What’s the most effective web site builder for my small enterprise?


 It has been estimated that the fee to any enterprise that doesn’t have an internet site averages at £173,769 per 12 months in misplaced income, regardless of the common month-to-month operating price of an internet site being lower than £18.

If creating an internet site for your enterprise can increase your income by practically £200,000 a 12 months, the one query left to ask is…

What’s the most effective web site builder for my small enterprise?

  Website 123 Wix Enterprise Limitless Weebly* GoDaddy on-line retailer Sq. Area on-line retailer fundamental* Fundamental Shopify IONOS
Settle for on-line funds
No transaction payment
Limitless bandwidth 5GB
Storage 10GB 35GB Limitless Limitless
Join your area
Advert free
10 video hours
Free area for one 12 months
Free SSL safety
Website search Product solely Product solely
Product badges
Stock administration
Transport calculator
Built-in delivery labels
Transport reductions
web optimization
Lead seize and make contact with types
Cell optimized web sites
Merchandise on Instagram
Built-in accounting with digital accounting
Employees accounts 2
Gross sales channels
Low cost codes
Deserted cart restoration
PayPal button
Electronic mail advertising and marketing
Social media integration
Constructed-in buying cart
Product evaluations
Pricing plan pm Free > £11 £20 £18 £13.99 £28 £19 Fundamental web site £9 + fundamental e-commerce website £19

Supply: firm web sites

Under are capsule evaluations of seven of the preferred off-the-shelf e-commerce platforms in Britain that will help you select the most effective web site builder.

Till a number of years in the past, you needed to rent an internet site designer should you wished to dump the web. Right now, you possibly can lease a bells ‘n’ whistles e-commerce platform from a Weebly, a Squarespace or a Shopify.

Associated: How can I promote my small enterprise web site?

Small Enterprise has tried to check entry-level e-commerce packages geared toward small companies that wish to promote by the web. A number of of the suppliers beneath provide extra highly effective packages, so it’s tough to check them instantly. Some bundle extra options than others (see desk), so it’s like evaluating apples and oranges.

Nonetheless, every of those web site builders have their very own strengths and goal markets, which ought to enable you to resolve.



Over 150 million individuals worldwide select Wix to create an internet site and handle their enterprise on-line.

Wix is a traditional drag ‘n’ drop template web site builder. You’ll be able to select from over 500 industry-specific templates utilizing its drag-and-drop editor.

Nonetheless, like GoDaddy and Site123, Wix additionally affords artificial-intelligence-powered design, which takes a lot of the determination making out of your palms.


You could possibly examine Wix to a prefabricated constructing: the form of the home is there and can’t be modified. Nonetheless, you possibly can repaint the partitions and use its 280-strong app retailer – each free and paid-for – to customize the inside.

Wix’s website pages are additionally optimised for cellular, which suggests they give the impression of being good on smartphones.


Straightforward to make use of and properly designed, its AI-powered design assist means you possibly can construct a fantastic trying website with out understanding the best way to code.

If you wish to promote greater than 50 product strains, you may be higher off with a specialist e-commerce platform corresponding to Shopify.


  • Wonderful for smaller web sites (no more than 30 pages).
  • Wix Synthetic Design Intelligence (ADI).
  • Extraordinarily intuitive and fast to become familiar with.


  • With a lot alternative (500+ templates), Wix can really feel overwhelming.
  • After you have picked your template, you can not swap to a brand new one.
  • No stay chat help.
  • Its e-commerce capabilities are usually not as highly effective as Shopify’s.

Value: £16pm for the Wix Enterprise Limitless plan



Site123 is constructed for companies that want an internet site up quick with as little fuss as potential.

Like GoDaddy and Wix, it makes use of synthetic intelligence in design. Site123 asks you a few questions in regards to the sort of web site you wish to construct, producing you a template with related options.

Site123 is extremely intuitive and timesaving.


First, you possibly can select from a variety of templates designed for various enterprise sorts. The method is intuitive and versatile providing a professional-looking parallax scroll.

Templates are well-designed and their apps straightforward to combine, enabling you to promote merchandise by your web site.


All premium plans provide e-commerce performance, with superior e-commerce options on the “Skilled” and “Gold” plans. These superior options let you promote digital merchandise and add coupons. That stated, Site123 is reportedly investing in enhancing its e-commerce options.


Site123 is the most effective web site builder for a small companies that wish to showcase their firm data and make contact with particulars, or in the event that they wish to promote a number of merchandise.

Should you’re a retailer who needs to scale up your enterprise quick nevertheless, it’s most likely finest to look elsewhere.


  • Good choice for fundamental enterprise websites and people who wish to promote a number of merchandise.
  • Good help, particularly by stay chat.
  • Templates are optimised for cellular.
  • Straightforward to make use of app market.
  • It’s fundamental bundle is free


  • You can’t change templates as soon as your website has gone stay.
  • Not a lot inventive freedom or flexibility.
  • Lacks actual monetary e-commerce instruments – corresponding to computerized invoicing and fee monitoring – making it tough to promote merchandise on a big scale.
  • If you’d like one thing extra substantial, you’ll need a extra highly effective answer like Shopify.

