10 Best Free Website Builders in 2021

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As we all know, free doesn’t always mean quality. That’s why we’ve used our in-depth research to bring you the 10 best free website builders on the market. You can compare the builders side-by-side with our interactive chart, scan our top 10 list for a quick overview, and then read our individual reviews of each platform for more detail. By the end you’ll know which free website builder is the best fit for your needs.

Not sure which free website builder is best for you? We can help with that!

In our rigorous research and testing, Wix came out on top as our overall winner, whilst GoDaddy placed second, thanks to its attractive SEO tools and improved design functionality. And Weebly scores third as an ideal choice for small businesses. 

We tested every website builder on this list, and created demo websites so you can see the results for yourself. Read on to check out the full list below, and discover our expert insights on the top 10 free builders.

Here are the 10 best free website builders:

  1. Wix Best All-Around Website Builder.
  2. GoDaddy Quickest and Most Effective Builder.
  3. Weebly Ideal for Small Businesses.
  4. Jimdo Small Online Store Builder.
  5. Site123 Made for Simple Websites.
  6. Strikingly Made for Simple Websites.
  7. Webflow Best For Designers.
  8. Webnode Quick and Easy Setup.
  9. Ucraft Best for Multilingual Websites.
  10. SimpleSite Great Mobile Editor.

Compare the Top 10 Free Website Builders

In a rush? Get all the key information you need at a glance with our helpful comparison table!

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Our overall ratings are based on the average score of all ratings combined.
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None: 15 pages max instead

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Three of the big drawbacks to free website builders are limited storage space, having adverts displayed on your site, and the lack of ecommerce tools. It’s also worth checking if the builder offers SSL security, otherwise your site gets flagged as non-secure.

The standard storage allowance for free plans is 500MB, although some builders like WordPress.com are more generous.

We used our own independent research to create this list, to provide you with accurate and reliable recommendations. We always aim to be as honest and transparent as possible – and in this spirit, we won’t gloss over the fact that free builders aren’t the best way to build a website. You deserve all the facts, so you’ll find drawbacks as well as pros for each builder in our list.

We’re pretty proud of our research process, because not many sites can say they’ve carried out such in-depth testing before making recommendations. Here’s how our in-house research team go about finding the best website builders on the market.

Every single builder goes through our thorough research process. We investigate important areas such as:

  • Ease of use
  • Design flexibility
  • Value for money
  • Feature quality
  • Help and support
  • Customer satisfaction

This helps us rate and compare the builders fairly, focusing on important factors that users have told us matter most.

We even get groups of everyday people to test the builders out and give us feedback, which we then analyze. This helps us:

  • understand exactly how easy (or difficult) beginners find the builder
  • uncover any issues within the builder
  • judge customer satisfaction

We’ve applied this process to over 50 website builders so far – all so we can bring you the most accurate results and recommendations!

Still got questions? Read our report on How We Conduct Our Website Builder Research for a more detailed explanation.

Ready to find your perfect match? Let’s jump straight in!

#1. Wix

Best All-Around Website Builder

Wix is by far the best overall free website builder on the market today.

Editor's Choice


Best all-around website builder



out of 5
  • 500+ customizable designs
  • Easiest builder to use
  • Tons of creative freedom

Free plan available

Paid Plans: $14 - $56 / month


  • Plenty of features on the free plan
  • 250+ apps to add more power to your site
  • Free SEO wizard helps gain more traffic


  • Free plan adverts are very noticeable
  • Can’t switch templates after publishing
  • Cheapest upgrade costs $14/month
Read Review

How Wix scored in our research: 4.8/5 stars

What about ads?

There’s a fairly noticeable banner ad across the top of free Wix sites.

What will my domain name look like?


How much storage will I get?


Starting price (if you want to upgrade)

$14 per month (billed annually)

Our demo website: Lucy’s Cupcakes

Wix: At A Glance

Wix is extremely easy to use, comes packed with features, and gives you total creative freedom over your site’s design thanks to its drag-and-drop editor.

Although Wix’s free domain isn’t the catchiest, you can customize it to reflect your brand. This gives Wix an advantage over other builders such as SITE123, where you’re given a domain you can’t edit.

Expert Insights: What We Thought Of Using Wix

We used Wix to create a free website for an imaginary business called Lucy’s Cupcakes – the whole building process took about half a day. Wix was easy to use, but still gave us all the creative freedom we needed to make our site look exactly how we wanted it to. We especially like the fact that our template came with the Wix Restaurant app already built-in!

What we liked: 

  • The creative freedom – we could drag anything anywhere, making it easy to line things up exactly how we wanted them!
  • The template choices and designs – our chosen template already had a menu section built-in.
  • The undo feature – simply hit CTRL and Z to undo changes you’ve made. This is a small but surprisingly useful feature.
  • How easy it was – changing text, images, and backgrounds only took a few clicks. Wix even has an image library on hand, which made it even faster!

What could be improved: 

  • Onboarding – although Wix is super easy to use, when the editor first loads, it can look a little confusing because there are so many options. This can make Wix look more tricky than it actually is. A quick tour would make it even more beginner-friendly.

Wix had the highest customer score of any builder we put through user testing, meaning it was the platform people were most likely to recommend. It’s simple and intuitive, and scored 4.4/5 for ease of use.

With its selection of more than 800 templates – most of which are free – and a huge choice of tools and elements, like galleries, buttons, and social media icons, Wix makes creating a website easier than ever.

Wix guides you through the setup process. You choose the type of site you want to create, your industry, and your template before starting to build.

We chose the Restaurants & Food industry during setup, which gave us 68 tailored templates to pick from. (We chose the Ice Cream Parlor template).

wix free website builder choose template

Our chosen template came with the Wix Restaurant feature pre-installed, which made editing the example menu quick and easy.

wix free builder menu editing

Most Wix templates are available to users of its free plan – including the one we used to create our demo website, ‘Ice Cream Parlor.’

You will find limitations to Wix’s free plan, though. For starters, there’s a banner ad for Wix which stays in place as you scroll down the site. It’s not too in-your-face, and it’s pretty subtle compared to other builders, but still – it’s a tad intrusive and hard to miss.

wix best free builder banner advert

You also can’t use a personal domain (aka a custom website address) – your domain will follow the format yourusername.wixsite.com/yoursite. So instead of lucyscupcakes.com, you’ll be stuck with a much lengthier domain, like this one: carnagelucy.wixsite.com/lucyscupcakes

Make sure to choose a professional username, and a short brand name – you’re restricted to 20 characters for the ‘yoursite’ part of your address.

