The Best Website Builder In Australia For 2024 [5 Builders Tested & Ranked]

4.8
(72)

(72 votes, average: 4.8 out of 5)

Choosing the right website builder for your personal brand or small business is vital. From selling your services online to showcasing your points of difference, the best website builder can help you achieve your business and personal goals faster. In this guide, I ranked and reviewed the 5 best website builders in Australia for 2024, highlighting my top pick, to help you create a beautiful and powerful website.


Last updated: February 2nd, 2024

Best overall

Squarespace

Squarespace is excellent as a blogging platform, a personal branding platform and a small business toolkit.

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Best for small business

Wix

Wix is the best choice for Australian small business owners who sell products or services online.

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Best for entrepreneurs

WordPress + WPEngine

Best for entrepreneurs with big dreams, WordPress offers unlimited functionality & a huge plugin library.

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Opinions in this review are based on my personal experience with the products. Brands don’t get to offer editorial input nor see the review before it goes live, but may compensate me at no cost to you, if you choose to purchase a product on this page. Can you trust this review? Read the financial and editorial disclaimers.


Last updated: February 2nd, 2024

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You’re an Australian professional, small business owner or blogger – and you need to build your own website – but you don’t know which website builder to choose. Should you opt for the convenience of all-in-one site builders like Squarespace or Wix or the unconstrained freedom of WordPress?

  • I have personally built, or overseen the building of, more than 100 websites over the past 15 years.

This means I know what I’m talking about regarding web design and choosing the best website builder in Australia.

Below are my top 5 picks for 2024.

Important!

If you’re interested in my selection method, who I am, plus a few uncomfortable truths about website builder reviews, scroll to the bottom of the review.

1. Squarespace

Best overall website builder.

best website builder Australia

Squarespace is a beautiful website builder. Its user interface is a masterclass in UX/UI design, and the websites you can create with it are breathtakingly gorgeous.

  • It’s the perfect website builder for users with non-existent or beginner-level design skills.

Squarespace must have hired every top designer and UI expert in the world and locked them until they produced a site builder that’s friendly and intuitive, yet capable of producing websites that don’t look like they were made using a website builder.

And they succeeded.

  • As a bonus, they bolted on world-class business tools, critical for running an online store.
You can use Squarespace to build your web presence, take bookings, sell products, optimise your SEO and measure your success – all from one centralised interface, and without a huge learning curve.

Pros.

First, I love the themes that you get with Squarespace. You get many of them, and almost all are beautiful.

Bold typography, contemporary aesthetic, lots of white space and beautiful photography are the cornerstones of each Squarespace template.

This is rare.

website builder australia

Above: Gorgeous photography, clutter-free interface and beautiful templates are 3 reasons Squarespace is the best website builder on the Australian market today.

While most website builders promise you “500+ templates and themes”, you quickly realise that 80% of them look like they belong to accounting firms, c. 1997.

  • No offence if you run an accounting firm, but you guys are notorious for having outdated websites.
  • Speaking of accounting, is it time to choose the best accounting software for your business?

Squarespace is a cure for ugly websites.

  • While 10% of its templates are ordinary, the other 90% are bang on point.

When you log in, click on “New Page” to see dozens of pre-built starting pages included with your template. This makes it fast and easy to create striking new layouts for your brand with text, images, galleries and more.

If you want to make further customisations to your template, Squarespace’s library of pre-built sections is also the best in the business.

You get access to a catalogue of over 100 sections that are tailored to your template’s look and feel. Just grab and place using the drag-and-drop editor.

best website builder australia

Above: you can fine-tune the placement of elements using Squarespace’s grid system.

Thumbs Up!

Squarespace doesn’t leave you stranded if you dislike its default colours. Instead of forcing you to self-select colours that may or may not work, it presents you with a selection of pre-made, professionally-designed palettes.

When adding images to your website, I love that it lets you grab images directly from Unsplash (for free) and edit them on the fly using the built-in image editor.

No need to download the image, open it in Photoshop, edit, save, and upload.

A huge time saver.

best website builder Australia

Above: you can add images by uploading them directly from Unsplash (for free) or from your phone.

On the e-commerce side, Squarespace offers the ability to sell physical and service-based offerings, optimise your SEO and dial in specifics like class times, free trials and recurring payments.

Cool extensions round out the e-commerce suite very nicely:

  • Waitlists.
  • Member areas.
  • Restaurant reservations.
  • Product reviews.
  • Print on demand.
By the way, I found Squarespace to be the best website builder for responsiveness. It automatically converts your design into a mobile version (with a live view available), and I could not trip it up even once.

(If you’re curious, Wix was second best, but I managed to confuse it once).

Cons.

Squarespace provides a free logo maker, which is good without being excellent.

Although it’s easy to use, its logos follow the familiar (and somewhat overdone) hipster design language.

