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Having an efficient and attractive site is very important for your enterprise to grow rapidly and remain competitive on the market today. You will also need a top-notch hosting provider that can guarantee your target audience of a great user experience, fast response time, and security.
Two brands that have made names for themselves in the Internet hosting niche are Weebly and GoDaddy. Weebly is known for its proprietary site-builder while GoDaddy is the global leader in domain services. The two brands also offer hosting services. Which one should you go for?
In this Weebly vs GoDaddy comparison post, I dive into each of the providers to review their features, support, website builders, and pricing to answer the question: "Which is the better option for you?"
Weebly is a web hosting company that is largely oriented toward online shopping. It was co-founded by Chris Fanini, Taylor Jones, and Dan Veltri, who wanted to make it easy for people to create their own sites. Their company grew rapidly as they introduced innovative features such as the what-you-see-is-what-you-get (WYSIWYG) editing interface and Google AdSense monetization.
The company has more than 50 million clients and is marketed using the tagline, “turn your ideas into a website or online store”.
GoDaddy was created by Bob Parsons in 1997, about ten years before Weebly was conceptualized. Initially, the company went by the name Jomax technologies, until 1999 when the name GoDaddy was adopted.
The company has grown to reach more than 62 million domains and is ranked as one of the top hosting providers based on market share.
Website builder has become one of the main features that no hosting company wants to be without. It is considered a crucial component, because it helps clients to easily create new sites and add useful features without incurring the cost of hiring expert designers.
Weebly has an easy-to-use drag-and-drop editor that allows you to customize images, fonts, maps, videos, and text. I was impressed by the fact that you are allowed to customize Cascading Style Sheets (CSS), used to describe how documents written in a language such as Hypertext Markup Language (HTML) are presented.
Note that, though you do not need a background in coding, having some basic skills on computing programs like Photoshop will come in handy when using the Weebly site builder.
The video below demonstrates how to use Weebly’s website builder:
For its part, GoDaddy has simplified its site builder to make the process of creating new websites or features lightning fast. The website builder provides templates that feature all the elements you need for a website. You can also adjust color and fonts, personalize the site text, and position the images at pre-designated points.
It is important to note that GoDaddy’s site builder will work for you, even when you have no background in computer skills. Indeed, this notion is extended even to a search engine optimization (SEO) wizard that allows you to simply fill out a questionnaire of what you want in order to optimize your website visibility on search engines.
Though Weebly has more options, GoDaddy stands slightly taller because of simplicity. The website is also faster and allows anyone, even those with no computing background, to craft top-notch sites/features.
In addition to their site builders, GoDaddy and Weebly have put a lot of effort and resources into creating features that help them stand out in the industry. One such feature is e-commerce.
Weebly has designed its e-commerce store to allow you to easily convert your conventional store into a winning online marketplace. This feature allows you to add important online store components such as customer accounts, shipping options, in-store pickup points, and discounts.
During this GoDaddy vs Weebly comparison, I found that Weebly further allows you to gather info about abandoned carts. You can use this information for remarketing that focuses on clients who were close to converting into buyers but did not finish the purchase process.
On payment, Weebly charges a 3% transaction fee when a client buys from your store. To avoid the 3% transaction fee, you should consider using the Business Plan or more advanced plans.
Unlike Weebly, GoDaddy advances its principle of keeping everything simplified for you. Using the GoDaddy e-commerce store, you can sell unlimited products and even attach their variants. For example, if you are selling a white tee-shirt, GoDaddy makes it easy to also sell the same tee-shirts in different colors and sizes.
You can set email notifications for abandoned carts, run special offers, and provide shipping options. This is a great way to reach clients who failed to complete a purchase process because of a reasons like not having enough cash.
On payments, GoDaddy supports credit cards and online wallets, like Stripe, that make it easy for your clients to pay. Notably, GoDaddy does not charge an additional transaction fee. This implies that when a client buys from your GoDaddy-based store using a credit card, you will only be charged the standard rate of 2.2% + $0.30/transaction.
On e-commerce, GoDaddy wins because of simplicity and affordability. If you are creating an e-commerce store for the first time, Weebly would be the wrong option, because it slashes your returns by 3%.
Both Weebly and GoDaddy have installed multiple support channels that make getting help easy and fast.
Weebly allows you to place inquiries via email, support tickets, or talking with support staff via live chat. Note that phone support is only available for those on the Pro Plan and above.
To get more details about key topics such as e-commerce, hosting, and website building, consider using webinars, articles, and guides on the Weebly’s knowledge base.
Like Weebly, GoDaddy also has multiple channels that you can use to get help. You can opt to contact the company via email, a support ticket, or live chat. The main difference with Weebly is that GoDaddy's phone support is available in all plans.
If you want to learn more about website building, you should also use GoDaddy's knowledge base that has how-to articles, videos, and articles on hosting and website plugins, among other topics. The knowledge base also allows you to interact with GoDaddy's hosting community.
GoDaddy and Weebly pricing indicate that they target a wide range of clients. Whether you want a personal website or an e-commerce feature for your store, here is what to anticipate from the two hosting providers.
Unlike GoDaddy, Weebly's plans are categorized into two broad groups: one for hosting websites and the other for online stores.
1. Pricing for Websites
Free plan ($0/month)
Pro plan ($12/month)
Business plan ($25/month)
2. Pricing For Online Stores
Pro plan ($12/month)
Business plan ($35/month)
Business plus ($38/month)
From the above plans, I found that Weebly offers more options, depending on whether you want to host a website or an online store. Despite this, it is more expensive compared to GoDaddy. For example, the Business Plus Plan at Weebly costs $38/month ($456/year) while Maximum Plan, a similar plan at GoDaddy, costs $11.99/month ($143.88/year).
GoDaddy is the outright winner on this category.
You Want The Best …GoDaddy Is The Best
During this Weebly vs GoDaddy review, I established that the two hosting providers are very committed to offering top-notch services to their clients. Weebly is highly committed to providing you with more features and options on its website builder and even user plans. However, GoDaddy has simplified its features and plans for both starters and experts.
Though Weebly has a free plan that makes it easy for starters to try a hand in website building and hosting, its features are very limited. For example, I found the 500MB website storage on this free plan to be too small for any significant hosting operations. However, even the next higher Pro Plan is priced $12/month ($144/year), which I found to be very expensive.
Even though GoDaddy does not have a free plan, I found its plans, starting from the lowest that is priced $2.99/month,to be very affordable. The commitment to understand clients and simplify what they need puts GoDaddy well ahead of Weebly and even other competitors such as HostGator and WordPress.
You want the best, so I recommend you go for GoDaddy.