With the free plan, storage and bandwidth are both capped at just 500MB. This will prevent you from using too many images or videos on your site, as well as potentially limiting how many visitors you can get. You also can’t sell any products through Wix on its free plan.

Premium plans start at $14/month. Although this may sound pricey, Wix is the best value website builder with a value for money score of 4.5/5, so if you do ever decide to upgrade you’re in good hands!

Among other things, Wix’s $14 per month Combo plan removes any adverts from your site, lets you use a custom domain, and increases your storage to 3GB instead of 500MB.

Wix’s most popular paid plan is its Unlimited plan, aimed at entrepreneurs and freelancers. For $18/month, it removes all ads, lets you use a personal domain, and provides unlimited bandwidth – as well as 20x more storage space than the free plan!

wix logo

Wix is the builder our users were most impressed by

88% of people in our user testing would recommend Wix. Build your free site to find out what all the fuss is about!

Further Information

For more information on Wix specifically:

  • Wix Review – If you’re looking for more information on Wix then this is a great place to start.
  • Wix Pricing Guide – We take a closer look at the costs of each Wix premium plan and what you get for your money.

#2. GoDaddy

Quickest and Most Efficient Builder

GoDaddy is a solid all-round choice for website building. With its user-friendly design formats and SEO Wiz feature, GoDaddy is ideal for getting any small business off the ground.


Quickest and Most Efficient Builder



out of 5
  • User-friendly with ADI
  • Quickest builder to use
  • SEO Wiz to help optimize

Free plan available

Paid Plans: $9.99 - $19.99 / month


  • Plenty of features on the free plan
  • Easy SEO features in Settings
  • Access to mobile editor view


  • Isn't much room for creative freedom
  • On-site adverts with free plan
  • No custom domain unless you upgrade
Read Review

How GoDaddy scored in our research: 4.4 / 5 stars

What about ads?

‘Powered by GoDaddy’ will appear in the footer section of your website

What will my domain name look like?


Starting price (if you want to upgrade)

$6.99 per month (billed annually)

Our demo website: Lucy’s Cupcakes

GoDaddy: At A Glance

GoDaddy is ideal for anyone looking to create a clean, basic website in a short period of time. It’s pretty user-friendly with its ADI functionality which builds your website based on a few answered questions. From the last time we tested out the builder, GoDaddy has made some impressive changes to its design process with new and improved templates and customization tools – which is why it smoothly climbed its way to number two on our list!

The SEO Wiz feature stands out as a quick and easy function to help optimize your site, although it doesn’t have some of the more advanced SEO features like Wix. 

Expert Insights: What We Thought Of Using GoDaddy 

When we created our demo website with GoDaddy, it was clear that the builder is nice and simple to use. By just answering up to three questions, GoDaddy got to work producing  a sleek site that came with customization tools at the bottom to add a personal touch. You get to play around with themes, fonts, colour schemes and CTA buttons.

What we liked about GoDaddy: 

  • Mobile Optimization– yes, you also get to see what your site looks like on GoDaddy’s mobile editor view! This way you can tweak image and font sizes so it looks good on any device.
  • How easy it was to set up – like Wix, GoDaddy asks you what sort of website you want to create and what your business name is, and then gives you tailored themes to work with.
  • Easy SEO features– By heading over to ‘Get found by Google’ in the Settings section, you can start optimizing your website by answering a few simple questions. No need to soak up any SEO knowledge before building! 

What could be improved: 

  • There isn’t much room for creative freedom when it comes to block elements. You can’t move or resize image blocks outside of your site’s parameter which can be annoying if you’re trying to make the layout unique to your brand. 

In short, GoDaddy is quite easy to navigate through. The ADI functionality means anyone can create a quick, sleek site without needing any coding skills. You have a business contact page available in each free template, but it’s definitely more limited than other website builders out there in terms of creative freedom. It’s ease of use really depends on how unique you want your site to be. If you’re not too sure how you want your site to look and are pretty happy to stick with the template’s design, GoDaddy will work in your favor.

You get 22 different templates to choose from when building your free website with GoDaddy. This is pretty limited compared to Wix, which offers more than 500 templates (most of which are free), but the selection range is pretty broad in terms of overall design. Whether you’re looking for a more urban style, or something more formal, GoDaddy does have a lot on offer with its templates. You’re also free to switch up the colours depending on your brand style once you’ve chosen your preferred template! 

The only downside would be that the templates aren’t that personalised to the industry you’ve chosen. For example, with our demo website, Lucy’s Cupcakes, the templates didn’t seem very food-related compared to the templates you can find on Wix.

Essentially, you get what you pay for! If you’re going for a free GoDaddy plan, there are quite a few features you won’t have access to compared to a paid plan. You’ll have to deal with on-site adverts, no custom domain and limited customization tools. 

If you want to get your hands on a custom domain and a no-ad website, you’ll have to upgrade to its premium plans which we’ll talk about in the next section! 

GoDaddy’s cheapest plan is its Basic plan for personal use, starting at $6.99 per month. This is a discounted price if you choose to be billed yearly – the usual price is $14.99 per month. You get access to a custom domain, removal of GoDaddy ads, and the ability to send 100 emails per month for your business. 

For small business owners, GoDaddy recommends its Standard plan at the pricepoint of $10.49 per month (billed yearly). You get everything in the Basic plan plus advanced SEO functionality and up to 500 email sends per month. 

For businesses that are looking to expand, the Premium plan will work in your favor. From $13.99 per month, your visitors can book online appointments through the website, and you’ll have an impressive limit of 25,000 emails sends per month! 

If you want to expand in the digital world of commerce, the dedicated Commerce plan from GoDaddy is your go-to at $17.49 per month. It has everything you need from selling on Facebook and Instagram, to connecting to marketplaces like Amazon and Etsy. 

GoDaddy’s free plan will get you a professional site in a matter of minutes.

For more information on GoDaddy, read the following:

  • GoDaddy Review – Our in-depth look at GoDaddy will tell you everything you need to know about this free website maker!
  • GoDaddy Ecommerce Review – Everything you need to know about building an online store in a flash! 
  • Wix vs GoDaddy – We compare the differences between Wix and GoDaddy to help you decide!