If you don’t want your brand to look like every Australian coffee shop, barber, T-shirt manufacturer and eco-friendly soap brand, stay away.

  • For best results, I recommend that you avoid free logo builders altogether and invest a few hundred dollars on a logo through 99designs or Canva.

Squarespace does not offer phone support (although extensive manuals, tutorials and guided tours are available).

Thumbs Down!

On the e-commerce front, I was hoping Squarespace would offer the ability to photograph your products, remove backgrounds and upload them straight to your product listings. Alas, no.

Of all the website builders I’ve reviewed, only Weebly offers this feature.

Unfortunately, it’s its only good feature, which is why it earned my “Worst Website Builder In Australia” award (see below).

  • Analytics in Squarespace could also be better.

The platform provides insights into your conversion rates, but there’s no way to see attribution and no ability to create custom goals.

Expert Tip.

For that, you’ll need to run Google Analytics on your Squarespace site. My prediction is that you’ll eventually do all your analysis from GA, which makes any website builder’s native analytics redundant.

Overall.

How Does Squarespace Stack Up?Score
Front-end aesthetics (can it build a beautiful website?)10/10
Ease of use (how steep is the learning curve?)10/10
Technical features (CSS, API, apps?)9/10
Business tools (scheduler, logo maker, CRM?)9/10
Value for money10/10
OVERALL9.4/10

Squarespace is the website builder in Australia because it creates gorgeous front ends and powerful commerce shops without overwhelming you.

It’s the Apple of website builders.

  • Intuitive and inviting, its user interface is genuinely a delight to use. I found myself wanting to explore and dig into its features.

Compared with Wix, it’s easier to learn and can build equally gorgeous front ends.

While it’s also cheaper than Wix, it features a less comprehensive suite of business tools, which means it delivers less bang for your buck.

That said, Squarespace shines as a blogging platform, a personal branding platform and an uncomplicated small business platform.

As such, it’s ideal for people who want an elegant website, but are:

  • Not tech-savvy.
  • Not designers.

If you have zero design experience, it gives you a huge head start in the form of great templates and pre-made sections.

Expert Tip.

I recommend that you resist the urge to tinker with Squarespace designs. Unless you have a few years of design experience under your belt, your edits will likely detract from, rather than add to, the excellent layouts that Squarespace provides you with.

That said, if you have some design chops, Squarespace gives you substantial freedom to explore your creative side.

Pricing.

  • Squarespace pricing starts at $16/month and tops at $54/month.
  • The free trial lasts 14 days, but ongoing free plans are unavailable.
  • Get 10% off Squarespace by using our code: ARIELLE10.

2. Wix

Best for small businesses with an online store.

best website builder Australia

Wix is the best online Swiss Army knife for busy small business owners.

More than a website builder, it contains a collection of powerful business tools to help you run your ergonomic furniture shop, massage salon, meal delivery service, photography studio or resume writing consultancy.

Apart from giving you the ability to build, host and maintain an excellent website, it will help you run your business with built-in:

  • CRM
  • Email tools
  • Marketing tools

Expert Tip.

If you were to pay for all these tools separately, you could be paying more than $2,500 per month. I’m not kidding. A roughly equivalent HubSpot CRM subscription for just one of my businesses costs $2,800 per month.

Pros.

Wix’s “build a website for me” functionality is unbelievably good at giving you a headstart with your website.

It asked me a few questions and spat out a website that I was about 80% happy with.

  • Within two minutes.

(I’m not exaggerating).

Getting the other 20% right took another 30 minutes.

(Related: 7 Best e-Commerce Platforms In Australia).

The beautifully intuitive and pleasant-to-use UI removed all frustration and clunkiness that usually occurs during the finessing stage of a website build.

best website builder Australia

Above: Wix asks you what you need and proceeds to build it for you.

Wix’s other key strength is its ability to help you sell your physical products, services, content or courses.

  • It’s more than just an online shop that allows you to sell stuff. It’s an e-commerce engine that allows you to design outstanding customer journeys and manage your business.
  • For example, in the context of services, it allows you to sell a 3-month plan that includes a range of consulting services and gated content, costs $100/month, includes a 7-day free trial and allows cancellation by the user.

If you have multiple staff, you can tie this to specific people and get users to book appointments in their calendars.

This is truly ground-breaking for a product that costs less than $20/month.

Thumbs Up!

Wix’s interface is a live simulation of your website’s front end. This feature alone will save you hours in development time because you won’t need to publish and refresh the page every time you make a change.

You also get:

  • Basic and advanced SEO features, including the ability to publish sitemaps and edit robots.txt.
  • Ability to automate important emails (e.g., abandoned cart).
  • Library of over 900 templates, most of which are very good.

The built-in logo maker is pretty decent without being outstanding.

