SITE123 is a simple website builder that makes it possible to create promo sites, landing pages, blogs and small online shops. All websites created on the basis of this platform are responsive and can be browsed on any mobile devices.
You can use the service for free, but, in this case, the ad banner of the site builder will be provided in the footer and you will not be able to set up the 2nd level domain.
The major SITE123 feature is an opportunity to create the unlimited number of websites on one account. Just choose a plan, buy it, let’s say, for a year and start creating sites, each of which can eventually bring profit and attract clients (but you will still need to pay for each website if you want to connect a custom domain to it).
The service is mainly oriented on users and business owners, who need a website quickly, easily and without settling for less when it comes to quality and professionalism. The fact is that SITE123 is so simple and easy-to-use that even newbies willing to develop custom-built websites can use it. No coding, web design skills or experience of working with databases and hosting settings are required to do that.
The system has a user-friendly and understandable multilingual (available in more than 15 languages) interface. So, let’s test it now to make the unbiased conclusions.
1. Ease of Use
You can register with SITE123 and start creating a website through your Google+ or Facebook account. The dashboard is very simple, intuitive and understandable even to a newbie.
It contains only useful options and features that affect the quality of websites you will create. You won’t find anything complicated or useless here.
2. Feature Set and Flexibility
You don’t have to be a pro to manage with SITE123 Dashboard. It is so simple that even a newbie can learn it in less than 10 minutes. Listed below are some of the sections you can find there:
SITE123 makes it possible to access the Dashboard itself. This is the place, where you can see all the websites you have created. You can edit, copy and delete them, add new ones, set up domains, check your balance etc. You can also look through the list of incoming messages, orders, comments and newsletters for each website.
Home Page lets you edit the main page, including its logo, name and slogan. This is also the section, where you can adjust the design of the home page and its format: quantity and type of the elements the header will consist of (buttons, videos, links or just images without any text and other elements).
Pages allows you add new pages and edit the existing ones. You can choose any display format for each page (3-4 variants depending upon the type of the page, be it a blog, an online shop, a promo site, About Us page). It is possible to set up SEO parameters, block sizes, background types and other parameters for each page. This means that you can easily change the stock template of displaying some website sections.
Design offers customization tools for all website elements described above.
They are subdivided into the following categories: Popular, Analytics Tools (Google Analytics, Facebook Pixel, Google AdWords), Live Support Chat (Pure Chat, LiveChat, Zopim, Intercom), Marketing Tools (Zotabox, Privy), Webmaster Tools (Bing Webmaster Tools and Yandex Webmaster Tools).
It should be noted that SITE123 has robots.txt file editing options. This option is useful for every user, not only for professional webmasters. And frankly speaking, not every website builder allows to edit that file, as it’s often being generated on the system’s level.
SITE123 comes with a visual editor without the ‘drag and drop‘ feature: all changes at the website are made through the sidebar settings described above and are seen in the real-time mode.
Multilingual Website. Recently SITE123 has launched very useful tool for international businesses. Now you don’t need to create a separate website in other languages, you can simply add another language version to your website.
But this simplicity has a set of features I have never seen in any website builder before. The system automatically translates all headers and subheaders of your site. Using Language manager you can edit the default website translation in a dialog splitted window, where in the left side there is your original content and on the right side – the content from another language version. What’s more – the number of language versions could be up to 5 (depending on your pricing plan).
You can also connect a separate domain name to each language version in one click – the dream of mane webmasters who work with multilingual websites.
The website builder is an ideal choice to develop promo websites and blogs. You can also create a small online store, but get ready to add all the products manually. Other settings like discounts, payment options, customizing delivery and additional fields are also missing. There is a shopping cart and an opportunity to accept PayPal online payments.
The service is a nice option for creating blogs and promo websites, but it is quite challenging to build a large online shop or a quality landing page here. SITE123 is simple and easy-to-use for newbies, but it lacks in-depth settings that could make it possible to create online shops and landing pages.
Right after the registration procedure, you will be offered to choose one of the categories for a future website (restaurants and food, business, photography, art, CV and portfolio, marketing, medicine, technologies, sport, fashion and beauty, online-shop etc.). Each category involves from 5 up to 10 themes.
|Free Themes:||✔ YES|
|Theme Import:||✘ NO|
|Theme Customizing:||✔ YES|
|Responsive Design:||✔ YES|
|Sort by Industry:||✔ YES|
|CSS Code Editing:||✘ NO|
The quality of templates is high, although, their versatility is a bit doubtful. Fortunately, customization tools at SITE123 are flexible and easy-to-use. You can apply any of 13 tools for each template. In this case, the positioning of blocks will notably change.