Value: Free rising to £11 per thirty days.



Weebly presently powers greater than 40 million web sites, which works out at roughly 2 per cent (and rising) of all web sites on the web.

It’s most likely the best to make use of of all of the non-AI powered web site builders being reviewed. Its intuitive web site builder has bolt-ons that you simply purchase by its app retailer emigrate your website to an e-commerce platform.

Nonetheless, not like Wix, Site123 and GoDaddy, there isn’t a ADI design choice, the place synthetic intelligence makes use of your picks to routinely create a website for you, saving you having to suppose.

What Weebly is although is a “What You See Is What You Get” (WYSIWYG) web site builder. This implies you possibly can click on and edit, in addition to drag ‘n’ drop media, without having to know any code or, not like WordPress, flick backwards and forwards from the backend to what the location will ultimately seem like.

One in all Weebly’s easiest and only options in editor mode is that it dims the remainder of the web site you’re engaged on so you possibly can focus on the component in hand.


Weebly affords round 70 “themes” – web site templates – protecting all the things from clothes to journey and luxurious items – which you need to use as a template in your personal web site. The quantity is across the similar as Shopify however far fewer than Wix’s 500 plus.


Like Site123 and Wix, you add e-commerce performance by shopping for apps in Weebly’s app centre. Weebly affords over 300 apps, greater than 50 of that are free. This manner, Weebly’s core web site builder is stored easy and never bloated with code. Most paid-for apps have free trial durations, so that you may give them a take a look at drive with out having to commit any money.

Along with grouping apps by perform, corresponding to gross sales, site visitors and social media, Weebly recommends apps which might enhance the performance of your website.

And since Weebly was purchased by funds supplier Sq. in 2018, its e-commerce performance is nearly as good specialist e-commerce platform Shopify. E-commerce options that Weebly helps embody present playing cards, including buyer accounts, coping with deserted buying carts and enabling in-store assortment.


Weebly is nice for small companies, making it a powerful alternative for entrepreneurs, start-up firms, and small on-line shops.


  • Straightforward to make use of
  • WYSIWYG performance in its editor perform.
  • Handpicked themes so you aren’t overwhelmed with alternative.


  • No synthetic intelligence ADI design choice.

Value: £18 per thirty days


Must get your e-commerce retailer up rapidly? Then GoDaddy is the e-commerce answer for you, primarily due to its use of ADI (Synthetic Design Intelligence), which helps steer your design primarily based on a number of questions.


In contrast to Squarespace and Shopify, GoDaddy doesn’t have a library of pre-designed themes. Relatively, it’s ADI means it will probably help over 1,500 several types of companies. That stated, its ADI additionally prevents you from fiddling an excessive amount of with its templates. Nonetheless, not like Wix and Site123, you possibly can junk your current theme for a brand new one, and GoDaddy will import all of your components.


In all probability the best to make use of, given its ADI help which takes web site constructing out of your palms, primarily based on a number of questions.

Nonetheless, should you’re promoting various product strains, you may be higher off with a extra scalable platform, corresponding to Shopify.


  • ADI makes web site creation straightforward.
  • Sturdy e-mail campaigns.
  • In-depth reporting instruments.


  • ADI limits your choices in the case of customising your web site.
  • A few of its options are clunky in comparison with rivals.
  • In contrast to Shopify and Squarespace, you can not promote on to social channels corresponding to Fb or Instagram.

Value: £13.99 for the GoDaddy on-line retailer


Squarespace is finest for extra design-led web sites and for many who have slightly website-building data. It’s particularly geared toward creatives corresponding to photographers, musicians and designers, and its movie star endorsers embody Keanu Reeves, Idris Elba and John Malkovich. It isn’t as straightforward or newbie pleasant as both Wix, Weebly or GoDaddy.

Like Weebly, Squarespace is one other What You See Is What You Get (WYSIWYG) editor. With some platforms, corresponding to WordPress, you make modifications and edits within the backend, and solely see what it’s going to seem like stay while you preview it.

Squarespace’s editor interface is extra polished and versatile in comparison with Wix and Weebly.


Squarespace’s templates are all superbly designed, as should you’d spent hundreds on getting in knowledgeable designer to code it to you.

Templates embody on-line shops, eating places and the generic “enterprise”, and all templates are cellular responsive, so your web site appears to be like sturdy on any smartphone.

After you have chosen a template, you layer in photographs and content material utilizing their design. The templates themselves are malleable. Or you possibly can create your individual web site from scratch. Distinctive to Squarespace, you possibly can customise your individual URL. And the stay preview perform means that you can see what your unpublished web site goes to seem like.

And, not like Wix and Site123, you possibly can swap templates even after you could have gone stay.

Squarespace has simply 60 themed templates in comparison with Wix’s 500 plus and Weebly’s 70.


