The best free website builder of 2024

Best free website builder: quick links

The best free website builder services: Wix, Weebly, WordPress.com logo on a poster held up by a building crane

(Image credit: Future)

Top 3
Free plans compared 
1.
Wix: Best overall free plan
2. Weebly: Best for small businesses
3. HubSpot: Best for custom domain
4. Webflow: Best for website design
5. Site123: Best for affiliate marketing
6. Square Online: Best for ecommerce
7. Google Sites: Best for students
8. WordPress: Best for bloggers  
9. Jimdo: Best for portfolio websites
10. Strikingly: Best for one page sites
Buying information
FAQs


How we test free website builders: 

Our experts get hands on with each website builder, testing tools, features, and ease-of-use. You can find out more about how we test website builders in our full guide. 

Finding the best free website builder is no easy feat. After all, each option comes with a unique mix of tools and features, all of which must be considered if you want to find a solution that perfectly meets your needs. 

Most free website builders also come with limitations, such as an inability to connect a custom domain and restricted bandwidth and storage. However, for those looking to test a business idea without a major investment or who want to start a website for a hobby, the free plans we list in this guide offer you everything you need to get online without spending a dime. 

We have fully tested and reviewed 70+ website builders, spending thousands of hours getting hands-on with some of the best website builders on the market. Now, we have shortlisted the very best free website builders, creating this guide to help you find the one that perfectly meets your needs. 

Wix tops our list with a generous free plan that includes some powerful website building and AI tools. Plus, with an extensive app marketplace with plenty of free apps, you can extend your website's functionality easily. 

So, is there really no such thing as a free lunch? Or are the best things in life truly free?

Let’s find out. 

Written by:
Owain Williams
Written by:
Owain Williams

Owain has spent over 7 months with TechRadar, leading on all website builder content. With a background in business and marketing, he has over 7 years of experience in testing website builders, building his own websites, and writing about business and marketing topics. He has also started several successful businesses including ecommerce stores and a marketing agency. 


My top 3 best free website builders of 2024

Below I list my top 3 picks for the title of best free website builder. Although not all of these are free (for life), they do each offer an outstanding free option that is well worth considering. 

1. Best overall free website builder: Wix

1. Best overall free website builder: Wix

Wix is the top dog when it comes to website builders, pairing considerable power with incredible ease-of-use. If you're looking for something that ticks all the boxes (including offering a free plan) you can't go wrong with Wix. 

Going premium removes ads, gives you a dedicated (free) domain, extra storage, and 24/7 customer support.

The generous free plan comes with a array of website building tools, 500MB of storage, up to 500MB of bandwidth, and customer support


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3. Best for simplicity: Weebly

3. Best for simplicity: Weebly

Weebly offers a great free website builder that is a little easier to use than Wix. This is an ideal option for those looking to build a very simple site quickly. 

Weebly's free plan give you the same bandwidth and storage as Wix, but also comes with the added bonus of allowing you to accept online payments


Best free website builder plans compared

In this guide we offer a detailed overview of everything you need to know about the best free website builders on the market.

In this section, we distill this information down into an easy to digest table, highlighting some of the most important factors to consider when picking a website builder such as the ability to connect a custom domain, whether they show onsite ads, how much storage and bandwidth they offer, customer support options, and if they allow you accept online payment. 

Swipe to scroll horizontally
Header Cell - Column 0 Wix WeeblyHubSpotWebflowSite123Square OnlineWordPressJimdoStrikingly
Best forOverall website builder planSmall businessesCustom domain Website design A quick affiliate marketing websiteBuilding online storesCreating an online blog Building an online portfolioOne page websites
Our overall rating ⭐⭐⭐⭐½⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐½⭐⭐⭐⭐½⭐⭐⭐½⭐⭐⭐½⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐½⭐⭐⭐½
Add a custom domainNoNo YesNoNoNo NoNoNo
On site adsYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYesYes
Storage 500MB500MBUnlimitedUnlimited250MB500MB1GB500MB500MB
BandwidthUp to 500MBUp to 500MBUnlimited1GB250MBUp to 500MBUnlimited2GB5GB
Customer supportYesYesForum onlyYesYesYesForum only NoYes
Online payments NoYesNoNoNoYesYesNoYes

Note: If you want to learn more about what storage and bandwidth limits mean for your website, you can read our guide to web hosting.


