Looking for the best website builder for small business?
Having a website is more important now than ever. Your customers are looking for you online, and using social media alone doesn’t give you much control. A website makes your business more professional and gives you more flexibility and options.
But for small businesses on tight budgets, hiring a designer or web developer to build a website can be one expense too much.
And let’s be honest: running your online store takes enough of your bandwidth. Find the time to learn how to code HTML and CSS yourself simply isn’t an option.
That’s why website builder software is so important. Website builders:
- Are a great option for small business owners with budget, skill and time constraints
- Let you create an amazing website really fast at an affordable price
- Allow you to use the money you would have spent on web development to grow your business
Before we jump into our list, let’s answer a common question…
How Do I Create a Professional Website for Free?
It is possible to create a website for free, but it may not look very professional.
When you look deeper, many free website creators aren’t really free because:
- You can’t use your own domain
- Your website is covered in ads you don’t control
- You have to pay for templates and any addons
- You don’t have full control over your site
We DO include a few free website builders in our list below. However, it’s crucial to pay attention to what’s on offer and make sure it fits your needs.
In this roundup, we’ll be looking at the best website builders for small business and we’ve included a handy table of contents. If you’re interested in a specific builder, click the links below to go straight to it:
Best Website Builder for Small Business
- Self-Hosted WordPress: Best choice for any business
- Web.com: Powerful DIY website builder for beginners
- HubSpot Website Builder: Best builder with marketing automation
- Wix: Quick builder with simple templates
- GoDaddy Website Builder: Easy builder to create a simple site
- Gator Website Builder: Simple and budget-friendly builder
- MemberPress: Best membership site builder
- Weebly: Popular simple site builder
- BigCommerce: Best for powerful eCommerce websites
- Squarespace: Popular simple builder with modern designs
You might notice we haven’t included some popular options in our list, such as GoDaddy website builder, Shopify, Jimdo, or Duda. That’s because our list is focused on just the best website builders, not the most popular ones.
How did we choose? Before we get to the website builder reviews, let’s take a look at our requirements. What makes a website builder the best?
Choose the Best Website Builder for Your Needs
The best tool for one business won’t necessarily be the best for everyone. It all depends on your needs when building a website.
So, how do you know which is the best small business website builder for you?
Here are a few of the most important factors to look for:
Affordability: One of the most important factors for small business owners is the price. You need a website builder that’s affordable now, and will still be affordable when your business grows. Think about how your site will evolve as your business grows. Ideally, you should be able to scale up easily when you need to
Ease of use: You’ll also need your website builder to be easy to use and learn, with a wide range of templates for all situations. You should have a hassle-free way to add:
- The basic web pages you need, such as the home page, about page, services page, and contact page
- More complex features like image galleries and video content
- Other website elements that some businesses need or want, like a blog, a booking or reservation system, membership features, or an online store
Search engine friendliness: You’ll also want a website builder that’s search engine-friendly, so your site content appears in search results for your target keywords and helps to attract your target customers.
With these features in mind, we’ve narrowed down our choices for the best website builder for small business.
There’s a reason why a third of the web runs on WordPress and it’s the world’s most popular content management system (CMS). That’s because it’s flexible, scalable and easy to use. We don’t want to jump ahead here, but WordPress is pretty much the best free website builder for small business.
Just so you know, there are actually two versions of WordPress (learn more about the difference between WordPress.org vs WordPress.com here). We recommend the self-hosted version (WordPress.org) as your small business website builder because it’s even more flexible than the other version.
WordPress is open-source and completely free, so it’s available on most web hosting platforms. For example, Bluehost, an official WordPress partner, has a one-click install.
Designing your site is easy, no web designer required, with thousands of pre-made WordPress themes that cover every business niche you can imagine.
It’s easy to customize your layout using theme customization options and widgets. For those who prefer more control, you can integrate WordPress drag and drop page builders. Two of our recommendations are SeedProd, an easy-to-use landing page builder, which costs $39.95 and Beaver Builder (shown below), a live page builder which costs $99 for use on unlimited sites.
