Planning to build a website for business or personal use can be overwhelming for those with no knowledge in website design. Thankfully, website builders have made the process much easier for business owners and individuals doing it as a DIY project. Majority of website builders are designed to make website design easy and fast for those that have no money to hire. It is for this reason that free site builders are popular with those looking to create a simple or elaborate website.
Is Using A Free Website Builder Worth It?
When looking for a site builder, it is almost certain that you will go for the free version offered by the provider. Ideally, free website builders are intended to build sign ups on the site and hopefully convert those that show interest to paying customers. Even so, there are reasons why free site builders are not actually “free” and they are listed below.
It is essential to check out as many sites as possible when shopping for a website builder that offers free plans. You can start with sites such as https://www.thetop10sites.com/website-builders/best-free-website-builders.html that provide a list of the websites you need. In most cases, all the free plans offer some features that you can use to start building a site but will require you to upgrade to access the features you need. Some sites restrict the use of specific fonts or templates, while others deny you access to advanced features such as an SSL certificate, plugins and site analytics among others.
Presence Of Company Branding
Free site builders always have their branding displayed on the site after it’s done as a way of directing others to their website to sign up as well. The branding can be displayed at the top or bottom of the site; on web pages or in the body of the text. In some cases, the company logo or watermark is discreet but can still be identified by visitors to the site.
Majority of website builders that offer free plans limit the number of pages that can be created under the free package. In most cases, a website designer is allowed to build five to six pages before they are asked to upgrade to a paid package. A five paged website restricts the amount of content that can be uploaded on the site forcing the owner to sign up for a paid plan.
Restriction In Use Of Domain Name
Websites created using free website builders often have the URL of the company alongside your business or personal name. The domain name often looks a bit unprofessional when compared to websites that have been set up using the required name.
Typically, website builders restrict the amount of bandwidth or storage offered to their members. However, those on the free plan get even less which could be only a few megabytes to use for storage. The limit in storage also affects the number of images that can be uploaded on the site and their quality once they are displayed.
Minimal Or No Customer Service
Support is crucial when creating a site because of the many issues that come up during the process. It is therefore vital to have a customer service team that you can ask to help out when you get stuck. However, with free website builders, customer support may be non-existent or restricted to specific communication channels such as e-mail among others.
Pop Up Advertisements
Some website builders that allow you to create a site at no cost allow ad placements on your site without your consent. The ads can pop up at any time distracting visitors that might be interested in the products and services that are displayed on your website. Also, some of the ads may be lead away from your site making it harder to get the customer or visitor back.
Steps To Creating A Website Using A Free Website Builder
Although website builders that provide free plans have their inhibitions, they are quite ideal for those looking to build an online presence in the short-term. Some of the steps you need to know when developing a site for free include:
Step 1: Sign Up On Your Preferred Website Builder
Website builders are many online with majority offer similar services to those that sign up. However, there are some that offer extra features to their customers as part of the free plan making them worth investing in.
Step 2: Select A Template
Website owners can choose from the templates made available by the site builder to those that have signed up for the free plan. Ensure that the selected template matches the overall theme of the website being created.
Step 3: Add Website Pages
You can build one page or multiple page websites depending on your needs. Most times, you will have at least five pages to use when creating a site using a free website builder. The pages should be enough to display text and images that will be part of the website once it is completed.
Step 4: Tailor-Make Your Content
Ensure that the content on the website is customized to fit the template that you have chosen for the free site. The text and the images should be placed in their respective positions on the site to make it look complete. In some cases, you may need to add or remove content for the entire site to look appealing and professional.
Step 5: Publish Your Website
After looking through some previews of the website and are satisfied with the work you have done, you can publish the site. If there are still some changes needed to make it your perfect site, consider working at the back end until you are satisfied.
Ultimately, the debate on whether free website builders are worth it, is here to stay, with some people encouraging the use of the sites while others preferring the paid options.