This page may contain links to our partners’ products and services, which allows us to keep our website sustainable. This means that buyorbye.com.au may receive a compensation when you sign up and / or purchase a product or a service using our links. However, all opinions expressed in this article are solely ours, and this content is in no way provided or influenced by any of our partners.
The Site123 team describes its website building product as “by far the easiest free website builder.” I have already reviewed a wealth of awesome website builders to help you find the right solution for launching your very own website easily and without significant investments. Site123 drew my attention with the promise of changing the way people build websites.
Below, you’ll find my in-depth Site123 review that analyzes the main aspects of the builder, including the Site123 website editor, ecommerce functionality, pricing, and much more. To provide you with the most accurate information, I created a couple of test websites on this platform.
Read on to find out what I’ve discovered.
Site123 was founded in 2015 by a tech team from Israel with the idea to help anyone who wants to build free websites. What made them stand out is the fact that a website can be created in no time, and design or coding skills aren’t necessary.
With Site123’s point and click web builder and various plugins, it will be easy to make a professional website.
Moreover, the Site123 website builder claims to have simplified the site creation process, reducing it to three simple steps: selecting the type of website you want to build, adding content to it, and launching it live. However, I had to test the builder myself to see if everything about Site123 is as easy as one-two-three.
The first step is to choose the type of website you wish to create, and as you can see there are many options. I chose to build an online store.
The second step requires you to choose a name for your website.
The third and last step includes creating an account, which can be done in three ways: via email, Google account and Facebook.
First things first, the website builder’s homepage lists all the cool features and functionalities you can use with Site123.
Upon landing on the Site123 homepage, live chat agents immediately asked me if I needed any help in discovering how the site builder works. This was a strong indicator that the Site123 team pays special attention to customer support.
When I created an account on Site123, I was finally able to try and test the website editor. One of the first things I noticed is that the interface is clean. The website editor takes little time to get used to, but overall, it is quite straightforward.
All the tools you need to customize a site to your taste are located on the left side of the screen, including design and general website settings.
This free website builder, unlike many of its competitors, features a point-and-click editor. So whenever you want to edit the content of your site, you need to click on a particular site element, and the editing options will pop up on the left side of the page you’re editing.
When it comes to image editing options, the Image Filter Tool is one of the website builder’s strongest points. This tool allows you to apply 25 different filters to your images. Site123 also features a rich library of royalty-free images from Unsplash and Pixabay.
If one of the crucial aspects of my review of Site123 was how extensive the media library is, I’d give Site123 an A+. However, my focus is on the image editing options, and to what extent you can modify an image.
This web builder supports just a few editing options, i.e., applying filters to images and cropping them. The cropping options are not impressive, either. There are no predetermined aspect ratios.
With that in mind, you should set your preferred image size without any guidelines if the image is not cropped automatically.
The excellent content editing experience is one of the features worth highlighting in this review. The website builder supports basic content editing features, including standard text formatting options.
Additionally, you can add images, videos, links, tables, and lists to your content. Even though there aren’t any special features that accompany the Site123 content editor, I’m satisfied with its simplicity and ease of use.
Site123 is a little short of 200 templates. If I compare the builder with its competitors, Site123 has a solid website template offering. What’s interesting is that the Site123 team made sure users have a lot to choose from when it comes to site templates. What’s even better is that all these templates are free.
To help you narrow down your choices, Site123 organized its selection of templates into ten categories that range from business and restaurants to photography and online store templates. Plus, at the end of the Templates page, there are dozens of tags (plumber, legal services, etc.) that will give you the template recommendations based on the tag you select.
Switching between templates is only available for paying users, while free plan users can only change a site theme by starting a new website or customizing the existing one to a certain extent.
Moreover, when previewing Site123 templates, the builder lets you see the main site elements a particular template is using. So, for example, a restaurant template uses menu and reservation elements. This feature is quite convenient to help you find the perfect theme for your site.
Site123 websites adapt well to different devices. While building your site, you can see how it will look on different devices, i.e., desktop, mobile, and tablet devices.
As I already mentioned, there are several different categories, and in order to be thorough, I wanted to include some screenshots of a few templates.
The example below is a template for real estate agencies, but there are many more for various services.
This type of template might seem similar to the one for businesses, but when you start scrolling down, you’ll see that titles and short descriptions of blog posts are in focus.