#3. Weebly

Ideal for Small Businesses

Weebly is one of the easiest to use free website makers around, with a great plan for small businesses.

People's Choice


Ideal for small businesses

Very Good


out of 5
  • Most scalable features
  • Professional free domain
  • Quick and easy to set up

Free plan available

Paid Plans: $6 - $29 / month


  • Great SEO prompts to help beginners rank
  • Subtle Weebly branding in free domain
  • Huge app store to scale your free site


  • Limited free plan features and support
  • Editing tools lack creative freedom
  • Pop up advert is bright and distracting
Read Review

How Weebly scored in our research: 4 / 5 stars

What about ads?

There’s a small slide up ad in the bottom left hand corner (see screenshots below)

What will my domain name look like?


How much storage will I get?

500MB (with a 10MB limit per upload)

Starting price (if you want to upgrade)

$6 per month (billed annually)

Our demo website: Lucy’s Cupcakes

Weebly: At A Glance

Weebly has a similar ‘drag-and-drop’ editor to Wix, which is extremely user-friendly. Combine this ease of use with its great SEO tools, semi-professional free domain, plus lots of room for growth to scale your website, and Weebly stands out as the best free website builder for small businesses.

In terms of its feature score, we did realise that the platform has dropped 16% compared to the previous analysis, and now scores 3.5 / 5 in our ratings. We put this down to its poor server response time and mobile formatting!

If you’re in the US, you can even sell from your free Weebly site, which is a great perk seeing as 62% of US consumers shop online more now than before the COVID-19 pandemic. However, you’ll pay a 3% transaction fee on each sale.

Expert Insights: What We Thought Of Using Weebly

When we created our demo site with Weebly, it felt very beginner friendly – setting up the site was easy. It felt a lot more limited than Wix though, with fewer templates to choose from and more dated looking editing tools.

What we liked about Weebly: 

  • The structured themes – yes, we did find Weebly’s structured themes frustrating at times, but they’re helpful for following design best practices.
  • How easy it was to set up – like Wix, Weebly asks you what sort of website you want to create, and provides you with tailored themes to help you get started.
  • Its beginner-friendly prompts – Weebly makes it difficult to accidentally delete anything; it always double-checks first, which is helpful!

What could be improved: 

  • Lack of creative freedom – the one thing we’d ask Weebly to improve would have to be its level of creative freedom. Having more control over the color and size of your text shouldn’t cause a headache – or require you to code.For Lucy’s Cupcakes, Weebly’s limited editing style proved frustrating when trying to arrange text over an image background, as you can’t simply drag a text box a few millimetres up.

To put it briefly, Weebly is very easy to use. It uses drag-and-drop building tools like Wix, meaning anyone can create a site using Weebly without needing any coding skills.

weebly free builder editing buttons

That said, Weebly is more limited, offering less creative freedom than Wix – which can cause problems when you’re trying to make your site look exactly how you want it. Weebly is easiest to use when you’re sticking pretty closely to your template’s design.

Weebly has seen quite a big reduction in our design scores when looking at aspects like templates, flexibility, UX design and mobile editor.

When testing out the platform with everyday people, we found a a commonality in the frustration users felt. The templates stood out to be pretty bland and lacking style. The blocks can be sticky and tough to play around with, which is a pain point for anyone trying to let their creativity flow!

Our main gripe with Weebly’s templates is the lack of creative freedom they allow. In short, Weebly’s customization options are more limited than Wix’s.

Weebly comes with the usual free plan limitations – on-site adverts, no custom domain, and limited storage at 500MB.

weebly free website advert example 2

Weebly’s adverts come in the form of a bright blue slide-up box that opens when you hover it.

But Weebly also reserves phone support for paying customers – you only get access to a community forum, chat, and email support on Weebly’s free plan.

Weebly’s cheapest plan is the Personal plan, which costs $6 per month when billed annually.

We have to be honest, though – we don’t recommend the Personal plan. It won’t remove adverts from your site, and you don’t get a free domain or access to phone support. Its main attraction is that it lets you connect your own custom domain.

Weebly’s $12 per month Professional plan offers much better value for money, which is why we recommend skipping the Personal plan and heading straight for this one. You’ll get unlimited storage and remove ads from your site, among other things!

weebly logo

Weebly's free plan is one of the most generous

Weebly is the perfect platform for small businesses, and one of the easiest website builders to get to grips with.

For more information on Weebly, read the following:

  • Weebly Review – Our in-depth look at Weebly will tell you everything you need to know about this free website maker!
  • Weebly Pricing Guide – We take a closer look at the costs of each Weebly paid plan.
  • Wix vs Weebly – We compare the differences between Wix and Weebly to help you decide!

#4. Jimdo

A Good ‘Pre-store’ Option

Jimdo is a good choice of free website builder if you want to set up an online store and sell through your site at a later date.


Small online store builder



out of 5
  • Sell for free
  • ADI and coding options
  • Connect online profiles

Free plan available

Paid Plans: $9 - $40 / month


  • Cheapest plan to remove adverts later
  • Subtle footer ad isn’t too noticeable
  • Does lots of design and SEO work for you


  • Drag-and-drop tools are difficult to use
  • Template designs aren’t the most modern
  • Only 56% of our users recommend Jimdo
Read Review

How Jimdo scored in our research: 3.6/ 5 stars

What about ads?

Tiny note in the footer of your website to say it was built using Jimdo.

What will my domain name look like?


How much storage will I get?


Starting price (if you want to upgrade)

$9 per month (billed annually)

Jimdo: At A Glance

The team behind Jimdo are very passionate about helping you build a free website, and things are kept simple so you can jump right in.

All in all, we’d recommend Jimdo if you need a quick and easy website to provide a backdrop for an online Facebook store or similar. You can sell up to five products for free with Jimdo, and it’s really easy (and fairly cheap) to upgrade your plan to scale up your store later down the line.

Expert Insights: What We Thought Of Using Jimdo

Jimdo values simplicity, and this is obvious as you build. There are question mark tool-tips scattered throughout the editor to help you along, and uploading images, changing text, and replacing backgrounds is all effortless.

