GoDaddy Review

Top10.com Staff

In a Nutshell

GoDaddy Websites + Marketing is a website builder that makes it easy for the most novice of users to create a professional website. It goes beyond site builder, integrating several tools that make it simple to increase traffic via SEO, upload and manage social network content, and synchronize products across multiple marketplaces such as Amazon or Etsy. GoDaddy offers tiers ranging from free, up to an Ecommerce plan that allows unlimited sales.

pros

  • Easy-to-use interface
  • Modern looking mobile-friendly templates
  • Included marketing tools

cons

  • Unable to add custom code
  • Limited to embedded HTML only
  • Unable to export content

GoDaddy GoDaddy Visit Site

Overview

GoDaddy uses a unique combination of destruction-free editing, a variety of almost infinitely customizable templates, and back it all up with award-winning customer support. 

The overarching idea here is that they created something that’s more than just a traditional website builder. It has all the tools that the average small business owner needs to get to all the places that matter online. And that helps them grow their company, sell more products, and engage better with customers. That’s a lot to cram into a simple package, but they’ve seemed to work it out perfectly.

If you're looking to build your own website and you have little to no experience, GoDaddy is an excellent place to start.

Who Should Use GoDaddy?

  • Anyone that needs a website
  • Small business owners and non-profits looking to build a web presence
  • People looking to sell online

GoDaddy's Websites + Marketing has a lot of components packaged in one spot. What that does is make it easy for someone to start off with a free website, and then move on as their business grows. The idea is that it will be easy for anyone to build a professional looking website and market it easily. 

But another interesting thing about GoDaddy is that they don't just offer a website builder. Should you feel like you want something different, they also have a Managed WordPress solution, as well as a "do it for you" option called Website Design Services. It should come as no surprise to anyone that a company that was built around getting other companies to succeed online would have multiple choices to do just that. 

Getting Started with GoDaddy

Let's start with one of the obvious things about GoDaddy: You don't need to sign up for some fancy plan before you get into it. You don't even need a credit card. You can create a site, 100% free of charge so that you can see if you like it or not. If it's the latter, no big deal, just go on about your business. That's pretty nice, because sometimes you just want to play around before you decide to invest money into your site. 

Once you've begun the process you're off to the races. GoDaddy asks you a few questions about your business so they can set you up with a website template, and this is another thing that sets them apart. 

The industry seems to get wrapped up a lot in the concept of "themes" and "templates," but really what anyone needs is a good place to start. GoDaddy gives customers 2 ways for that to happen: 

  1. Choose from one of their beautiful industry-specific templates 
  2. Answer a few questions about your business, then GoDaddy pre-loads a website design for you 

This takes care of 2 very different types of customers in one easy pass. Some people really like browsing through tons of templates, picking out whatever works best for them. And others want it just to be fast and easy, and option 2 is that in a nutshell. It'll even auto-populate applications for your industry—hair salons get online appointment scheduling, for example. The nice thing is that if you don't like what you create, it's no big deal. Just start over from scratch and you'll be fine. You're not locked into any particular look. It's quite flexible. 

As for images, this is another huge strength of GoDaddy: Free stock imagery is included. If you're not a photographer, this is a big deal, and gives you a step above the competition. But what if you are? Well they also have a cool system where, once you connect your site to your Facebook and Instagram profiles, they can pull in images instantly from there to use on your site. Now all the cool stuff you've already done is ready to go.

Design

As previously mentioned, once you've set up your website, you're presented with a website prepopulated with photos and sample copy. But how do you add and delete sections to customize your site?

There are 2 methods. The left side of the screen has the website itself, and you can modify the site there if you prefer. The second method is to use the sidebar on the right and click your way through the menus. Both are equally easy to do, it just comes down to personal preference. 

Automatic back-ups

Another thing to note is that there is no need to save. Your site is saved as you go, so there's no need to stress about whether or not something made the cut before your power went out. If you're online, it's backed up. 

Themes

Another advantage to the system is those themes. With some other builders, if you change the theme or template, all of your customization goes out the window. GoDaddy's Websites + Marketing doesn't work like that, and instead, any time you decide to do a site makeover, the entire site tweaks with it—including your layouts and content. That's an edge that not every provider offers. 

Limited HTML customization

Now there is a drawback to all this: There is no behind-the-scenes HTML customization. GoDaddy offers all kinds of website building options, from GoDaddy Websites + Marketing to Managed WordPress and even services where they'll build your website for you. So if you do want to get into the code, you're going to need something a bit more robust, like their Managed WordPress option. 

Of course, if you're looking for an inexpensive website builder, do you really want to be buried in code? Probably not, which is why GoDaddy came up with a nice compromise: You can add your own HTML, it's just placed inside of an iframe (and if you know enough about HTML to code, then you know what an iframe is, anyway).

