It is difficult to find a person who in the Internet era would not have thought about creating their own website, because now we can’t imagine our lives without them. However, only a few people actually do it, because the majority of network users are sure that in order to do this, it is necessary to have some knowledge in this area and programming skills. And we would be lying if we said that this is not true, but nothing is impossible, you just need some information and resources.
So how to create a website for free and on your own?
Of course, the beginner will not be easy to decide where to start, and you should start with the choice of platform for your future website, because a lot depends on it. Do not worry and panic, we will try to provide you with a maximum of information on this subject, and help you choose among a variety of options that will suit you.
In our article we have collected the most common (and not very) platforms, talk about their advantages and disadvantages, as well as share general information that you need for free to create your first website.
What do I need to consider when choosing a website platform?
Before we get to the list, it’s worth determining exactly what you need from a website.
Define your goals
The correct goal is the engine of your success, so be sure to think through all the details of the tasks that it (the site) must perform, or better yet – make a list.
What is required from a standard business website:
- Introducing visitors to information.
- Creation and retention of the target audience.
- Formation of trust of visitors (information posted on the site should be as credible and verified).
- Automation of work processes.
- Access to download useful information.
- Processing of customer requests.
Of course, you can supplement your list of items at your discretion.
Choosing the type of website
Once you have decided on the goals that the site should perform, it is worth to decide on its type. Although, as a rule, the type of site is directly dependent on the goals.
Consider the most common ones:
- Business card – one of the simplest options, which is characterized by a small number of pages. It is created to introduce the company, the price list for its services, customer reviews and advertising. Also on such a site include contacts.
- Corporate – essentially the same business card, but a larger format. This type of site is popular with most companies. There are already more pages than in business card. It is a kind of guide to the company: it introduces the news, range of services and products, job vacancies, gives the opportunity to contact online support service.
- Internet-shop – a site that is designed to sell a particular product.
- Infoportal – a site that introduces visitors to events in the world, simply put, with the latest news.
- SEO site – gives access to a variety of information on all occasions: from knitting to car engine repair.
- Web portal – a collection of useful services, including: poster, weather forecast, schedule (not the most common type in 2020).
- Single-page – a site that specializes in selling one particular type of product.
- Blog – reviews, photos, tips, thoughts of one particular person.
- Forum – a site of a particular subject, which gives people the opportunity to find like-minded people or ask for advice.
- Online Service – is a website, which combines the services that are designed for the convenience of the customer, such as: mailing, mail, payments, exchanges.
Is it possible to create a website for free?
If a couple of years ago you had to have special knowledge of CSS-styles, programming languages and HTML-partitioning to make a website, today everything is much easier. Since the appearance of designers CMS, creating a website has ceased to be something super-complicated.
Currently, any businessman or owner of the store in the network can create a free website on their own!
Deciding to create a resource based on a CMS, the user only has to pay for hosting and domain. Be that as it may, creating a site in the shortest possible time and with minimal investment, it is realistic.
What is better: builder or CMS?
Before you make a final decision on the base for creating a website, you should pay attention to studying the functionality, the efforts and the possibilities to use the website-builder to the maximum benefit.
Each platform is a software product, which gives the opportunity to organize pages, make them filled with content, update and edit blocks, set up search engine promotion tools?
Before opting for a CMS, a user who wants to create a website on their own, it is worth taking the time and effort to get some basic skills and learn:
- Use HTML code.
- Set up hosting.
- Adjust built-in templates.
- Configure and connect plugins.
This step will not be a problem for those who know the basics of programming, especially since the Web can easily find training materials that will help to implement these tasks.
The advantages of using CMS are as follows:
- Access to a huge number of plugins that allow you to expand the basic functions of the site, and also make it possible to create a project of high complexity.
- Use of templates on a free basis.
- Quickly editing the structure of the web resource and its design.
- Availability of engines that are available for free.
- The ability to handle huge databases.
CMS is very powerful platforms, which have an incredible range of technical opportunities and tools, but in order to take full advantage of them, you need to learn a lot, and it will take a lot of time.
With a sitebuilder, the effort required is significantly less. In order to create a website for free and in a short period of time, this is an ideal option. By deciding to use a website builder, you will get rid of the need to deal with setting up hosting, using databases and codes.