At $29 for a logo that takes 5 minutes to make, it’s probably enough for the early stages of your business.

You also get 250+ extensions that allow you to expand Wix’s functionality.

Some basic ones, like opt-in forms and appointment schedulers, are free, while others, like e-commerce features and podcast streams, require payment.

  • Move elements to the exact pixel.
  • Change colours and fonts of every single element.

Phone support is available to paid users. Yes, you can get help from a real human being if you get stuck.

Cons.

Because Wix aims to be a full-service web builder, it must walk a fine line between capability and ease of use.

In doing so, it does tilt slightly on the side of capability.

While the designers have done a lot of work to create a UI that does not swamp you with dozens of options simultaneously, you will find yourself in situations where you have a lot to deal with.

best website builder Australia

Above: Wix gets complex at times. On this screen, you get an abundance of features presented in 21 menus across two windows. It’s not difficult to get lost.

Until you get familiar with the interface, you may find yourself clicking around but making little progress.

Expert Tip.

If you’ve never used Wix before and are planning to build a small business website on it, give yourself 1-2 days to get your head around all the features and settings.

It’s not something you’ll be able to use to its full potential right out of the box.

Overall.

How Does Wix Stack Up?Score
Front-end aesthetics (can it build a beautiful website?)10/10
Ease of use (how steep is the learning curve?)9/10
Technical features (CSS, API, apps?)9/10
Business tools (scheduler, logo maker, CRM?)10/10
Value for money9/10
OVERALL9/10

Wix is not a simple website builder.

It’s a powerful all-in-one digital toolbox that wants to take care of your CRM, website, web hosting, client booking and payment processing needs.

It includes a suite of business-oriented tools like live chat, advanced appointment scheduler and inventory manager.

Most importantly, it’s capable of scaling with your brand or business. It’s not as scalable as WordPress, but it’s pretty damn close.

  • Wix occupies an uncomfortable middle ground where it’s neither as simple as Squarespace nor as powerful as WordPress.

Yet, this is Wix’s greatest strength, and the reason it’s the best website builder in Australia.

If you’re selling things online, Wix will help you manage your business more effectively than Squarespace – and without the added complexity of WordPress.

Design-wise, Wix’s templates are great but not perfect.

The automated website builder functionality, however, is bloody brilliant (so much so that I wouldn’t even bother with templates).

Pricing.

  • Wix plans start at $18/month or $168/year.
  • Coupon “TAKE10” gets you 10% off on any Yearly Premium plan (excluding Combo, Connect Domain and Editor X plans)
  • A free plan is available, but it will limit your website to a Wix subdomain. Oh, and you’ll get Wix ads popping up on your site.

3. WordPress + WPEngine

Best website builder for world-class entrepreneurs.

best website builder Australia

If you have dreams of building a world-class business, you need to build your website on WordPress.

And if you run WordPress, I recommend WPEngine as your web host – because it’s built specifically for it.

Yes, you can get cheaper web hosting for as little as $5/month somewhere like CrazyDomains, but this brings disadvantages that I’ll discuss shortly.

  • Don’t listen to naysayers who say that WordPress is difficult to use. First, they’re not entrepreneurs. Second, they’re stuck in the past.

Let me explain.

As an entrepreneur, you’re expected to incessantly learn, expand and grow.

If you baulk at the idea of spending a few days learning the ropes of WordPress, you’re in for a real shock when the real challenges of entrepreneurship begin.

  • Get used to staring challenges in the face.

That said, people who criticise WordPress did have a valid point a few years ago.

It was clunky and required a decent amount of coding knowledge.

Now in its 4th iteration, Guttenberg provides a gob-smacking amount of design control.

It makes it easy for anyone to create rich, flexible content layouts with its block-based UI.

To prove my point, I’m about to get meta on you. Below is exactly what I’m looking at while writing this review for you, in WordPress.

best website builder Australia

Above: there’s nothing to be afraid of. It’s a blocks-based user interface that you control through familiar buttons and menus.

Pros.

WordPress scales better than any other website builder. This is the #1 reason it powers over 43% of the Internet as of 2024.

In a study that analysed the top 1 million websites in the world, WordPress was used almost 60X more often than Squarespace:

best website builder Australia

Source: W3Techs.com

Scalability is the reason for its popularity.

  • And when you start a business, you MUST plan for scalability.

In other words, you must ensure that your web platform grows in sync with your business, and never runs into a dead end.

Expert Tip.

A dead-end is a situation where your business has outgrown the platform’s capacity to expand efficiently. A bottleneck and/or mountains of operational debt form until you replace the platform with one that scales.

Replacing platforms is expensive and time-consuming because it involves rebuilding your internal processes and retraining your staff.

These events also come at the worst possible time, when your business is experiencing rapid growth, and the last thing you need on your plate is an IT distraction.

