Although there are countless options on the market, the best website builders generally stand out from the crowd for a variety of reasons. Common features include a beginner-friendly, intuitive editing interface, a range of attractive templates, and a clear price structure.
Many of the best builders also offer a limited free forever plan, enabling new users to test the platform without a subscription. Some are targeted at specific people, such as musicians, photographers, or those who want to create an online store, while others are more versatile and useful to much broader audiences. Additionally, some are offered by, or come alongside, the best web hosting services available.
As website builders grow in popularity, though, so does the number of options on the market. This can make it increasingly difficult to find the best builder for your requirements. There are numerous factors to consider when selecting a website building platform, such as scalability, customer service, ease of use, and any special tools or features you will need.
To help simplify the choice, we’ve compiled the following list of the best website builders on the market today. Here, you will find an option that suits your needs, regardless of your experience and the type of site you want to build.
The top 3 best website builders available
1. Wix: the best all-round choice
Wix is our choice for the best website builder across all requirements, because it offers users a wide degree of flexibility and a choice of hundreds of website templates. In addition, its drag-and-drop interface is incredibly user-friendly, while its range of pricing options are fair as well.
2. HostGator: a powerful, affordable website builder
HostGator is predominantly known as a web host, but its Gator Website Builder is a powerful yet affordable builder, utilising a pixel-perfect drag-and-drop editor. Its features, including unlimited bandwidth and storage, a free domain name via a 12-month plan, and a free SSL certificate, are part of competitively priced plans.
What are the best website builders?
If there’s one website builder that clearly stands out above the competition, it’s Wix. Although the gap is narrowing, its huge template library, excellent design flexibility, integrations with third-party apps, and artificial design intelligence really make it our number-one, all-around choice.
Another popular option is HostGator’s Gator Builder, which rivals Wix’s design flexibility. It comes with unmetered bandwidth and storage, a free domain name, and very competitive prices.
Weebly also stands out as a great choice, especially for those who want to add an ecommerce store to their website. It boasts a partnership with Square, one of the world’s leading payment processors.
Responsive, professionally designed templates are a major feature of Squarespace’s website builder. GoDaddy is also a viable choice, particularly for those who simply want to get online as fast as possible.
Don’t look past the other five platforms on this list, either. Shopify, Elementor, Zyro, 1&1 IONOS MyWebsite, and Constant Contact have all made the cut for one reason or another, and are all worth considering for particular uses.
The best website builders you can buy today
Since it was founded in 2006, Wix has gone from strength to strength to become the world’s leading website builder. It offers a great selection of advanced features, as well as two different editing interfaces—the Wix Editor and Wix ADI.
For starters, the Wix Editor is one of the most powerful website editors available. It enables you to create your site by dragging and dropping different elements into pixel-perfect positions. It can be a little confusing to learn to use, but the rewards are worth it.
Wix ADI (Artificial Design Intelligence) is a much more beginner-friendly option. To use it, simply work through a short questionnaire. A custom site template will be developed based on your answers, and then you can customize it to your heart’s content.
Another standout feature is Wix’s App Market, which contains numerous add-ons that you can use to add extra functionality to your site. Take advantage of the huge template library, which boasts over 500 designs, and create the website of your dreams with a minimum amount of fuss.
To find out more about our views on this website builder, check out our Wix review.
If you want something that offers similar power to Wix without the high prices, HostGator’s Gator Builder is a great option. Although there’s no free forever plan, it enables you to build a new site for just a few dollars per month. Note, though, that prices will increase when you renew your contract.
One thing that stands out about the Gator Builder is its excellent drag-and-drop editor. This enables you to create the exact site that you want, as you can position any of the numerous elements with pixel-perfect precision.
On the downside, HostGator’s templates are average at best. Many of them are outdated, and you will need to do a significant amount of work to make them look professional. However, the free domain name, unmetered storage and bandwidth, and free SSL certificate are certainly attractive features.
Check out our HostGator review to see what we made of the company’s web hosting as well as its website builder.
Weebly sits alongside Wix as one of the world’s most popular website builders, and it’s easy to see why. It boasts a great selection of professionally designed templates, as well as some of the best ecommerce tools we’ve seen.
The online store features are provided through payment giant Square, which should give you confidence in their reliability and usefulness. Noteworthy features here include advanced site stats, search engine optimization (SEO) tools, customizable email templates, and full inventory management tools.
One noteworthy downside is Weebly’s somewhat limited editor, which constrains you to pre-coded element positions. You can still drag elements to reorder them, but you certainly won’t benefit from the pixel-perfect editing that some platforms offer. Read our Weebly review to learn more about the website builder.
Squarespace has long been known for its professional website templates. Although its library is quite small compared to some of the other platforms, every single design is built with modern techniques and standards in mind.
In addition, Squarespace offers ecommerce tools to rival the best in the industry. You can sell virtually anything, including digital content, services, and subscriptions. The product categorization tools are great, to say the least, and you will be able to manage inventory and orders through the intuitive management dashboard.