Thanks to the tools that are built into the designer, you can create an online store or a landing page, not bothering with the search for templates, connecting widgets and other conveniences. A great visual editor allows you to quickly and easily fill pages with content, rates, photos and product cards.
You do not need special knowledge to edit the design, settings and text materials, because all this is done through the control panel, which is easy to handle even a novice.
And most importantly – using the designer, you don’t have to search for hosting and domain name, connect payment aggregators and search for templates. So, choosing between CMS and constructor, the choice is obvious – the constructor, of course! Although here, each of us in the right to choose what he likes.
Promotion and SEO
Most sitebuilders give the opportunity not only to create a website, without any special knowledge, but also in their functional possibility of SEO-promotion and analytics. The fact that the site will look presentable is not enough for its success, it needs to sell and interest visitors. To achieve success, you have to make an effort.
Platforms for creating a website
For a beginner to create a website on their own, you need to choose the right platform, which will allow easy setup, training and does not require programming skills. And today we will look at several options.
WordPress can safely be called one of the most popular CMS, because one third of all sites in the world work on it! And it speaks about its availability, ease of use and functionality.
WordPress.org can easily be confused with WordPress.com! See our guide to the difference between WordPress.org and WordPress.com. WordPress.org is a free, open-source CMS that makes it possible to create a website yourself in just a couple of hours!
WP doesn’t have fees that you have to pay for. So how, then, do developers make money from their brainchild? Quite simply, by offering specific hosting, functionality refinement services, and theme creation. In addition, often those who use WordPress, make voluntary contributions to the development.
The only thing you have to pay for is hosting and domain. Some themes and plugins are also available for a fee, but their purchase is not required.
- You will be able to control every aspect of your website.
- It is possible to add additional features.
- A mass of theme templates available for free.
- Over 54,000 plugins available for free.
- WP is great with search engines. Plus, there are a ton of great SEO plugins that will allow you to add additional features.
- To manage your website, you’ll have to take the time to learn and take the time to read the articles.
- You will have to deal with security and backups.
This CMS is undoubtedly worthy of attention, although it is not in such demand as WordPress. It is on the basis of Drupal created many of those sites and applications that you use every day. You can use it to create a blog, a website, or an online store. And most importantly, you don’t have to pay to use it. A huge team of specialists is working on its creation and improvement, so this CMS has a lot of advantages.
Many professional developers choose Drupal, but it can work with him and beginners, though, will have to set aside time to study the documentation. Although you can install a ready-made assembly and in the course of creating a website to study the CMS.
The Drupal project is open source software. Anyone can download it, use it, work on it and share it with others. It is built on the principles of collaboration, innovation and globalism. It is distributed under the terms of the GNU GPL. There are no license fees. This CMS will always be free.
- The flexibility of the system, so it can be used to create any type of resource.
- Thanks to the open source code, this CMS is used by many users who are working together to modernize it.
- The built-in caching system ensures a high speed of operation.
- The level of security is high.
- It is possible to expand functionality through the use of modules, of which there is a huge number.
- The engine is quite complex, since it was originally designed for developers with experience.
- Free templates are not different originality.
- High requirements for hosting.
One of the most popular CMS (2nd place after WordPress), using which you can effortlessly create your own website. Even if you do not have special knowledge of the PHP language, you can create a complex dynamic website. However, an experienced user will first study all the advantages and disadvantages before choosing this service as a platform for independent creation of a web resource.
Joomla is well suited for creating an online store or an information portal. Despite the fact that experienced developers will find its disadvantages in this engine, for the beginner it will be a real boon, thanks to its simplicity.
Jumla is positioned as a free CMS, which can be easily downloaded from the official website. A lot of free versions of templates and plugins, which, in fact, is common for any in-demand Content Management System with open source.
At times, however, free materials are not enough. Often you can achieve the maximum functionality of a plugin only by using the premium version. The cost is directly proportional to the features provided by the extension.
Prices are quoted in dollars, but are quite acceptable. For example, to purchase a professional module for the online store you will have to spend $40. This investment is made on a one-time basis and will pay for itself in a short time.
Ambiguous situation with templates. You can choose a great option of those in the free access, or splurge on a premium theme. A huge number of options can be found in the segment for $65-85.
However, despite all the paid services listed above, they are not mandatory. Only the domain and hosting fees will have to be paid.
- Easy installation, which even a novice can figure out.
- A wide range of components and modules.
- Regular component updates that provide additional useful features.
