Need a new website for your small business or startup? While you’ll want the most attractive and user-friendly site you can muster, you may not have the budget to hire a professional web developer and designer.
Thanks to the proliferation of DIY site builders and additional tools, creating your own website is now quite easy. You’ll just need to find the best tools based on the type and sophistication of website you’re looking to build.
“Almost anybody with no technical experience can get a website up and running today,” says Anthony Harris, director of business development for H2 Digital Creative, a company that consults businesses on their digital presence.
Here are some of the best website builder tools that could help you:
Basic site builders like Wix and Squarespace make designing a business website simple. They guide you through the process, such as choosing a template that provides a consistent look and feel across your site, selecting images and placing copy. They also offer various plug-ins and add-on features that provide additional capabilities or allow for greater site customization. WordPress is also a popular site builder. Each site builder is different and offers its own plug-ins and back-end functionality. WordPress, in particular, is known for being “open source,” meaning other companies develop many tools to use with it—but may require more time and technical know-how. Wix, on the other hand, is more of a one-stop site builder that’s easy to use but does not offer the same number of add-on tools and plug-ins. The pricing structures also vary, so you’ll want to review those before choosing one.
If you’re looking to sell products online, you’ll want a site builder specifically designed for ecommerce. Shopify and BigCommerce are two to consider. They make it easy to add product listings and have a full range of online retail and point-of-sale (POS) features built into their platforms—including online inventory management, payment processing and the ability for customers to enter promo codes. In addition to site builder platforms, there are other apps that allow you to add ecommerce to your website. But they may not provide the same level of integration.
You may need unique features on each page of your website, such as email newsletter sign-up forms, pop-ups or animation. A page builder tool such as Elementor or Beaver Builder (both for WordPress) lets you add customized features to your site without needing to code.
SEO and keyword tools
Make sure you’re using the right words and phrases on your website copy in order to enhance your site’s search visibility. Many site builders have built-in SEO help, but you may want to go beyond that. Yoast SEO, for example, is a WordPress plug-in that allows you to determine the best keywords, create the best page titles and meta titles and descriptions for each page, and overall better integrate keyword usage throughout your website copy. Moz is another SEO tool. Both also include SEO features specific to local businesses particularly looking to improve their local search rankings.
Proofreading and copywriting tools
You can make sure your website copy is grammatical and spelled correctly by installing a proofreading and copywriting suggestion tool such as Grammarly or the Hemmingway App.
One good thing about building your own website is you’ll already be familiar with the platform and tools you used—so you should be ready when you need to make updates to your site.Print this article