Is there such a thing as a free website?

Is there such a thing as a free website?

Your business needs a website. You know that, but with so many options out there, how are you supposed to choose? There are free website builders, paid website builders, some with ecommerce packages and some without – with so many options, you need a way to whittle down your choices. 

First, make a list of the things you want your website builder to have. Do you want responsive web design, ecommerce capabilities or a personalised domain? Are you a budding designer who wants the freedom to create their own website or are you a rookie who wants ready made templates to make a professional-looking site in moments? You can get all of this and more with Go Sitebuilder, but finding the right website builder is a personal decision.

If you’re not sure what your website needs, we’ve compiled a list of what we think are important elements of the best website builders, and whether you can get them free or not. 

Personalised domain name

The name of your business is the first thing people are going to see when they look for you, so it’s paramount that your website reflects that. It’s well worth finding a website builder that gives you a personalised domain name as it looks much more professional; other free website builders will give you a domain that includes their own name, like This automatically shows that you aren’t 100% invested in your business. You are likely to have to pay for a personalised domain name, but we think it’s worth the money. 

Responsive web design

Responsive web design means that your website scales up or down in size to fit whichever screen it is viewed on, whether that be a laptop, mobile or tablet. This is increasingly important as mobile web usage overtook over desktop for the first time back in 2016, and the vast majority of people browse for content on their phone. 

Some free website builders offer some elements of responsive web design, and some like Wix are slowly adding more features that will make most of the elements responsive. If you’re not that tech-savvy, however, and don’t want to have to delve into the back end of your site to make sure it is fully responsive, go for a website builder like Go Sitebuilder that is fully responsive. Even our website builder platform is responsive, so you can update your website on your phone wherever you are!

Integrated ecommerce platform

If you’re looking to sell your products on your site, you’ll need a website builder with that capability. It is possible to get a free ecommerce platform, from Square for example, but they are fairly basic and don’t allow you to have a custom domain, shipping calculators, site statistics or integrated shipping labels, which make you seem more unprofessional. They do give unlimited product listings but there is a 500mb maximum website storage, which could become an issue if you are using high-quality photos and have many different products. 

We think it’s best to get an integrated ecommerce website that makes your life as easy as possible, including automatic low stock alerts, shipping calculators and unlimited space. 

Integrated blog platform

It’s no secret that blogging is one of the best new tricks to enhance the SEO on your website. If you want to give your website the best chance, try writing regular blog posts on subjects related to your business that you are knowledgeable about; this will help you look like a leader in your field and inspire trust in your potential customers. 

If you choose a few relevant keywords and use this in all your blogs, this will help Google rank you more effectively, so people searching for your products or services will see your website as soon as possible. 

Most free website builders will provide a basic blogging platform for you to use. Find one that has no limits on the number of blogs you can post, has SEO optimisation tools, and can easily be shared on social media. 

High quality web design

The most important bit! A high quality web design is paramount for your website builder, which can be difficult if you have no design experience. Many website builders will boast of hundreds of functions as a way of selling their product, but we’ve found that in the vast majority of cases, people just don’t use these functionalities. That’s why we’ve perfected our web design platform to have everything you need – and nothing you don’t. 

If you have no web design experience, we provide you with colour palettes and templates, but if you want more freedom you can play around as much as you want! Some free website builders have a limited number of templates, but at Go Sitebuilder we have hundreds, with many specialised for certain industries. 

Free website builders are available, but you will have to compromise on certain elements to do so. At Go Sitebuilder, we think it’s worth investing to make sure your website is the best it can be, so we created an affordable website builder – just £9 a month – that has all the capabilities talked about in this blog, and so much more. Try our 14-day free trial today to see what we can offer you. 

What should you put on your personal website?

Young Asian man using the laptop in the living room thinking about what he should you put on his personal website

A personal website is a great tool to help you present yourself on the internet. Invaluable if you’re job hunting or if you’re a freelancer (or just starting out as one), a personal website is potential clients or recruiters’ first port of call when they start researching you – so you want to make sure you stand out. 

Website builders like Go Sitebuilder can help you have a beautiful and professional-looking website out in minutes, but when you’re customising your website, there are certain things you need to make sure you include. 

