Best website builder Australia 2021
2nd August, 2021Start Reading
Having a website is the core of many modern businesses ever since the boom of the internet. There are a lot of options for DIY website builders out there and we’ll go through some of the most popular options and our professional recommendation. However, keep in mind, the type of website and what platform you use to build it will depend entirely on a variety of factors. Furthermore, before we begin, we’d like to clarify a few points that are important to mention now rather than later:
- A website builder that is free, is often a terrible solution.
I’m sorry to all of you waiting for the perfect free solution, no such thing exists. If you want a website that is optimized for SEO and has all the necessary functionality to ensure your digital dominance, it’s worth shilling out a few bucks to get it done. The difference between free and a small nominal fee will blow you away!
- A website builder that is easy to use isn’t good.
Building a good website isn’t an easy process. Therefore, a website builder that claims it makes building websites easy usually will be unable to provide you the results you want. Let’s take a step back and examine the internal workings of good websites.
- The best website builder hasn’t been invented yet.
While there are some serious incumbents for best website builder, the ultimate website builder will probably emerge in the next few years as innovation bridges the gap between beautiful design and responsiveness of code. It’s important to ensure that you’re constantly on the lookout for new technology.
Without much further ado, here are our recommendations:
1. Custom built websites
Understandably, it costs more to have a professional agency build your website than to DIY build. However, here’s a situation that will help outline the importance of why this is our number 1 recommendation.
Let’s assume your business has 1000 optimised keywords with 200 backlinks and a website speed score of 75.
Your competitor has a similar set of 1000 optimised keywords with 200 backlinks that have a similar reputability and a website speed score of 90.
Your competitor will categorically rank higher than you simply because their technical SEO is far superior.
Now, to achieve 1000 optimised keywords and 200 backlinks, your investment would have been many tens of thousands of dollars or hundreds of hours. Given that a custom website can cost as low at $2000 one-off, this seems like a small initial investment to ensure that all your time and effort does not go waste!
At SocialMindr, we’re a full scale digital agency and all of our websites are tailored to maximise your SEO efforts. That being said, we also can help advise you on what website requirements you might need. If you’d like to get some free advice, we have free consultations available in the Australian Eastern Standard Time Zone with one of our website development professionals, bookable here.
You might be surprised that our first preference after a custom built website isn’t a super well-known organization like Wordpress or Wix. Webflow is hands down one of the best website builders that has really only become popular in the last few years. As we’ve highlighted many times over the years, Webflow is a great tool that bridges the gap between design and lightning fast responsive code. Any designs you make will be automatically built into HTML which is the most lightweight and fastest loading format you can have. If you’re a designer who is used to Adobe XD or Figma, you might find Webflow’s design process rather frustrating. This is because it ensures that the way you design a website allows for the cascading structure of websites for HTML and CSS.
Webflow also touts a multitude of additional features that should handle all your website needs such as:
- Content Management System
- Subscriptions and Membership Systems
- Forms with complex conditional logic applicable
- Exportable code and collaborative team capabilities
In our eyes, it’s a no brainer and it’s free to try and only costs $40 a month if you decide to get serious.
3. Shopify (e-commerce only)
If you’re an e-commerce business, there’s a serious limitation of the types of website builders you can use. Thankfully, over the past few years, a multitude of online store building tools are now available. The only problem is that picking the right one for your business can be extremely daunting.
Shopify is a web app that allows you to create your own online store. It comes with a huge range of themes that make set-up and your store going live extremely easy. Furthermore, it focuses heavily on a no-code approach to using it despite also having developer functions for HTML and CSS. You’ll notice that HTML and CSS come up a lot! This is the language of the internet and it’s probably worth understanding what they are and how they work.
Shopify was founded in 2006 and currently powers 2.6 million online stores. As of 2021, there are 5 Shopify pricing plans.