The best free website builders of 2024 in full:

We have tested the best free website builders on the market. Below you will find our list, ranked based on who they are best for. So, whether you are looking for a great all rounder, something that gives you great design options, or a simple option that is ideal for small businesses - we have what you are looking for. 

Best free website builder overall

Wix makes it very easy to design a website, while giving experts plenty of power to customize elements if they need it (Image credit: Wix)
Excellent overall performance

Reasons to buy

+
Very user-friendly ADI editor
+
But experts can tweak everything
+
Powerful and well-featured
+
Supports third party apps

Reasons to avoid

-
Cannot change templates without starting from scratch
-
Ads on every page 
-
Limited storage (500MB)
-
No custom domain

Wix is a big-name website builder with one of the most impressive website editors in the business, and, surprisingly, a completely free plan.

Features

Wix's Artificial Design Intelligence mode is the simplest way to create a new site. The editor asked us questions about our business, the pages we needed, and our design preferences, then automatically creates a website in seconds. We found the site was basic, with few customizations, but the process was straightforward and very fast.

Those who want to get more hands on can step up to the full Wix editor, where a strong set of powerful editing tools allow you to hone your website and get it looking just as you want. 

Alternatively, you may use Wix's new AI website builder. This takes the WIX ADI to the next level. When using the tool you will start by being asked several questions by an AI driven chatbot. It will then use the information you present in your answers to build a bespoke website including the template, written content, and images/videos. Unlike the ADI tool, the new AI website builder will also automatically install business tools such as scheduling, eCommerce, and event management into your website. 

If you go the manual route, a range of attractive templates are provided, too, though be careful: we noticed that, once you've chosen your favorite, you can't switch later. If you decide your site needs a new look, all you can do is start again from scratch: hardly convenient.

Limitations

Free Wix sites have some issues and limits. There's only 500MB storage, you'll find Wix ads on every page, and not only is there no support for custom domains, but your free Wix URL will be longer than most (youraccountname.wixsite.com/yoursitename.)

If you are looking to sell online, you won't be able to do this on the Wix free plan. In fact, not even Wix's entry level plan offers ecommerce functionality. You will need to sign up for the more expensive Core plan at $29/mo to be able to sell online. 

Competition & Alternatives 

Square Online is a dedicated ecommerce website that allows you to sell online with its free plan.

Weebly is also a great alternative to Wix. Although it lacks some of the features you get with Wix, it provides everything you need to build a great website and is super simple to use. 

You can read our full comparison of Wix and Weebly in our Wix vs Weebly study.

Finally, if you want to connect a custom domain, HubSpot is one of the few free website builders that allows you to do this. 

Verdict

On balance, though, Wix is still a great website builder. The templates are excellent, we loved the intuitive editor, and genuinely helpful support is available, even on the free plan. 

Powerful blogging functionality rounds things off nicely, and you’re getting a truly high quality offering with this website builder.

Read our full Wix review.

Best free website builder for small business

If you want to create a website as quickly as possible, look no further than Weebly. It's so easy to use, you'll have a great-looking site online in mere minutes (Image credit: Weebly)
A simple option for ambitious small businesses

Reasons to buy

+
Powerful free solution
+
Automatic website building for novices
+
Tons of stylish templates
+
Ecommerce support
+
Free SSL security 

Reasons to avoid

-
Less customization options than some
-
No phone support
-
No custom domain 
-
Unable to remove ads 

Weebly's free website builder plan is a worthy competitor to Wix and, unlike most others on this list, will let you sell online. 

Features

Weebly's website creation tools start, a little like Wix, with a very simple automated builder. This guides you through a series of questions, then automatically creates your site in a few seconds. There isn't much scope for customization, but it's very easy to use - making it ideal for small businesses.

The standard editor gives you more fine-tuned control of your site design (though not quite as much as the best of the competition), but is still fairly simple to operate. We were amazed by the hundreds of stylish templates - and, yes, they are genuinely impressive – which we were able to tailor to our needs using a WYSIWYG editor. 