The most important thing to bear in mind is the goal of your website. Are you looking for a job? Or on the hunt for clients for your next freelance project? Either way, focus on your personal website so that it will help you achieve this goal, rather than uploading swathes of information about your cat and your favourite pair of socks. Now, let’s talk about what you should include in your personal website. 

Your elevator pitch

This is paramount! Your elevator pitch should be one of the first things a visitor sees when they reach your website, and should say what you do, and what makes you different. Imagine that someone arrives on your website and only reads your elevator pitch; will they have a good idea of what you do and why you’re better than the competition?

Things you could include in your elevator pitch are your most important career moments, what you’re most proud of, and what you’d say is your “superpower” as a professional. It shouldn’t be any longer than two to three paragraphs – shorter if possible, but make sure it shows a little of your personality – you want to hook them in!

Your bio 

You can put this on an “About Me” page, and is longer and more informative than an elevator pitch. Give details of both your education and your expertise in work; if you have a long work history, it might be a good idea to visualise it in a timeline to make it easier to digest. 

Make sure that you are showing a bit of your personality here as well. The main aim is to highlight your professional achievements but you also want to humanise yourself, making yourself both more likeable and more memorable. Many companies screen potential candidates for company culture fit, and this is a way you can show your personality. 

It’s also a good idea to have a downloadable CV in this section, for recruiters who have stumbled across your page. Normally you’ll optimise a CV for a particular job, but for this general one make sure you include a wide range of your skills and achievements so it could work for multiple different roles. 

Samples of your work

It’s very easy to think you need to upload all the work you’ve ever done here, but in reality nobody is going to look at it. Only add your very best work to this section. You might find it difficult to do this if you aren’t in a visual industry, but if you work in marketing for example, you can outline the best campaigns you’ve created. 

One tip is to make sure you quantify your work. Saying that you’ve managed “multiple successful campaigns” is vague and open to interpretation, so it’s better to be clear and say exactly how many you managed, and what results it had. Why not use a free infographic creator like Canva or Venngage to make this more engaging? 


Creating and maintaining a professional blog does require a bit of time investment, but it is worth it. It shows that you are committed to your career path, that you’re knowledgeable about the industry and engaged in how it is evolving. You’ll need to update your blog at least a couple of times a month – there’s nothing more off-putting than an outdated blog that obviously hasn’t been added to in a while!

Be aware that this is also an opportunity for you to show off your communication skills and style, so make sure that you proofread your work for errors!

Contact information 

What is the point in having a beautiful personal website showing off all your skills if there is no way to contact you? Make sure your contact information is visible and easy to find, and give multiple ways for people to contact you. It’s also a good idea to link to other professional platforms as well; the more times you are mentioned on the web, the more credible you appear. 


Testimonials from people you’ve worked with are a great way to lend credibility to your online persona. Linkedin is a good way of sourcing these – if you don’t already have some, contact some former colleagues or clients to ask them to do so. Make sure they give details, not just saying that you’re a great person, but what exactly makes you good to work with and why? 

Now you know what are good things to put on your personal website, it’s time to create one! Go Sitebuilder has a simple website builder with professional web design in the form of hundreds of customisable templates. On the go? Our website builder can be used from a laptop, tablet or smartphone, so you can create a professional website from wherever you are. Why not try our free 14-day trial today? 

How much programming knowledge do I need to create my own website?

Male working on laptop from his home and hanging out with his dog pet finding out how much programming knowledge is needed to create my own website

Whether you’re planning on expanding your business model by setting up an ecommerce site, want to create a digital portfolio for your work, or simply want to start blogging, you’ll need a website to do this. 

If you’ve decided to build your own website without the help of a website builder, you’ll either need to already have some experience in programming, or be prepared to expand your programming knowledge. Whilst building your own website from scratch does have some pros, you will also encounter some setbacks. We take a look at the different ways you can build your website, depending on how much programming knowledge you have.

Customising your web design 

If you’ve enlisted the help of a website builder, but want to create your own custom web design elements – like a specific photo gallery or navigation bar – then you’ll need to have some knowledge of HTML and CSS:

HTML is the standard markup language of building website pages:

  • It describes the structure of web pages 
  • HTML elements tell the browser how to display content 
  • HTML tags label pieces of content, such as ‘heading’ or ‘graph’ or ‘table’
  • It allows you to embed images, videos and other media

CSS focuses on your document’s style:

  • Page layouts, colours and fonts are all controlled with CSS

So, in other words, HTML provides the materials for the structure of your website, whilst CSS gives you all the tools to decorate it, making your web design look attractive and appealing. 