- Lite - $9 per month
- Basic - $29 per month
- Shopify - $79 per month
- Advanced - $299 per month
- Plus – Custom pricing
The pricing is extremely appealing and if that still doesn’t convince you to give Shopify a go for your e-commerce store, they also have a 14-day free trial available.
Furthermore, Shopify comes with a huge array of features including collaborative teams, reporting, real-time carrier stats, payment gateway system and shipping discounts.
If you’re looking for the ultimate entry service to help build your e-commerce site, we’d highly recommend giving Shopify a trial.
We understand many of you might be surprised that we’ve lumped these two websites builders in the number 4 spot together. However, both of these options have the same features, functionality and issues.
- User friendly CMS
- Heaps of plugins to get you started quickly
- Open source
- Forums for debugging
- Poor SEO potential
- Frequent plugin updates that can crash your website
Honestly, it’s a bit of a mixed bag whether or not you want to use Wordpress, Squarespace or another similar service. While it is extremely easy and fairly cheap to get started, the long-term usefulness of your website is severely crippled, especially in regards to SEO.
At Socialmindr, our recommendation is that if you’re looking for a simple website to get started, Wordpress or Squarespace is okay. We understand that if you’re a small business looking to get on the map, money and time are both things that can be saved in the short term by using Wordpress or Squarespace. However, if you’re thinking about keeping your website built by these providers in the long-term, we would recommend moving to either Webflow or a custom-built website by a specialized agency. The potential negative effects of having your website on one of these platforms should be seriously considered. It could mean that all of your SEO efforts completely go to waste!
If you’ve read our recommendation and still want to proceed with Wordpress or Squarespace, you can find them here:
5. Website builders to avoid like the plague!
Here’s where we annoy some website builder loyalists. That being said, we feel it’s important to present the limitations of the following so you can avoid making the mistakes that many people have made before.
Wix is one of the most popular website builders in the world. That being said, we highly suggest avoiding Wix for one main reason. Wix, like Wordpress or Squarespace has several plugins which can slow your website down. This isn’t a huge problem for smaller businesses who might want to eventually migrate over to a better provider. However, Wix doesn’t let you download your existing website code. This means that if you want to migrate, you’ll have to entirely rebuild your website which could lead to issues with high costs, design, functionality and redirects.
- Any domain registrar web builder
A domain registrar is a platform that sells domains. Avoiding these website builders is a bit more logical. Any website builder that is included with a domain purchase is usually crap. The most notorious ones include GoDaddy’s website builder, Dreamhost’s website builder and Crazy Domains’ website builder.
Many individuals who purchase domains from these providers may end up purchasing the website building service due to the convenience of a single transaction and management on a single platform. This is problematic as domain registrars will charge a hefty premium for both website building and complementary hosting. Not to mention they lack both the coding and design functionality.
Like Wix, we recommend avoiding these services like the plague. It’s also worth mentioning that these services will also negatively impact your technical SEO similarly to Wordpress or Squarespace without the support plugins that make those services semi-worth it.
Now that you’ve made it to the end, you should have a fair idea of how to proceed with getting your website built. In summary, we’ll always recommend having a specialized agency build your website for you. It also doesn’t have to be immensely expensive either. Simple websites from SocialMindr start at $500-1000 one-off with no hosting fee. In fact, in the long run, this will actually save you money when compared to the usual $100-200 yearly hosting costs. If you’d like to get a free quote on how much a website would cost, you can book a consultation here.
If you’re a go-getter and insist on building your website yourself, we’d highly recommend trying out Webflow. If you have a design background, it’s a bit hard to use at first but it’s easy to learn and the results will be a huge benefit to the longevity of your website and SEO efforts.
Once again, if you’re an e-commerce website, you can default to trying out Shopify for your all-in-one website builder.
As you can see, there’s a huge range of options for building your website. If you’re overwhelmed by your options, that isn’t necessarily a bad thing! Just make sure to avoid those website builders on our “avoid” list!