- Powerful user community that is constantly developing new templates and plugins.
- Ease of learning.
- Simplicity and convenience of the admin panel.
- Updating is carried out in just 1 click.
- High level of security.
- There are some shortcomings in the structure of the elements of CMS.
- Protection systems against hacking is not the best level.
- At times there are problems with the indexing of the website.
- From time to time there are difficulties with the updating of the system.
- Pages work slowly because of an overabundance of code in the engine and in templates.
- There is no custom tech support.
4. Constant Contact
This website builder is not as popular as WordPress, it is very powerful and equipped with elements of artificial intelligence. Based on Constant Contact, you can create a business website, a blog, or even an online store for free in no time at all. But there is one catch – it is in English. However, even in spite of this, to pay attention to this designer is undoubtedly worth.
Constant Contact has a wide range of templates, very simple and accessible interface, you can move the blocks with the mouse. You will also have the opportunity to create your own logo, use a professional photo library of more than 550 thousand images, an online store and a lot of other advantages.
You can create your own business website, blog, logo or online store by taking advantage of the trial version, but it is available for 60 days.
You can change the pricing plan to Website Builder for $10/month, which will let you use your own domain, get a free SSL certificate, and other benefits of the platform, plus you can get phone support (in the language of the developers, which is English).
- The interface is very easy to use and there is no need to have any technical skills to use it.
- Placing your site will be on servers, so it will be very easy to set up and it will not take much time.
- The demo version is free for 60 days, which gives you the opportunity to try out the service and create an online store on its basis before buying the paid version.
- All paid plans have an SSL certificate, which is free.
- The plugins that WordPress is so famous for are disastrously few for Constant Contact.
- Integration with other web resources is limited.
- It will be difficult to migrate your website to another platform if necessary.
Wix is a hosting platform designed for website development. It’s great for creating a web resource for small businesses. You can add a blog to your site by installing the Wix Blog app.
Wix.com has been around for 14 long years (established in 2006), and marketed as a platform that allows anyone to build a website without any coding skills. Today Wix has over 110 million users worldwide.
You don’t have to pay for the basic Wix builder. Except that your free account comes with a Wix subdomain looking something like this:
But you can add a custom domain name for $4.50/month. Premium plan can be purchased from $12.50/month, and the most expensive will cost $24.50/month.
- Dozens of templates and applications are available to customize the site.
- To create a site with a mouse is enough, the tools are simple and no programming skills are required.
- Installation is quick and easy.
- Limitations of the free account, showing Wix branding and promotional offers on the created website.
- Very few third party apps available for free.
- No ability to change the template once it is selected.
- E-commerce is extremely limited, and in order to expand capabilities, you will have to purchase a paid plan.
This builder site can safely be called the oldest in Russia, and it is used for tens of thousands of websites, and is popular with novice webmasters. uCoz is distinguished by its flexibility and masses of advantages.
This constructor is the normal solution for creating a corporate website of a complex structure, but at the same time, it is perfect for creating simpler resources.
The free site created on uCoz is limited in size – 400 MB. There are 6 plans with a different set of benefits, the cheapest of which is “Minimum” (+1 GB of space), and it will cost $2.99/month, and the most expensive “Maximum” (+20 GB of space), costing $15.99/month.
- Free use option with your own domain name connected to the web resource. Everything is available except: creating an online store and working with the SEO-module, also remains an advertising banner.
- In terms of security, functionality is as good as CMS, a lot of fine-tuning, two dozen built-in modules are available, you can also work with code.
- Extensive selection of premium templates of the highest quality.
- Awesome editor.
- Excellent SEO and blog module.
- Suitable for both experienced webmaster and beginner.
- Attractive bonuses, such as a 50% discount on the connection rate (although the action is only 2 days after the registration site).
- It is possible to set up a user authorization through social networks.
- You can add online games to the site.
- The presence of advertising in the free version.
- To make a site created on uCoz, work effectively, you must at least be familiar with HTML.
- Standard templates that are free are extremely simple, and most of them are outdated.
Tilda is a website builder of ready-made blocks. Fortunately, have some programming skills to use Tilda is not necessary. The creator of this miracle is Nikita Obukhov, who is confident that his brainchild is slowly but surely becoming the “people’s website builder. Tilda is constantly being improved to displace competitors, which is only to the benefit of users.