If you already have a basic backbone of your site but want some specific tools or functionalities not provided with a website builder, then you’ll need some knowledge of HTML and CSS, or have the time available to learn more about it. This means you can have the freedom to edit and add to your site, giving you a final web design which is unique to you. However, learning this programming jargon takes time for those who aren’t familiar with it, making understanding web design a lengthy and complicated process. 

You could enlist the help of a website designer if you need help with the visuals element of your web design. However, hiring a website designer to work on your site could set you back anything from £400 to just under a thousand pounds

So, whilst building your own web design is ideal if you have the time, or skill, needed for programming, if you’re new to building websites and don’t have much spare time on your hands then using a website builder with ready to go templates might be the better option.

Building the skeleton of your website 

Of course, before you can even think about your web design, you must have a functioning website which doesn’t have any glitches or errors. To build this yourself, not only do you need to have programming knowledge of HTML and CSS – you also need to understand Javascript. 

Javascript is a sort of scripting language that allows you to create content which can update, control multimedia, animate images and much more. If HTML is the foundational structure of your website, and CSS is the interior design element, Javascript is the blueprint you use to build your website with. 

Building your own website from scratch is great if you have an exact image in your head of the final product, and are willing to spend the time needed to create your site. However, beware of the hidden costs you might not have otherwise considered – you will need to become SSL certified to ensure the details of your site users are protected from possible interception from malicious third parties. 

You will also have to buy your own domain name so that people can find your website, as well as creating your own contact form so that people can use your website to get in touch with you. If you’re setting up an ecommerce site then you’ll need to use an ecommerce platform to sell your items through, and if you want to upload high quality photos onto your site you’ll need to hire a professional photographer. 

So, whilst building your website might seem like the cheaper option to begin with, once you add up all the extra expenses it can become a lot more costly. If you’ve built your site to boost your business online, spending countless hours trying to get your head around coding might not be the best way to improve your business model. By turning to a website builder for help, you can create the right website for you, without the hassle and expense of starting from scratch. 

Using a website builder 

If you don’t have the time or inclination to learn how to code, then a website builder is the ideal choice. With a website builder, the chances are you’ll be saving both time and money, enabling you to redirect your energy into more efficient ways to grow your business.

Go Sitebuilder offers ready to go web designs which are completely customisable, an ecommerce platform, a selection of domain names, an SSL certificate and more, all for an incredibly low price, making us one of the cheapest website builders in the UK for ecommerce sites.

Want to try it for yourself? Our 14-day free trial lets you test out all Go Sitebuilder has to offer – try it today to build your dream website, within a few clicks!

Top tips for designing your own website

Young male sitting in his pottery shop in front of a laptop and writing notes on how he is designing his website. He is wearing a black and white striped top and has glasses

Designing your website is an exciting moment for your company, and really lets you flex your creative muscles! But it’s not just making a beautiful design, although this is important to create a good first impression for your potential clients. We’ve put together a list of top tips of things to think about for your website to help make it look professional and help bring traffic to the site. 

What do your customers want to know?

It’s easy to think about what you want to tell your potential customers, but it’s even more important to think about what information they need. Put yourself in your client’s shoes – when you arrive on the website, can you see what service you provide and how to get it at first glance? If not, your visitors might be put off and move on to another site.

Prepare your content

You should have at least 10 blog posts ready to publish as soon as your website launches. And don’t rush it – your content needs to be high quality. Long-form content which has high-authority links and target keywords will rank higher in search results and drive more traffic to your site. Most importantly, make the content useful and relevant to your target audience! 

Keep your contact details visible and up to date

You want your potential clients to trust you and your brand, and if your site doesn’t have any contact details, they’re likely to become suspicious. 44% of users will leave a company’s website if there’s no contact information. It also creates a better user experience if the contact details are where they expect them to be, so make sure they can easily be found both in the main menu and in the footer of your website. 