If you want to start an ecommerce store, Site123 has templates for that as well. Products are displayed in boxes while the price and the name are below, and of course, you can customize certain things in this template.
In the section below, I will provide information for each feature that you’ll need for your website.
Another highlight in my Site123 review is the builder’s built-in blogging functionality. Each template comes with a predetermined set of pages, but you can always add a blog to your site. The builder supports seven different blog outlines. When it comes to customization options, you can add tags along with a short description of your blog post.
Additionally, you can set blog comments to show or hide them from a page, in addition to first selecting a blog commenting system: internal, Facebook, or Disqus.
In the blog settings, you’ll also find the option of displaying related posts and adding social sharing buttons, while the URL of each blog post is a post title.
Site123 is also dedicated to making all of its websites secure. The builder uses an SSL secure protocol, ensuring all sites are protected – for free.
After completing a Site123 upgrade, the builder allows its users to create free email accounts with their domain name. The option of integrating a Site123 email account with Gmail and Outlook is available too.
Free plan users, unfortunately, are not entitled to a free email account with Site123. This feature requires a custom domain, and free plan users can only create a site with a free subdomain.
The form builder is available with the following Site123 packages: Basic, Advanced, Professional, and Gold. In other words, free plan users cannot use the form builder.
If you opt for one of the Premium Site123 plans, you’ll be able to use the builder’s Custom Form Builder. Additionally, you can integrate your site with other form builders such as JotForm, 4Screens, MailMunchand Site123’s very own form builder app – 123FormBuilder.
The closest thing to a form builder for free plan users is a contact form with the Name, Phone, Email, and Message fields. However, you cannot change any of the fields or add custom ones.
The default menu type for non-paying users is a horizontal menu tucked in the header area of the website. The same menu also appears in the footer area.
Furthermore, free plan users can also add a Category to a horizontal menu and add multiple pages under that category. This way, they can create a drop-down menu within a horizontal menu. The option to add social networks, a shopping cart, and other items to the header menu is available too.
With the premium plans, there are even more menu options. Much like some of the well-known web builder, Site123 supports the sidebar menu, as well as the option of adding a search box tool to your website navigation.
Site123 allows you to add various marketing and analytics tools, payment gateways, and much more via the App Market. All integrations are divided into different categories, including Pricing, Online Store, Booking, and Webmaster Tools, among others.
There is also the Popular category that lets you check which add-ons and plugins are frequently added to Site123-powered websites.
Unfortunately, free plan users have no access to the App Market and cannot integrate a single app into their website. Based on numerous Site123.com reviews I read, this is one of the most common complaints about the builder.
I went through more than one Site123 ecommerce review to get additional information. What I really like about Site123 is that it allows its users to launch an online store in no time. This option is available with a free plan, too, but there are some limitations. With the free plan, you can only add offline payment methods such as bank wire transfers, checks, phone payments, etc.
While you can add as many products to your store as you want, you can only have a maximum of 10 orders per month.
The Site123 ecommerce options are much more diverse with the builder’s Professional and Gold plans. Payment-wise, subscribing to one of these premium plans allows you to add e-wallets and credit cards as payment methods.
Different store labels are available as well, including Out of Stock, Add to Cart, Quick View, etc. What’s more, you can assign your products to different categories and add Site123 coupon code to your online store.
It’s essential to keep in mind that the page speed heavily depends on website elements. If you overload your website with videos, images, and other interactive features, the page speed is likely to be below average.
Below is a PageSpeed Insights performance of a website created with Site123 – Lilley Wilding. The desktop loading speed is great, while mobile speed is not that satisfactory.
Another good example is Sofie’s Lounge, which showed better metrics than the one above.
To confirm the results, I checked GTmetrix’s test as well, and the results were amazing.
So, as long as you don’t overstuff your website and keep the content light and informative, you don’t have to worry about page speed.
When it comes to search engine optimization tools available with Site123, the builder allows you to add title, description, and keyword meta tags, 301 redirect tool. You also add meta descriptions for each page on your site individually.
One of the many highlights of this website builder is that it automatically generates a sitemap for your site.
The platform features a myriad of great SEO-related Site123 tutorials that can, among other things, help you learn how to submit your sitemap to Google Search Console.
