What is a DIY Website Builder?
DIY of course stands for do-it-yourself, and a DIY website builder helps you do just that--build your own website. DIY website builders are designed with the tech-challenged user in mind. From blogging platforms to small business websites and online portfolios, DIY website builders offer you the chance to express yourself and your product in richly designed, fully functioning websites without having to learn code or spend substantial amounts of money on a professional designer.
What is a DIFM Website Builder?
DIFM stands for do-it-for me, and unlike a DIY website builder, a DIFM builder takes your needs and suggestions and creates a website for you. DIFM website builders are typically more expensive than DIY website builders, but they have their own set of advantages: they’re easier, more time-efficient, and leave you time to focus on the more essential aspects of your business or blog.
DIFM Websites vs. DIY Websites: Which Is Best for You?
To decide whether you want to go with a DIY or DIFM website builder, here are some things to consider.
Creative control: How much creative control would you like over your website? If you have a specific vision for your business or blog and feel most secure in implementing it yourself, a DIY website builder might be best for you. However, if your goal is simply to gain web presence and have a professional looking site for your audience, a DIFM builder may be the better approach.
Cost: DIY website builders are more affordable since you’ll be putting the site together yourself. Those with limited expenses should opt for a DIY builder since it will save them money on paying a company to design it for them.
Complexity: DIY website builders may offer less advanced features since they’re designed for efficiency and usability rather than complexity. While the best DIY website builders do have plenty of features to offer, their goal is to make things simple rather than sophisticated. If your business requires many pages, advanced tools, and sophisticated presentation or hosting needs, a DIFM builder may be more appropriate.
The Best DIY Website Builders
Without further ado, here’s a look at the best DIY website builders for those who want to take things into their own hands.
For anyone seeking a free option that offers all the essential web-building features, Wix is the ideal solution. In business since 2006 and with 10 offices in 5 countries, Wix is in a class by itself.
There’s a bit of a learning curve, and sometimes the elements don’t line up perfectly the first time, but with a bit of practice, there’s little that can’t be accomplished.
The team at Wix is committed to providing customers with the ability to create attractive, easy-to-navigate websites that don’t cost a penny. Though they do have some restrictions, Wix’s free plans are perfect for those who need to quickly develop a simple-yet-elegant web presence.
Pricing plans start at just $5 a month (with banner ads), and even the best plan—complete with unlimited bandwidth, 20GB of storage, and a fully functional online store—costs only $25.
Wix also has a few game-changing features that make it worth checking out, including the state-of-the-art Wix ADI feature. This is the company’s proprietary artificial intelligence. It asks the user a few simple questions and then builds a complete website from scratch.
Wix sites are also easy to update and manage from a smartphone thanks to the user-friendly Wix app. Find out more in our full Wix review.
Web.com has helped tens of millions of people get their sites online since it first hit the scene in the late ‘90s.
Its do-it-yourself (DIY) website design package provides users with everything needed to get up and running, including hundreds of starter templates, thousands of royalty-free stock images, and unlimited storage.
Over the years, the team at Web.com has streamlined the web building process to the point where it’s as simple as choosing a preferred design, plugging in some content, and clicking “Publish."
And to make things even easier, Web.com offers world-class customer service. Any user can enlist the services of the company’s friendly professionals with just a simple phone call.
It’s worth noting, though, that Web.com charges considerably more than the most direct competitors. A basic plan runs $22.95 per month; for anyone who wants to add marketing tools, the rate is $32.95. Owners of Ecommerce stores can expect to pay $42.95 for a basic store.
Though the prices are a bit steep, they come with some pretty noteworthy perks: unlimited web storage, portfolio creation tools (which are great for bands, graphic designers, and other professionals), and even specialized layouts for different industries, including dental and chiropractic. Find out more in our full Web.com review.
Based in San Francisco, Weebly is the backbone for more than 20 million websites.
The widget-based builder makes it remarkably simple for anyone to rapidly create an aesthetically pleasing site with all the trappings people have come to expect from a modern web presence.
The main menu is located along the top navigation bar, and all editing features are clearly labeled and illustrated in the left column. For example, if you want to add a block of text to a webpage, just click the “Text” box in the left column and drag it right to the spot where the text should appear.
Then start typing. It’s that simple.
The Weebly website builder is also designed with search engine optimization (SEO) in mind, so prime search engine rankings are always within reach. Most website builders allow users to edit their meta tags and control how their site appears in search engine results, but Weebly takes the search factor even further with SEO-friendly HTML formatting and automatic XML and HTML sitemaps.
Similar to Wix, Weebly also offers a free—albeit limited—plan that works beautifully for the majority of users. For those who don’t mind plunking down a few bucks for a paid plan, Weebly’s platform offers additional features and functionalities that match those of their big-name competitors. There’s an $8 Starter plan for personal websites, a $12 Pro plan for organizations and large websites, a $25 Business plan for small businesses and stores, and a $38 Performance plan for large Ecommerce stores. Find out more in our full Weebly review.
The Best DIFM Website Builders
If you’d like to pay someone to create a website for you, you have options as well. Many website builders like Web.com, Hibu, and Weebly now offer DIFM (Do-It-For-Me) services, which can bring your unique vision to life and give your site an edge over the competition.
1. Web.com: Good Choice for Best SEO Rankings
Web.com is the Big Kahuna of DIFM website builders. Plans start at $114.95, and while that may sound high, consider that there are no up-front costs to build a website (some platforms charge thousands of dollars up front), and the monthly plan includes ongoing maintenance. Not only will you get a beautiful, functional, and mobile-friendly website, but the site will have the potential for higher search engine rankings thanks to the company’s commitment to Search Engine Optimization (SEO) best practices. Other benefits include Google Local setup, a variety of tracking tools, and 24/7 phone support.
2. Hibu: Custom-Built for You
Hibu is ideal for small- to mid-sized local businesses that are looking for an alternative to do-it-yourself (DIY) website builders. All Hibu-created websites are fully responsive for mobile devices and tablets, and include built-in SEO tools and detailed analytics to track website performance.
There are hundreds of templates to choose from, with simple, modern and clean designs. Hibu’s experts will do all the work, though you are encouraged to provide input to designers. Once your site is live you’ll receive proofs, giving you an additional opportunity to make any final changes.
3. Weebly: Just Right, If You Can Go It Alone
If you’re willing to pay more up front and potentially save money in the long term, consider Weebly. This website builder offers straightforward pricing to accommodate different needs, including a free domain name, Google Ads, and a host of site features.
Once the site is completed and approved, the maintenance becomes your responsibility. Signing up for a Pro or Business plan is a must in order to maintain your hosting and web building capabilities, and you’ll have to use the DIY website editor to make additional, ongoing changes to your site—unless you pay for additional DIFM services.
Members do have access to a community forum, live chat, email support, and phone support, but live help is only available between 5AM and 5PM PT on weekdays, and 7AM to 4PM on weekends. If you’re just looking for a quality custom web build that you can then take control over, Weebly offers a tremendous value.
DIY or DIFM Website Builders: The Choice is Yours
Whether you want to launch a DIY website or go the DIFM route, you have a variety of options. Each of the leading website builders feature a host of designer tools and features that make it easy to launch, and helps you focus on growing your business. From SEO tools to easy-to-use site builders, there is no shortage of ways to launch your new site and gain the audience you deserve.