Weebly scores highly for its advanced tools. We were able to extend our site with all kinds of content types via its capable editor. Weebly is great for online stores, offering basic ecommerce functionality, unlimited items, and inventory management on the free plan - not something you will find on most free website builder plans. 

Limitations 

As usual with a free website builder, Weebly didn't allow us to use our own domain. Instead, you're offered a free Weebly subdomain (yourname.weebly.com.) That's short, but not exactly professional, and not a good look for a business or serious site.

The free plan also limits your support to live chat and a community forum (phone support is reserved for some of the premium plans.) That could be an issue if your website is down and you're looking for immediate assistance, but it's still better than some free services, which don't include support at all.

Competition & Alternatives 

With its AI website builder, Wix's offering is a little more advanced (although it doesn't allow you to sell online unless you upgrade to a paid plan). 

Like most others on this list, Weebly's bandwidth and storage are both limited (up to 500MB). If this is a concern, you may opt for the likes of Webflow which offers unlimited storage and a more generous 1GB of bandwidth on its free plan.

Want to connect a custom domain for free? HubSpot is your best option. 

Verdict

Weebly is a great option for small businesses. Not only does it offer a great free plan, but as your business grows and you need more from your website, Weebly's paid plans are also incredibly affordable. Overall, its power and flexibility make Weebly a good, free website builder to consider. 

Read our full Weebly review.

Best free website builder for a custom domain

screenshot of HubSpot homepage

HubSpot's free website builder integrates seamlessly into many other powerful HubSpot business tools.  (Image credit: HubSpot)
For simple integration with a host of other marketing tools

Reasons to buy

+
Integrates easily with HubSpot CRM and other tools
+
Great option for microsites 
+
Unlimited storage and bandwidth 

Reasons to avoid

-
The free version contains HubSpot branding 
-
The free version offers a limited number of webpages and subdomains 
-
Support only via forum on free plan

HubSpot may be best known for its CRM and marketing tools, but the brand also has a powerful free website builder that is well worth considering.

Features

The HubSpot website builder aims to simplify the experience for business owners, with no coding knowledge required. HubSpot also handles the hosting, so you don’t need to worry about dealing with the backend. Everything is drag-and-drop, so you can pick exactly where things go. We were able to choose from hundreds of themes and templates and customize them with our own logo, typography, and content.

We linked our website to HubSpot CRM right out of the gate, so tracking our customer interactions was incredibly easy. Also, we used HubSpot’s free chatbots, forms, and live chat to help automate our customer service. We created email newsletters, a company logo, and a landing page, all from our HubSpot account.

You also get security features like SSL and two-factor authentication. HubSpot allows you to try almost everything on its “forever free” plan, but there are some limitations. 

The CRM giants also have an impressive app store, with over 1,000 different integrations available. You can extend your site with SEO tools, email, ads, messaging integrations and more.

Limitations

You must purchase its CMS Suite Starter plan for $20 per month to remove branding. The Professional plan is priced at $360 per month — quite the jump. 

Just note that while some built-in features are gated behind specific plans, it doesn’t mean you can’t access similar functionalities in lower plan tiers. For instance, HubSpot’s SEO analytics are only included in the Professional plan. But you can still access SEO analytics with the Free and Starter plans if you integrate a Google Search Console or Schema account with HubSpot.

HubSpot’s customer support includes email, chat, and phone support — although some support is only available for premium plans. But if you want quick answers, you can search through HubSpot's extensive blog and resource center with thousands of articles and how-tos. 

Competition & Alternaties 

The HubSpot website builder is best suited to those who are using (or want to use) other HubSpot tools such as its CRM. If you are looking for a standalone website builder with greater flexibility, Wix is well worth considering. 

Verdict

With unlimited bandwidth, storage, and the ability to connect a custom domain, the HubSpot free website builder plan offers a lot that others on this list don't. All-in-all its free website builder plan should certainly be on your shortlist. 