Mobile website builder

And since everything is designed to be mobile first nowadays, you can not only design and maintain your website using a mobile device, the site looks just as good on them, too.

Marketing Features

Let's say that you've built your website and you're happy with the results. What can you do from there to improve your business? GoDaddy's Websites + Marketing also includes an SEO tool that walks you through your site, suggesting changes to improve your ranking on popular search engines. And one click is all it takes for them to make the changes for you. 

And how about email marketing? It is the big thing, nowadays, and it's included in all of GoDaddy’s plans, even the free website! Use it to promote your latest products or just the new posts on your blog—it's your choice

Ecommerce

Ecommerce is fairly self-explanatory. If you want to set up an online store, you can simply do so by adding products. The builder will do all of the magic for you, and build checkout pages and the like based on your chosen theme. All payment processing is taken care of too, via a robust and secure platform. You'll need to use the Ecommerce plan to get all of these options, but if you want to sell things, it’s the way to go. 

Online Appointments

As for Online Appointments, that's a whole other ball of wax. Let's say that you do pet sitting and you want a website. Wouldn't it be cool if your clients had access to your calendar so they could book their own appointments? And what if they could pay for them, too? That's exactly how Online Appointments works, and it's a very powerful feature. 

And what are those payment options? PayPal, Apple Pay, Square and all major credit cards, so everything is covered. That's nice.

Business Listings

Then there are other odds and ends, like Business Listings, where you can make Yelp and Google My Business listings directly from GoDaddy’s platform. There's also a social add in so you can integrate your company Facebook page with your website. And like everything, it's also mobile ready with designs that scale to any platform. They are designed to look beautiful and modern on any mobile device, after all. There are a lot of features the deeper you dive, and they add new ones all the time. 

Built-in Add-ons

One other interesting thing about GoDaddy Websites + Marketing is that there's no app store like you'll find with the competition. Is that an advantage? The idea is that since GoDaddy builds their own add-ons, there's no need for third-party developers to go in and make their own. And if GoDaddy makes them then they do the maintenance too, so you know everything will stay current and compatible. Ever had a plugin break because the developer wasn't around anymore or wouldn't maintain it? This is the problem they've avoided.

Customer Support

GoDaddy support is among the industry's best, so should anything come up while you're working on building a website, know that there's someone there to answer your call 24/7/365. These are friendly and knowledgeable people, so don't stress about whether or not your question will stump them or not—chances are they've got the right answer. And if you're not a phone person, it's no big deal, because they also have award-winning online chat support. So really, there are lots of ways to get hold of someone if you need your problem solved, and that's comforting. 

GoDaddy also features an unparalleled knowledge base. It's packed with step-by-step instructions on any task you might need to perform, and even includes video tutorials. And if that's not enough, there are webinars available on a wide variety of topics with the goal being to teach business owners about how to improve their presence online. 

Along with the knowledge base comes GoDaddy's Help section, which includes community forums. If you've got questions, chances are someone else has asked them before, so this is a great place to troubleshoot. It also has lots of good answers on best practices and the like, and you can even post your own questions if need be

Plans and Pricing

Package
Cost/Month
Free Website
Free
Basic
$10
Standard
$15
Premium
$20
Ecommerce
$25

Every GoDaddy Website Builder plan includes a 1-month free trial, so you can give it a go and see if you like it or not, no credit card required. After that there are 4 types of plans: Personal, Business, Business Plus and Online Store. All of them come with 24/7 support via phone or live chat, as well as hosting.

The Personal plan starts at $5.99 a month, and includes website hosting, SSL security, rapid page-load performance and a blog creator. 

The Business plan is up next, and it's $9.99 a month, and adds a PayPal Buy Now or Donate button and SEO tools to optimize your site's performance. 

Business Plus takes all that and adds email marketing, Google My Business, Yelp, social media integration, Facebook integration, and online appointment features. That one goes for $14.99 a month.

Finally, there's the Online Store plan. It's $19.99 a month and is made for anyone that wants to sell products online. It's got all the bells and whistles of the previous plans, plus a full-featured online store that accepts credit cards, PayPal, Apple Pay and more. You can even set it up to get texts when orders are placed, and create automated abandoned cart recovery emails. 

GoDaddy GoDaddy Visit Site

Conclusion

So what's the verdict on GoDaddy's Website Builder? If you're looking for a simple and straightforward way to build a professional website quickly, this is an excellent option. Anyone that knows how to get online can build with their tools, and since their customer support is stellar, you've always got backup if you need help. 

If you want a modern, professional website that has built-in tools that can help you drive business results, then this is a good tool for you.

Top10.com's editorial staff is a professional team of editors, writers and experts with dozens of years of experience covering consumer, financial and business products and services.

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