You have seen the advertisements for "free websites" and "build your own website", but these offers are a major GOTCHA. Simply put, if it sounds too good to be true, it is. For those who are actually looking for these "deals", the below list can help you, but be aware that there are major downsides for doing this.
I have been contracted by folks many, many times who went with one of these companies, and then realized they made a terrible mistake!
The major problem (and there are many other problems) with all of these "make your own" situations is that you do not really own your site. If you wanted to move it off to another host, you are out of luck. These are PROPRIETARY sites that cannot be moved from where they are. To "move" them, you have to basically re-do them elsewhere from scratch, as we have done many times for our clients.
This is why we use "open source", free content management systems (CMS) like Drupal and Wordpress. Using these, you truely own your site and can move it, in its entirety, from one host to another.
PROPIETARY SOLUTIONS ARE BAD! OPEN SOURCE IS GOOD! Period (.).
Want to know more? Give us a call: 303-545-9955.
Here are some actual user reviews from some of these sites:
Bertie Lyons ~ July 27th, 2010 at 10:07 pm
I have been a Go Daddy customer for several years and was very satisfied with them until they made some major changes and no longer offer certain templates anymore. Just so happens, mine was one of the ones they decided to axe. I called Cust Serv and the fella that answered had no clue why and no suggestions for me! I am not happy they upgraded to less-friendly user features either! Once you get used to using something, they have to go and change it on you. Not happy with them right now at all and thinking seriously about changing to someone else!
GoDaddy is the largest domain registration and hosting company in the world, and at time the arrogance of that position shows through. I have had constant lock-out problems with their website tonight product. I have sent them screen shots and screencasts from multiple computers using different operating systems and internet providers that demonstrate and repeat the on-going problems I have, yet GoDaddy claims I am the only one in the world reporting this problem…? Really guys, I’ve seen other posts reporting very similar sounding problems w website tonght so stop goofing with your customers and solve some technical issues
unsatisfied ~ July 1st, 2011 at 8:16 pm
Don’t do it. This site sucks!! It is a total waste of money, the programmers who wrote this S**t, need to look for a new career. There are some quality sites that have quality and easy to use web building programs out there. This isn’t one!!
Lainey ~ October 26th, 2011 at 9:32 am
Have been using this for about a year and have run into a snag. I am an ecommerce member, the most expensive plan, yet I am only allowed to upload up to 2000 photos and when I go to delete to add more….I can only delete one picture at a time. I am a photographer and it’s not accomodating to me anymore, moving onto another one!
Geri Allen ~ June 20th, 2011 at 12:44 am
I didnt like it. I thought it was easy enough to use, but I found it to be frustratingly limited and sadly primitive. The extras are good. But, the site builder is a bore…would have been prehistoric 5yrs ago. Still, its a good place to start. Just don’t stay long.
My name is Stacey Buchanan from Buchanan LP Gas Company in Travelers Rest SC. I am a large independly owned Propane company and this year I started a new website with Intuit. We started building our store at the end of May which was a absolute nightmare finally about mid July our website appeared for the first time. Weeks past and we are trying to find some small signs of our existance on the internet. At the first of October my keywords that had been submitted to Intuit could not even be found on the last page much less anywhere near the first page. I understand it takes 3 to 6 months for optimization to complete but I find it strange that I cant even be found on the back of the bus. My last phone call in October I found out that my optimization didnt start until after the first of September I find this to be very unprofessional the website was started 2 months before the begining of optimization. I hope everyone reads this review because this is not a web host for a professional business it is a sad day for me because it is getting cold and it is time for my business to get started you cant sell propane and gas logs in the summer. Please everyone beware of this company it is all empty promises I will have to change my site and web host as soon as the winter is over. Sincerely, Stacey Buchanan President of Buchanan LP Gas Inc.
Switching form Yahoo hosting as fast as I can after 4 years. Their customer service is nonexistent. No way to speak to a real person! You can find better deals.
Media ~ September 12th, 2011 at 10:04 am
While the website is easy to build you’re going to have to deal with cheesy templates that sometime work and sometimes don’t. I have had to delete videos I have tried to add because I could not make the font or style uniform with the rest of the site even after communicating back and forth with support who were not able to fix the problem. Sometimes buttons work-sometimes they don’t. Just know what you’re getting into!!!
SUCKS! I wanted to use a 3rd party credit card processing company instead of PayPal. It’s less than 1/2 the cost of PayPal. I asked before I started building my site if I could use the particular vendor. I was told NO PROBLEM!! Spent about a week building my site inly to find out that I couldn’t use the vendor. I needed to transfer to domain name I set up and they want $19.99 to transfer it!! Not to mention their templates suck now that I have shopped around. I went with GoDaddy.com and they have templates that make your company look like a Fortune 500 company!! No comparison. Best part, the GoDaddy team all speak fluent English!! The pricing is about 1/4 of the price of Vistaprint also. They need to stick with business cards because they suck at the website building service!!
VISTAPRINT SUCKS. Avoid their website builder – it has ongoing problems that their “technical dept” will not address – and I have NOT BEEN ABLE TO EDIT MY WEBSITE IN OVER 4 MONTHS! THIS is an ongoing issue they simply cannot and seemingly will not fix, EVER. AFTER 9 years with them, GOOD RIDDANCE! HORRIBLE SERVICE!!!!!