Read our full HubSpot website builder review

Best free website builder for design

Webflow offers fantastic website design options.  (Image credit: Webflow)
Customize and create super-detailed websites

Reasons to buy

+
Advanced design customization
+
User friendly CMS
+
Variety of templates
+
Wide range of SEO options
+
Unlimited storage and generous bandwidth 

Reasons to avoid

-
Steep learning curve compared to competitors
-
No phone support or live chat
-
Highly dependent on third-party integrations and user-generated features

Webflow is a popular website builder that excels in its design customization, especially for those who have a decent amount of web design knowledge. 

Features

Webflow’s interface is based on the ‘box model’, and needs basic HTML and CSS knowledge for maximum utilization.

You can choose from over 49 free templates available on the platform. Although, you can’t change the template of your site once you’ve selected it. The only way to do so is to build a new website from scratch.

Webflow offers automatic backups and a free SSL certification to make sure your website is safe and secure. While setting up, Webflow lets you create an entry-level site with 2 pages, 50 CMS tools, localization, and up to 50 form submissions. It even offers 1 GB bandwidth and up to one thousand visitors with its free plan. Basically, it offers everything you need to build a website for free without running into any bottlenecks.   

Limitations

While setting up a site, we found Webflow’s interface quite complex and tricky compared to other options like Wix or Site123. Unsurprisingly, Webflow doesn’t offer any custom domains or CMS support on its free plan. This means that if you build a free website, you’ll have to stick with a .webflow subdomain.

Competition & Alternatives

If you have no or little coding knowledge (or a desire to learn it), Webflow probably isn't the best fit for you. Luckily, there are plenty of decent, simpler alternatives including Wix and Weebly, both of which are known for offering a user friendly interface.

Verdict 

Overall, if you want to build a basic website without having any knowledge about website building or design, Webflow might not be the best option for you. However, if you want a super customized site that comes with unique designs and detailed features, this platform can stand out as a strong contender in this list.

To learn more, you can read our full Webflow website builder review

Best free website builder for affiliate marketing

Need to launch your site fast? Site123 might be the best option for you.  (Image credit: Site123)
Create your free website in minutes

Reasons to buy

+
Beginner-friendly interface
+
Instant website setup
+
Easy editor

Reasons to avoid

-
Basic customizations
-
Generic design templates
-
Very limited features in the free plan

Site123 is a simple and super easy website builder that lets even a complete beginner create a brand new website all by themselves - making it ideal for those looking to launch an affiliate marketing site quickly. 

Features

As you sign up on the platform, the builder asks for basic information regarding your site, and within moments, the first layout of your website is ready. Surprisingly, we found that it did a pretty good job with the initial layout. Even the images were quite good and accurate to the website's niche. 

Site123 offers a very neat and easy-to-use editor. Users can easily click on any element and simply edit it, although your options for doing so are limited. 

Ultimately, the Site123 free plan is super simple, which could be either a blessing or a curse, depending on your goals. It is ideal for those that want a simple platform to promote affiliate content, but don't want the hassle of a complex website set up process.

Limitations 

You don’t get many customization options with the Site123 free plan. This means that you can only get your hands on all the editing tools for your website by subscribing to their paid plans. In fact, small edits, like using custom color schemes or accessing the full font library also need a paid plan to work. This limits your capabilities of building a detailed or unique website for free. 

Site123 also doesn’t offer any custom domains with its free plan, and you’ll have to settle with a subdomain that is quite long. This can make your site look a bit unprofessional. 

Competition & Alternatives

With plenty of features locked behind a paywall and a pretty stingy 250MB of bandwidth and storage, although the Site123 plan is a great way to test the platform, it is unlikely to be suitable for long.

For more features on a free plan, Wix is a great alternative that also offers double the bandwidth and storage of Site123. Alternatively, opt for HubSpot if you want to access unlimited bandwidth and storage for your website, as well as the ability to connect a custom domain. 

Verdict 

Overall, Site123’s free plan is a great option for someone who just wants to create a simple website and doesn’t have any past experience or knowledge about website building. Thanks to its user-friendly interface, creating a website is as easy as it could get with this platform.

Read our full Site123 review now. 

