GoDaddy Website Builder Review

GoDaddy Website Builder Review

The Company

GoDaddy is one of the bigger players in the industry and theoretically will provide a service appropriate to that. Although I have heard many complaints about them, my own experiences, going back nearly ten years have always been positive. They have dealt with any complaints quickly and decisively, and the customer service has been exceptional. They offer genuine 24/7 customer service, and if you are UK based and therefore outside the usual American business time zones, you can expect very fast responses indeed.

My only complaint is their aggressive upsell policy, even to the point of customer service reps trying to sell to you when you are reporting a problem. Having said that it is a minor annoyance and will not prevent me using them again.

GoDaddy Website Builder 

Main pros:

  1. Ease of use – There is no question in my mind that this is one of the easiest website builders on the market. 
  2. Speed – Assuming you have prepared text and images, you can be up and running in a matter of hours. Certainly less than half a day to be published and online.
  3. Customer service – 24/7 customer service that is probably the best in the business.

 Main Cons:

  1. Upsells – Too many upsells for comfort sometimes
  2. SEO – Limited SEO, and images are non SEO friendly 

Launching the app is easy, and the first thing you are asked to do is provide a company name, address and industry. The site contact or about us page is automatically populated with this information, including adding a Google maps widget.

Next thing is to choose a theme. There are 300 to choose from and by and large they are well designed and well thought out for each industry. I very much doubt you would not be able to find something suitable no matter your industry.  In this example I have selected a restaurant theme:

GoDaddy Website Builder Review

GoDaddy Website Builder Review

The site is built using drag and drop widgets and layers which is perfectly useable but requires some thought and the individual layers are moved separately so must be carefully aligned. As an example the “Weekly Specials” is comprised of an image with a layer of text over the top – two different elements that move independently and are layered over the large image in the background. These can all be locked in position and layers changed forwards or backwards using the right mouse button.

Using the GoDaddy website builder editor

Using the GoDaddy website builder editor

Stock images are easy to replace and there is a list of  “elements,” down the right hand site that can be added at will. This includes social media widgets. Plan out your page before starting and it should go smoothly.  The only downside with the images is that it is not possible to add an “alt description,” but unless you are hoping to aggressively look for search engine traffic, this is unlikely to be an issue.

The text editor is a nice uncluttered editor with just the bare minimum options – I like that. Simply click on a text element and the editor appears. Allowing you to change fonts, text size etc.

Using the GoDaddy website builder editor

Using the GoDaddy website builder editor

At the top of the editing page, you have a couple of useful buttons – undo and redo – if you change your mind the previous version is a click away. 

A couple of things to bear in mind:

This is a blank canvas editor, which means that you cannot later change to a different theme – you will lose everything, so be sure and choose the theme you want because you will be stuck with it.

GoDaddy have preselected fonts that “go with,” each theme. So you are somewhat limited in your font selection. Personally I think that is great – simple is better as far as I am concerned and I don’t want to have to choose from 2,000 fonts.

Overall

GoDaddy offer multiple other services including hosting and domains. On the one hand it is great to have everything in one place, but on the other hand they do a great job of trying to sell you something at every opportunity.  The website builder is perfect for anyone with limited coding knowledge or interest in “getting their hands dirty,” and I have no hesitation recommending it as being one of the best website builders for most small businesses. You really don’t want to spend too much time messing around getting your website perfect.

One drawback is that it is not “responsive,” i.e. it doesn’t change shape to suit different devices such as an iPad or iPhone. What it does instead is serve up 2 different versions – desktop and mobile.

Desktop preview:

Screen Shot 2014-05-13 at 3.43.55 PM

Mobile preview:

Screen Shot 2014-05-13 at 3.44.13 PM

“Using GoDaddy’s Website Builder makes me look professional. I can do it myself.”

- Dana, Simply-Sweets.com

 
 

Review by Mark Knowles Last Updated 6th May 2014

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