About Jason Chow
Jason is a fan of technology and entrepreneurship. He loves building website. You can get in touch with him via Twitter.
Weebly offers two broad categories of pricing plans, one for websites and the other for online stores. Yet scrutiny of the plans reveals that it’s essentially just a tiered upgrade in features across the board.
Weebly works by offering users a very visual interface that they can use to build their websites and requires no knowledge of coding at all. All you need is to drag and drop stuff, resize things with a mouse and add or edit text and images.
Weebly powers more than 50 million websites. It looks great when you compare it with the vast availability of website builders.
Some great sites built with Weebly-
Each successive tier of Weebly’s plans brings more features. This tiered approach is convenient for some users but may not suit everyone. Let's take a closer look at what Weebly plans and pricing offers.
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At the entry level, Weebly offers an “easy in” for new users with its free tier. You get the bare minimum basics to build and run a website. That means hosting, a Weebly-associated subdomain name, and a small amount of storage.
To connect a custom domain name, you must upgrade to the Weebly Connect plan at $5/mo. Aside from that, there is no difference from the free plan. Boh Free and Connect plan users will still have to put up with Weebly ads on your website.
The Weebly Pro plan, costing $12/mo, is where things start happening. Aside from removing Weebly ads, you also get some basic eCommerce features. These include a shopping cart and payment acceptance via Square or third-party providers.
Weebly Business Plan enhances the eCommerce side of things with more product-specific tools. For example, you can use coupon codes, manage inventory, and support item reviews. Analytics also start to creep in, covering website visitors and item sales.
Business Plus is Weebly's most expensive plan. It includes everything on the previous tier, plus abandoned cart recovery and real-time shipping tracking. You also get $96 worth of email marketing freebies.
Weebly’s Pro and Business plans are also listed under their online store plans, meaning these plans come with basic eCommerce-related features like payment gateways and shopping carts.
For those who prefer something other than Weebly, choices abound. These range from direct competitors like Wix and Shopify to web hosting companies offering website-building and eCommerce-centric solutions.
Shopify is a dominant name among eCommerce Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) platforms. While you can use it to build basic websites, the platform focuses on selling. Using it to create a static website isn’t exactly cost-effective.
The platform also offers all features imaginable that an online store or eCommerce platform could need. That means comprehensive tools for product listing and management and support for the entire sales process right to the point of shipping.
One of the most formidable tools in Shopify’s arsenal is its extensive payment system support. You get a stunning breadth of choice, including Shopify’s native payment processing. It even supports in-person transactions with Point-of-Sales (PoS) terminals.
For those wishing to build a solid eCommerce business, Shopify is a much better alternative to Weebly. It offers far better eCommerce features plus extensive integration capability with other platforms. The only catch is that Shopify is more expensive and starts at $29/mo.
Wix is one of the earlier entrants into the new generation of website builders. On this list, it’s comparatively one of the most similar to Weebly. For example, it offers a free tier and plans follow the same increasing-feature upgrade path.
The critical distinction between Wix and Weebly is that the former draws a clearer line between website and eCommerce plans. Website plans are much cheaper, ranging from free to $24.50/mo.
eCommerce plans add the expected tools like product management, shopping cart functionality, multi-channel sales, and more. These plans start at $17/mo and increase to $35/mo.
Wix compares well against Weebly in most areas. The Wix website builder feels more usable in terms of stability and performance. eCommerce features are also more comprehensive with Wix, even though they come nowhere near matching those of Shopify.
Zyro is relatively new compared to most well-known website builders. It’s the brainchild of Hostinger and follows their value path. That means it offers an essential product with decent performance at affordable prices.
When I first tested Zyro, the platform was quite buggy. However, they rapidly fixed those and, as far as I know, the technical team has done a fantastic job. The website builder is easy to use, and novices will have no problems creating a website independently.
The best part about Zyro, however, is its ultra-affordable pricing. There are only two plans on Zyro which draw the line between regular websites and eCommerce. The standard website plan lacks product listing and sales features, costing only $2.99/mo.
Zyro’s Business plan covers eCommerce users. For a mere $3.99/mo, you can list up to 500 products and access more than 20 payment options. Compared to most service providers, Zyro pricing is a steal.
Unless there’s a specific reason you want to use Weebly, Zyro outclasses it in almost all areas. The website builders offer similar features, and overall pricing is nowhere near comparison. For eCommerce alone, the cheapest Weebly plan is $12, which can’t match what Zyro provides.
Squarespace is another contemporary website builder offering that’s somewhat morphed over time. It first emerged with some good features, but it’s refined these and now offers a pretty strong product overall.
The brand does a good job distinguishing its features from competitors. A few good examples are video content support, team collaboration, and excellent app integration features. While you may find some of these with Weebly and Wix, Squarespace does slightly better with commercial app and service integrations.
Squarespace provides a stable and comprehensive website-building tool that can create fast websites. It also comes with decent templates to get you started quickly. However, this comes at a high cost, so building a non-eCommerce website with Squarespace can be unrealistic.
The cheapest Squarespace plan costs a whopping $16/mo. For that price, you get the basics of what’s necessary to build a regular website. eCommerce features only kick in on the Business plan or above with a minimum price of $23/mo.
On this list, Bluehost is perhaps the only service provider that doesn’t only focus on the website builder aspect of things. Instead, it is a traditional web host. There are several reasons why Bluehost makes a valid entry as an excellent competitor to Weebly.
Bluehost offers access to the Weebly website building tool. That means you get the same interface as Weebly but with a choice of web hosting plans at varying costs. That gives you a great deal more flexibility when planning your website.
You can also opt for WordPress or WooCommerce, which are equally competent as website builders or eCommerce platforms. WooCommerce is much more potent than Weebly in terms of capability and potential.
While most web hosts can support these systems, Bluehost is one of only three service providers recommended by WordPress. It sits at the perfect pivot point combining these elements, giving it a distinct advantage.
Since so many hosting plans are available, costs at Bluehost can vary greatly. Shared hosting starts at a mere $2.95/mo at the lower end of the scale. Those needing more power for eCommerce can go with VPS plans that start at $18.99/mo.
Each Weebly alternative introduced here provides a robust feature set capable of outclassing most competitors. Choosing the right one will depend on your needs. There’s no better option than Shopify for online shops and eCommerce platforms.
Bluehost is an exciting throw into the mix since it’s technically in a different category. However, the inclusion of Weebly’s website building gives it an excuse to shine. Not to mention bringing a diverse range of options to the table.
Also read – 20+ site builder platforms to create a website
From a personal standpoint, I feel that Weebly hasn’t developed much since it first emerged. Its contemporaries have far outclassed it, introducing more features, better performance, and greater service depth.
As a website builder, Wix provides a more stable alternative and a lot of beautiful templates. That’s not even mentioning the Wix App store. For eCommerce, Weebly is nowhere near as comprehensive or focused as Shopify. If you’re looking for a cheap website builder, even Zyro does a better job than Weebly.
While Weebly isn’t terrible, the problem is that it’s too mediocre. However, if you can’t decide what you want, Weebly might make a decent middle-ground choice.