Service is perfect for beginners and designers, but there are still some flaws in it, because of which the professional developer will still decide to opt for a different engine.
There are three types of plans: Free, Personal and Bussines. As you might have guessed, the Free plan is free and is suitable for creating a business card or a simple landing page. Here you get 50 MB of disk space, the ability to create a website and no more than 50 pages. The user gets to use some modules and register on a subdomain and get a URL like: site.tilda.ws.
On the Personal plan you get a domain name with .com or .ru extension, 1 GB on the disk and up to 500 pages. Suitable if you want to create a store or corporate website. This rate provides access to all modules, which are in the library. Payment for the tariff will be $10/month.
The Bussines plan offers all the same benefits as the Personal plan plus you can create up to 5 websites. Using this plan, the user will be able to use their own server and export code. The fee is $20/month.
You will have to pay for hosting separately.
- The ability to customize the design yourself.
- The presence of Zero Block, so you can create your own sections.
- The magnificent design of the interface.
- Ability to export files of the website.
- You can add any integrations by pasting code.
- Understandable to the beginner.
- Ability to create quizzes and various tests on your site.
- The presence of more than 480 blocks in the library and 180 page templates.
- Expensive compared to competing engines.
- Average level store and weak blog.
- Inconvenient SEO optimization tools.
- No built-in conversion analyzers.
- Not suitable for creating a large-scale website.
This builder is in the top 10 of the best website builders, and in some it even takes the leading position. It will be a great solution if you want to create a store, a landing page, or a business card. It has a lot of profile widgets, with which you can create not only superficially attractive pages, but also competent in terms of marketing pages.
A website created with uKit will help you unleash your creativity, because it’s simple and accessible, and most importantly – a lot of ways to express yourself. Visual editor is so simple and straightforward that even a child can deal with it, so that the creation of the site becomes a pleasant fun.
The system is also available for use on a free basis, and the functionality, although limited, is not as dramatic as in the case, for example, with Wix. The main disadvantage of the free version is the lack of ability to connect your own domain name. You will get a domain like – site.ukit.me.
Needless to say, that such a name will be a hindrance to quality business promotion? By paying $5/month, you can get paid access, which will allow you to use all the features of the engine and get rid of advertising. But there are also tariffs that are more expensive:
- For $10/month, you can use premium templates and get access to unlimited statistics;
- For $12/month you will be able to create an online store with everything you need;
- For $15/month you will get a free online store functionality and you will be able to edit the HTML markup.
- Huge selection of templates on different themes.
- Allows you to integrate various types of services: from social networks to music streaming services.
- The engine is convenient and simple, making it easy for a beginner to understand all the intricacies.
- Convenient control panel and an attractive interface.
- Through the use of lazy load technology, pages are loaded very quickly.
- The system does not allow beginners to make gross mistakes.
- Excellent technical support and frequent promotional offers.
- The design of the site is very uniform and similar to other resources created on the same basis.
- You can edit the codes only on more expensive plans.
- Managing posts on the blog can not be called convenient.
Jimdo is a purely commercial project, but it is not suitable for beginners to create a website, exclusively for business. Jimdo has a free version, but it is so limited that a decent website with it simply will not work. Note in advance that if you decide to opt for this sitebuilder, be prepared to pay one of two plans.
Despite all the difficulties, Jimdo is a very interesting product, which is worth a look. On it get a great store, but for the creation of business cards is much simpler, and most importantly – convenient, solutions.
This sitebuilder is not cheap, which makes it competitive with other platforms significantly reduced. A free account is, but it is only good for just to get acquainted with the system.
However, the system gives you a 30-day opportunity to try out the functionality of the paid account. After this time, you will have to decide on the tariff:
- The Start tariff will cost $9/month. It provides: 1 domain name as a gift, technical support, getting rid of advertising, a version of the website for smartphones, the site attendance module, access to the SEO setting of each page and the ability to create an online store, though only for 15 products.
- Tariff plan Unlimited will cost twice as much – $39/month. Comes with: 2 domain names, with the ability to create an online store with no limit on the number of products sold and advanced SEO settings.
- Templates of the highest quality, excellent functionality.
- You can edit the HTML and add your own template.
- Mass of additional applications that significantly expand the functionality of the engine.
- Section help of a high level.
- With the visual editor, you can customize the web resource is quite deep.
- An excellent set of modules that will help create an online store.