As I’ve previously mentioned, the Site123 App Market features plenty of useful plugins and add-ons. The Analytics Tools category offers a lot of handy tools for traffic evaluation, increasing conversion rates, and gathering customer feedback. Some of the integrations from this category include Google Analytics, Lucky Orange, Facebook Pixel, Optimizely, Heap, Mouseflow, etc.
One of the things I want to emphasize in this review is that the builder offers significant savings with a yearly subscription, as well as with two-year and three-year subscriptions. These subscriptions also include a free domain for a year, which is not the case with a 3-month subscription.
Luckily, this website building tool employs common online payment methods. If you decide Site123 is the perfect builder for you, you can use PayPal and credit cards to purchase one of the premium plans.
With a free plan, you get a subdomain, 250MB of storage space, and 250 MB of bandwidth, while with a premium plan, you’ll get a domain free of charge and a lot more storage and bandwidth.
The big difference between these two plans is that with a premium plan, you can open an online store, remove the Site123 tag, connect an already existing domain, etc.
One of the areas where Site123 truly stands out is the builder’s customer support. The support team is available around-the-clock via live chat functionality. The live chat agents are knowledgeable and quick to reply at any given time. You can also search the builder’s knowledge base or go through video tutorials on the Site123 YouTube channel.
I wanted to include reviews that users have left on different review websites such as Trustpilot, G2 and Capterra. In the majority of reviews, people have praised user-friendliness, and how results are quick but stunning. And, when it comes to Site123 complaints, I went through several and they complained about fewer customization options.
|Trustpilot||4.3 based on 6.033 user reviews|
|Capterra||4.5 based on 80 user reviews|
|G2||4.4 based on 6 user reviews|
In this part, I suggested some alternatives in case you want to explore your options. One of the affordable options out there is Jimdo’s website and online store builder.
When comparing their free plans, Wix’s free option stands out because it has more templates and more free add-ons. Another difference that might be vital for you is whether or not you can use codes in their designs. Site123 is for people who don’t have coding skills, while Wix offers the possibility of adding codes.
One of the differences is that Site123 has an abundance of ecommerce features, while WordPress has a plugin for ecommerce. In addition, Site123 has plenty of other features. However, WordPress is popular because of the add-ons and plugins available on their platform. What’s important to mention is that WordPress has quite a lot of built-in templates, but note that Site123 doesn’t have a low number of them.
Shopify is a popular ecommerce solution, but Site123’s ecommerce options are incredible as well. What’s different between the two is that Site123 has more templates than Shopify and that Shopify has more SEO tools to offer in their pricing plans than Site123.
GoDaddy is a drag and drop website builder, while Site123 includes a point and click editor. For some people, customer support is important, and Site123 is a winner in that department because it offers help 24/7. Another difference is that GoDaddy doesn’t offer a free plan, while Site123 offers one, though it’s limited.
All in all, Site123 is an easy-to-use website builder that offers a lot of features with a free plan. If you are not a fan of point-and-click builders, you should consider Weebly, as this website builder might be a better fit for you. Weebly is a drag-and-drop builder, and it also offers a lot of options with its free plan.
If you’d like to give Site123 a try, here’s what you should know about it. The builder allows you to create a simple online store for free, and it offers a plethora of modern templates to accommodate everyone’s taste. If you’re a beginner in website building, you should check out Novi Builder’s pricing and main features, that option might be as good for you as Site123.
It doesn’t support many image editing options, but it has an exhaustive library of free images and icons. The Site123 blog functionality and a free SSL encryption protocol are nice additions to the builder’s free plan offering, but it would’ve been nice if the App Market was available to free plan users as well.
From the perspective of paying Site123 customers, this website builder is equally tempting. Premium plans unlock a wealth of features that are not available with the Free plan, such as creating a multilingual website and adding various payment methods to your online store.
Still, one of the things I have to emphasize is that the builder won’t give you much control over your site’s design options and overall functionality. The features it offers are pretty basic, so if you’re an advanced user, Site123 might not be the best fit for you.
On the other hand, if you’re looking for an easy and quick way to create a website, this website builder is undoubtedly one of the best options out there.
The website uses encryption technology, and your data will be well protected.
Site123 is an amazing choice for small businesses, portfolio websites, blogs, and anyone who needs a simplistic yet stunning website template.
The company has a free plan that has limited features. In this Site123 review, I described pricing plans.