  • WordPress is friendly and convenient when you’re small but will expand in functionality as you get large.

If you own a serious business that requires a lot of custom functionality (e.g., a forex trading platform or a trading app), WordPress is the website builder for you.

You will need a good template to make your WordPress website look world-class.

Even though it includes built-in templates out of the box, I recommend downloading one from ThemeForest by Envato Market.

best website builder Australia

Above: for between $30 and $90, you can download a WordPress template on Envato that no website builder will ever match.

You also get best-in-class SEO tools, marketing tools, and ecommerce tools.

WPEngine is just that. An engine that will power your WordPress website, day and night, keep it running fast, secure and backed up.

Cons.

It’s time to invoke the Apple vs Android analogy again.

WordPress, the Android of the site builder world, gives you ultimate flexibility, but this comes at a cost.

Plugins can break, website hosting can have issues, and security risks can emerge.

When you go with an all-in-one vendor like Squarespace, you get everything from one vendor. The builder, the hosting, the templates and the widgets are in one spot.

  • If something goes wrong, you have one throat to choke.

And the support team is actually trained on the product, so they have the power to fix the issue at the core, rather than sending you on “their plugin broke our theme” types of wild goose chases.

  • This doesn’t happen very often, but it can happen. For context, as a current owner of 8 WordPress websites, I deal with this issue about twice per year.

That said, in 90% of cases, I solve the problem by submitting a support ticket to a relevant provider, going to bed, and seeing it resolved the next day.

My last gripe with WordPress relates specifically to WPEngine – because they don’t provide domain names and email hosting.

You’ll need to go somewhere like Namecheap for that.

Overall.

How Does WordPress/WPEngine Stack Up?Score
Front-end aesthetics (can it build a beautiful website?)10/10
Ease of use (how steep is the learning curve?)7/10
Technical features (CSS, API, apps?)10/10
Business tools (scheduler, logo maker, CRM?)10/10
Value for money8/10
OVERALL9/10

WordPress powered by WPEngine is best for ambitious, gritty entrepreneurs with big visions.

If this is you, don’t mess around with Squarespace or online shop builders like BigCommerce or Shopify.

Those are just training wheels that you’ll end up jettisoning in 12 months’ time as your business grows, anyway.

Important!

Since a massive upgrade to Guttenberg drag-and-drop editor in 2018, WordPress has become easier to use than some all-in-one website builders in this review.

4. Webflow.

Best for agencies and experienced designers who don’t code.

best website builder Australia

One of the coolest things about Webflow is that it allows you to design your website from scratch, and be constrained only by your imagination – without forcing you to learn to code.

You can change padding, border radius, margins, and line height to your heart’s content.

But more importantly, you can enter a professional workflow, reusing styles, elements and styles globally via dynamic content, as well as controlling micro-details of your website, such as wrappers and hero content.

Pros.

One of the coolest things about Webflow is that it allows you to design your website from scratch, and be constrained only by your imagination – without forcing you to learn to code.

  • You can change padding, border radius, margins, and line height to your heart’s content.

But more importantly, you can enter a professional workflow, reusing styles, elements and styles globally via dynamic content, as well as controlling micro-details of your website, such as wrappers and hero content.

Important!

In that vein, Webflow is optimised for collaboration with other team members or clients. You can share your website project and invite them to provide feedback or even edit the content.

Webflow won’t force you to add any plugins or extensions in a refreshing move. Everything is available from the interface.

This makes the interface quite complex, but as an antidote, Webflow offers a comprehensive University that includes videos, courses, articles and a private forum.

Cons.

Webflow’s interface is pretty dense. It’s definitely something that will take you a few weeks to master.

best website builder Australia

Above: Webflow’s interface is a beast. Think Photoshop or Final Cut Pro, but in a browser.

It’s not the type of environment that is immediately intuitive nor a huge pleasure to use.

  • Webflow claims to be a lot easier to use than WordPress, but I’m not convinced.

I’m also not a big fan of Webflow’s templates. You get a selection of free ones, but almost all of them are very ordinary.

Thumbs Down!

You get premium templates that cost between USD$30 and USD$150, but most of them are pretty rubbish, too.

Given that Webflow’s target clients are professional designers and agencies, I suspect these templates rarely get used, and most websites are built from scratch.

Overall.

How Does Webflow Stack Up?Score
Front-end aesthetics (can it build a beautiful website?)8/10
Ease of use (how steep is the learning curve?)6/10
Technical features (CSS, API, apps?)10/10
Business tools (scheduler, logo maker, CRM?)8/10
Value for money8/10
OVERALL8/10

If you’re a design professional who wants to be unconstrained by the limitations of typical site builders, but you don’t code and don’t want to mess around with separate domains and web hosting, Webflow is a powerful option.