Enabling different customers to assist handle your web site is essential, particularly if you’re promoting items on-line. Squarespace offers you the choice to handle accounts with totally different entry ranges.

The £20 per thirty days on-line retailer fundamental plan is the most cost effective choice for promoting by the web. It removes transaction charges from lower-level plans and provides further e-commerce options, together with stock administration and label printing.


Squarespace is the most effective web site builder for anybody who has an eye fixed for design, who needs a novel and visually spectacular web site, and is completely satisfied placing slightly time into constructing their pages.

Nonetheless, spending time in understanding how this product works is really useful earlier than onboarding. If you’d like an internet site stay inside a few hours, then Squarespace isn’t for you – attempt Site123.


  • Lovely, design-led templates.
  • Plenty of performance.
  • You’ll be able to swap templates, even when you have gone stay.


  • Requires some effort to get finest use out of it.
  • Some design data useful.

Value: £28pm for the Squarespace on-line retailer fundamental plan. Squarespace affords a 14-day free path earlier than you to resolve whether or not you wish to improve to paid-for.


In accordance with Shopify, the platform has over a million customers operating 800,000 on-line shops which have generated over $100bn in gross sales.

One Wall Road analyst predicts Shopify’s share of the e-commerce market will triple to about 9pc inside 5 years.

A giant differentiator between Shopify and rival web site builders is that Shopify has its personal bodily point-of-sale {hardware} you purchase with barcode readers, tills and receipt printers. It’s an all-in-one system for anybody with a bodily store.

The very first thing you see on Shopify is an easy-to-understand dashboard overview.

Importing merchandise is straightforward for anyone used to a WordPress-style CMS.

You’ll be able to add new plugins in your website, together with a variety of 1,200 apps which sync providing delivery, accounting, social media and superior reporting. Nonetheless, the sheer variety of apps could be overwhelming and a black mark in Shopify’s e book for not together with extra fundamental performance in its packages.


Shopify affords simply 10 free e-commerce templates or “themes” that you need to use. Nonetheless, there are one other 60 paid-for themes. Like Squarespace, the themes are superbly designed and provide whizzy options like parallax scrolling and video backgrounds.

One niggle is that Shopify doesn’t routinely resize uploaded pictures, so when you have product photographs in several side ratios, you will need to edit in Photoshop earlier than importing to your web site.


Shopify integrates with Snapchat, Fb, Pinterest and Supervisor for straightforward gross sales although social media.

The platform not too long ago unveiled an “spectacular array of product launches” to boost e-commerce, in response to US analyst Josh Beck of KeyBanc, together with “advanced” delivery automation capabilities, multi-currency options and improved developer instruments.

One draw back with Shopify is that, not like Wix, Weebly and Squarespace, Shopify does cost 2.2pc on every bank card transaction plus an extra 20p.


Shopify is the most effective web site builder for companies which have a bodily store but in addition wish to promote on-line.


  • Finest for outlets with a bodily outlet who additionally wish to promote on-line.
  • Effectively-designed themes.
  • Straightforward to make use of.


  • Transaction charges for these utilizing a third-party fee gateway can get pricy.
  • Variety of bolt-on plugins could be overwhelming.
  • Usually it’s a must to obtain an app so as to add fundamental performance that’s bundled with different e-commerce affords.

Value: £19pm for the Fundamental Shopify plan. Shopify affords a free 14-day trial.


IONOS is the biggest internet hosting platform in Europe managing 12 million domains with contracts with eight million clients worldwide.

Nonetheless, it additionally has its personal easy-to-use web site builder with inexpensive plans for creating fundamental web sites and on-line e-commerce shops. All websites are cellular pleasant with web optimization and analytics performance.


The IONOS web site builder has you select from pre-designed templates and insert textual content and pictures the place you need. What this implies is that there aren’t any particular person components you possibly can transfer round, however somewhat, full-width web page sections you possibly can transfer up and down.

There are solely 18 templates to select from, together with:

  • Marriage ceremony
  • CV
  • Restaurant
  • Enterprise
  • Journey
  • Actual property
  • Pictures
  • Youngsters’s hospital
  • NGO
  • Bakery
  • Inside design
  • Regulation agency
  • Tattoo artist
  • Digital company

Nonetheless, templates could be helpful, particularly if you wish to launch your website rapidly.

IONOS additionally makes it straightforward to arrange an ecommerce retailer – all it’s a must to do is add a retailer web page to your website. If you have already got your merchandise listed in a spreadsheet, you possibly can import a CSV to populate your storefront.


General, this web site builder is a good choice if you wish to launch a professional-looking web site rapidly and cheaply, and don’t thoughts giving up some inventive management alongside the way in which.


– Cheap ecommerce plans
– Websites look very skilled
– Promote throughout a number of channels


– Solely 18 templates
– Restricted customisation choices

Value: Fundamental web site plans begin at simply £9 a month plus VAT and ecommerce plans begin at £19 a month plus VAT

Additional studying

The professionals and cons of promoting by your individual web site


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