However, when it comes to site creation, Squarespace’s editor is far from the best we’ve used. It’s quite counter-intuitive and poorly designed, and you will likely find it a little confusing to get started with. A free forever version is also lacking, although there is a 14-day free trial so you can test the platform.
But with its excellent templates, native tools, range of add-ons, and versatile marketing suite, it’s easy to see why Squarespace is so popular. Make sure to read our Squarespace review to learn more about the service.
If your number-one priority is developing an online presence with the minimum amount of fuss and time, we’d recommend considering the GoDaddy website builder.
Developed by the hosting and domain registration giant, the GoDaddy builder has grown rapidly over the past few years to gain a spot on this list. This is largely because of its extremely beginner-friendly, intuitive editor. Now, you won’t have very much design flexibility if you decide to use this platform, but that might not necessarily be a bad thing.
With GoDaddy, it’s not unrealistic to expect to get online within a couple of hours. There’s a neat range of tutorials that you can take advantage of if you run into problems, but the chances of this happening are low at best.
The underpowered ecommerce tools will likely bother some users, but you will benefit from a free domain, 24/7 support, a free SSL certificate, and unmetered storage with all but the cheapest plan. Our GoDaddy review provides further details on the services offered by the company.
If you have any knowledge whatsoever of the ecommerce world, you would have heard of Shopify. Although it’s not a website builder in the traditional sense—its sole focus is ecommerce—it’s still one of the best options for those who want to build an advanced online store.
Now, Shopify is the world’s leading online store builder, and for good reason. The tools on offer are excellent, and you will benefit from an unbeatable range of management, marketing, and general online selling features.
On top of this, there are numerous templates that you can base your store on. Prices are quite competitive, and there’s plenty of room to scale if your store grows more than expected. The editor is a little limited, but it’s beginner-friendly, and you will have full code access if you need to fine-tune different parts of your design.
Although it isn’t a website builder in the strict sense of the term, Elementor is one of the most powerful editing interfaces for those using WordPress.org. In short, it provides access to an intuitive drag-and-drop editor, rather than the less intuitive native WordPress editor.
With Elementor, you can put together your new WordPress website without any coding whatsoever. There are numerous third-party integrations that you can take advantage of, along with a neat free plan that provides access to the basics.
Note, though, that you will need to sign up for a separate web hosting account before you can harness the full power of the Elementor builder. You will also need to purchase a separate domain name before you can publish your site. Read our Elementor review to learn more about the builder, and our thoughts about it.
Like the GoDaddy website builder, Zyro is designed for those who want to build a simple site without spending too much time or money. It doesn’t have a free forever plan, but its paid plans are up there with the most affordable we’ve seen.
Start your website with one of the more than 150 templates, add your own content, and hit the publish button. There are also a number of AI tools available, including an AI writer, a brand name generator, and a logo maker. These provide an affordable, straightforward way for new users to save time and effort when building their site.
You can sell products through your Zyro website, but keep in mind that the ecommerce tools are basic at best. The blogging tools are decent, though, and all users will benefit from 24/7 customer support.
The 1&1 IONOS MyWebsite website builder is an affordable, beginner-friendly builder that’s backed by a great selection of templates and the power of Europe’s largest hosting provider.
It comes with a range of great features, including one of the best template libraries we’ve seen. Here, you will find designs for virtually any type of website, including portfolios, ecommerce stores, and simple blogs.
In addition, you will have access to a range of stock photos that you can use to make your new website stand out from the crowd. There are numerous SEO and other marketing tools, and the blog manager is one of the best we’ve seen. The editor is also excellent, boasting an intuitive yet powerful interface.
On the downside, there’s no free forever plan or free trial, but with prices starting at just $5 a month, this is a relatively minor flaw. Read our 1&1 IONOS MyWebsite review to find out more.
Constant Contact is known as one of the world’s most powerful email marketing platforms. However, it also comes with a neat little website builder, which you can access for just $10 a month. This makes it a great option for those who plan to focus on email marketing as a major part of their overall marketing strategy.
One particularly noteworthy feature here is Constant Contact’s AI-powered builder. To take advantage of this, simply answer a few basic questions, and then the platform will deliver a custom template based on your needs. Edit this, add your own content, and hit the publish button to get online in record time.
On the downside, Constant Contact doesn’t offer a free domain with its website builder plans. The editor is far from the most powerful we’ve seen, and the free plan lets you try the builder, but doesn’t let you publish your site.
What is a website builder?
In simple terms, a website builder is a platform that’s designed to help those with limited web development experience create their own site. Builders come in a vast array of styles, ranging from powerful editors such as Wix or the Gator Builder to simpler platforms such as Zyro or GoDaddy.
Usually, website builders come with a number of standard features. These include a template library, a drag-and-drop editor that requires no coding knowledge or experience, and a selection of tools to add things like ecommerce functionality.