Update your website regularly

Once your site is online, you can’t just let it sit there! Using an out of date website framework or plugin makes your computer vulnerable to hackers, so make sure the website creator you use has regular updates. Uploading new and up-to-date content that is useful for your target market both increases trust and helps with SEO, making it easier for users to find your site. 

If you’re ready to put these top tips into action, why not register for a 14-day free trial of Go Sitebuilder? You can design the site, upload your content and launch it in a couple of hours, without any previous knowledge of web design. 

How much does it cost to pay someone to build a website?

Two female entrepreneurs sitting side by side. One is holding a mobile phone and on is writing on a notepad. Both are looking at the notepad with a laptop in front of them

When looking to create your own website, one of the options is to pay a web developer to design it for you. This will require minimal technical input from you and will result in a website that is tailor-made to you and your company’s needs, but it comes at a cost. 

Paying a web developer to create a custom-designed website starts at around £5000, but can turn into tens of thousands for a high-quality product. If you don’t have coding experience, be aware that you will have to pay the developer for any and all maintenance on the site, which could be costly and time-consuming. You’ll also have to pay for your own domain and web host, which costs a minimum of £70 with a shared host.

It’s also worth noting that the basic overall design may not look that different from a website builder either, as many of the pre-loaded themes are based on high-quality designs. 

What are the benefits of getting a custom-designed website?

If you already have a detailed vision of how you want your website to look and function, and you’re not willing to compromise, then a custom-built website may be the only way for you to get the precise design you’re after. In this way, you’ll be able to liaise with the developer to make sure it’s exactly what you want.

A developer also does a lot more work behind the scenes than just creating a pretty design. An experienced designer will help you avoid potential technical and financial potholes, as well as tailoring their work according to your budget level, coding experience, and time restrictions. 

If you’re just a small company with a limited budget, however, the price difference between a custom-built website and a website builder is vast. If you don’t have the financial resources to fund and maintain a tailor-made website, it might be worth going for a website builder that handles the domain name, web host and design for you. 

Why not try it for yourself? For 14 days, you can register for a free trial at Go SiteBuilder, which allows you to create your own website from beautiful preloaded themes, with a domain and five email addresses to get your company’s website up and running in no time!

How long does it take to build a website?

A male and a female sat at desk, looking at a laptop. The male is wearing a red hate and pointing to the laptop. The female is looking at the male.

You’ve decided your company needs its own website, and you’re ready to go. But how long will it take until you launch your website and welcome its first visitors?

The answer to this question varies considerably depending on the way you decide to build your website, and the features you want to include.

Hiring a web developer

If you want complete freedom to create a custom-built site, you’ll have to hire a professional web developer, where you’ll work together to make your vision a reality. This is what the process will look like: 

  1. You meet with the developer to discuss your requirements for the website.
  2. They create a mockup of the design and the sitemap for you to approve or ask for changes.
  3. The developer builds the website according to these specifications.
  4. The website is then sent to you for review, where you can ask for modifications until you are happy with the product.

This process typically takes around 14 weeks for a standard website, but could take longer depending on the complexity of the design and how many modifications you need. The main cause for a delayed website launch is lack of content, so make sure you have all the content prepared for the developers to upload as soon as it’s ready. 

This is a good option if you aren’t working on a deadline and you have a lot of specific requirements for your site. Hiring a web developer costs upwards of £5000, however, so you’ll need the financial resources to be able to go down this route.

Using a website builder

A website builder is the fastest – and cheapest – way to get a website up and running, because rather than relying on a web developer to create your design from scratch, you choose from a list of ready-made themes. Then you can customise it to fit your design, upload your content and you’re ready to go, even if you have no experience. Realistically, if you already have your content prepared, you could launch your website in a couple of hours. 

However, the website builder you choose is important. You need to make sure that they provide everything that you need at a price you can afford. If you realise that a website builder doesn’t give you the features you need after you’ve customised the design and uploaded your content, it’s a laborious process to start over again with another company. 

If you’re not ready to hire a website developer, or you’re in a rush to get your site online, then have a look at the features offered by Go SiteBuilder. If you register for their 14-day free trial you could have a beautifully designed website online today!

How much does it cost to build a website?