WordPress has tens of thousands of plugins to give your website additional functionality. Many of these tools do have Pro plans that are paid, but many offer free versions to let you get started on a budget.
For example, with the right plugin you can add:
- customizable web and contact forms
- Google Analytics
- SEO tools
- eCommerce store with shopping cart
- online courses
- event calendars
- and more…
And while WordPress is popular with bloggers, it isn’t just for blogging. In fact, you can create almost any kind of site with WordPress, whether simple or complex.
Dozens of big-name brands use WordPress, including TechCrunch, The New Yorker, BBC America, and many more.
So WordPress is a great platform for your small business website, both when you first launch your business, and as it grows.
When it comes to growing your website traffic, WordPress makes it easy because it’s search engine-friendly by design. You can also use plugins like All in One SEO to ensure your content follows the best search engine optimization (SEO) practices to rank higher.
This will get you more organic exposure and help build your brand’s online presence.
WordPress integrates with virtually every online platform or tool you might want to use, giving you unlimited flexibility to create websites of all kinds, from content-rich blogs to eCommerce websites with thousands of products. You can even design a custom “coming soon” page using the SeedProd plugin to build your audience before your site even goes live. SeedProd is the best landing page builder for WordPress. It lets you easily create beautiful landing pages using a visual drag and drop builder.
Another big benefit of having a WordPress site is its popularity. Because so many people use WordPress, there’s a huge community and plenty of resources out there if you get stuck and need help when building your website.
That means you’ll have plenty of docs, blogs, tutorials, and community support right at your fingertips.
Check out our top picks for WordPress eCommerce plugins to build your best business.
To install WordPress, you’ll need web hosting services.
Once WordPress is installed, you’re in charge of maintaining your website. That includes backing up your site, keeping themes and plugins up to date, and updating WordPress itself when needed. Some of this has to be done manually, which means another addition to your to-do list.
One way to solve this is by using managed WordPress hosting, which means someone else looks after the technical aspects of running your site, leaving you free to concentrate on running your business.
It’s hard to believe that one of the best website builders for small business is free, but that’s exactly what WordPress is.
While WordPress software itself is free, you’ll need somewhere to install it. That means getting your own domain name and hosting. Domains (such as www.example.com) cost about $14.99 per year and shared hosting costs around $7.99 per month.
But with our recommended host Bluehost, you can get started for just $2.75/month and even get a free domain.
Web.com is an easy-to-use, “do it yourself” (DIY) website builder. It allows anyone to quickly and easily create a professional website, regardless of their technical skills or budget.
That’s because this web builder comes with an intuitive drag and drop builder. Plus, there are tons of website templates that you can use to get started FAST.
These template designs save you time, energy, and headaches as you create a website that’s unique to your brand. That way, you can spend more time focusing on your actual business than wasting hours trying to develop a site.
With all that included, you’d think Web.com would be expensive – but it actually has the lowest starting price of all the website builders on our list, making it ultra-friendly for small businesses on a budget.
Finally, Web.com has a fast and reliable support team in place. This gives beginners more confidence in the platform as they can always reach out for help if they’re feeling “stuck.”
In all, Web.com is an excellent choice for people who need a stunning and professional website and don’t have the budget to hire a developer for help.
The thing that makes Web.com stand out is how user-friendly and affordable it is. When you sign up, your first month is only $1.95, and it comes with a domain name and professional email address.
From there, beginners can choose a template and use the drag and drop builder to customize their site’s layout. The platform doesn’t require any coding experience, so it’s perfect for small businesses with limited resources.
It also comes loaded with tools to help market your site, including resources for SEO and integrations with 3rd-party tools.
Web.com lets you try out their website building software for just $1.95 for the first month, but the price increases a bit after your first month depending on your plan level.
Here is a breakdown of the pricing information we found for each plan:
- Starter: The first month is $1.95, then it becomes $10 every 4 weeks. You can get an annual plan for $50 with your first year, then renewal fees will be $100/year.
- Marketing: The first month is $2.95, then it becomes $15 every 4 weeks. Annual offers start at $75 for the first year and can be renewed for $150/year.