Color styles are also adjustable at the platform. You can choose any color scheme offered or adjust it manually.
It is also possible to change menu button styles, fonts and enable/disable social media buttons. Changing templates on the go is not allowed here. Each of them comes with thematic demo-content. If the template you have selected has not come up to your needs for any reason, just create a new website using another theme.
Another good thing I want to take a point is a free image and icons library. Such tool is especially will be on a great purpose to novices who need to customize a website without browsing the Web searching for the icon or background image he or she needs.
To sum up, SITE123 offers similar, but high quality templates. The only thing that differs them is the images in the demo-content. You can change the structure and design of the home page, enable parallax effect and transparency, upload your own images and change fonts and color schemes. The website builder also offers an opportunity to create a site in two variants, namely one-page and multi-page.
4. Customer Support
Description of features and video tutorial on how to work with the website builder is available at the website. You can also contact the customer support team via the live chat any time of the day.
5. Pricing Policy
|Free:||$0/mo||✓ 500MB of disk space;
✓ 1GB of bandwidth;
✓ 10 product orders/mo.
|Basic:||$9.80/mo||✓ 10GB of disk storage space;
✓ 5GB of bandwidth;
✓ Free domain.
|Advanced:||$15.80/mo||✓ 30GB of disk space;
✓ 15GB of bandwidth;
✓ Sell up to 50 products/mo.
|Professional:||$21.80/mo||✓ 90GB of disk storage space;
✓ 45GB of bandwidth;
✓ 500 products for sale/mo.
|Gold:||$27.80/mo||✓ 270GB of disk storage space;
✓ 135GB of bandwidth;
✓ Unlimited products for sale.
The system offers five plans, which differ in the volume of disk storage space and bandwidth of the website.
The pricing policy of SITE123 differs depending on the user’s region. Here we’d looked though the pricing for North America users.
Free plan is not worth the attention because of the inability to set up your own domain and the ad banner of the website builder visible at the site. It may be used to explore the options the platform offers.
Keep in mind that any plan makes it possible to create the unlimited number of websites on one account. This is the major SITE123 advantage, yet each website must be paid separately.
The problem is the volume of the disk storage space and bandwidth. The bigger website you wish to create, the more expensive plan you will have to buy. Product order limits (except Gold Plan), in their turn, make it impossible to create a network of small online shops. However, nothing prevents you from creating promo sites and blogs here.
All in all, SITE123 is quite affordable, but the features and limitations of the plans make the idea of creating a large amount of websites not that tempting. What you can create here is many blogs and promo websites only, so it is up to you to decide whether this platform meets your web building needs. The flexible tariff policy to users from different regions makes this website builder more affordable comparing to other cloud services.
On the other hand, an opportunity to create even one website for $117.6 per year seems quite a nice investment. Thus, this website builder is a good option for those users, who are going to work with client projects.
6. Pros and Cons
SITE123 is a nice website builder for newbies. It has a list of notable benefits everyone should be aware of:
- Simplicity, ease of use, no coding and web design skills required;
- A rich choice of templates and nice customization tools;
- An opportunity to create many websites using one plan and account only;
- Responsive templates;
- Availability of plugins and numerous options making it possible to work with different SEO parameters.
Disadvantages of the website builder include:
- Inappropriate range of settings for professional users;
- Too simple online shops and landing pages (but they are good enough for the most users);
- Parameters of free plan and some paid plans notably limit the opportunities to create a large functional website.
To sum up, the platform is a great choice for newbies willing to create one or two websites for personal use, such as promo sites, portfolios or blogs. The wide range of options offered by the website builder is limited by the features of the plans and inappropriate depth of settings for landing pages and online shops.
SITE123 is a nice website builder for most users. It can be used to create promo websites and blogs. Technically, there is an opportunity to build online shops and landing pages, but their quality will hardly meet the needs of professionals. Setting up plugins can notably expand the functionality of the system, but this will not make the website builder a universal tool for creating different types of projects.
SITE123 is a cost-effective platform for those users, who wish to create one site only. An opportunity to build a rich amount of projects seems to be a smart marketing approach here rather than the highlight of the system. The websites created with SITE123 are modern, stylish and appealing, but they are still very similar. The dashboard tools can hardly come up to the requirements and needs of clients.
While testing the platform, I have concluded that the initial impression SITE123 has created does not correspond to its real features. The website builder is great for personal use of newbies only. It looks reliable and nice, but its functionality is not enough to work with clients’ websites.