Best free website builder for ecommerce

square online homepage screenshot

Although Square offers a free way to start selling online, it is important to be aware of transaction fees that will eat into your profits.  (Image credit: Square)

Square Online

Start an online store, for free

Reasons to buy

+
Perfect for small businesses with big plans
+
Great online ordering feature for restaurants
+
Integration with Square POS app

Reasons to avoid

-
Prebuilt themes only available on paid plans
-
No automatic AI builder feature
-
No custom domain on free plans

Square Online offers a powerful website builder, created with ecommerce in mind. Instead of tacking on ecommerce as an extra, everything about the Square experience is based on powerful ecommerce features you won't find on generic builders. Of course, others such as Shopify and BigCommerce are built with ecommerce in mind - but neither of these platforms offer a free plan. 

Features

Square Online offers more than just a web presence. The service includes point of sale tools to sell face-to-face, on social media and via mobile. All using the same platform. 

To get started you open an account, choose your business details and store name, and select the layout and design elements you want. You can customize all elements, including colors and fonts, and then select your ordering process. The choice of custom elements is nice, and we like that you get to choose an ordering format. You can pick from a menu style for online restaurants or a conventional web store. Both models offer the chance to connect with point of sale elements, as well as more advanced shift and inventory management if you upgrade to a paid plan.

Limitations

The free plan is, perhaps unsurprisingly, limited. But it does come with some good features to note including the ability to sell via social media, built in SEO tools, and the ability to accept multiple payment types. Online processing fees for online sales are 2.9% + $0.30. 

Competition & Alternatives 

If you don't want advanced ecommerce features, Weebly (that owns Square Online) is a great alternative. Most other platforms won't let you sell online on a free plan. 

Verdict 

If you're starting an online store, but don't want to invest in a paid platform straight away, Square Online is likely to be your best option. Not only does it allow you to set up an online store for free, but it also gives you an opportunity to test out one of the best ecommerce platforms on the market. 

Read our full Square Online review

Best free website builder for students

screenshot of example website on Google Sites

(Image credit: Google Sites)

Google Sites

An easy to use, but very limited site builder

Reasons to buy

+
Google account security applies
+
It's completely free to use
+
Integrates with Google Workspace tools
+
Mobile-friendly templates
+
Super simple to use
+
Real-time collaboration option

Reasons to avoid

-
A handful of generic templates
-
Can't publish to a custom domain
-
Limited features and functionality
-
Severely limited customization and no SEO
-
Limited storage space for free users

Google Sites is a straightforward and user-friendly site builder offered by Google, making it ideal for students and beginners looking to create a simple online presence. While it lacks advanced features and SEO tools, it's a superb option for those who want to get a basic site up and running in no time. 

Features

Google Sites provides an intuitive and simple-to-use platform for building websites. It comes with a handful of website templates and themes to choose from - 18 themes and 6 templates as we write - allowing you to customize the look and feel of your site. While the customization options are severely limited compared to site builders such as Webflow or WordPress, Google Sites still offers enough flexibility for students to create a personalized website.

One of the standout features of Google Sites is its seamless integration with other Google services, including Google Workspace tools. You can easily embed content from Google Drive, YouTube, Calendar, Maps, Docs, Slides, Sheets, Forms, and Charts directly into your site. This easy integration enhances the functionality of Google Sites and allows you to integrate various multimedia elements into your site without much effort - making it great for organizing and presenting student projects.

Additionally, as a Google product, Google Sites offers a secure website-building experience. By leveraging your Google account's security features like two-step verification, you can boost your site's security for you and your visitors.

Limitations

While Google Sites offers a user-friendly experience, there are limitations you should keep in mind. For starters, unless you're a Google Workspace user, you can only publish sites to a "sites.google.com" domain, which may not provide the professional look you desire. So, if you want to invest further in your website's branding, you'll have to purchase the Google Workspace suite.

Additionally, Google Sites is not as feature-rich as other website builders like Wix, so it may lack some advanced functionality, particularly for those looking to create ecommerce sites. It offers limited storage space for free users - 100MB per site - which could be insufficient if you want to upload large amounts of media content.

Competition & Alternatives

In the competitive landscape of free website builders, Google Sites faces fierce rivals in Wix and Webflow. 

