6 Best website builders for small businesses in 2021
You’ve got a small business – now you just need to find the perfect website builder to take it to the next level. Read our guide to help you find the right one for your business
We are a team of writers, experimenters and researchers providing you with the best advice with zero bias or partiality.This article was co-authored by:
Did you know over 84% of businesses have a website? If you don’t have one, you risk falling behind your competition.
Thankfully, website builders are on hand to help you create a professional website quickly, and cheaply.
We think choosing the right website builder is a bit like choosing what to have for your roast dinner – not only can the main event differ each time, so can all the trimmings that come with it.
So while you think you’ve found the best website builder for your business, there may be one out there that suits your tastes – or needs – better.
Thankfully, Startups has put together this guide to help you discover the best website builder for your small business.
So without further ado, let’s tuck in.
- Best all-round web builder
- Optimised for mobile performance
- Outstanding customer support
- Stunning templates
- Impressive design flexibility
- Great blogging and ecommerce functions
- Rates highly for value for money
- Great customer scores
- Huge number of app integrations to choose from
- Great help and support
- There's no obligation to upgrade to paid plan
- Editing tools are pretty easy to use
- Editor is easy to use for beginners
- Useful help and support
- Some of the cheapest ad-free websites
- Simple to use
- Update website from desktop, mobile or tablet
- One-month free trial is very generous
Wix offers more price plans than most other website builders, so you can pick or switch to one that works for you.
You can click any of the plans below to head straight through to the Wix website to start comparing packages.
Wix: the verdict
Wix is an intuitive drag-and-drop website builder that creates beautiful, professional sites. It's also the best rated in the world.
As a professional, flexible and easy-to-use website builder, we cannot recommend Wix more highly to our readers. It has over 510 stunning templates, robust ecommerce capabilities, and the best drag-and-drop tool we tested.
That means whether you're completely new to creating websites or keen to customise every inch of your site, we think you'll be chuffed to bits you went with Wix.
Read our Wix review for more information
Squarespace: the verdict
Squarespace is a dream for creative types, especially if you love playing around with style. The templates really are stunning.
But it's more expensive than most alternatives, and we found it gives you less – less control over the look of your site, fewer features and it's much less easy to use.
Read our Squarespace review for more information
Spend a little more on its Pro plan, and you’ll even be able to upload some snazzy HD videos to your website.
Weebly: the verdict
If you’re looking to get your new website off the ground for very little money, Weebly is your website builder. While the templates are basic, there are lots of apps to add to your site, which give you ecommerce and marketing capabilities, plus integration with social platforms.
Although upgrading to the Pro plan gives you the option to add HD video and audio to your website, Weebly is still behind Wix and Squarespace when it comes to innovative template features.
A little like GoDaddy, Weebly is perfect for no fuss, low cost website building.
Site123’s pricing, just like the website builder itself, is very simple. There’s only one premium plan, for the very reasonable price of £9.41/month. That comes with a free domain for one year, 10GB of storage and 5GB of bandwidth.
You are able to run your website on the free plan for as long as you like, but you’ll have to put up with both Site123 branding and using a Site123 subdomain.
Site123: the verdict
If you want to get your website up and running with minimal fuss (and with plenty of support should you need it) Site123 is the website builder for you. Instead of offering you a bewildering array of templates, Site123 just chooses one of its simple but effective website designs for you based on your answers to a few questions.
And with only one premium option, you don’t need to agonise over which paid plan has just the right features for your business.
However, this simplicity does come at the expense of in-depth features and design flexibility – businesses after a more complex website may want to look elsewhere.
Jimdo’s prices are transparent, and pretty reasonable for a top website builder, though it doesn’t compare so favourably when you consider what you’re getting for your money.
For example, Wix is a much more affordable website builder (offering cheaper plans across the board), and it’s also superior to Jimdo on every metric we measure.
Jimdo: the verdict
Our user testing found that, while some people found Jimdo easy to build a website with, others were frustrated by the limited template options and restrictive design flexibility.
That said, its features are decent, and it has a nice range of third party apps you can use to enhance your small business website.
But if you’re looking for an affordable and user-friendly website builder, there are definitely cheaper and friendlier options available.
Although one of the cheaper website builders out there, it’s a case of ‘you get what you pay for’. Not only does GoDaddy offer less design flexibility than other website builders, its customer service department doesn’t top the rankings either.
However, if you’re looking to get online cheaply and quickly, its Basic and Standard packages will do the trick nicely.