A male and female coffee shop owners sat in their shop at a table adding up their monthly costs

It’s impossible to answer the question of how much a website will cost without first working out what you need from your website. There’s no point in shelling out thousands of pounds for a custom-made website if you’re just going to be uploading blogs, but equally, you won’t be able to rely on a free website-builder if you need online shopping capability. Let’s have a look at the basics that you’ll need to think about, and how much they’ll cost. 

What’s essential?

Domain name: The annual cost of a domain name can vary considerably, but the average price is between £8-10.

Web hosting: This is the server that allows users to visit your site, and affects the speed and reliability of your website. Shared hosting is the cheapest option, which costs around £5 a month, but there is also Virtual Private Server (VPS) hosting, which offers better reliability, security and performance than a shared server, but can cost between £18-80 per month.

How are you going to build your site?

This section will be strongly influenced by your budget, your technical skills, and your time. Getting a custom-built website costs thousands of pounds, whereas coding your own site is cheap but takes time and needs technical ability, and could end up looking unprofessional if you’re not an experienced developer. We recommend using a semi-automated website creator. 

Website builders make it easy to create high-quality websites with ready-made and customisable themes, and their monthly prices often include the domain name and web hosting already. Many of these offer free plans or free trial periods, offering paid premium features for a monthly fee between £5 and £15. If your site needs to function as an online shop, then expect to pay an extra fee for this. 

When you make your decision, it’s important to budget realistically. You may have the money this quarter for a premium website, but remember that this will be an ongoing cost year after year. It’s best to start small and then add premium features as and when you need them. Write down a list of all the features you want on your website, then prioritise them accordingly – what is necessary right now? What can wait until the website is more established?

If you want to try out a website creator that gives you a domain, web hosting and five free email addresses, then Go Sitebuilder offers a 14-day free trial, and costs just £9.99 a month after that. Why not register today?

Can you build a website for free?

Male business owner working from home and using his laptop to update this Go Sitebuilder website. He is wearing a blue v-neck t-shirt, sitting at a desk that has a mug, notebook and hard hat on.

If you’ve got a business you need a website. If you’re just starting out, though, is it worth shelling out a monthly sum for a paid domain when there are so many free options available? We look at the pros and cons of free website builders and building a website for free.

Why choose a free website?

With so many free website creators on the market, it’s easy to see why so many people have chosen the unpaid option to make their first digital footprint. Even if you don’t know anything about website design, they offer ready-made themes tailored to specific sectors that give your site a professional look in minutes. Many small companies start off on social media, and a free website offers a significant step up from a Facebook or Instagram page. Seems like a good deal, but there are limitations to a free website.

Why choose a paid website?

A free website provider normally has its drawbacks. First, you cannot get your own domain, but instead, have to piggyback on the name of the provider. One of the most popular free website creators, Wix, forces you to create an unwieldy and unprofessional web address along the lines of

Another disadvantage is that most free websites cap their storage and bandwidth, which means you’ll be limited in the number of images, videos and blogs you’ll be able to upload. Restricted bandwidth will make your site slower, resulting in a worse user experience and a less visible site in terms of SEO.

The website may be free for you, but the providers need to make money through you somehow, which they do by cluttering up your page with their own adverts. The companies also bombard you with emails detailing all the features available in their paid version in a bid to get you to upgrade.

To decide whether it’s worth getting a free website rather than a paid one, then you need to look at your priorities. If you just want a web presence where you can show your services and upload blogs, then a free plan is all you need. However, if you are looking to grow your company, increase your SEO and need certain features such as online selling or mobile capability, then it might be better to look at a paid version. 

If you’re still not sure, Go SiteBuilder offers a 14-day free trial where you can see which features work for you and your business, as well as a team of experts on hand to offer support if you need it. Give it a go today!

What you need to start building your website

Caucasian female working from home in her kitchen. The kitchen is white with a dark wood surface. She is wearing a casual denim shirt and has notebooks, pens and a camera on the desk next to her

Thinking of building a website for your company but don’t know where to start? It’s easy to get bogged down in the details of what you do and don’t need, but we’ve compiled a handy list of key things you should think about to create a great website in line with your brand. 

Web hosting

First things first; you need to find somewhere to host your website. The best options provide a personalised domain name and multiple business email addresses, but there are three other areas to bear in mind; website speed, uptime reliability and customer service.