- eCommerce: The first month is $3.95, then it becomes $20 every 4 weeks. Annual offers start at $100 for the first year and can be renewed for $200/year.
HubSpot Website Builder is an easy drag and drop website builder combined with HubSpot’s powerful marketing automation tools and CRM. These tools let you build a website that’s optimized for every device and personalized for every visitor.
You can use pre-built templates to quickly create blog posts, landing pages, site pages, and even emails.
A unique feature about the HubSpot website builder is its adaptive testing. This lets you choose up to 5 different versions of a web page, and HubSpot will monitor and serve the best performing version.
It also comes with features such as SEO tools, detailed analytics, live chat software, blogging tools, email marketing, and much more.
One of the best parts about the HubSpot website builder is that it seamlessly integrates with its CRM platform. This lets you leverage customer data to create a completely personalized experience for each website visitor.
You can dynamically personalize your website content based on location, source, device, language, or any other detail stored in your HubSpot CRM.
Considering all of the other features that come along with this drag and drop website builder like email marketing, live chat software, etc., this is one of the most comprehensive website builders for marketers and small businesses.
HubSpot website builder is best suited for landing pages and simple small business websites.
If you want to create an online store or a more complex business website, then a website builder like WordPress.org would be a better choice for you.
Also, beginners might find all of the extra features a bit intimidating to use. So, you should consider if you need just a simple website builder instead of one with extra marketing automation features.
The Starter plan starts at $25 per month and comes with the website builder, email marketing, live chat, reporting dashboard, and much more.
Wix is a well-known brand in the website builder product type. They’ve been around for quite a while (since 2006!), and they offer a very simple and straightforward website builder.
Wix has more than 500 templates available for you to use. All you need to do is pick the one you like and replace the pre-populated content with your own. And, the templates are easy to customize.
With Wix Artificial Design Intelligence (ADI), you can quickly build a simple website in minutes.
Wix has limited editing tools, and doesn’t have the same advanced customization features of most of the choices above. However, you can replace the text and images to customize the templates for your site.
There are a couple of issues with Wix to consider.
First, once you’ve selected a template, it’s hard to change it. With so many templates available, this may cause some headaches for business owners who find that they have to add their content over and over again just because they want a different look to their site.
Also, if you do end up moving your site away from Wix, it can be quite complicated to make it happen.
This can be a deal-breaker if your site grows and you want to add more features later on. Their premium plans can get quite expensive.
Really, Wix is best for hobby or personal websites and not a great choice for small businesses.
Wix monthly plans start at $11 for the Combo Plan, $14 for the Unlimited Plan, and $29 for the VIP Plan. Business Plans are available at $20, $25, and $35 per month.
You might also want to check out the following resource: Wix Email Capture: 5 Ways to Grow Your Email List.
GoDaddy is one of the most popular domain name and hosting service providers in the world. With their GoDaddy Website Builder, you can easily create a simple website that includes GoDaddy hosting.
You don’t need any technical knowledge to create a small business website with GoDaddy Website Builder. Simply pick one of their professionally designed website templates and use the drag and drop editor to customize it with your own images and text.
You can also quickly add essential website features like contact forms, videos, social media links, and more.
Plus, GoDaddy Website builder works on smaller screens. That means you can work on your site on the go using your mobile phone or tablet.
Compared to some of the other website builders on this list, GoDaddy Website Builder offers fewer features and design options.
It’s also not the best option if you want to create a content rich website; it’s better for building a simple site with a few pages.
And if you want to move your site to a different platform in the future, it’s not easy to do.
GoDaddy Website Builder starts at $5.99 per month for the personal plan, $9.99 per month for the business plan, and $14.99 per month for the business plus plan. All plans are billed annually.
Next on our list of the website builders for small business is Gator Website Builder. Developed by web hosting company HostGator, the Gator Website Builder makes it easy to create a simple website with just a few clicks.
Gator Website Builder boasts no learning curve, with a library of professionally-designed themes to choose from. The drag and drop website builder software makes it easy to customize your website with images, videos, Google Maps, and more.
The Gator Website Builder package includes free web hosting, a domain name, website analytics, and a free SSL certificate to keep your site secure and help you rank high in search engines.