Good to Know…

Jimdo offers an impressive ADI editor product, Jimdo Dolphin, which essentially creates your website for you.

Although you may not have a lot of creative control this way, the end result is professional, clean and sophisticated so it’s worth trying it out for yourself. You’re always able to add block elements as you go along, and change the layout after the ADI editor has done its thing!

Jimdo is generally very easy to use – it was pretty smooth, but didn’t knock our socks off. It’s easiest when you’re simply replacing and adding content in the template, rather than trying to reformat it or customize it too much.

In user testing, 56% of users said they’d recommend Jimdo to a friend. We enjoyed its simplicity, while simultaneously growing frustrated at its limitations.

If you’ve tried out Wix and Weebly, you’ll find Jimdo a bit lacking in comparison. The template selection is also much more limited.

For example, we chose our industry during setup, and were then provided with a selection of templates. But the designs weren’t all relevant to the food industry we’d picked – it would have been nice to receive more tailored designs, like you do with Wix and Weebly.

The prompts at the beginning do mean you can get a website set up really quickly, and avoid the problem of being overwhelmed with choice.

The domain name format is fairly standard: your-site.jimdofree.com. For this site, for example, ours was lucyscupcakes.jimdofree.com. This is nice and simple, but it does signal to all your visitors that your website is free, as it’s right there in your domain name.

There are also no banner or pop-up Jimdo ads with the free plan, just a tiny note in the footer.

jimdo free website builder subtle advert

On Jimdo’s free plan, you can sell up to five products, but you’re limited in terms of SEO functionality. You also don’t have access to the helpful analytics dashboard that comes with premium plans.

Jimdo has two sets of plans – one for its ADI builder, and one for its Creator editor. We used the Creator editor when testing and building with Jimdo.

The ADI editor plans range from $9 to $39 per month, billed annually.

The Creator plans range from $10 to $40 per month, billed annually.

Upgrading guarantees you faster support response times, a free custom domain, more storage and bandwidth, the removal of adverts, and more features, such as adding email accounts.

jimdo logo

Looking for a simple storefront?

Jimdo is ideal for building a simple storefront for your ecommerce business, whether you’re already selling on social media or just starting out.

To get the lowdown on Jimdo, check out the following:

  • Jimdo Review – For more information about Jimdo, you can’t go wrong with our in-depth review.

#5. SITE123

Great Design Assistance

SITE123 is a simple to use website builder that focuses on helping you get online.


Great design assistance

Above Average


out of 5
  • Uses ADI to build sites
  • 24/7 live chat support
  • Useful design guidance

Free plan available

Paid Plans: $12.8 - $41 / month


  • Friendly live chat perfect for beginners
  • ADI quickly builds a basic site for you
  • No adverts visible when page first loads


  • Unprofessional, non-customizable domain
  • Template designs are outdated and clunky
  • Extremely limited creative control
Read Review

How SITE123 scored in our research: 3.4 /5 stars

What about ads?

There’s a very subtle banner along the bottom which appears after the user scrolls a little down the page.

What will my domain name look like?

A random mix of numbers and letters, ending in site123.me. Here’s the free domain for our SITE123 demo website: 5f35237f568e3.site123.me

How much storage will I get?


Starting price (if you want to upgrade)

$12.80 per month (billed annually)

Our demo site: Lucy’s Cupcakes

SITE123: At A Glance

SITE123 is ideal for beginners who want to create a nice, simple website. It’s super easy to set up, but if you want to get creative and push the boundaries of your site’s design, then SITE123 isn’t for you. It’s very limited, and the free domain you get is a jumble of letters and numbers, which is a huge downside.

Expert Insights: What We Thought Of Using SITE123

The main thing we noticed about SITE123 was how much it tries to help you while you build. From creating your basic site for you, to providing font pairings and complimentary color suggestions, it feels like someone holding your hand from start to finish.

What we liked about SITE123: 

  • How friendly it was – if you have zero tech skills and want a fairly hands-off building experience, SITE123 is a perfect choice.
  • Its chat support – SITE123’s live chat is there to help throughout the building process, which is great if you get stuck.
  • All the creative help – simply choose your industry and site name, and SITE123 creates your basic site for you. It has pre-paired fonts and color suggestions to help you too!

What could be improved: 

  • The quality of design – it’s no secret that SITE123 provides limited creative freedom. This would be less frustrating if the designs were more modern and attractive. Our Lucy’s Cupcakes site was easy to build, but the result looks a little dated and bland, especially compared to the Wix site we made.

One thing that makes SITE123 so easy to use is its design-assisted technology. All you have to do is choose your industry from the 16 options provided, enter your website name, and SITE123 does the rest. It creates a basic site for you, which you can then customize.

site123 free website builder adi

When customizing, you don’t need code – SITE123 is suitable for beginners with zero building experience.

An immediate drawback of SITE123 is that it doesn’t give you a choice of templates. So unlike Wix, Weebly, and other free website makers, who let you choose a template that takes your fancy, with SITE123 you can’t choose from various pre-populated designs.

While this certainly makes it quicker and easier to set up, it also gives you less control over the look and feel of your website.

Design assistant

Instead, you’re relying on SITE123’s design assistant. You pick the type of website you want from 16 different categories (including portfolio, blog, music and CV), before being presented with a default website design. Although you can amend the default design to some extent, SITE123 scored poorly for design flexibility overall (2.9/5).

site123 free website builder page layouts

SITE123’s customization options aren’t the most attractive or exciting around – if you want a stunning website, SITE123 isn’t really for you.

Not being able to connect a custom domain is a common drawback with free website builders, but with SITE123, it’s an even bigger problem. That’s because SITE123’s free domain is a randomly generated jumble of letters and numbers – and you can’t customize it.

The result is an unprofessional, impossible to remember domain that looks like this: 5f35237f568e3.site123.me

When you view SITE123’s plans on its website, you’ll see two options: its free plan, and a premium plan that costs $12.80 per month billed annually.

Once you’ve created a free account, however, you’ll discover a wider range of four plans, ranging from $12.80 to $34.80 per month (billed annually). SITE123 often has a sale running, so it’s worth checking for discounts if you do decide to upgrade.

site123 logo

SITE123 gives you a helping hand with design

SITE123’s design assistance takes the hassle out of finding the right look for your site.

