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Using A Free Website Builder?

Are you looking at setting up a website for your business?
Considering using a website builder like Wix or Squarespace?
Do you understand the disadvantages and limitations of using these platforms?

Website builders can certainly help you build a website relatively cheap (or FREE!!), but most still require you have some additional knowledge to get the website to perform well.

These are a few things to consider before going this route.


1. Mobile Responsiveness

Why is this so important??

- Search Engine Ranking Factor
Google and all other players in the search engine realm have made mobile responsiveness a critical requirement when ranking websites because mobile viewing of websites has finally surpassed desktop browsing as of 2016. Over 70% of internet users view websites on their mobile devices.

- User Experience
Website builders give you a limited or no access to the actual code that is required to make the fine tweaks to how your website renders on different screen sizes. You are restricted to their mobile built-in mobile rendering which does not always translate your content and design into an ideal look and feel, leading to a poor user experience.

2. Design Flaws

While most website builders allow you a preview of the website before you publish, it rarely looks exactly like the preview resulting in poor quality design. Unfortunately, you are limited to the capabilities of the website builder.

3. Feature Limitation

Need your website to perform a certain task like verifying a users age or dynamically display information based on a user's requirements?
Well, all website builders are limited to the features it has built into it. If it doesn't have the feature you require, you are out of luck... you could try another website builder but would that have all the features you require?
When coding a website from scratch you can develop any feature or function you require.

4. Cookie-cutter Templates

Most of these platforms offer a selection of cookie-cutter templates for you to choose from. This may seem convenient in the beginning but it limits you from deviating from the original template design leaving your website looking exactly like other business using this template.

When coding a website from scratch there is no template.

Your website is uniquely built according to your branding and business requirements.


5. Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)

Most website builders don't offer SEO when creating your website.There is no functionality to add or tweak your SEO which is needed for your website to perform well on search engines. A part of SEO optimization requires a lot of back-end coding elements (Meta Tags, Schema etc).
So it may be easy or cheap to build a website on these platforms but whats the point if you cant be found on Google?

So should you use a Website Builder?
A website builder may help you create a website quick and cheap and this can be an OK starting point if you on a very limited budget.

However, website builders lack the ability to create a unique, functional and SEO friendly website that will give a competitive edge.

In Short, Website builders won't get you there.