Sitejet Website Builder Overview
Sitejet is primarily aimed at freelancers and small-time website design agencies, although with the feature set available and its ease of use there is no reason why anyone with a modicum of design nous should not be able to produce a website of high quality using this software tool.
Note: eCommerce is provided by third party Ecwid and if selling is going to be a major part of your business then this tool is not what you need. Try Shopify, BigCommerce or EKM first.
Ease of use is Sitejets's big selling point and that means no App integration or third-party add-ons to complicate things. If you want to build a simple, good looking website in a few hours then Sitejet might just be the tool you have been looking for. Alternatively, if you are a small digital agency looking to grow a client base then this could be the software you need to develop client sites at a rapid pace and without fuss.
The main reason for it being described as a tool to be used by the design crowd fraternity is the accompanying CRM (customer relationship manager) which provides a workflow and collaboration routine enabling teams to design a website project and leave notes and pointers for the remaining work to be done. However, it's ease of use and scalability, places it squarely in a bracket between the drag and drop website builders like Wix and Weebly and more traditional CMS (content management systems) like Joomla, Drupal and Wordpress.
To see what type of website Sitejet can produce I took it for a test drive, crunched the gears and examined the feature set.
Adding Your First Projects
Simply click the +Website green button and you're away. I added a few different projects to start with so that I could see the difference between templates and how they looked but I didn't see an easy way to rename a project once it was created? I ended up deleting the ones I changed my mind with and recreated them. I chose a couple of popular business types like a Hairdresser and Photographer, to begin with. If you don't like the template you've chosen initially you can easily change it afterwards.
So far so good! I've created five projects. I'm immediately excited when I see the "clone website" link in the "more" dropdown. Anyone who has tried to copy a Joomla or Wordpress site knows that copying databases can be fraught with difficulty. On the face of it, it's a simple job. In reality, PHP versions, PHPMyAdmin versions and even Cpanel versions can all get in the way of your "easy job".
It takes a little bit of time to find your way around how things work but we are talking minutes rather than hours. A small timer on the top left of your screen shows how much time you have spent on each project. So after ten minutes, I have this:
Now admittedly, it's a lot easier when you have things like your logo premade and all you need to do is upload them but all the same, the speed at which you can develop a site is impressive. In ten minutes I'd still be unpacking my Joomla files ready for an FTP session!
The favicon failed to load up though and I suspect that the conversion routine tries to convert from an existing .jpg .or.png to the .ICO favicon format but I'll get some feedback on that later.
From here it is simply going to be a case of replacing the existing templated images with your own and changing the text. very easy indeed. I was disappointed though when I found out that I could only publish my handiwork if I subscribed to a plan. I wanted to see what the site looks like on a mobile device and tablet first.
But then I'd missed "presentation mode" which did exactly that!
There is also a "share presentation" link so that you can invite comments on your handiwork. The more time I spent using this software the more powerful it became and it was obvious that the developers have spent a lot of time concentrating on the UX side of things to take away as much clutter as possible from the workspace leaving it functional and intuitive. I'd also missed the neat little-embedded icons that let you switch between display types whilst you are developing.
There are plenty of templates to choose from although changing the style of one template to another is as much about changing the images than altering the layout of the template. I'd like to have seen more support for social media built in.
Fonts And Font Styles
Sitejet uses Google font integration so you have plenty of choice for type display. My favourites "Roboto" and "Open Sans" are here and they will cover most of the simpler project requirements but you can tweak the style using checkboxes without having to know any CSS. In fact, so far I've not even looked to see where the CSS file is!
Each page you work on has its own panel ready to accept the page title, keywords and page description. So on page SEO is a breeze.
There are several features in Sitejet that hitherto I've only seen in much more expensive platforms but are wonderful additions to the group working on a collaboration of projects.
The first is the Snapshot feature which will let you revert back to a previously saved version of the site. Invaluable if you are going to let a client loose with the editor because you can undo their mess in one fell swoop without having to proofread everything again.
The second is the "to do" list which will let editors leave notes of things to be done.
Sitejet comes with built-in lightning fast hosting and your first published website is already included in any paid package (see our pricing here). Sitejet hosting including e-mail, SSL encryption, CDN & DDoS protection can be enabled with just a click. Every website you create can be published on any domain that can be either registered via Sitejet or connected externally. The Team and Agency plans offer you the flexibility to export websites. Your websites are hosted on powerful GDPR-compliant server infrastructure that provides speed, stability, reliability and security against DDoS attacks. There is no limit to storage or bandwidth.
For rapidly producing a new website Sitejet has one of the best platforms on the market for doing so. It slightly lacks in some functionality, for example Social media support, but it's no problem to embed your own images in the template. Where this scores heavily though is in the ability to be able to quickly clone a site and make it live.
For producing inexpensive websites at a fraction of the cost of developing in Joomla or Wordpress this is your tool of choice.