There’s even a save history feature, so you can easily revert your website to a previous version with just a click.
Gator Website Builder is a simple website builder that doesn’t include advanced features. So if you’re looking to open an eCommerce site or add more functionality to your website, this wouldn’t be the best choice for you.
The Gator Website Builder starts at just $3.46 per month, including hosting and domain name. This makes it a really cost-effective choice for small businesses that just need a simple web presence.
Do you want to create a membership website, where visitors can register to access exclusive content? Then you need MemberPress.
MemberPress is actually a WordPress plugin that helps you to build stunning membership sites. You can accept payments for memberships, sell digital downloads, and control who sees all the content on your site.
Since MemberPress runs on WordPress, it comes with all the flexibility and other advantages listed above.
With a MemberPress site, you can:
- Set up your membership site in minutes, no code needed
- Create a business with recurring subscription revenue
- Manage your site members and give them access to specific content depending on their membership level
- Integrate with other plugins to create forums, build your email list and more
- Use any WordPress theme you want for a unique custom design
Plus, MemberPress is well known for providing high-quality customer support to help you create and maintain your membership site.
One disadvantage for small business owners is that this website builder isn’t free. MemberPress has a basic plan that’s $149 per year.
And because it runs on WordPress, you’re responsible for software updates and backups.
You can get started with MemberPress for $149 per year – that’s less than $13 per month. They do offer a 14-day money-back guarantee so you can get started with no risk!
Weebly is often listed among the best free website builder software. It’s true; it’s hard to argue with the price tag, but as with most things, you get what you pay for.
Weebly’s fully hosted, so you won’t get bogged down in the technical details of running your site.
You can create your Weebly site with its drag and drop builder, choosing from dozens of mobile-responsive templates with modern designs.
Weebly offers features to make your site search engine friendly. Weebly includes some lead generation features, though these are limited in the free version. But, you don’t have unlimited storage.
In fact, site storage is restricted to 500MB in the free version, which means if your website files take up more than that amount, you’ll need to upgrade.
Upgrading lets you use Weebly with your own domain, which is a must for the professional reputation of any small business. Domains are available free with the upgrade, along with a $100 credit to promote your business with Google Ads.
With different plans, you also get access to site analytics, site search, HD audio and video, and the ability to run a membership site.
Weebly also has a number of plans designed for businesses with online stores, though these aren’t free. Depending on the plan you choose, you can benefit from:
- The ability to sell digital goods
- Reduced transaction fees
- The ability to offer coupons and gift cards
- Abandoned cart emails
- Additional shipping functionality
While Weebly’s often included among the best free website builders for small business, it’s probably more accurate to call it freemium. That’s because you have to pay if you want your own domain and more extensive site options. Small businesses running eCommerce stores will also have to pay.
Not everyone finds Weebly’s drag and drop builder easy to use, either. And it doesn’t have many SEO features. Under the hood, there’s some unnecessary code, which can hurt your SEO.
Finally, the main disadvantage of using Weebly is that you get locked into their platform. If you want to change website platforms later, you’ll find it difficult to move without having to recreate your entire site from scratch.
Weebly’s pricing for a regular website starts at $0 and ranges up to $25 per month. Its eCommerce pricing is between $8 and $38 per month.
If you’re looking for an eCommerce website builder, then BigCommerce is a great choice. That’s because it’s specifically designed to help businesses handle online sales. The BigCommerce platform powers Ben & Jerry’s, Skullcandy, CamelBak, and other famous online stores.
BigCommerce is a great way to launch an eCommerce store and sell products and services, without having to worry about the technical aspects of managing it. Their Essentials plan includes everything you need to build, run, and scale an online store, without having to know any code.
Even absolute beginners find it easy to create their first online store with their stunning website templates, so you can have a professional-looking eCommerce store up in minutes. They offer more than 80 designs for all different industries, and all of them are fully responsive and look good on mobile devices.
Not only that, but you can easily customize your store with BigCommerce apps. They allow you to unlock more advanced features to grow your online stores, like shipping and inventory solutions, built-in customer reviews, email marketing automation tools, and much more.