Read more:

  • Our SITE123 Review tells you all you need to know about this top free website builder

#6. Strikingly

Made for Simple Websites

An easy-to-use free builder which creates simple, stylish, one-page websites.


Made for simple websites

Above Average


out of 5
  • Build single page sites
  • User-friendly onboarding
  • Good for personal sites

Free plan available

Paid Plans: $8 - $159 / month


  • Most subtle advertising on free sites
  • Very simple, beginner-friendly editor
  • Sell one product per free site


  • No SSL certificate for free websites
  • Only build one-page sites on free plan
  • Rigid templates restrict personalization
Read Review

How Strikingly scored in our research: 3.4/5 stars

What about ads?

Very small scroll-triggered slide up ad in the bottom left corner.

What will my domain name look like?


How much storage will I get?


Starting price (if you want to upgrade)

$8 per month (billed annually)

Strikingly: At A Glance

Strikingly is a simple, easy to use free website builder that’s best for personal rather than business websites. Strikingly’s core focus is getting you online cheaply, easily, and quickly. Because of this, you don’t have the same level of creative control as some of the more intuitive website builders, like Wix.

Expert Insights: What We Thought Of Using Strikingly

One of the first things we noticed about creating a website with Strikingly was how friendly it feels. You get a quick onboarding tour that shows you around, and customizing your template is super easy – as long as you’re happy to stick to the design.

Strikingly isn’t just easy to use – it’s also enjoyable. It has a fun, friendly feel to it, along with a simple and uncomplicated editor. Anyone could build a site with Strikingly, and quickly too!

Strikingly would have scored higher in our ease of use testing if it offered more control – our users wished for a more intuitive editor with more creative freedom.

Strikingly creates one-page websites with a pre-formed design of your choice. The first thing you do is choose your template. We chose the template ‘Pastry Corner’ for our practice site.

strikingly free website builder pastry corner template

Unlike many other free website builders, you can change your template as many times as you wish once your site is live.

You’ll find editing Strikingly’s templates a piece of cake – as long as you don’t want to change things up too much. In just a few clicks, we’d customized our template to look like this:

strikingly free website builder easy customization

Customization is pretty limited – when building our test site, we would have liked a little more control over our page layout.

strikingly free website builder formatting

Moving the right-hand text box up a little would make it easier to read, but the template’s structure wouldn’t allow it.

With Strikingly’s free plan, you can create as many free websites as you please. You’ll also get a 5GB monthly bandwidth, 24/7 customer support, and the ability to sell one product per site through the Simple Store function.

Strikingly’s advertising is arguably the most subtle of any builder so far, and the domain name format – yoursite.mystrikingly.com – is especially decent.

Don’t worry if your free domain looks odd to start with. Our domain for Lucy’s Cupcakes started out as site-2866940-7308-879.mystrikingly.com – but we easily changed it to lucyscupcakes.mystrikingly.com

The downside, however, is that – unlike all the builders listed above – Strikingly’s free plan doesn’t include an SSL certificate. This means your site will be flagged as ‘Not secure’ to anyone trying to visit it – not good!

You can also only build one-page websites on the free plan. If you want to build multi-page sites, you’ll need to upgrade.

We’d suggest trying out Strikingly’s free plan, then upgrading to the ‘Limited’ paid plan for just $8 a month once you’re happy. You’ll get a custom domain, up to 50GB of bandwidth per month, and the ability to sell up to five products on your site, making it very good value for money.

strikingly logo

Strikingly is a great choice for one-page websites

Easy setup and subtle advertising make Strikingly a winning choice for any simple website.

Find out more:

Read our Strikingly Review for an in-depth look at this top free website maker!


#7. Webflow

Best for Designers

Webflow is by far an ideal choice for web designers and those who can handle large amounts of customization. 

Webflow: At A Glance

This website builder definitely has web designers in mind. Instead of the usual drag and drop functionality that Wix and Squarespace offer, Webflow works with padding and section block areas. This will be a pretty familiar format for users who are used to large amounts of customization but, to a beginner, this may be quite an overwhelming design process.

Expert Insights: What We Thought Of Using Webflow 

We went ahead and tested Webflow out for ourselves with our demo business, Lucy’s Cupcakes. The building process did take a couple of hours because of how different it is to the popular drag and drop editor that Wix offers. It’s safe to say that without any prior knowledge to using section block areas and overlays, it will be a little difficult to navigate at times. Thankfully, Webflow has a virtual design assistant which gives you an in-depth demo into how everything works before it leaves you to it!

What we liked:

  • Template choice and designs – Webflow makes it clear which templates are best for which industries, and offers a pretty big range of free templates compared to other builders.
  • Creative Freedom – Webflow gives a lot of creative control to users and, even with its free plan, you have get an array of customizable features
  • Efficient navigation – Webflow relies on the use of short keys and right-clicking to remove or add elements, which makes the design process a lot more streamlined overall

What could be improved:

Ability to drag elements – although Webflow is designed with web designers in mind, it would be useful to include drag and drop editor functionality so that it is more beginner-friendly! We’ve seen how great this works with Wix in terms of improving user experience.

Idf you’re not familiar with section block areas and overlays, you may find Webflow a little tricky to get your head around!

Webflow relies pretty heavily on the use of short keys and right-clicking to remove or add elements, which makes the design process a lot more streamlined. You do get thrown into navigating the dashboard which can be slightly daunting at first. It’s great if you’re someone who has prior knowledge with padding functionality and won’t feel too overwhelmed with large amounts of customization.


With both free and premium templates, Webflow does a good job of identifying which templates are going to be better for your individual requirements . Although, there is no actual search functionality which limits the amount of templates on view and whether it accomodates for a certain industry.

Usually website builders have a set of templates for the blogging industry, for example, which provides a good indication as to what works for you. This is something Webflow could definitely include to make the overall user experience much more enjoyable.

Unless you upgrade to Webflow’s premium plans that start at $12 per month, you won’t have access to a custom domain name or advanced design tools.

Your domain name will look something like this lucyscupcakes.webflow.io, with the free plan which doesn’t look the prettiest!

Webflow’s advertising will also appear on your free site, and it limits you to publishing up to two projects only. Anything beyond this, you’ll want to look into Webflow Site plans which are closely designed for blogs and personal sites.

Webflow offers two types of paid plans; Site Plans and Account Plans.

