SimpleSite is a new website builder that boasts that anyone can build a website just by signing up, customizing it, and clicking “Save” for free. It’s marketed as an extremely simple and budget-friendly way to create your own website. So we put SimpleSite to the test to see how it stacks up.
In short, the claims are true. You can publish a site in three steps. But for those looking for more design freedom or to create a professional site with built-in marketing tools, the results from SimpleSite might be too simple. This is why we also encourage you to check out our article on the best and easiest website builders to make sure SimpleSite is the best easy-to-use option for you after reading more about the three steps.
1. Sign Up on SimpleSite
The first step is to head over to SimpleSite and follow its easy prompts to sign up for a free account. That said, if you just want to know the steps it takes to create a website with SimpleSite and have not yet decided if this is the provider for you, here’s a quick summary about the service:
When you are ready to get started, click “Make a free website or blog” on its menu at the top of the screen. Then answer a few questions about how you want your website to look.
Don’t worry too much about the options; everything leads to the same basic template, which can be changed later within the editor.
2. Edit Your Site & Add Pages
Once you’ve created your account, you will be led to the site editor. SimpleSite makes use of a basic block editor that you can click and edit—once you hit “Save” on the content block, the changes will automatically be reflected on your live website.
Before anything else, change the header to reflect your business. You can do this by clicking on the box that says “My website” and changing both the header and the subheader to the appropriate content. SimpleSite also allows you to add your logo by clicking on the gear at the bottom left corner of your heading box or by clicking “Design” on the menu at the top.
The Design submenu also gives you the ability to change your website font, color, layout, background, and footer. Note that SimpleSite provides very limited font, color, and layout schemes, but you do have the option to choose from SimpleSite’s images for your web page background or upload your own.
With the free plan, your web page’s footer (i.e., the content located at the bottom of your page) can only be customized to show or hide visitors’ comments. You’ll also have a SimpleSite footer ad that will be displayed until you upgrade your website.
Next, customize your web page by adding different content blocks. You can access the basic blocks by clicking on “Content” at the menu above. Add more text, images, slideshows, videos, and other elements to your page. You can even add a map to show your business’ exact location or a contact form so that your visitors can reach out to you. Remember to hit “Save” to all of these changes before exiting the menu.
Add pages to your website by hitting “Pages” on the menu bar. There are three-page templates you can choose from, and each comes with preset content blocks that you can edit or remove completely. You can also opt for a blank page and customize it with the content blocks you need.
While the pages you get are pretty basic, SimpleSite does include an ecommerce page that allows you to add up to five products on a free plan—a paid feature for most website builders.
Each page you create automatically becomes a category on your navigation bar (located under the header on your website). To change the order of your pages, go back to the Pages menu and drag the page in question up or down.
To create a subpage (which can be accessed on your site by the arrow on the main category), drag a page down and to the right of the main page.
SimpleSite really shines throughout this entire process: The simplicity of its editor makes it easy for beginners to navigate and create their own websites. However, in exchange for an editor that is a breeze to use, you get dated and inelegant templates, plus a frustrating lack of customization ability with the premade blocks and lack of design options.
3. Click ‘Save’ to Launch Your Website
As we mentioned previously, as soon as you hit “Save,” your changes automatically reflect on your live site. However, if you want to see how your website looks without leaving the editor, click “Preview” in the upper right-hand corner. This step also lets you view your website on mobile and tablet.
Optional: Upgrade Your Plan
SimpleSite’s free plans are quite basic. You get up to 15 free website pages, a domain name that looks like this: www.yourdomainhere.simplesite.com, plus ads—unsuitable for business websites. If you need a more professional web presence from SimpleSite, we recommend upgrading to one of its paid plans below.
Price (Annual Billing)
$11.25 per month
$26.25 per month
Connect Existing Domain
Built-in SEO Features**
*You can choose to buy a domain name for $1 with any of SimpleSite’s premium plans.
**Aside from mobile-optimized pages.
Note that both paid plans come with a 14-day money-back guarantee, so that you can try them out before committing.
Not What You Were Looking For? Try a SimpleSite Alternative
SimpleSite is an easy website builder that gives clean templates suitable for blogs and other personal content. However, its paid pricing is expensive for what you get: Its design capabilities are rudimentary at best, and its lack of page templates and features makes it unsuitable for bigger ecommerce sellers, sellers looking for a good booking system, or even small businesses looking to scale in the future.
If SimpleSite isn’t for you, here are our top alternatives:
- Squarespace: Has an intuitive editing interface, sleek templates, built-in search engine optimization (SEO) features, and hundreds of integrations.
- Wix: Known for its extreme design flexibility housed within a true drag-and-drop editor and beginner-friendly features.
- Weebly: Has an easy drag-and-drop editor and fully fleshed out ecommerce services, all for affordable prices.
- GoDaddy: Best for businesses selling services online as it provides an integrated and advanced online appointment and booking system.
- Webnode: Low-cost pricing with decent features, perfect for a small business on a tight budget.
Need more options? Finding the perfect website builder for your business shouldn’t be difficult. Here are our reviews for more information on the best website builders.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What’s the best free website builder?
Most website builders come with a free plan so that you can really get a feel for their services before purchasing a subscription. Wix, Weebly, and WordPress are three very popular website builders for beginners. Note that to get a professional domain name (www.yourdomainhere.com) and no ads, you will have to upgrade to a paid plan with any of these website builders.
Can I make a website without using a website builder?
You definitely can. If you have a background in web development and coding, you can create your own website with an unlimited number of customization options and features. You can also choose to hire a professional through Fiverr or another agency to create a custom website for you. However, all-in-one website builders make it easy for anyone (including complete beginners) to create a website—and for most people, these website builders provide more than enough features to create the website they envision.
Can I get a .com domain name for free?
The short answer is no—you can’t get a .com domain name 100% free of charge. But most website builders come with premium plans that include free or extremely cheap domain names for a certain amount of time. For example, SimpleSite charges $1 per month for a domain name on top of their premium plans. There are other options for getting a domain name for free, although they are not as professional-looking and secure as a .com.
SimpleSite does what it promises: It gives you a clean, blank canvas to create your website in a few minutes. As a website builder marketed to beginners, it’s one of the easiest and most intuitive builders to use. Its free plan also comes with a limited ecommerce feature, which is extremely unique.
However, it does lack a lot of features that modern website builders contain, like robust ecommerce features, better design capabilities, and good SEO offerings. For a small business looking to build a web presence, we recommend going with a site builder like Squarespace instead.