 set up fee (only charged once, not every year). Or you can pay $4.56 month ($49.95/year) or $3.75 month ($89.95 for 2 years).
They also offer an Enhanced Package at $7.50 (if you pay 2 years…more if you don’t), and a Pro Package starting at $16.67 per month (if you pay 2 years).
My Websites on Webs
Other Free Options for Blogs & Websites
1. Many people choose WordPress as their writing platform. I personally think they are difficult and not at all user-friendly, but I have written on free and paid WP platforms, so I am familiar with them. I did have a couple of sites that were $27.00/year a few years back, but I let them drop because they never made money for me. But that was my fault, too, because I didn’t update and market them like they needed. Don’t discount WordPress simply because I don’t prefer them. Give them a try and see for yourself whether or not you like them. You can also do free sites, but they do not welcome affiliate pages, so keep products to a minimum, if you choose a free WP platform. Keep in mind there is a .com and .org.
2. Blogger. Blogger is a nice option for blogs. You can have a certain amount of products on here, but don’t over-do it, because they will delete your site if it’s overly promotional, though some people seem to get away with it more than others.
3. Pen.io. Penio allows you to create a blog or affiliate page (one page at a time…if I remember correctly). You can throw up something pretty quickly, and you have a unique URL per page. I believe you can build unlimited pages all with their own URL.
4. Google Sites: https://sites.google.com. Google Sites is a fun place to build a quick web page or blog. I used them for several pages, but have since moved those pages elsewhere or deleted them due to lack of traffic. I’ll probably try some there again in the future, though.
5. Others. Keep in mind that there are other places that allow you to write for free. I just shared the ones that I am most familiar with, or that I have used in the past.
My Blogs on Blogger
I will be the first to admit…I don’t give much attention to my blogs. With all my websites, web pages, and the work I do for others, it leaves me very little time to blog.
I USE EPD
I used Easy Product Displays (EPD) to build the displays on this page, and to build my content displays for each website. Check them out!