Webflow will also fit an amateur who wants an extra layer of control to do some tinkering on the back end.

  • Webflow is best-suited for agencies that sell websites for a living – lots of them. It stands out for this purpose, and only Duda can challenge it in this niche.

It does have a learning curve, so it’s not for people who want a website fast. If you’re a doctor, a lawyer or a small business owner who needs a one-page website fast, Webflow is not for you.

Pricing.

  • Webflow pricing starts at $15/month.

5. Duda.

Best for emerging designers.

best website builder Australia

Aimed at professional designers who have been in the web-building game for about 5 years, Duda provides a robust set of client management tools, great templates and a sophisticated e-commerce capability.

It can be used by small business owners and people who want a simple portfolio site, but if you fall into that camp, you’re much better served by the simplicity of Squarespace.

  • This is a business tool, designed for folks who sell website design and development for a living.

Instead of competing directly with WordPress, Squarespace and Wix, Duda describes itself as a B2B website builder and focuses on the needs of web-building agencies and freelancers.

Pros

Duda’s Quick-to-access global design functionality allows you to set a consistent style across all of your website’s elements and pages.

  • If you’re confident with design, you can work at the level of elements. If you’re not, Dudo will let you work at the level of sections.
  • If you’re a coder, switch to Developer Mode to edit any element JavaScript, HTML or CSS.

The design of the sections is very good. You can preview them directly in the builder, and this saves you a copious amount of time in saving and refreshing.

Adding content is a matter of dropping widgets onto Duda’s page.

The builder offers hundreds of widgets, allowing you to choose design elements and functionality for your site.

build an australian website

Above: Duda’s UI is logical and clear. The product page, for example, offers subtle hints that help you complete the setup and links to additional features that you should consider activating.

As a business tool, Duda allows you to white-label its platform by adding logos to its every touchpoint and setting your own prices for web hosting, site management and design services.

  • You can run your entire web design agency from one centralised dashboard and have immense control over your revenue.
  • This is a huge time saver.

For example, if a client stops paying for their website, you can set up an automation that takes their website offline and sends them email reminders until they pay again.

Additionally, it allows your clients to provide targeted feedback directly within the app.

No more lengthy emails that start with “In regards to that blue button on the about page, about halfway down…”.

Your client can provide notes about the offending button directly in the interface.

Thumbs Up!

I was pleasantly surprised by the quality of the templates. Mostly hits with a few misses.

best website builder Australia

Above: Duda allows you to swap templates on the fly from within the builder.

You get advanced responsiveness controls. While Dudo will do its best to convert your design into a mobile-friendly layout, it doesn’t always get it right.

For those situations, it allows you to manually specify page breakpoints to ensure your design vision is consistent across all devices.

Support is available via live chat from inside the builder.

Native integrations with Square, Stripe, PayPal and Afterpay take care of payment processing.

Oh, did I mention that a free logo maker is also included as a widget, and it’s surprisingly good?

Cons

Duda’s interface is a bit on the convoluted side.

It won’t pose a huge challenge to someone who has previously built websites, but a novice should expect to spend time familiarising themselves with the features.

Some options are quite obscure and may require you to raise technical support.

For example, I couldn’t figure out how to change the background of a header from a gradient to a solid colour.

Overall.

How Does Duda Stack Up?Score
Front-end aesthetics (can it build a beautiful website?)7.5/10
Ease of use (how steep is the learning curve?)7.5/10
Technical features (CSS, API, apps?)8/10
Business tools (scheduler, logo maker, CRM?)7/10
Value for money7/10
OVERALL7.4/10

For a relatively unknown website builder, Duda is very good.

It’s best suited to a digital native with moderate design skills or a freelance web designer who builds good, inexpensive websites for clients.

It has some quirks, but they’re not of the deal-breaker variety.

For a relatively unknown brand, it punches well above its weight. The company does seem to be on a growth trajectory, raising $50 million in a Series D round back in 2021.

Expect to spend some time poking around its features, and maybe even have to submit a support ticket or two before you finish your website.

Pricing.

  • You get a single website for $14/month on an annual plan or $19/month on a monthly plan.
  • Duda becomes even more good value for money if you need to run multiple websites
  • Their Agency Pack includes 4 websites and costs $59/month monthly or $44/month annually.

The Worst Website Builder In Australia: Weebly (Square)

Terrible all around.

best website creator australia

When you sign up, you get a decision tree – a business website or a personal website.

The latter option is very simple and has decent templates. They’re not remarkable, just OK. Very 2014.

One of the key features of Weebly is its eCommerce platform, which makes it easy to set up an online store. It’s powered by Square, the company that acquired them a few years ago.

Important!

Square has nothing to do with Squarespace. Square is a payments company that owns Weebly.

When you sign up, you must choose whether to build e-commerce or a personal website.

