Home – New Forums Marketing mastery Is weebly a good website builder?

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  • #996210
    heftzwecke
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    I find weebly a very user friendly – for stupid website builder (exactly what I need). But is it well coded I mean all the things you need that is google friendly loads fast etc.? What are the experts saying?

    #1206131
    Greg_M
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    heftzwecke, post: 245028, member: 88078 wrote:
    I find weebly a very user friendly – for stupid website builder (exactly what I need). But is it well coded I mean all the things you need that is google friendly loads fast etc.? What are the experts saying?

    I haven’t used Weebly, but according to their “features”, SEO seems to be taken seriously and all the obvious stuff you need to optimise a site seems to be available.

    Also noticed there’s plenty of online tutorials that are Weebly specific including how to optimise for SE’s.

    Usually load speed is proportional to the amount of visual widgets you use…be careful with stuff like video backgrounds, and fancy visual effects…they all rely on Javascript which can slow down load times significantly, Weebly probably manage this stuff better than a B grade designer anyway (or they’d probably be broke by now, not growing).

    I’d be inclined to Google around a bit and see if you can find a consensus on whether they’re good value for money and performance…if you want to use them for a shop I think there’s probably a lot more you need to research (not my area at all).

    #1206132
    heftzwecke
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    I’ve used weebly already and it is really user friendly, apart from the customer support. I don’t tend to use visual effects especially nothing what moves – I don’t like having moving things on the screen and get out of a website very quickly if something moves!

    #1206133
    sasha-jay
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    I haven’t personally used weebly, but if you are looking for an easy to use website builder with excellent customer support I would recommend Squarespace, if you also google squarespace offers they are ALWAYS offering 10+% discounts.

    #1206134
    John Romaine
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    Avoid it.

    You’re building a property that you don’t own and never will.

    Always build on a platform you own and control.

    #1206135
    cleaningyourway
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    I have used Weebly and created my own website on it but you do need someone to do the SEO so that it appears on Google. Weebly website are easy to build most of the HTML code you can find online (just cut, copy and paste) and if you don’t like your website you can start it all again.
    There are Website that allows you to click on your website and on theirs for free which helps you to gain some free web presence online.

    #1206136
    MCoWebsiteDesign
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    I strongly 2nd what John is saying, many of these platforms are easy to build on but you lack ownership..

    The terrible thing about using these “easy build” services when they host it etc is that, they can tear it down, delete it at the drop of a hat, change prices etc… then after say 2-3 years when you have a ton of links and referrals coming in, you are forced to move and they often won’t allow a redirect…so you lose the valuable SEO juice you have buit up over several years… all your directories, ads, links, business cards, email signatures etc , all will point to the wrong location..

    I guess the best way to think of it is , its like building a perfect easy to build house with absolutely no foundations that can be knocked over with a puff of breeze from the wrong direction… then you lose the lot, site and the valuable bit , the SEO juice…

    #1206137
    JohnTranter
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    MCoWebsiteDesign, post: 245252, member: 89106 wrote:
    … all your directories, ads, links, business cards, email signatures etc , all will point to the wrong location..

    I guess the best way to think of it is , its like building a perfect easy to build house with absolutely no foundations that can be knocked over with a puff of breeze from the wrong direction… then you lose the lot, site and the valuable bit , the SEO juice…

    Surely it’s the domain name that has the SEO ‘juice’, not the actual website. Assuming you own your domain, you could put up another website and lose very little, if anything, (assuming you built a site with a similar URL structure)

    e.g. You may lose that cheap house, but your customer still know your address and you can put up another house pretty quickly.

    And I think you may be overstating the risk to be honest.

    #1206138
    Greg_M
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    In the bricks and mortar world of business, how many businesses actually own the freehold on their businesses premises? What’s important is the stock/service they sell, not who holds the title to the building it operates in.

    I don’t see any real advantage in “owning” a few hundred lines of code that actually do nothing but deliver the “content” (which is what achieves the result).

    If these “platforms” are maintained, optimised and secured by specialists (probably in the top percentile of their respective skills), why would somebody with little or no ability to objectively analyse the quality of their website, let alone secure and maintain it take a punt and risk their capital and time being wasted.