Site offers four levels which are Basic, CMS, Business and Enterprise (ranging between $12 – $36 per month). We’d recommend site plans for content-driven websites or blogs because it gives you creative freedom but doesn’t allow much room for large amounts of traffic. Site has an ecommerce plan that is much better suits for growing traffic and marketing tools.

Account Plan offers two choices of either Individual or Team plans. You can kind of figure out which features these both entail! With Teams, you can collaborate with other team members with a shared dashboard, and is a lot more customizable.

Essentially, you’re getting a lot with paid plans, but if you just want to play about with the platform, it’s always good to give the free plan a try before you decide to buy!

Do You Need a Website Builder That Offers Advanced Customization Tools?

Webflow is ideal for users who want to get more out of their design process!

#8. Webnode

Great for Events Websites

Webnode is a popular choice of free website maker with more than 30 million users around the world.

What about ads?

Gray banner in the footer section that says ‘Make a free website’ and ‘Webnode’

What will my domain name look like?


How much storage will I get?


Starting price (if you want to upgrade)

$3.90 per month (billed annually)

Webnode: At A Glance

Webnode is a decent choice of free website builder if you can’t commit much time to working on a template design, or want a builder with virtually zero learning curve – but it does limit your creative potential compared to other builders on our list.

Expert Insights: What We Thought Of Using Webnode

Despite the slightly clunky sign-up process – Webnode publishes your template straightaway, and you need to go to your email to access the editor so you can start customizing – once you’re in, it’s a smooth and simple builder to use.

It’s really easy to get set up with Webnode. The whole website building process could be done in about five minutes – now that’s quick!

There’s no real learning curve with Webnode – it’s easy to quickly find your way around and start editing your template. Some design controls are located in the settings dashboard, which can take a minute to find, but other than that, everything is where you’d expect to find it.

webnode free builder easy editor

There’s nothing in Webnode that’s likely to cause you headaches – unless you try to do too much with it.

Webnode has clean, minimal template designs to choose from during the setup process.

webnode free builder templates

You can’t change your template, so make the most of Webnode’s preview feature before you commit to a template and start building.

webnode free builder template edit or preview

Webnode’s editor is very easy to use, but a lot less flexible than other free website builders like Weebly or Wix. It’s almost a drag-and-drop editor, but not quite.

You can move elements around, but they will conform to predetermined designs. For example, if you move an image from the middle of the page to the right, the page design will change to accommodate this, rather than simply letting you drop the image where you want it. It lends itself really well to building simple, minimalist sites – we recommend it for events websites rather than, say, business websites.

That said, we chose the ‘Joe’s Coffee Palace’ template for our cupcake website, and were pleased with the results.

One of the big drawbacks to Webnode is the limited storage you get on the free plan. You only receive 100MB storage, which is five times less than most of the other builders on our list.

Webnode has a helpful storage tracker in the settings dashboard, which shows you just how much storage you’ve used. This is good for knowing when it’s time to upgrade.

webnode free builder free settings

Your free Webnode domain will represent your brand to a certain extent, but you can’t customize it like you can with Wix.

The domain we got for our cupcake website looked like this: lucy-s-cupcakes0.webnode.com – not so bad as the SITE123 free domain, but not ideal either.

webnode small advert

Luckily, Webnode’s advert is very small and subtle, placed in the footer of your site and not at all “in your face.”

Webnode’s free plan doesn’t provide password protection, backups, or ecommerce – you’d need to upgrade to unlock these features.

Webnode’s cheapest paid plan costs $3.95 per month – this is a basic plan that’s main benefit is letting you connect your own custom domain.

To increase your storage you’d need the $7.50 per month Mini plan, and to remove the small Webnode advert from your site you’d need the $12.90 per month Standard plan.

webnode logo

Do You Need a Basic Events Website?

Webnode isn’t powerful, but it is quick and easy to use – and perfect for events websites!

#9. Ucraft

Strong on Design and User Experience

What you’ll notice pretty soon with Ucraft is how image-driven the website builder is. Most of its templates have visuals taking up most of the page – This means its ideal for ecommerce websites that really want to show off their products! A top choice if you’re going for a colourful, urban style.

What about ads?

A Ucraft watermark is attached to all free websites – you can remove this when upgrading to Pro plan!

What will my domain name look like?


Starting price (if you want to upgrade)

$10 per month (billed annually)

Ucraft: At A Glance

Ucraft is ideal for website owners wanting to focus on user experience. The image-driven platform lets you showcase your products or services in a bold fashion from large visuals, to flashy fonts. Although it doesn’t use a drag and drop functionality, it’s pretty user friendly with easy-to-use templates and simple customization tools on the left-hand side. The main focus on aesthetics really makes this builder enjoyable for the user!

Expert Insights: What We Though Of Using Ucraft

The onboarding process for Ucraft is pretty straightforward. When signing up, you get asked to choose your template and to type in your business name – Ucraft then gets to work creating your site.

Like we did with our website builders listed above, we used Ucraft to create a demo website for our imaginary business, Lucy’s Cupcakes. Without a drag and drop editor, it was little more difficult to move elements around the page! Also, with the platform being so image-driven, it could be tough to get all the relevant, ‘word-y’ information onto your site.

The design process was, overall, super fun to play around with and you can achieve a lot of page character when using Ucraft. Here’s what we managed to create:

Ucraft isn’t the easiest of platforms to use when comparing to other builders! It can be pretty restrictive when it comes to changing up the content blocks because there isn’t a drag and drop editor to work with. If you’re looking to amend the sizing of images and text blocks when creating galleries, you may be better with Wix which gives you a lot more creative freedom.

With Ucraft being a very image-driven builder, its templates are really focused on large images covering the page, rather than text. What’s great is that the templates are provided with an information button to allow users to identify what/who the template is designed for. Ucraft templates are pretty slick and clear with minimal content – the visuals are clearly doing all the talking!

As you can expect, you definitely get what you (don’t) pay for!

Ucraft’s free plan only limits you to 15 website pages, and there are a bunch of things that you end up missing out on.

You don’t get access to SEO tools, designer or blogging tools, and you can’t do any selling on a free plan! If you’re looking to sell online, you’re better off upgrading to any of its pro plans which opens up the doors to data management services and access to Ucraft 24/7 support.

