Starting a website can be exciting - but without the right tools, it can be a very stressful, and time-consuming experience.
This is where website builders are supposed to help: allowing you to make visually pleasing and user-friendly pages in hours, even without any website development experience.
For years, that's what web.com was trying to do. Web.com is a well-known website builder, focused on helping small businesses to get online and grow their business. It offers 3 plans, focusing not only building a website, but also online marketing and sales.
But is web.com any good? In this review, we'll test Web.com and see whether it's worth your time and money.
What Is Web.com
Web.com is a company that provides a drag-and-drop website builder for regular websites as well as online shops. Along with that, it also covers several fields: domains, hosting, website design, SSL certificates, and marketing services.
With this spectrum of services, web.com aims to be all that a small business would need.
This provider was founded 20 years ago, and its popularity has fizzled out - now it's been overtaken by names such as Wix and Weebly. Is this deserved? Is web.com a relic of the past, or a diamond in the rough? The best way to see that is to test everything ourselves.
In this web.com review, I will be evaluating their website builder packages based on the pricing, features, and customer support. Let's see how it goes.
Web.com website builder plans start at $1.95/mo. If you add some additional features, the prices increase up to $3.95/mo. That is exceptionally cheap! But only at first glance - because actually, this pricing scheme is very sneaky.
Web.com has a horrible renewal policy and there is no other way to put it.
The super low price is valid only for the first month. Afterward, the cheapest plan will cost you $22.95, and you'll get charged immediately after your first month.
That's an over 1000% increase in price!
Here are the three plans for website builders:
- Website Builder - $1.95 for the first month, goes up to $22.95. Provides a website builder with "hundreds of design layouts".
- Website and Online Marketing - $2.95, goes to $32.95. Website builder with marketing tools to get traffic. Also, SEO consultations.
- Website, Marketing and Store - $3.95, goes up to $39.95. Website builder with online store features.
The majority of Web.com reviews mostly complain about renewal pricing. But essentially, this is a premium-priced website builder with a low-cost 1-month trial.
And those costs are so hidden, you may easily miss that info while signing up. What you won't miss, is a very expensive automated subscription you don't want.
By the way, looking at the details of web.com highest plan, it turns out, there actually are only two builder-based packages. The last 'eCommerce' plan is just a mid-tier package with an eCommerce add-on.
However, it all comes down to the features' quality, so let's take a look.
What Do You Get With Web.com
With web.com drag-and-drop website builder you are supposed to have an easy way to start your website.
The provider promises hundreds of website designs, thousands of free images, and customizable text and image. Those are very basic features that any website builder absolutely must have.
So, what does a $22.95/mo hosting package give you?
- A free domain registration
- A website builder to work with
- A variety of website templates
Sadly, the list of provided features doesn't seem to justify the enormous prices so far.
On the side note, the purchase went with no problem - there were no issues or payment irregularities.
I did, however, had problems connecting my own domain name to its service. That's because Web.com don't seem to have any nameservers. But after a successful talk with their chat support representative, I was able to connect my domain via IP address.
After connecting to my account, the first thing I was introduced to was the templates selection.
Web.com offers a large variety of templates. They are grouped by different purposes and each can have slight modifications of color and fonts.
However, many of those templates are very outdated. Even though most of the templates seemed to aim at some sort of a "professional" look, they look all over the place in the matters of composition, fonts, pictures and even color scheme.
Luckily, working with the builder was easy. The panel is comfortable to use and allows to place items in whichever order you want.
But even there were some issues, certain menu options were out of place and the objects don't align perfectly. That makes the whole page look a little unfinished and amateurish, no matter how hard you try.
This website builder definitely has a lot of custom options for further enhancement. But overall it doesn't come close to what other website builders offer.
Web.com Customer Support
Web.com has customer support via live chat or phone. Also, you will find a knowledge base. It covers basic questions with detailed explanations and step-by-step instructions.
The live chat is ready to help at any stage of website building. What was also nice, there was no queue time - and even though the representatives kept referring me to the knowledge base and sometimes were sluggish to respond, overall I had no big issues.
Until I decided to cancel the services.
As I was trying to cancel my account, it didn't work. I was charged for an additional month. So to cancel for sure, I called the customer service on their phone. And surprisingly, for verification, I was prompted to tell my account password to the representative.
It's a very similar issue that I've encountered while doing a Network Solution review - it's a web.com company. And there, to purchase the services I had to tell the customer support my card details, including the numbers at the back, and expiration date.
Overall, such a process is incredibly unusual, outdated, and downright dangerous. And it's a very good example of how stuck in the past web.com really is.
Web.com is an all-in-one website solution. This means that you will get a platform to build your website on, and will also be given servers to host your website in.
And the servers are a crucial part of a website builder - because they will determine how fast your website loads and how often it is down. And fast loading, always available website equals happy visitors.
So, to check the performance, I've monitored my website for over 22 days. And, looking at the web.com response time, things are not so bad.
Response time of over 500ms is somewhere around the industry average. It's worse than Google's recommended 200ms, but still pretty good.
Speaking of uptimes, web.com servers are up for around 99.96% of the time.
That is not bad - that means web.com servers are down for 4 minutes a week on average. This is below the industry standard of 99,98%, but not by much.
So the web.com performance isn't something that would compensate its mediocre design features. But overall, it's not too bad.
Web.com Review - Conclusion
Web.com is a veteran provider - and sadly, it's time for it to retire. It's really difficult to find any actual positives when talking about this product.
The templates don't look like they've been made on a year that starts with a "2". The design experience, while simple, doesn't help to make beautiful websites either.
Then there's the awful pricing structure, seemingly designed just to trick people into spending more. And the cherry on top is the fact your personal data is not secure at all - and your password is known by a chat service representative.
If you're looking for a website builder, there are plenty more options to choose from. Not only they'd be cheaper, they'd also be better in every conceivable way. All in all, I can't recommend web.com for any reason, other than to experience the internet as it looked like 15 years ago.
- Decent server performance
- Old interface design
- Huge renewal costs
- Bad security measures