12 Best Web Design Tools for Building Websites and Pages

by | Mar 24, 2022 | Articles, Web Design, Web Tips | 0 comments

There are many web design tools on the market today to suit any type of web designer, from pricey downtown firms to DIYers. Feeling overwhelmed by your options? We’ve done the research so you don’t have to. Here is a look at the 12 best web design tools on the market today. 

Best Website Builders

best web design tools html 5
The first web design tool is custom code/HTML. Custom code and HTML website designers and developers are experts at creating bespoke websites that include highly customized elements. 

Building a website with custom code and HTML is not for the faint of heart or inexperienced. In other words, it’s not a DIY option for people with no background in HTML. If you require a custom website, your best option is to partner with a custom code/HTMl website designer and developer. 

Custom Code/HTML Pros

  • Highly customizable
  • Very flexible

Custom Code/HTML Cons

  • Accessible to experts only
  • Custom sites can be very expensive

best web design tools mailchimp
MailChimp is newer to the website builder scene, but has been a staple of email marketers and content marketers for years. A couple of years ago, MailChimp rebranded as an all-in-one digital marketing platform. For a single subscription, users can design their own websites and landing pages, manage online stores, send emails, post to social media, and run advertising and promotions. 

MailChimp’s website builder is easy to use and a great option for business owners who would like to create a basic website and online store on their own. Building a website in MailChimp is free for MailChimp subscribers. 

MailChimp Pros

  • Easy to use
  • Free to get started and for MailChimp subscribers
  • Integrates with other marketing efforts

MailChimp Cons

  • Design options are limited
  • Limited support

best web design tools square
Square is an online store platform that is a good option for eCommerce businesses that don’t need an entire website. Users can manage their inventory, take payments, and design an online store for customers all from a single dashboard. Square stores can be integrated into existing websites, too. 

A Square online store is easy to set up and manage for newbies and experienced designers alike. Designers can add their logos, customize their colors, and manage inventory items from a single dashboard. 

Square Pros

  • Excellent online store option for eCommerce companies
  • Square stores are easy to design
  • Can be included on an existing website
  • Options for email marketing, banking, and payroll

Square Cons

  • Exclusively for online store creation and management
  • Learning curve on learning to manage inventory 

best web design tools adobe commerce
Adobe Commerce, formerly known as Magento, is another online store platform. It is a highly customizable eCommerce drag-and-drop website builder that is easy to use and fast to update. Adobe Commerce is a good choice for larger businesses that need a single platform to manage all of their commerce channels. 

The drag-and-drop editor makes Adobe Commerce easy to use for savvy DIYers and web design experts. Because Adobe Commerce integrates with other Adobe tools, having some experience with Adobe products will make your experience with Adobe Commerce more efficient and effective. 

Adobe Commerce Pros

  • Capable of handling several brands, sales channels, and markets
  • Integrates with other Adobe tools
  • Drag-and-drop editor is fast and easy to use

Adobe Commerce Cons

  • Integrating with other Adobe tools requires know-how
  • Enterprise-level pricing may exclude startups and smaller operations

best web design tools joomla
Joomla is a content management system built entirely by volunteers. It allows users to customize more than 10,000 templates to create websites that meet their needs. Joomla also includes access to extensions that can customize websites further. 

Many website designers and developers use Joomla as their website builder of choice. However, first-time designers or DIYers may find the system difficult to navigate on their own. 

Joomla Pros

  • Free and open-source
  • Includes thousands of templates and extensions for full customization
  • Flexible enough to scale with your business

Joomla Cons

  • Can be difficult to use for new or DIY designers

best web design tools drupal
Like Joomla, Drupal is an open-source content management system that is a go-to platform for professional designers, developers, and web design agencies. Drupal is used in dozens of industries, from retail and eCommerce to tech, health care, and finance.

Also like Joomla, Drupal can be difficult for first-time designers or DIY website designers to navigate. To build a Drupal website, you are best off working with a Drupal website designer. 

Drupal Pros

  • Free and open-source
  • Accommodates thousands of add-ons for full customization

Drupal Cons

  • Can be difficult to use for new or DIY designers

best web design tools godaddy
GoDaddy, long known as a website hosting company, also offers DIY website design tools, including eCommerce options. Anyone can create a GoDaddy site for free, but most functionality is reserved for premium subscription customers.

