Our First Impressions
Weebly’s homepage works to establish and signify their dominance in the website building arena. The site is built with all of the advanced features that you can find in their website builder software. It features a rundown of all of the capabilities of the software and makes it easy to get started.
Signing up to Weebly is a breeze. Our account was active within a few moments and we were ready to start building a website immediately. No credit card information or intrusive personal questions were asked at signup. All you need to create your own Weebly account is a name, email address, and password.
Once registered, you can select a theme from a list of categories, including business, portfolio, event, and blog. Upon choosing a theme, you will be taken to the website builder platform where you will have the option of selecting your website domain. You can also opt to do this later.
The Weebly software is fresh and intuitive. Instead of a walkthrough, we were able to dive right into site building. Guided alerts and reminders helped us figure out where to start and how to continue after each step. New features can be added to a site simply by clicking on a panel of icons that also has descriptive text in case you are not familiar with a function.
No matter what you’re looking to place on your site, Weebly most likely has a solution for you. The platform features basics like blogging, contact forms, location mapping, images, and videos. It also has more advanced features not typically seen in everything-under-the-hood suites, such as URL redirects, custom coding, membership capability, advertising, and eCommerce tools.
Weebly offers a great selection of site templates that are easy to customize using a drag-and-drop platform. The site is foolproof and allows for a wide margin of error. The platform is fun and overall extremely easy to use.
Editing a site is simple with different pages for building, designing, pages, and a store. The site is loaded without feeling clunky. A sidebar on the left side of the page changes based on the category you are editing.
The Build category, for example, offers all of the tools needed to edit, add, or remove elements from your website. From the toolbar, you can drag and drop elements directly where you want them to appear on your site.
The preview area gives you a good idea of what your website will look like once published.
Weebly offers users an abundance of bold and beautiful themes, which are broken down by function. You can choose from templates made especially for businesses, online stores, personal pages, event sites, blogs, and portfolios. Of course, all of them can be customized to fit any need.
One of the best parts about Weebly is that they allow you to use themes from third-party designers. This means that you are not limited to their proprietary options, opening up a world of variety. There is a large selection of free themes, but if you are looking for a template that will be used by fewer websites, you can opt to pay a nominal sum for a more original one.
With its improvement in recent years, Weebly has focused on providing users with some of their most requested features, including mobile responsiveness and the ability to access the HTML/CSS editor if you desire to modify a website beyond the capabilities of the Weebly software.
The Issues That We Came Across
Most of the issues we experienced had to do with the fact that Weebly is an all-inclusive platform. While it can be convenient to rely on Weebly to do all of the back-end work for you, it can be limiting once you’re ready to delve deeper into the art of website building.
Important marketing tools, such as EV SSL certificates, email tools, analytics functionality, and user experience testing are all either impossible or more difficult to implement due to the nature of the platform. Additionally, users don’t have immediate access to root folders which impedes or significantly hampers the ability to transfer domains. As an example, if you are transferring a blog, you will have to manually copy each post.
Managing content is easy enough for smaller sites, but if you expect your website to grow to hundreds of pages, there is no effective managing solution. Obviously, a site of that magnitude would probably prefer using a different platform completely.
Weebly offers support via email, phone, and live chat. Their team is both helpful and responsive, facilitating short waiting times and workable solutions. Live chat support is limited to Monday – Friday, 6 am – 6 pm (PST) and Saturday – Sunday, 8 am – 5 pm (PST). You may want to consider that if you live in a place with a timezone that doesn’t have hours that sync with those conveniently.
Weebly’s online support center is extremely helpful, as is their community forum, so it is likely that you would be able to find a solution to a problem without the need to customer service.
Our Final Opinion
Weebly is a great software solution for anyone looking to create a simple, or even complex, website online. With an abundance of features and the ability to edit on the code level, it is perfect for beginners and skilled users alike. Our biggest issues will not affect most users seeking a platform like Weebly.