BigCommerce gives you your choice of over 55 payment gateways, including PayPal, Stripe, Square, Amazon Pay, and many more.
Since you’re handling financial transactions, you have the added benefit of built-in security features to keep your customer data safe. BigCommerce has 99.99% uptime, which means you won’t lose customers to glitches that bring your site down. They also have protection from hackers and DDoS attacks, which are becoming more and more common even for smaller websites.
BigCommerce integrates with Google Shopping so you can bring new customers to your store through Google. You can also add many other features using apps from their app store.
To help you get started, they also offer educational video courses and 24/7 live support via phone, chat, and email. They answer all calls in under 2 minutes, so you won’t waste your time waiting around on hold.
For some small businesses, the biggest disadvantage of BigCommerce is that it isn’t free.
You need to upgrade to more expensive plans to get:
- Google customer reviews
- Abandoned cart recovery features
- Stored credit cards
- Advanced product search and filtering
Want to know how BigCommerce stacks up to other eCommerce platforms? Check out our comparison of BigCommerce, WooCommerce, and Magento.
BigCommerce has a 15-day free trial. The Standard plan starts at $29.95 per month.
One of the reasons Squarespace made our list is because sites built with Squarespace look great! Squarespace users love its beautiful designs and ease of use.
Squarespace is user-friendly even if you’re a complete beginner, with dozens of designs and templates to choose from.
It’s not free, but its basic plan will let you set up a 20-page website, which is a good way for a small business to get started. You can use Squarespace with a custom domain, available for free for the first year. It’s fully hosted, which means Squarespace keeps your site updated for you.
Squarespace provides a lot of functionality at an affordable price. Small business owners can get an SSL certificate, web analytics, and eCommerce features within the basic package. You can also sell unlimited products, and accept donations.
If you want more robust features for your online store, Squarespace has more advanced functionality via its online store plans. Depending on the plan, you’ll get access to inventory management, accounting, checkout, abandoned cart recovery, and eCommerce reporting.
One disadvantage for small business owners is that this website builder isn’t free. And if you get your domain name through Squarespace, you’ll have to pay renewal costs after the first year.
Some people find there’s a learning curve for building your site, though Squarespace’s excellent support will help solve any issues.
And if eCommerce is important to your business, you’ll need to spring for one of the more expensive plans to get the features you need.
Squarespace websites are available at either $12 or $18 per month. Their online stores cost either $26 or $40 per month.
What Is the Best Website Builder for Small Business?
So, now that we’ve narrowed down our choices, which builder wins?
Best Overall Website Builder
WordPress is our all-around pick for the best website builder for small business. That’s because it’s flexible, extensible, scalable, and easy to use.
And with a quarter of the web running on WordPress, there’s a strong community to help provide the resources and help you need.
Best eCommerce Website Builder
BigCommerce wins our vote for the best eCommerce website builder. We love its user-friendliness, professional designs, and expert tools so you can create a high-earning online store your customers will fall in love with.
Once you’ve chosen your website builder, we recommend that you start growing your email marketing list and building an audience even before you launch your site. The sooner you start building your list, the more value you’ll see in terms of leads and conversions.
To unlock this value, it’s essential to choose a marketing tool that integrates with the website builder of your choice. OptinMonster has advanced targeting features that will help you market to the right audience at the right time, no matter which website builder you choose. Our targeting features include:
- Our signature Exit-Intent Technology, which grabs your visitors’ attention just before they leave your site
- Page-level targeting, which lets you create page-specific offers that are more relevant to your customers
- Onsite retargeting, to show different offers to people who’ve already seen previous marketing campaigns
And with our wide range of templates and themes, you can easily create high-converting marketing campaigns that match the design of your newly-created site.
And that’s all for today!
We hope you enjoyed this post on the best website builders for small businesses. If you did, then you definitely need to check out the following resources:
- Best Email Service Providers for Small Business (Compared)
- List Building Tools You Need to Try Today
- Small Business Email Marketing: 7 Tips for Growth
These articles will have even more information that you can use to grow your small business FASTER.