DIY designers can customize hundreds of templates to create a GoDaddy website that reflects their brand and meets their needs. Most people find GoDaddy’s website builder easy and intuitive to use.

GoDaddy Pros

  • Basic sites are free to build
  • Intuitive builder makes designing a breeze
  • Award-winning customer support

GoDaddy Cons

  • Template-based design means customization is limited

best web design tools wordpress
WordPress–the big daddy of website design (and Watermark’s website design tool of choice). WordPress is a versatile, template-based website builder and content management system that is the go-to choice for many professional website designers. 

WordPress offers template-based website design that integrates with thousands of plugins and widgets to fully customize a website. Once a website is created, managing content on a WordPress site is simple. However, inexperienced or DIY designers may find designing a website with WordPress on their own intimidating. 

WordPress Pros

  • One of the most popular website design tools
  • Highly customizable
  • Easy to manage content once website is created

WordPress Cons

  • Can be difficult for inexperienced or DIY designers to navigate
  • Plugins and other extras can increase costs

best web design tools weebly
Weebly is a website builder owned by Square. It fully integrates with Square’s online store platform, making it a good choice for DIY designers running eCommerce businesses. Weebly features an intuitive drag-and-drop editor and dozens of themes to choose from. 

Building a site with Weebly is easy for inexperienced or DIY designers, though professional designers may find it limiting. 

Weebly Pros

  • Integration with Square eCommerce
  • Intuitive and easy to use

Weebly Cons

  • Experienced web designers may find Weebly’s design options limiting

best web design tools wix
Wix is another drag-and-drop editor aimed at the DIY crowd. It is a low-cost option for people who want to get their business’s website up and running ASAP. 

Website designers of all stripes can build a Wix site from one of more than five hundred templates, then customize it to meet their needs. Or, they can start from scratch and design something completely their own.

Wix Pros

  • Free option available
  • Easy to get started and to customize
  • Can choose from templates or start from scratch

Wix Cons 

  • Experienced web designers may find Wix limiting

best web design tools shopify
Like Square, Shopify is a popular eCommerce platform. Many retailers use Shopify to manage their online stores. Shopify offers customers digital marketing support with SEO and Google Ads support. 

Retailers and digital store owners choose Shopify to help them market and sell their products online. Shopify customers use a drag-and-drop builder to create their store and customize its look. 

Shopify Pros

  • Popular with all types of retailers
  • Template-based editor is customizable
  • Custom themes also possible

Shopify Cons

  • No free option
  • No option for additional website pages

best web design tools squarespace
Squarespace is a template-based web design tool that is used by DIY designers and professional developers alike. Businesses of all sorts use Squarespace as their website design platform, including eCommerce companies, creatives, and service-based businesses. 

The Squarespace editor is intuitive and easy to use. It is also highly customizable, which is why it’s a popular platform of choice among professional designers.

Squarespace Pros

  • Easy to use
  • Image-forward template designs
  • eCommerce friendly

Squarespace Cons

  • No free option 
  • Limited third-party app integrations

 

Website Builder Frequently Asked Questions

How do I build a website?

First, read our guide to find the best web design tool for you. If you are brand new to website design, we recommend one of the template-based, drag-and-drop editor tools. Better yet, hire a pro. Get in touch with us to schedule your free web design consultation. 

What’s the cheapest way to build a website?

The cheapest way to build a website is to use a free website design tool like one of the tools described above. Remember, though, that you get what you pay for. A free website is a good entry into marketing your business online. However, you will eventually outgrow it and need to invest in a professional website. 

How long does it take to build a website?

As long or as short as you like! If you’re not picky and in a hurry, you can have a site up and running in an hour or so. However, the effort you put into your website directly influences the quality of the website you end up with. Most DIYers can count on at least several hours of work. Professionally designed, bespoke websites with lots of pages can take 40 hours or more.

Mark Haugstad

Mark Haugstad, founder of Watermark Design, which is based in Elk River, Minnesota. Since 2011 we've been a WordPress web design development agency providing services in web design services. Mark has always wanted to provide better quality service, affordability & support to local businesses. When Mark is not working with the Watermark Design team you can find him hanging out with his wife, five children and enjoying the MN outdoors; hunting, fishing and camping.

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