Pros.

I like that the Weebly e-commerce option only allows you to work on the level of sections. It doesn’t let you move things around at the element level, which is good.

You end up with a somewhat stiff-looking website, but you cannot break anything.

  • All of the expected technical features are present.

You can integrate Google Analytics, add custom header scripts and checkout tracking scripts, create 301 redirects and edit page URLs, titles and descriptions, alt text for images.

Checkout is done, predictably, by Square, and you get charged 2.2% on top of every transaction for the honour.

best website builder Australia

Above: Square, Afterpay and PayPal are integrated into the platform; you just need to provide logins to activate them.

You can create automated shipping calculations based on the address you’ll be shipping from.

Thumbs Up!

Weebly is the only website builder here to offer native integration with 99Designs, and this gives you the option to have your website built professionally, with prices starting at about $450.

You get the ability to insert pre-built sections into your pages, and these cover a good amount of use cases:

  • Contact forms
  • Testimonials
  • Pricing tables
  • Newsletter signups
  • Ticket sales for events
  • Instagram feeds
  • PDFs for displaying restaurant menus

I like the ability to toggle between a desktop and mobile version of your website.

The always-on-tap tutorials live in the bottom right corner and are very helpful at putting instructions at your fingertips in visual form, instead of you having to flick across to page in the knowledgebase.

Cons.

If you choose the option to build an e-commerce store, you don’t get access to templates.

This is dumb. You’re left to your own design skills. If I’m going to sit here and design, I’d rather use a platform that gives me more flexibility.

You don’t get the ability to create a blog and publish posts, either.

Thumbs Down!

This is a massive scalability problem, as it paints people into a corner. Sure, you’re only selling via an online shop now. But what will happen in 1 year’s time, when you start blogging?

Decent site traffic analytics is available for paid plans. It’s a bit redundant because it doesn’t offer goals and insights into costs per conversion, so you’ll need to use GA anyway.

On the personal website side of things, the situation is more dreary.

The templates are pretty crap, and their selection is limited, so you’ll be tempted to customise them. Once you do, using the somewhat clunky UI, you’re bound to create a fruit salad.

best website builder Australia

Above: Weebly’s UI is tolerable but doesn’t keep up with what you get with the best website builders like Squarespace and Webflow.

When using the Weebly builder’s personal side, you cannot grab images directly from free libraries like Unsplash.

  • Help is available as a knowledge base but is not very inviting.

The UI isn’t intuitive, either. I found myself getting stuck on the personal website side, and dealing with popups.

Finally, you cannot preview your website until you’ve paid for the plan. I think I know why.

Overall.

Weebly is in an awkward place. Its pure e-commerce mode is not as scalable or flexible as Shopify.

Its pure CMS/personal website mode is very similar but not as pretty as Squarespace.

The frictionless integration with 99Designs is cool, but again, if you’re in a position where you want to spend $500+ to set up your website, you’re probably in a position to consider more advanced platforms.

  • Compared with cars, Weebly reminds me of Subarus and Peugeots.

While decent, these cars struggle with sales because they’re stuck in no man’s land.

Not as reliable as Toyotas, not as refined as BMWs and not as cheap as Hyundais, they lack a distinct identity.

Important!

The e-commerce side is Square’s attempt to get more customers into its payment processor, and it smells like one. The personal website side is way behind the times. Uninspiring and dull.

Apps are available from within the platform, some are free, but many of them seem to be rated quite low. For example, here’s a screenshot of a form that costs $8/month but gets 3/5 stars. Are you inspired to build your brand on this?

There’s something “stuck in 2015”, dreary and “the rats have abandoned ship” about every aspect of Weebly.

  • Beauty of the front end – 4/10
  • Steepness of the learning curve – 5/10
  • Business tools – 7/10
  • Technical features (SEO, CSS, integrations) – 6/10
  • Value for money – 4/10

5 Other Website Builders To Avoid.

These four products are far from being the best website builders in Australia.

They’re decent products, but you’re much better off choosing one of the options above, depending on your need.

1. BlueHost+Wordpress

As I mentioned elsewhere, the only reason Bluehost gets recommended is because of its generous referral commissions.

Any reviewer who is half-honest will not recommend it, especially in the Australian market, as the platform doesn’t offer .com.au domain names.

2. WordPress.com

This option is the worst of all worlds. You get to deal with the relative complexity of WordPress, but you don’t get the benefits of freedom that a self-hosted WordPress website offers.

3. BigCommerce

Also standing at an awkward cross-road, BigCommerce is complicated, powerful, bloated, and not very user-friendly.

Expert Tip.

If you’re very serious about selling online and are hell-bent on NOT building your online store on WordPress and WooCommerce as per my recommendation, go with Shopify instead.