How to choose the best website builder
There are a few important things that you need to consider before selecting a new website builder. With the number of options on the market, selecting the right one can be as good as impossible without a structured approach.
For starters, decide how much time you’re willing to commit to your website creation project. Some builders, such as Wix, require a decent time commitment. Others, like GoDaddy or Constant Contact, are designed for those who want to get a basic site online as fast as possible.
Another important consideration is ecommerce. Although most builders include some form of online store functionality, many of them are quite basic. Go for a platform like Weebly or Squarespace if you want to build a serious online store.
Pay attention to what sort of freebies are included. Some platforms have a neat free forever version that you can use to test them out. In many cases, you will get a free domain name, unlimited storage, and more—but not always. For more information when starting out, read our feature that provides 10 tips for building your first website.
What’s the difference between website builders and web hosting?
Website builders tend to offer all-in-one site creation solutions. These usually include hosting, technical management, and everything else you need to set up a new website. This means that you will be able to focus all of your energy on designing your site and adding high-quality content.
On the other hand, web hosting refers to a service that stores your site’s files and data and delivers them to visitors when they view your content. If you decide to go down the web hosting path, you will also need to use a content management system (CMS), such as WordPress, to create and manage your site. This is generally a little more difficult, making it a less attractive option for absolute beginners.
If you’re looking for a web hosting provider, make sure to read our guide to the best web hosting services to see which platforms we rated highly.
What’s the best cheap website builder available?
HostGator’s Gator Builder is our number-one cheap website builder. It offers a variety of subscription options, with prices starting from just $3.84 per month. This gets you access to the platform’s powerful drag-and-drop editor, along with a free domain, a free SSL certificate, and basic online store tools.
What is a good free website builder?
If you’re looking for a free website builder, Wix is a decent option. Note, though, that you will be constrained by very limited storage and bandwidth, and you will have to put up with a branded Wix domain and Wix advertising on your site.
Free website builders vs paid website builders
Free website builders can be useful, but only in certain cases. They generally come with a number of limitations, such as branded subdomains, platform advertising, and heavily restricted bandwidth and storage.
This means that they aren’t usually a good option for business or commercial sites. However, they present a great way for you to test a platform before committing to a premium subscription, and they are often useful for small personal projects.
Prices for reliable website builders can range from a few dollars to over $50 a month. The amount you pay will usually depend on your needs. Expect to pay more for a builder with decent ecommerce and business tools.
It’s also worth noting that many website builders can be accessed for free. However, free plans are usually quite limited, which means that they aren’t often useful for anything other than basic personal projects.
To learn more about the costs you can expect when building a website, read our feature asking how much does it cost to build a website?
WordPress vs website builders: which is better?
At the base level, WordPress and most website builders share one common trait—they are all designed to help you design, create, and publish a new website. In saying that, they have a lot of differences as well.
For one, website builders generally offer all-in-one site creation solutions. Basically, this means that everything is included. Technical management, web hosting, security, and, in many cases, a domain are all included in the price of your website builder subscription. All you need to worry about is designing and maintaining your site.
On the other hand, WordPress can’t be used without a third-party web hosting provider. It’s an open-source content management system (CMS) that is designed to help you create and manage your own site. It provides much more technical freedom than most website builders, and it effectively gives you control over every aspect of your site.
Once you’ve decided to create a new website, it can be hard to decide exactly how to do it. Many people use website builders, but there’s also the option of paying an expert developer, or purchasing web hosting and using a content management system such as WordPress.org.
In general, you should use a website builder if you’re thinking about putting together your own site. Most builders require no coding knowledge, and even people with the most limited technical knowledge can use them.
What’s more, website builders generally offer the fastest option for those looking to get a new site online. This makes them a great choice for those who want to build a simple online presence for their business or personal project without spending a lot of time or money. If you’re using WordPress, make sure to read our article focusing on how to build a website with WordPress.
How hard is it to build a website?
In general, website builders are aimed at web development beginners and are quite easy to use. This, of course, varies between platforms, and some require a little more time and effort to get the hang of than others.
For example, platforms such as GoDaddy, Constant Contact, and Weebly are excellent for those who want to get online fast. Getting started shouldn’t take you more than a few minutes, and you should be able to publish your site within a few hours.
Platforms such as Wix and the Gator Builder are a little more confusing, but they also offer much more design flexibility. And even with the more complicated builders, starting a new site is still as straightforward as selecting a template, personalizing the design, and adding your own content.
To start building your own website, we’d recommend signing up with one of the website builders that we’ve listed above. Spend some time researching the best options for your needs, and take advantage of free forever plans and free trials when they are available to test different platforms.
Once you’ve selected a website builder, getting started simply involves following the prompts. Usually, you will be asked to choose a template to base your site on. Then, you will be able to customize your site through the platform’s editor and add your own content. Hit the publish button when you’re happy with your design, and your site will be live.