With the catchphrase “make productivity your priority” BlockSite introduces its own web filtering extension for Google Chrome and a mobile application that gives you the power to block websites/URLs, apps, and keywords that you find unwelcome for one reason or another.
As pretty much everything on BlockSite’s official site suggests, the primary purpose of this web filtering solution is to help its users free themselves from distractions, get their time under control, and boost their productivity at work, at school, or at any other act of creation that calls for complete concentration.
If you wish to find some helpful tips and tricks on how to stop procrastinating and start being more productive, BlockSite’s official blog provides plenty of articles on that topic – it’s also fairly frequently updated to boot.
You can also find BlockSite on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram and all accounts appear to be pretty much alive.
While BlockSite is created with Chrome in mind, it also works for Firefox, and Edge browsers, as well as for Android and iOS mobile devices.
Plus, it can be synced between your desktop and smartphone to make sure you stay productive and steer clear of distractions whenever you go.
So, since BlockSite has been recently rising in popularity, let’s check what the fuss is about.
Plans, pricing, and sign-up
Only then BlockSite will present you with its paid plans – it’s actually the same plan but with three different billing cycles (monthly, annual, and triennial). Not surprisingly, you can save quite a bit by committing for three years ($3.99 per month) in contrast with a monthly plan ($10.99 for one month).
The paid plan also comes with a 3-day free trial, but if you want to stick to free – tap into the “Skip” button just above the plans.
Features and functionality
While BlockSite is nothing short of features, to get the most of their product you’ll want to go with one of their so-called unlimited plans.
One of BlockSite’s main highlights is the sync feature that allows its users to sync multiple devices (desktop and mobile), which means you can add the sites you want to be blocked on one of your devices and this will apply across all of them. While this may seem like a small quality-of-life feature, it can save you both time and energy.
Other noteworthy features include the “Stay Focused” extension and “Focus Mode”, both of which will allow you to set a timer throughout the day at times planned for doing some serious work or studying – so, no need for testing your willpower.
And if you’re worried about adult content, BlockSite features a built-in adult blocker that blacklists all known adult sites by default and makes sure you don’t stray into unsuitable web surroundings.
Also, you can set up your own daily schedules and choose days and times when you’ll be allowed to access specific sites and apps. And if you feel creative, you can even customize your blocked page and give them a unique twist.
With password protection, you can keep yourself from simply removing sites from your blocklist and giving up on productivity.
Thanks to uninstalling prevention no one can remove apps from your devices behind your back and with the site redirect feature you can surprise yourself with something like a cute cat picture every time you try to indulge in procrastination.
We should also note that while with paid plans you’re free to block as many sites as your heart desires, with the free edition, you’ll have to settle with blocking up to three sites. Also, freemium excludes features such as password protection, custom block pages, and blocking by keyword, category, and such.
Interface and ease of use
Once you start your freemium plan you’ll be prompted to personalize it by providing BlockSite with a few pieces of information about your motives for choosing their web filter. You’ll even get suggestions about the sites you’ll want to block based on the experiences of users with similar goals.
Block Sites' user interface (UI) is incredibly intuitive and simple to us – you’ll even get a short tutorial showing you how everything on the UI works. To get a site blocked, copy its address/ URL into the only section you can, hit enter, and congratulations - it’s on your blocklist. You can even import a list of sites you want to be blocked – however, since the limit is three sites with freemium edition there’s little point in doing so.
As an alternative to blacklisting, you have an option to create a whitelist which is an opposite approach that includes adding allowed sites to the list and blocking everything else.
All in all, using BlockSite is as user-friendly as it can get and even a total non-techie will understand how everything works in a couple of minutes.
When it comes to customer support, BlockSite offers a FAQ page with short answers to most common questions and concerns, and a support ticketing system that looks like some sort of quiz which consists of choosing/filling in answers to a series of questions and entering your email address in the end.
Since their support email address is available on the offal site, you can seek help there as well and hope for a swift response.
Paid plans come with premium support, but it isn’t specified in which ways it’s superior to free support.
Since the BlockSite app is still new on iPhone, if you’re using one you’ll probably want to go with some of their competitors whose web filtering apps have supported iOS from the start. One of the best ones is Freedom and it offers its suite of distraction-blocking tools for a couple of bucks per month.
Another awesome alternative to BlockSite is Cold Turkey and it can block pretty much anything including specific sites, complete internet, or complete internet apart from a couple of sites – you can even block Google searches, leaving yourself with no place for procrastination.
If your computer runs on Linux and you enjoy tinkering with the technical stuff, a SquidGuard could be a good choice for you. However, since SquidGuard is essentially a plugin for proxy-software Squid – no Squid, no SquidGuard.
All in all, BlockSite is an easy-to-use extension for Chrome and it works like a charm with desktops and smartphones alike. So, if you’re searching for a web filter that’ll help you free yourself from a vicious circle of procrastination and guilt - BlockSite might be the perfect choice for you and there’s a freemium edition to boot.