It does everything BigCommerce does and more, but is further ahead on the user experience front. It also has a much larger pool of available integrations.

4. GoDaddy.com

You can use GoDaddy’s website builder in 30 minutes. I’m not kidding. It is by far the simplest website builder to use.

If you’re just after a billboard on the internet, a one-page website or your own review of the best website builders in Australia, then this website builder is for you.

It’s not my go-to for larger websites, e-commerce websites or anything that will require integration.

5. Hostinger Website Builder.

Touting its “AI website building tools”, Hostinger’s website builder comes with Hostinger web hosting.

Yes, it’s a lure. And you’re the fish.

Formerly known as Zyro, the website builder includes decent e-commerce features (you can add 500 products and offer your customers more than 20 payment options).

It has decent website builder functionality with a nice range of templates, but is aimed squarely at beginners. There’s nothing it can do that Squarespace or Wix can’t, but the latter can do a lot more.

Why I’ve Never Liked Website Builders.

Confession time. I’ve been building websites for over 15 years. During this time, I’ve personally built or overseen the development of over 100 websites.

I’ve never liked using website builders for this purpose.

Don’t get me wrong.

I’ve tried to like them. I’ve tested them. I’ve even tried to build my own websites, client and business websites using them. Yet, I’ve never become a fan.

Two reasons:

  • They restrict you too much in terms of functionality.
  • The websites you end up with never look quite right. They look both cookie-cutter and a little amateurish at the same time.

Hence, I’ve always stuck with WordPress. I’ve always viewed it as the best website builder for me, and for 95% of Australians.

It takes more time to master in the short term, but in my view, playing the long game is the key to success in business and life.

  • That said, website builders have been innovating like mad in recent years.

They’ve improved their drag-and-drop editors, rolled out advanced SEO features, and added gorgeous templates.

Some of them shifted their focus on enterprise clients, adding white-labelling functionality, centralised management and the ability to offer custom pricing.

Because my job requires me to be on the cutting edge, I started road-testing the most popular website builders on the Australian market in 2024.

My dilemma was:

  • Have website builders finally evolved enough to knock WordPress off its perch as the best website builder in Australia?
  • Or are they still overpriced, overhyped show ponies that make lofty promises but leave you with an ugly and dysfunctional website that you’ll be upgrading to WordPress in 12 months’ time anyway?

The Uncomfortable Truth About Website Builder Reviews.

I love writing about stuff that I know something about. This is easy for me because I have a lot of experience with web development.

That said, website builder reviewers are corrupt because of incentives to provide favourable reviews.

  • The builder platform that offers the most seductive commissions often gets the #1 spot, rather than a platform that genuinely deserves to be there.
  • This is how BlueHost, for example, became the “#1 web hosting service” worldwide.

They’re one of the best web hosting services, but certainly not the best. Yet, few reviewers can resist the juicy $65 commission.

My Testing Methodology For Best Website Builders In 2024.

I signed up for a paid plan with each site builder and used it to build a full new website.

I carefully considered each builder platform against the criteria below during the website creation process.

Every site that I built included:

  • Home page with a header.
  • Product page.
  • Blog post.
  • Contact page with a contact form.
  • Online store.

As a digital native with a tonne of web development experience, I did not read guides or watch tutorials prior to building each site. But, when I did get stuck, I’d check the knowledge base.

What I Looked For In Website Builders (And How They Compared).

For a website builder to score highly in my review, it needed to show competence across 5 primary dimensions. Here’s how the top 5 stacked up side-by-side.

SquarespaceWixWordPressWebflowDuda
Front end aesthetics10101087.5
Ease of use109767.5
Technical features9910108
Business tools9101087
Value for money109887
OVERALL9.49987.4

And here’s what each criterion means (is “criterion” a word?):

1. Front End Aesthetics.

How pretty are the templates? How many templates are available – and how many are good-looking? How good are the colour palettes?

Beyond that:

  • What is the overall vibe I get from the web builder’s output?
  • Do things look too rigid and upright or smooth and inviting?
  • Do I get cookie-cutter vibes?

If the website builder doesn’t pass the scrutiny of these questions, I don’t even bother assessing it further. Australian users expect good-looking websites in 2024. Ugly, crappy stuff won’t cut it.

2. Ease Of Use.

How steep is the learning curve? How complicated is the back end? How intuitive is the interface?

  • Will I need to pour through manuals, or will I be able to work it out as I go? Is the interface enjoyable to use?

If I do need support, how good is it? Is it limited to text-based tutorials, or does it also include video walk-throughs? Is there an option to speak with a real human?

3. Technical Features.

How good is the advanced SEO functionality (e.g. sitemaps, robot blocking)?

  • What about prompts that help you improve your page titles and descriptions?
  • Can you do 301 redirects?
  • Does the website builder alert you about dead links?