Webflow stands out with its advanced customization capabilities, allowing for highly personalized websites. However, mastering its intricate features comes with a steep learning curve.

On the other hand, Wix offers a robust set of features, enabling users to create sites with impressive functionality. Nevertheless, Wix lacks the flexibility to switch templates seamlessly, requiring users to start anew. In contrast, Google Sites allows for template changes without sacrificing existing content, although it lacks any advanced features such as SEO tools, an area where Wix excels.

Verdict

Although Google Sites is a solid choice for students and beginners, those requiring extensive customization or advanced features may find it lacking. However, its simplicity, integration with other Google services, and collaborative options make it a solid option for swift and straightforward site creation.

Best free website builder for bloggers

WordPress is the tool of choice for many blog owners. It takes a little getting used to, but once you've mastered it, you'll love its flexibility (Image credit: Wordpress.com)
An easy pick for blogging

Reasons to buy

+
Easy-to-use online editor
+
Lots of free themes
+
Hosting is included
+
Easy way to learn the WordPress basics

Reasons to avoid

-
Limited range of plugins
-
Customising pages can be difficult
-
Adding plugins and extras can be expensive
-
10% transaction fee on sales

WordPress is best known for the free CMS which can be automatically installed on just about any web hosting plan. 

Features

WordPress is a super flexible website builder tool that allows you to build blogs, business sites, web stores and almost anything else you can imagine.

This is a great solution for demanding or business sites, but you'll probably need to part with some cash for the hosting, and the full-strength WordPress interface can be complicated, even for experienced users.

Fortunately, there's a simpler hosted version of WordPress on WordPress.com.(yes, we know it's confusing). This includes web hosting, so signing up gives you everything you need to build your web presence. There are a number of good-looking templates to choose from, and we were able to create a blog, a photo site and more.

The free plan allows you to take payments for products, and if you can create really compelling content, there's even the option to sign up paid subscribers. 

Limitations

Beware, although WordPress allows you to take online payments, it does also take 10% of every transaction. If you're hoping to make real money, it may be worth signing up for a paid plan (the $25 a month Business plan doesn't charge any commission at all.)

Opting for the hosted WordPress.com over the self hosted WordPress.org also limits the number of plugins and templates you can access. 

Competition & Alternatives

WordPress can be a little trickier to navigate than some of the other website builders on this list. If you want ease-of-use, consider a user friendly builder like Wix or Weebly. 

With a mind boggling 10% fee for transactions on the free plan, if you plan on selling online, but really need a free plan, Square Online is likely a better option.

Verdict

Whether you're creating a static site, or a blog-style site with regularly updated content, the online editor is a joy to use, in our opinion, and allows just about anyone to create an impressive, professional-looking site. The only downside is the limited range of plugins and templates compared with the self-hosted version of WordPress, and other free website builders.

Read our full WordPress.com review.

Best free website builder for portfolios

Jimdo is another website builder well worth looking at (Image credit: Jimdo)
Showcase your best work to the world

Reasons to buy

+
Free plan has some unusual extras
+
Good tech support
+
Well-designed editor
+
Easy to use

Reasons to avoid

-
Less features than some rivals
-
Limited tools

Jimdo has been used to create more than 25 million website since 2007, with its simplicity receiving plenty of praise. Another area of strength is the way that it looks, with a range of clean, flexible templates on offer. 

Features

Jimdo's stylish and modern templates make it a popular website builder for creatives such as designers and photographers - or indeed anyone else who wants to display their portfolio with a stunning website. 

The platform even comes with its own Logo Designer to help make your brand recognizable. When testing Jimdo's free service, we were able to enter our business and select a starting point for our logo design. Then, we customize our icon and layout, choose a color and font, and that’s it! 

Another useful design feature that Jimdo users will appreciate is the way that website colors automatically harmonize with an uploaded logo or image. This means that garish color clashes become a thing of the past – that's great for businesses where looking good is part of the brand.

Furthermore, Jimdo comes with a host of tips and support documents to help you create the right website for you. This includes examples of the best photography websites created using the platform, along with tips to build a successful site.