    For my money it’s the “data” you should own, and I think the better platforms allow you to shift it if you need to. Assuming it hasn’t changed since the last time I looked, Squarespace for e.g. allows you to migrate to WordPress out of the box…I just can’t figure out why you’d bother.

    #1206139
    troysteele
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    I agree with Greg if you don’t have the skills or budget to setup on your own hosting. I’m a believer in failing fast – spend your time and budget on getting traffic to the site and making sure it works before blowing it all on a website from the start. It’s likely your site is going to need tweaks once you see how the traffic interacts with it and if you can manage those adjustments yourself then they’ll be done faster and with only your time as cost. Once you’ve got a site that’s converting traffic to leads/sales then you can look at moving to your own hosting down the track.

    As John said, build your site page URLs smartly and the impact will be minimal if you do decide to move. Keep offline copies of your content in case something does happen to the service provider. You can lose a self-hosted site quite easily too if you don’t backup your content.

    #1206140
    cleaningyourway
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    Weebly allows you to migrate your data and you can download the site on to your computer no problems – I have done it, just go to setting to download. Wix and Squarespace don’t allow you to move the data at all, Squarespace is the worst one so don’t bother with them read lots of reviews and comments on web builder before I decided. To do a comparison of the different Website builders go to: http://www.websitebuilderexpert.com/wix-vs-weebly-vs-squarespace-vs-jimdo/
    There is a new website builder available and they are Aussie owned – Rocketsparks. You many want to check them out too.

    #1206141
    John Romaine
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    I’m just amazed at some of the responses here regarding ownership.

    Anyone building out a site, and investing their time effort, money and resources on a property that they can potentially lose overnight is crazy.

    Also, even if you did just “pack up and move” unless you can set accurate 301s youre going to lose any link equity youve got.

    Likely scenario…

    • You put in several years worth of effort, investing in content marketing and outreach etc
    • Weebly announces they’re “closing down”
    • You wake up two weeks later and your site is gone
    • You rush around in a mad panic trying to sort out a backup. You dont have a backup (game over) You do have a backup, then what? Chances are its some obscure database that cant be imported into something sensible like WordPress
    • After 2 weeks of mucking around, you finally get your site back up and running on WP
    • You realise that all your site has literally tanked in search. WHY? Because youve just lost all link equity.

    Ive been doing this a long time now and Ive lost count of how many times Ive had business owners in tears on the phone because they ignored my advice.

    Ownership and control is vital.

    #1206142
    bb1
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    Why are we assuming Weebly may pack up their bags and call it quits, they have 40 million users, wouldn’t that make them a reasonable chance of wanting to stay in business.

    Based n this argument no business owner should ever us any services which they don’t fully own.

    #1206143
    JohnTranter
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    John Romaine, post: 245291, member: 39536 wrote:
    Ive been doing this a long time now and Ive lost count of how many times Ive had business owners in tears on the phone because they ignored my advice.

    The only time I’ve seen this is when a client has not asked a web agency/web designer for all the logins for their hosting/site/DNS etc.
    The agency goes out of business and stops responding to emails. The client has no way to get into their site and extract the data. Even worse, they have a hard time claiming their own domain name because it was registered by the agency.

    Worst case scenario, the agency was hosting the website and emails on their own VPS, which is now gone.

    It doesn’t matter if it was WordPress, Weebly, Squarespace, Magento, the results are the same. A massive uphill slog to reclaim the site and/or data.

    John Romaine, post: 245291, member: 39536 wrote:
    Ownership and control is vital.

    Yes, but not necessarily how you’re portraying it.
    Make sure you have all the login details for your hosting, the domain, email etc.
    Do make sure there’s a backup that’s hosted somewhere off the hosting server, and you have access to it.
    That’s the same for any platform, hosted or self-hosted.

    #1206144
    heftzwecke
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    I’ve asked this questions for someone wanting to teach some local courses. For that person owning everything is not important. It is simply a good thing to have a cheap website that people can read a little bit more about you than you would be able to put on a flyer. Traffic is not important.

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