- Easy to work with, which will undoubtedly be appreciated by newcomers.
- Free account is completely useless, and paid account is expensive.
- The control panel is very specific and extremely uncomfortable to use.
- A full range of SEO settings can be obtained only by purchasing Bussines tariff.
Weebly is a website builder that is popular in Europe and the United States, and is an alternative to platforms such as Tilda, Wix and uKit. This sitebuilder is characterized by remarkable basic design, the simplicity of the admin panel and the fact that even in the basic version is the possibility of optimizing the website for SEO needs.
Unfortunately, Weebly is unlikely to be included in the list of popular sitebuilders, which definitely should be used, but still pay attention to it would not hurt, at least for purely educational purposes.
There are two types of plans – for online stores and for websites. The cheapest plan costs $49/year and the most expensive is $299/year. First of all, these plans differ from the free plan in the ability to connect the domain name.
If you want to create an online store, you’ll have to shell out for the most expensive plan, because the rest are limited to adding products. In general, it is not worth it.
- Professional-level templates that allow you to edit HTML and CSS.
- Visual editor that allows you to easily customize the appearance of pages.
- There is an application store that allows you to expand the functionality of the site.
- Excellent tools to help organize online sales.
- The assortment of themes for the site is limited.
- On cheaper rates take a commission on transactions.
This sitebuilder can be handled by any beginner without any problems. With SITE123, you can create a personal blog, a compact online store or a business card site. It will be extremely difficult to find a simpler designer, and a person without special skills will be able to master it. But for experienced users, this sitebuilder will not cause interest. But to discuss it is undoubtedly worth it.
Period of free use is unlimited, but get ready for the constant sight of a small banner in the footer. Well, and your domain name can not be connected. Simply put, the free plan is designed only for review.
SITE123 has four tariffs, but they are all one more expensive than the other: from $5/month for the “Connect” to $25/month for the “Business”. Well, this sitebuilder cannot be called affordable, despite the fact that it has a “conditionally” free plan.
- There is a huge set of modules that can be customized individually.
- Customization of the design and structure of the web resource will pass easily and effortlessly.
- Available integration with many social services.
- Editor works very quickly and is extremely easy to use.
- Technical support, which works 24 hours a day through online chat.
- You can create multilingual websites.
- There are useful plugins.
- Extremely simple landing page and store.
- On all plans is limited bandwidth web site.
- The depth of settings is extremely inadequate for users with experience.
Ucraft is popular mainly among entrepreneurs, but there may be exceptions. It is worth noting that the designer is included in the top 10 best website builders. It is distinguished by the possibility of creating single-page web resources with the connection of your domain name. At first glance, Ucraft quite inspires confidence, but is it so good in fact?
“Website” is the name of the constructor’s free rate. If you choose it, you will be able to create a multi-page resource with your domain name attached to it. Except that you will not be able to edit the blocks of the template, the only thing you will be able to – content substitution in the sections. If finances are quite tight, you can use the free version, but it is better to make a paid version.
The cost of paid rates, there are three, ranges from $10/month to $25/month. That’s just even at the most expensive “Unlimited” tariff you’ll be limited either by the insufficient number of products, or the same place for them on the hosting.
- The editor is very functional and understandable.
- Store of high quality.
- It is hosted on Google Cloud servers, which are very reliable.
- Synchronization of everything you might need for a business website is supported.
- SSL is free and easy to use.
- There is a progress bar, which is very convenient for beginners.
- Decent, if you compare it to competitors, blogging.
- It has a built-in logo builder.
- Few ready-made templates.
- Store rates are very overpriced.
- Some integrations must be added manually by entering code.
So what kind of platform will be the ideal solution for free and self-creation site?
A single answer is extremely difficult to give, because each of us has its own goals in creating a web resource. If we talk about free creation, then you should pay attention to the CMS, particularly in WordPress, because you only have to pay for paid templates and plugins (if needed), well as for hosting and domain name. In the case of sitebuilders free web resource creation is almost impossible.
And in general, the choice of platform for your future site should approach very thoughtfully. The choice will depend on the goal. If you decide to create an online store, it is worth opting for a designer with an expensive rate plan that will provide access to all the functionality of the engine. But when creating a business card is enough and a free version, because in this case, it is important to manage easily.
We hope that the information we gathered will help you choose the constructor or CMS that will be ideal for you!