Limitations

Jimdo has a free plan, but this only supports a Jimdo subdomain (youname.jimdosite.com) and inserts ads on your pages. Some Jimdo users have complained about a lack of fancy features.

Plus, if you are looking for support on your site, you won't get that with the Jimdo free plan. 

Competition & Alternatives

If you want more features, Wix's free plan is going to give you what you are looking for. Wix also offers a reasonable level of support its on free plan, which is lacking on the Jimdo plan. 

Verdict

If you want a quick, straightforward way of launching a great-looking site, Jimdo is a great option. 

Read our full Jimdo review.

Best free website builder for single page websites and landing pages

(Image credit: Strikingly)
A powerful tool for building landing pages

Reasons to buy

+
Simple and easy-to-use
+
Good editor
+
No ecommerce transaction fees
+
Live chat support

Reasons to avoid

-
Not very many templates
-
Limited customization options
-
Limited pages
-
Most features are on the Pro plan
-
No custom domain 
-
Limited storage 
-
Limited bandwidth 

Strikingly is unusual when ranked against the best website builder platforms, as it has a focus on designing mobile-friendly single-page websites. Before you decide a “single-page” site isn’t for you - it's not as limiting as you might think. 

Features

Surprisingly, Strikingly allows us to add image galleries, a blog, custom forms, even a simple web store (with no transaction fees). There are also a host of other useful features including responsive templates, social media feed integration, password protection, and much more. 

The free plan comes with some impressive features such as unlimited free sites, 24/7 support and the ability to invite collaborators. With Strikingly, you can easily build an attractive and functional website that’s complete with a blog. Plus, you can set everything up within just a few minutes. 

Limitation

Like with most free plans, it has its limitations. These include the use of a Strikingly.com domain, 5GB/mo bandwidth, 500MG total storage, only up to 5 pages per site and only one product per site. 

Competition & Alternatives

We found that the Strikingly website builder isn't as powerful or customizable as competitors like Wix, Weebly, or HubSpot. These alternatives are well worth considering if you want a multipage website with plenty of features. 

Verdict

If simplicity is key, and a single-page website is what you are looking for, add Strikingly to your shortlist. 

You can find out more about what Strikingly has to offer in our full Strikingly review. 


How to choose the best free website builder for you

With so many website builders on the market, how do you know which one is the right free solution for you? Or, indeed, is a free website builder the best option for meeting your needs? After all, you may find that investing in one of the best small business website builders or the best portfolio website builders gives you the extras you need to really grow your website. 

When choosing a free website builder, you need to consider their limitations. 

Hosting & domain 

Start by looking at the hosting basics. What are the storage and traffic limits? Will that be enough? If the service doesn't support custom domains (and most don't), what sort of URL will you get? The shorter it is, the more memorable it'll be for your visitors. Plus, a platform-given domain can look unprofessional. 

Website design 

Also think about site design. All free website builders have a range of website templates suitable for general sites, but if you're hoping for something very specific - a site for a jewellery store, a florist - then check for suitable templates before you sign up.

Tools and features

Consider features, too. What will really help or impress your visitors? A top-notch image gallery, integration with social media, something else? Make a list of your priorities and ensure the builder delivers.

Does the platform offer some free SEO tools to help you boost your search engine rankings? Does it have an app marketplace where you can expand your website's capabilities? 

Ecommerce capabilities 

If you're interested in ecommerce and a free plan seems to deliver, check the small print for catches. Some free builders display products but can't take payments online, for instance, and if a site does include payment support, it might ask a huge transaction fee. Read the plan specs carefully, make sure you're getting what you expect.

Reporting and analytics

Take a look at the reporting and analytics offered on the free plan. Sometimes deeper analytics and insights are only accessible by those on premium plans. This isn't necessarily an issue if you don't need them, but some basic information on who uses your website and how they they use it an be really helpful when looking to improve your visitor journey. 

Test them out (they are free after all)

And if you've done your research and can't decide between the top two, hey, they're free, just sign up to both and try them side-by-side. There's nothing like real-world experience to help you find the best option, and 30 minutes of drag-and-dropping might tell you all you need to know.

How we test the best free website builders

When testing website builders we start by signing up to the platform and purchasing a plan. We then go through the same process a beginner would when creating a website for the first time.