Beyond that – can I add custom CSS (globally and at the level of individual elements)? How easy is it to expand functionality using integrations, plugins and extensions?

4. Business Tools.

Business tools are expensive. Especially when you buy them separately.

A typical annual bill for digital tools in a business that turns over between $100K – $2M per year might look something like this:

  • CRM: $1,000-$50,000
  • Appointment scheduling: $1,000-$2,000
  • Email sequences: $1,000-$3,000
  • Recurring payment processor: $500-$2,000
  • Live chat: $500-$4,000
  • Social media management: $700-$7,000
  • Support tickets/knowledgebase: $1,500-$4,000
  • Sales pipeline management: $300-$5,000
  • Customer pipeline management: $300-$2,000
  • Analytics, reporting, security anti-spam, backups, etc, etc: $2,000++

Some website builders include a lot of these tools for free, which makes them incredible value for money.

Expert Tip.

For example, my #1 best website builder, Wix, offers about $10,000 worth of tools in its e-commerce plans that cost about $1,000 per year.

5. Value For Money.

Value is relative and is much more important than absolute cost. Most people build a website to start a small business or augment their brand.

These are commercial endeavours and need to be viewed holistically. There’s no point choosing a website builder that costs $5/month less if its lack of features increases development time by 3 months.

Another consideration is that of upfront vs ongoing costs. How much do you pay now and once, and how much do you pay monthly?

Website builders trick you into believing that prices are lower than they are by showing them in a weekly context.

Important!

$32/week doesn’t seem like much, but you’ll feel it when you get your monthly invoice for $128.

The secondary features are:

  • Maintenance.
  • Server location.
  • Speed.
  • Customer support (both human and knowledgebase).

Any website builder not scoring at least 7.5 out of 10 on any of those metrics will die a very slow, painful death.

How A Person With No Design Skills Can Build A Beautiful Website.

There is a trick to making your website look great.

Statistically speaking, you probably don’t have design chops.

Even if you did, you’d still need to build at least 5-10 websites, and suffer the agony of them looking like ugly abominations to figure out what works in web design and what doesn’t.

  • My #1 piece of advice is to use templates – and to make as few adjustments to them as possible.
  • In other words, let the professionals do the work.

Limit yourself to moving large sections only. Do not move individual elements within those sections, and don’t change font sizes or image sizes.

  • Less.
  • Is.
  • More.

Frequently Asked Questions About Australian Website Builders.

Here’s what people usually ask me about this topic.

What’s the best template and hosting option for WordPress?

WordPress is a platform that you download for free. You install it on your web host and customise it to your exact needs using themes and plugins.

This means you’ll need:

  • Domain name.
  • Web hosting.

If you’re in Australia, I recommend Namecheap for the former and WPEngine for the latter. The best WordPress templates (by far) are on Envato.

Is WordPress a website builder?

Let me clear up some confusion first. When people mention WordPress, they refer to one of two entities – WordPress.com or WordPress.org.

They’re wildly different from each other.

WordPress.com is a hosted platform with proprietary aspects, much like Squarespace and Wix. It’s great if you want a simple, free website hosted on the WordPress.com domain.

WordPress.org is an open-source platform you can download for free and install on your web host. Think of it like this:

  • Web hosting is a block of land. You can buy it (run your own physical web server) or rent it from a landowner (pay for web hosting on a remote web server, like WPEngine).
  • WordPress is the foundation of your home. It gives you a canvas that you can use to build anything you want.
  • A theme is a house you add on top of the foundation. It determines the look, as well as the UX of the property.
  • Plugins are specialised appliances you add to your house, to improve its usefulness. Just as you can add an automatic garage door, a lawnmower and a security system to keep your house secure and convenient, you can add caching, anti-spam and backup plugins to achieve the same with your website.

Which website builders include SEO?

If you’re looking to build a website that will rank highly in search engine results, you need to choose a website builder that includes search engine optimization (SEO) features.

  • Not all website builders are equal in SEO stakes.

Some include basic features that will help your site rank higher, while others go the extra mile with comprehensive tools and resources.

To help you make the best decision for your website, we’ve tested them all and concluded that Squarespace is the best option for SEO.

What is a mobile-responsive site?

Responsiveness is the site’s ability to automatically adjust its layout so that it appears user-friendly on small screens of mobile devices.

If you think your website’s mobile version isn’t important, think again. We’re already in a mobile-first world, and this trend will only accelerate.

As of 2024, over 50% of web traffic comes from mobile devices.

– Steven

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4 responses to “The Best Website Builder In Australia For 2024 [5 Builders Tested & Ranked]”

  1. This is an outstanding review – thanks, Steven. I signed up with Squarespace and love their interface and templates.

    • You’re welcome, Tom. They’ve made significant improvements to their template library in recent months.

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