The design process itself is a lot more limiting on the free plan, even if you’re just trying to create an online presence.

Premium plans start at $10 per month when billed annually. Although this may sound pricey, Ucraft does have a pretty good value for money with the array of features you get in return.

Data management tools don’t creep in until you upgrade to Pro Shop for $21 per month, so that might be your best option if you want to build an online store.

You’ll receive a free domain with all three of its pro plans and gain access to all the Advanced tools, such as multilingual options, custom fonts, and more than 20 integrations.

You can select either the Pro Website plan (which is its most popular plan), Pro Shop, or Unlimited plan. The more premium you go, the bigger the pricetag so make sure you have a rough idea of the tools you’ll need before selecting one.

Do You Need a Website Builder That's Strong on Design?

#10. SimpleSite

Great Mobile Editor

SimpleSite lets you easily edit your site from your mobile.

What about ads?

Small white button to the left which says ‘Get Your Own FREE Website. Click here!’

What will my domain name look like?


How much storage will I get?

No storage cap, but limited to 15 pages

Starting price (if you want to upgrade)

$11.25 per month (billed annually)

SimpleSite: At A Glance

SimpleSite is – you guessed it – a very simple website builder, which nevertheless has some surprising perks built into its platform. Its mobile editor in particular is a great feature for those on the go. Other than that, we’d go so far as to say this free builder is a little too simple. It’s only suitable for hobby websites rather than anything serious.

Expert Insights: What We Thought Of Using SimpleSite

If you want a builder that walks you through setting up the different parts of your website step by step, then you might enjoy using SimpleSite.

Its onboarding process uses an animated beaver character to guide you through setting up each page, before you get to enter the main editor. While this is helpful for ensuring you don’t miss out anything important, it can become tedious if you’re after any amount of creative freedom.

SimpleSite has a very thorough onboarding process, where it walks you through each step of setting up your website before you even reach the editor. This is good for nervous or first-time builders who aren’t sure where to start.

simplesite free website builder onboarding

SimpleSite is a mobile delight. It has a really impressive specialism – it gives you the ability to create a website to the same extent as on a desktop, but from your mobile device.

This makes it ideal for busy users who are always on the move.

But what about the designs themselves?

As part of the setup process, you have to choose your website layout. There were only two options to choose from, which felt extremely limiting – especially compared to builders like Wix and Weebly!

free website builder simplesite layout editor

Showing the mobile preview alongside the desktop view is a nice touch, but more template choice would be even better!

SimpleSite’s free plan limits you to 15 pages on your site, which should be fine for a new hobby website. You can sell up to five products on the free plan, and your site will be mobile optimized, too.

However, you have limited design options, and will need to upgrade if you want to remove adverts – as well as get rid of that page limit.

There’s just one small ‘sticky’ ad, and again, a decent domain name structure: yoursite.simplesite.com (or in our case, lucysyummycupcakes.simplesite.com).

However, there are some big downsides. You aren’t actually able to amend the mobile version of your website when you’re working from a desktop, while SimpleSite’s premium plans are relatively expensive overall compared to other website builders should you want to access more features.

While it does have a free plan, the premium options range from $11.25 to $26.25 per month, billed annually.

And as with Strikingly and Mozello, SimpleSite’s free plan doesn’t include an SSL certificate, leaving your site exposed – a big disadvantage in our eyes.

SimpleSite has two premium plans, and both are pretty expensive for what they offer. Its cheapest plan costs $11.25 per month when billed annually – for that much, you may as well look at Weebly’s $12 per month plan, because you’ll get much more for your money.

simplesite logo

Do You Like to Keep Things Simple?

SimpleSite is a good option if you need on-the-go editing, or if you want your hand held while you build.

Want to find out more?

What’s Important in a Free Website Builder?

what to look for checklistFree website builders may have once seemed too good to be true, but we set out to demonstrate that this is not always the case.

A question we often get asked is just how do these free website builders make their money? Is there something sketchy going on? Luckily, it’s all super safe and above board. These website builders operate on what’s known as a ‘freemium’ business model, whereby the customers who want to pay for extra features effectively fund those who are happy with a limited plan – no strings attached.

That said, there are some elements that you should pay close attention to when deciding on which free website builder you choose.

To create this ranking of the best free website builders, we drew upon our extensive research and user testing for each website builder as a whole, and combined this with a specific focus on their free plans, paying close attention to whether or not the builder ticked these boxes:

Clear domain name

Free website builders won’t let you link up a custom domain name – but what does the auto-generated one look like? For example, a format like IM Creator’s (im-creator.com/free/yourname/yoursite) could make your site look quite unprofessional.

Low upgrade cost

Upgrading to a paid plan comes with clear benefits, so it’s good to know how much this would cost.

Minimal advertising

You don’t need us to tell you that a website plastered in ads won’t look as good as one without! Our screenshots should help you evaluate the ads of each website builder, and decide on the least intrusive option for you.

Free SSL certificate

Most website builders include a free SSL certificate as standard, but a couple don’t (we’ve flagged when this is the case). Without an SSL certificate, your website will display as ‘Not secure’ to visitors. You can buy an SSL certificate separately for around $10/year.

Sufficient storage

Most free website builders have a cap on the amount of content you can upload to your site. If you know you want to include lots of images or videos, be mindful of how quickly you’d hit this cap.

Easy to use

There’s no point in finding a website builder that ticks the boxes above, only to discover it’s clunky and frustrating to use. We’ve given an indication of how easy each website builder is to use, based on our research and user testing.

Ecommerce functionality (optional)

If you need to sell through your free website builder, this limits your options a little. Keep an eye out for website builders we’ve flagged as allowing you to sell on a free plan, like Weebly.

By going through the process of creating a free website with each builder for this article, we’ve been able to give a really accurate first-hand account of the process.

How Do I Create A Free Website? (Step-by-Step)

One thing all the website builders in our ranking have in common, aside from being free, is that they are easy to set up – they wouldn’t have made the cut otherwise! The process and learning curve differ slightly from builder to builder, but here are the steps you can expect:

  1. Sign up with the website builder. This will require an email address, password, and possibly a username.
  2. Choose a template, or answer questions for the design assistant. This is the first fork in the road – most builders will let you select a template to work off at this stage, but some will use design assistance to mock up a website for you based on your answers to a few questions. We’ve specified when this is the case.
  3. Add in your own content. Get rid of placeholder text and images, and replace these with your own.
  4. Tweak and customize your design. If you want to, you can customize your design further by testing out new layouts and colors, or even switching to a new template. Most builders let you switch templates after publishing, but keep in mind that Wix doesn’t.
  5. Press publish! At this point, your domain name will be generated, and your site will be live for the world to see.