For free website builder services, we compare the same features you would expect from a paid website builder with the exception being the price comparison. We look at the features offered, ease-of-use, functionality, support, and other add-ons like blogging and ecommerce capabilities. 

Once signed up, our reviewers create websites using the website builder, giving them a chance to get hands on experience with the tools and features on offer. We have tested and reviewed all of the free website builders listed above.

Because nothing is perfect, we made sure to dig out the positives and negatives of each free website builder so that you have a clear understanding of what to expect from each service.

You can find out more about how we test website builders in our full guide. 

Our website builder testing ethics

Our goal is to help you find the best free website builder. 

We know that if your experience with a website builder doesn’t align with the advice we give  - you simply won’t trust again in the future. This means that, although we do occasionally make a commission when you purchase one of the website builders we list above, we do not accept financial incentives to place platforms within our guides

All our recommendations are based purely on research, hands-on experience, and our expert opinion on which website builders are truly the best on the market.  

Best free website builder: Summary

In the end, while considering the best free website builder for your needs, there are some no-brainers that you must keep in mind. Factors such as traffic limits, storage, custom domain support, template options, and specific features aligned to your needs are all a must while hunting for your ideal platform. Remember, free website builders often have restrictions when compared to their paid plans, so it's vital to understand these before making a choice.

After testing all of the above website builders on our list, we have picked Wix and Weebly as our top choices. Wix comes out on top for its user-friendly Artificial Design Intelligence mode and some powerful editing tools, making it the right choice for both experts and beginners. Despite some shortcomings like restricted storage and ads on pages, its quality templates and neat interface make it a solid website builder. 

Similarly, Weebly stands out with its simplicity and speed in setting up a website, along with its stylish templates and ecommerce capabilities. In short, it’s best for users who want a fast, straightforward website-building process. 

So, go ahead and try building a website for free to see which one aligns best with your website needs and personal preferences. 


Best free website builder FAQs

Is there really a free website builder?

Wix, Weebly and WordPress are website builder providers that offer their services for free as an option (in addition to a subdomain). Wix has completely free plans as well as paid ones. 

We suggest you compared the benefits of each, weigh out your options in order to decide whether a free website builder is the right fit for your needs.

Is it worth upgrading to a paid plan?

The answer: it depends.

Free website builders aren't for everyone, but can be suitable for some. 

For example, if you are starting a website to blog about your hobby, you probably won't care too much about massive storage, connecting a custom domain, or having some ads on your site. In these cases a free website builder would be a good option for you.

Equally, if you are are starting a business or testing a business idea and have very little budget, a free website builder can be a great way to get online and get the ball rolling.

However, in most business scenarios, upgrading to a paid option will likely be needed. This is because free plans tent to be limited in functionality and with on site ads and a non-custom domain, they can make your business look a little unprofessional. 

Take for example if you want to launch an online store with thousands of products. A free website builder is unlikely to offer you the tools and features you need to do that. Plus, a non-custom domain and on site ads may discourage visitors from trusting you enough to input their card details.

Owain Williams
B2B Editor, Website Builders & CRM

Previously working as a freelance content writer and editor, Owain has been writing about website builders, marketing, and a range of other business topics since 2017. During this time he has worked with industry leaders, spoken at several events, and been published on top media sites including MarketingProfs, Website Builder Expert, Digital Doughnut, and NealSchaffer.com.  Owain has gained hands-on experience with many leading website builders. This includes building his own ecommerce store on Shopify, creating several websites on WIX, and working with clients to grow their WordPress and Squarespace sites.  During his career, Owain has gained a breadth of marketing experience across industries ranging from complex engineering and international events to brand design and even brewing. Undertaking a 4 year apprenticeship in business, Owain has achieved a HNC, HND, and BA(Hons) in Business, Management, and Marketing alongside several professional qualifications from institutes including the Institute of Leadership and Management (ILM) and the Institute of Data and Marketing (IDM).  When he isn’t thinking, talking, and writing about website builders, Owain is a keen practitioner and competitor in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, enjoys walking his dog, and spending time with his family.

With contributions from