A website with a fast connection will rank better in SEO and increase your conversion rate, so avoid shared hosting and know that the cheaper you go, the slower the connection may be. 

Uptime reliability is also extremely important, as if the host isn’t working properly, your users won’t be able to access your website from any server. Look for a host with a 100% uptime guarantee, so that if your site does go down for any reason, you are likely to get some form of compensation. 

You might not think that customer service deserves a place on this list, but let’s face it, things go wrong. If this is your first time building a website, it’s much easier to quickly talk to an expert who can fix the issue in moments rather than spending precious hours trying to find a solution yourself. 

Design and Content

Not a designer? Don’t worry, most website creators have their own pre-loaded designs and themes ready to use and optimised for the type of service you provide, but check that they also have mobile capability. You can always try a few out before you decide on a final one, but make sure it aligns with your brand and your logo. 

When you’ve got your web-hosting site and themes set up, it’s time to start adding content to your website! Optimising blog posts for SEO is a great way to help your website rank better on Google and stand out as a relevant resource for your prospective clients. 

Creating a beautiful and effective website shouldn’t be a hassle. If you want all the features mentioned in this article and more, why not sign up for a free 14-day trial with Go SiteBuilder? Let us know how it goes, and contact our team of experts if you have any questions!

Core Features to Look For in a website builder

Core Features to Look For in a Site Builder

When you launch your website, you are sending it out into the world wide web to be seen by your audience, and new ones too! Go Sitebuilder helps you build your confidence in site launching, even if you are not a professional site designer. We’ve put together a comprehensive list of what core features to look for in a website builder!

Making your website look appealing

Go Sitebuilder offers several professional designs and a library of beautifully designed sections and themes, all of which are fully customisable. There is a wide range of layout possibilities with the numerous pre-built sections offered. You can style each section of your site individually or even change the whole layout in just a click. These layouts are very responsive to your commands, making it easy to operate your site on smartphones, tablets and larger screens. A beautiful website will make all of the difference. 

Editing images

With the built-in image editor you can re-size, crop, scale, reduce red-eye and even add filters or stickers to your images. This will help you make your photos pop!

Increasing activity on your social media platforms

By adding your social platforms to your site, it becomes easier for site visitors to view your profile and latest posts. Make sure you’re creating content on your social media accounts as well. 

Ensuring communication with customers

When you include contact forms on your site, you’re helping your customers! Following submission of the form, you receive an email on the same in a matter of seconds.

Uploading files

Upload files and PDFs to your site so that customers can easily view, download and print them. We love this feature, especially for restaurant menus.

Embedding external content

You can add relevant outside content from other sites such as YouTube and Pinterest to your site.


Ensure your site gets fully indexed on search engines by adding site-level and page-level SEO tags and content.

Creating a gallery

Incorporate an appealing multi-image gallery on your site for visitors to view, expand and zoom in. You can import images from your Facebook page or from the Go Sitebuilder stock image gallery to your site. Additionally, you can set these images in a slide-show that transitions both manually and automatically.

Previewing your site

Before you publish, see a preview of how your site will appear on any device in both portrait and landscape layouts. In this way, you can add products and updates from anywhere.

Mapping domains

Do you have multiple domains that you wish to make available on your site? Go Sitebuilder offers a simplified domain mapping page for this.

Analysing customer insights

By incorporating the Google Analytics tracking code into your site, you can see what your audience thinks of your site. This can help you in a number of ways in the future, we’ll touch more on this in a future post.

Website personalisation

Add personal content into your website including videos, audios, text and maps to increase site traffic.

Creating a product store

With Go Sitebuilder, you can create a store with assorted products and stock as much as you wish. Additionally, you get to integrate various payment options such as PayPal and major credit cards and also create customised offers, just-arrived items, discount vouchers or redeemable points for customers. You can create a preset stock level that gives you alerts when certain products fall below that level.

With Go Sitebuilder, you can choose from a huge selection of professional and beautiful themes and personalise it to your company, safe in the knowledge that whatever you choose will work just as seamlessly on mobile and desktop. Take advantage of our 14-day free trial (no credit card needed) to see just how easy it is.