This process could take anything from 15 minutes to a few hours, depending on how much you switch up in steps three and four.

Is It Worth Upgrading to a Paid Plan?

As we’ve seen, free website builders can do a lot – but paid plans allow for a lot more. And paid doesn’t have to mean expensive; you can take advantage of premium features from as little as $6/month.

The most common advantages of paid plans include:

Removing ads

When you’re trying to give a professional image, no ads is a whole lot better than subtle ads – and upgrading your plan will leave your site ad-free.

Connecting a custom domain name

Again, yoursite.com is a whole lot better than yoursite.yourwebsitebuilder.com, and a whole lot more memorable, too.

Access to more storage and bandwidth

As your site grows and your traffic increases, you may find you simply outgrow your free plan. You may need to upgrade to have enough storage, and so that enough people can access your site at once. Many paid plans offer unlimited storage and bandwidth, so you can have total peace of mind.

Advanced marketing and sales tools

The features and tools needed to take your business or hobby to the next level will often be waiting for you in that premium plan, so make sure you at least take a look!

While there’s no pressure to upgrade to a paid plan at any stage, we think it’s always worth checking out or trialling at some point. It can be nerve-wracking to invest money in a new business, project or hobby, but there’s an element of ‘fake it till you make it’ here; with the added professionalism of a paid site, nobody needs to know that you’re not far more established.

Read more:

If you’re interested in upgrading or just want to find out more, read our reviews and pricing guides for a full look at what these top free website builders’ have to offer in value for money, price plans, and more:

Best Free Website Builders: Conclusion

We’ve guided you through the pros and cons of 10 free website builders, as well as the advantages of upgrading to a paid plan when possible. You’re now equipped with everything you need to pick a website builder, and to put your digital pen to digital paper.

Let’s have a quick recap…

Here are the 10 best free website builders:

  1. Wix Best All-Around Website Builder.
  2. GoDaddy Quickest and Most Effective Builder.
  3. Weebly Ideal for Small Businesses.
  4. Site123 Made for Simple Websites.
  5. Jimdo Small Online Store Builder.
  6. Strikingly Made for Simple Websites.
  7. Webflow Best For Designers.
  8. Webnode Quick and Easy Setup.
  9. Ucraft Best for Multilingual Websites.
  10. SimpleSite Great Mobile Editor.

Our list of the top 10 free website builders ranks Wix as the best all-around builder, with tons of free features. GoDaddy is great for SEO and design functionality, while Weebly is ideal for small businesses.

Just remember that free website builders nearly always limit the features and functions that are available to you – you may be ok with this now, but it could prove extremely frustrating further down the line.

While we always recommend making the most of free plans to build, play, and experiment with different builders, we never recommend staying on a free plan forever. 

If you’re serious about your website, and want other people to take it seriously too, then at some point you will need to upgrade to a premium plan.

There’s no rush, though – none of the builders on this list have a time limit on their free plan, so you can stay on them as long as you like, until you’re ready to take your site to the next level.

In the meantime, enjoy trying out your favorite free builders – come back and let us know which one you liked the most!


It’s done in a number of ways. The main method is through a ‘freemium’ model, in which the paying users can sustain everyone else. Another way for website builders to make money is through advertising on your site (the ads can be removed by upgrading your plan).

Free websites are not very SEO-friendly because you cannot connect a personalized domain. This means your website is actually part of the website builder’s own site, which makes it harder for search engines like Google to find, crawl and index your web page.

Yes – website builders make it super easy to create professional looking sites for no money at all. With these free platforms you get most of the features you need to get your site up and running, but, of course, upgrading your plans gives you access to better tools.

You can upgrade to a paid premium plan whenever you want to. Doing so will provide you with far more tools, templates, storage space, and other important features for growing your website. All of our recommend free website builders come with paid plans if you’d like to upgrade.

Yes, they are totally free to use. You can sign up, create, customize, and publish your site without paying a thing. However, most website builders lock certain features unless you upgrade to a paid plan, but these costs are completely optional, so the overall costs are up to you.

Wix came top in our research for ease of use. Its intuitive drag-and-drop design makes it easy to create a professional looking site without any tech knowledge. It also gives you tons of creative control so you can build a really developed, personalized site.

WordPress.com is one of the best blogging platforms out there. It’s really easy to use and has excellent built-in blogging tools, including social bookmarking and an RSS feed, and offers a more advanced blogging functionality overall than website builders like Wix or Weebly.

WordPress.com comes out cheapest, with prices starting at just $4 per month when billed annually. It’s closely followed by Weebly, which starts at $6 per month, billed annually.

It’s also worth noting that Wix came first in our ‘Value for Money’ testing, despite its higher starting price of $14 per month (billed annually). You get what you pay for – it’s the best overall website builder on the market today.

Weebly takes top spot for best free ecommerce builder – it lets you sell an unlimited number of products on its free plan! (This feature is for US sellers only).

Strikingly is great for creating modern websites quickly, but only lets you sell one product through its free plan. Mozello is more limiting in terms of design, but lets you set multiple languages for your site, and lets you sell up to 10 products on its free plan – great for selling internationally!

No! Hosting is all taken care of by the website builder, so this isn’t something you’ll have to buy separately. Keep in mind though that, like storage, free plans often have a cap on bandwidth, so you may need to upgrade to a paid plan in order to access more resources once you start getting higher traffic levels.

Yes! All the platforms featured on this list should reformat your site so it displays properly on mobile. It’s always worth double checking this though, either as a preview or once your site is live.

We really rate Squarespace as a website builder, but unfortunately it doesn’t offer a free plan, just a 14-day free trial. The ten builders featured on this list all offer a free plan you can stay on for as long as you wish, with no pressure to upgrade.

Looking for a hosting provider rather than a website builder? Why not check out our article on the Best Web Hosting Services to help you find the right one.

There are currently no free services, but check out our article on the Best Cheap Web Hosts if price is your main consideration when choosing a provider.


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