The best website builder for your small business in 2022 depends on your requirements. Any article recommending only one company is likely making a nice affiliate commission for their suggestion. Although we are a website design agency, we want to educate you on your choices rather than sell to you. Part of our business is teaching business owners to build and manage their own websites.
We break down a business’s needs into three categories when considering which design platform to use. Your website will need to do any combination of – Inform, Sell or Educate.
The most basic requirement for a website is to share vital information about your business. An email, phone number and address details (if you have a physical location) are the most prominent examples.
Many small businesses only need a website for prospective customers to get basic information. An information-only website is for companies that conduct most business offline.
Whilst all business websites aim to ‘sell’, we must distinguish between providing information that will lead to a sale and selling goods and services online.
A business that makes sales of goods or services via a website is known as an E-Commerce business. An example of this would be Amazon or ASOS.
A website like this will be much more challenging, time-consuming, and expensive than a site designed only to inform.
A site designed to educate your customers will need a blog. An example of an educational website is BBC News. All news sites are giant blogs created to inform readers about current affairs.
If your business needs a blog, you are providing knowledge to your clients about your services.
A blog can directly sell to users or guide them on specific subjects, precisely like this article you’re reading now.
The Right Combination
Inform, Sell or Educate are not three independent ideas; they often must be combined. This website is both an Inform and Educate site. If we wanted to start selling merchandise, we would add e-commerce, making this an Inform, Sell and Educate website.
Now you understand the three areas a website covers; you will know what kind of site you require.
What Are Your Options
Almost daily, we see new site builders popping up online. Whilst jumping on the latest innovation can be exciting, it isn’t the wise choice. Some options will inevitably fail and shut down in an already saturated market. The effort required to build a site twice is a stress you do not need.
We have chosen three platforms that will serve a combination of Inform, Sell and Educate. These services are well-established and have cemented themselves in their field.
Carrd – Inform
Founded in 2015, Carrd is a simple, fully responsive site builder designed for informational websites.
Launchfyi company owner – Alex Andrews has been using Carrd for over five years and has built over 150 websites. Alex recently wrote an article on his website showcasing his favourite templates for the platform.
Carrd is one of the most accessible tools for building a website. If you are interested in creating your own informational site, you won’t find a better place to begin.
How Much Does Carrd Cost?
Carrd is one of the best site builders online and one of the cheapest. Prices start from just $9 per year. Considering most subscription services these days are over $9 a month, Carrd is a genuine bargain. Even the most expensive version of Carrd is only $49 a year.
Shopify – Sell
Over 1.7 million businesses use Shopify to sell products and services online. Shopify has a 33% market share in the US, making it the most popular e-commerce platform. Globally its share is 22%.
Shopify’s user-friendly interface makes it an accessible choice for beginners whilst offering powerful features to allow your business to grow.
Some of the biggest e-commerce brands use Shopify to power their store. Here are three examples of Shopify websites:
How Much Does Shopify Cost?
Shopify recently updated its pricing, reducing its lowest tier from £29 to £19 a month. New users can also enjoy their first three months on the basic plan for £1 a month, which is ideal if you are just starting.
WordPress – Educate
WordPress is the market-leading website builder with over 60% market share. WordPress is also open-source, making it completely free to use*.
Originally developed as a blogging platform in 2003, WordPress has grown to become a versatile platform for building almost any website.
There is a steeper learning curve to WordPress than with Carrd or Shopify. We recommend paying for setup if you aren’t confident with website building.
How Much Does WordPress Cost?
Whilst the platform is free, WordPress needs a hosting account to run. Depending on your needs, hosting can start from as little as £2 a month. You may also require additional themes, builders or plugins, which typically start from around $49 a year.
We wrote this article to give you a brief overview of the website platforms you should consider for your small business. We can confidently recommend these three services, as we use them every day. Many more options are available on the market that we do not use and therefore cannot recommend.
Should You Build Your Own Website?
With time, effort and desire, anyone can build a website. Of course, with a business to run, you likely do not have time to learn a new skill. We would love to hear from you if you are considering hiring a professional web design team. Use one of the three contact options below to contact us.