Established in 2015 and based in Los Angeles, Site123 was created by Noam Alloush and CEO Shai Zrihan who wanted give people with no website building expertise whatsoever a way of sharing their thoughts and ideas on the internet of things.
But with so many drag and drop website builders clamouring for market share what makes these two dynamic operators think that they can compete against the likes of Wix and Weebly, both of which have built extremely advanced website builder platforms and refined them over some years now.
The Answer May Surprise You:
Site123 is not a drag and drop website builder. It is a straight-jacketed website builder that won't let you out of the room to go and play with the other toys. There is no plethora of templates to choose from and nothing close to resembling an HTML editor designed to confuse your closeted creative ability.
Just a single template is offered along with a lone menu bar that provides the editing choices. Where higher-end platforms strive for more diversity, Site123 aims for simplicity. So that even the most tech-averse among you can build a website that doesn't look like it hit every branch in the ugly tree on the way down.
By narrowing the choice of template to one and one only while simultaneously constricting the design options you may think that anything you produce is going to look bland and similar to everyone else's Site123 website, but it doesn't necessarily have to be that way, as I'll show you.
Who Is Going To use Site123?
Crucially Site123 is aimed at all those people who would love to build a simple website but don't have the time or patience to learn that complicated under the hood stuff like HTML and CSS. For them not having to do any coding is a boon and not something to be sniffed at. If that's you and you want to build a small website with the minimum of fuss, then Site123 could be what you are looking for.
No drag and drop editor, no coding skills required, no procrastination required before choosing a template, the thought may cross your mind – does this website builder build a website at all?
The answer is a resounding yes. And you'll be able to do it in an hour or so. If all you need is a single page website that stands up to a minimum of criticism, then this website builder is the one for you.
Site123 is, unfortunately, less than blessed in the blogging tool department and so I wouldn't recommend it for that. You can include images and video in your blog posts, so all is not lost, but all the links to your posts will be expandable and on the same page which gives you limited scope for changing display options.
As for eCommerce – forget it. Site123 has a rudimentary Paypal account connection, but you'd only use it if you suddenly decided it would be a good idea to sell that promotional product that is currently filling up the broom cupboard and you now needed the space.
Advanced Site123 is not. But if all you want to do is build a website with the minimum of fuss, not to mention low cost and in the shortest time possible then Site123 is for you. You could have something up and running and be broadcasting to the world in the time it takes to read this review.
Ease Of Use And Features
Being simple to use is Site123's strong point. You do not need to think outside the box, and so you can't make any glaring design errors that can cast a shadow over even the most expensively produced websites.
There is a website creation process, and you follow it, as simple as that.
The menu bar on the extreme left-hand side of the page opens a vertical menu which lets you edit each element. The primary background logo is one I uploaded from Unsplash, so you are bound to find something of very high quality there and make your Site123 website stand out from the crowd. You may also like to read my guide to sourcing images if you are new to hunting down royalty free photos on the web.
There are four default pages as well as the home page and to add more you merely click the "add new page" button! Very simple.
The contact us page comes complete with a pre-populated contact form for you to use and to configure it, you input the "receiver" email address, and all form submissions will be sent to that address - what could be simpler? It is also possible to add more custom form fields through the "advanced" tab. The contact page also has an excellent Google maps feature which is impressive.
Here is a run through of some of the features of Site123:
Responsive Website Design - Give your users an optimal viewing experience with perfect responsive web design on a desktop, smartphone or tablet. SITE123's responsive web design system adapts every website to fit on all devices large and small. It's time to go cross-platform. Check out SITE123's responsive web design today.
SEO Tools - Use SEO tools to deliver a correctly SEO optimised website. You can use SITE123's tools to set meta tags, view your sitemap, set 301 redirects, and use webmaster connections to make your site ideally suited to bringing in traffic to your website and expanding your online presence.
Sell Online - Create an online store with SITE123 and make sure your business is always open. Add products quickly and start selling on a global scale. Manage your orders and products and adjust your store's design.
Unlimited Web Pages - Build a website without having to worry about how many pages you can have. On SITE123 there is space for all of your content. Clients can have an unlimited amount of web pages, allowing for small to large designs and everything in between.
Free Image And Icon Library - Use our free images, icons, and videos to fill your website. SITE123 gives you a free gallery full of media that you can use to make your website look impressive and professional. Media can be added to any page to create the look you want for your website.
Events - Sell tickets for your events online! Customize your events with SITE123 by selling tickets with an online shopping cart, creating different types of tickets, offering coupons, using custom registration forms, and more! Get your audience ready to enjoy your events faster and easier than ever!
Email Marketing - Promote your business with an excellent newsletter package using proven mailing list tools. SITE123's email marketing tools let you stay in touch with your customers and win new ones. With a mailing list, you can easily keep up your clients.
And perhaps the one tool that is more powerful than all the others combined if you can put it to good use:
Language Selection - Choose from over 80 different languages to build your website. SITE123 is a multilingual platform where you can select your local language. You do not need to get lost in an unfamiliar language and will understand how to design your website.
You really can't go wrong at this price!
Summary And Conclusion
Site123 is way ahead of Strikingly in the one-page website builder marketplace because the user interface is so well thought out and allows a complete novice to quickly and easily find their way around. There are comprehensive FAQ and user support sections, and you can speak to support via email. Live chat support also appears to be online 24/7 so if you get stuck anywhere they will be on hand to assist you.
For anyone that wants to build a straightforward website, Site123 is impressive. You'll have a website up and running in a couple of hours complete with a fantastic looking contact form. The only issue you might have is in finding those high quality, royalty free images that will make the difference in presentation but I have you covered for that eventuality here.
What Site123 lacks in sophistication it makes up for in efficiency and that's the bottom line. You can reliably make quick websites that look good in short order using this product.