GoDaddy: the verdict
GoDaddy has everything you need to build your own website quickly, with a user-friendly drag-and-drop editor and plenty of features to keep small business owners happy. You can even put its platform to the test with a free 30-day trial.
The features it does have are all fine-tuned to get your business succeeding online, thanks to its SEO tools, fast load times and marketing campaign functionality. However, GoDaddy's simplicity does come at the cost of having the kinds of quality, in-depth features offered by the likes of Wix and Squarespace.
For those that don't want to go down the website builder route, we should also call out GoDaddy's reputation as a great hosting provider. It offers four reasonably-priced hosting packages to suit a variety of business websites.
Read our GoDaddy review for more information
Our verdict: the best web builder
Although all of the website builders that feature on our list have their strengths and weaknesses, it’s Wix that clearly comes out strongest. As a great all-rounder, it offers feature-rich, beautiful website building at a great price.
If you’re looking to build an artsy website, Squarespace certainly has the feature package for creative freedom, and the best looking templates in the business.
Weebly and GoDaddy are almost on par with what they offer – cheap websites with no-fuss building. However, if you don’t already have a domain and you’re looking to set one up, GoDaddy offers the cheapest paid plan.
Lastly, Site123 and Jimdo are quite simplistic website builders, and not as feature-rich as some of our other top providers – but they have their benefits. Site123 offers genuinely useful help and support, and Jimdo is great if you want to get your new website live in under an hour.
Click any of the links below to get started with a free trial of any of these top website builders.
Price is the most important factor for most businesses. You want to know the builder you pick is affordable – and will stay that way as you grow. But most importantly, which provider will create the most value for you? There’s no point cutting costs on a free version that’s keeping you from impressing your customers or achieving those lofty sales targets.
Time is of the essence for both you and your customers. That’s why most first-timers we spoke to wanted a hassle-free, friendly site that is fully optimised for search engines. Thankfully, website builder templates allow businesses to create beautiful websites in a matter of hours.
How do you choose? Website builders come in all shapes and sizes. What do you want yours to do for you? Most people discover companies online, so making that killer first impression is key.
Think – will you be looking for an online store? 24/7 support? What about the ability to grow and customise your site over time? Pinpointing what you want your website to do will help you decide on the best website builder to use.
What is the easiest web builder for beginners?
One of the easiest web builders for beginners is GoDaddy. This is thanks to its Artificial Design Intelligence (ADI) tech, which can help you get a professional-looking website live in under an hour regardless of your ability. That said, this technology does somewhat limit your creative control.
If you’re looking for ease of use and design flexibility, we’d recommend Wix, which offers near unlimited customisation options on its many templates – though it does will require a little more effort and input from you.
What is the cheapest website builder?
With plans starting from just £3/month, Wix is the cheapest website builder in our ranking, and it’s the best! Yes, for very affordable prices, Wix offers everything you need to get a professional business website up and running with ease.
Is Wix the best website builder?
See above. But seriously, thanks to its intuitive drag and drop builder, excellent features, and great design flexibility, Wix outshines every other website builder in our ranking on nearly every metric. And that’s according to solid, impartial user testing carried out by our research team.
Which free website builder is the best?
Guess what? Our best website builder is also our best free website builder. You might not be able to access all the things that make it a great option for your small business website, but Wix’s free version still allows you to create a great website with no obligation to update to a paid plan.
Check out or full list of the best free website builders here.
Which is the best website builder for SEO?
For comprehensive SEO support, you can’t do much better than Weebly. It has plenty of quality, in-house SEO apps and functions built into the platform, which makes it easy, even for beginners, to know that your website is fully-optimised.
Which website builder has the best templates?
Squarespace has the best templates hands down. Squarespace offers a great variety of fully-optimised, beautifully-designed templates to suit businesses of all sorts, and with a lot plenty of design flexibility.
Does my business need a website builder?
Quite simply, website builders are a game-changer for small businesses. They are made to help people who are too busy running a business to get online. And their popularity is owed to the fact that they’re much less money and effort than hiring an independent website developer.
The best part? The top website builder sites are just as professional-looking and easy to customise as hiring a freelance coder yourself.
With over a third of people looking online before they pay you a visit, websites are essential, whether you’re a king-size company or a small and mighty business.
If you’re not online, you’re really missing out. The main points to look forward to with a website builder are:
Website builder prices start from less than the cost of a coffee a month.
Get online fast
With slick, easy-to-use templates, you can be up and running in minutes.
Flaunt your style
Your online presence is your opportunity to make a real impression on your customers. Without a website, you could be missing out on potential customers and all important sales. Build one today and watch your business grow.
So what are you waiting for? Get your business online today!