How to Make a Small Business Website for Free in 2022

How to Make a Small Business Website for Free in 2022

Having a professional business website is no longer a luxury; it’s a necessity if you want to get noticed online and promote your products or services. That is why website creation has become accessible and budget-friendly. 

Now, you don’t have to spend thousands of dollars hiring professional web designers and developers. All you have to do is find a reliable, easy website builder and put your website live in a matter of minutes. 

But how to choose the best website builder that’s just right for your needs? First, identify the purpose of your website. Then, check out the features of the available website builders and select the one that has all that you need. 

Best Website Builder for Small Business 2022

Below, we’ve gathered some of the best website builders for small businesses and their features in one place. Have a look at them and choose the one that best suits your business:

  • Renderforest
  • GoDaddy
  • Wix
  • WebsiteBuilder
  • Squarespace
  • Weebly
  • Shopify
  • BigCommerce
  • Strikingly

Renderforest logo

Renderforest

Description: Renderforest is an all-in-one platform that offers online marketing and branding tools. One of those tools is Renderforest Website Builder. It’s an easy-to-use tool for creating personal and business websites. Perfect for creating functional websites with no technical and web design skills. 

It’s a super easy website builder that will allow you to create your business site in just a few simple steps. Search for your industry, and the Renderforest website builder will show you professionally designed templates within seconds. Click on the one you like most and start editing its texts and images. The great thing about this platform is that it offers SEO-friendly website templates. So, your business website will be able to handle all your business needs as your business grows.

Features: SEO-optimized website templates, free domain name when using Renderforest subdomain, drag and drop option, customizable style, SEO-friendly content, the easy editing process, additional tools for SEO, available on mobile.

Price։ Free, Paid Subscription

 

GoDaddy logo

GoDaddy

Description: GoDaddy is one of the most popular online platforms that will allow you to create a business website without any professional skills. It’s not only a platform for starting a business site. GoDaddy has various hosting plans to help you establish your online presence faster. Once your website goes online, you can also use its in-built marketing tools for website promotion.
Features: Easy-to-use website builder, domain registrar, DDoS protection, online marketing tools, 24/7 support, different partner programs, security monitoring, and more than 125 applications installed with one click.
Price։ Free Trial, Paid Subscription

 

Wix logo

Wix

Description: Wix is another popular website-building platform that will help you move your business online without coding knowledge. It offers more than 500 templates, web hosting services, and SEO tools to create pages that will draw the attention of potential clients and help you reach your business goals.
Due to its built-in e-commerce features, you will not only have a beautiful site and a platform where you can successfully sell online and generate more revenue. Like Renderforest Website Builder, Wix has a drag and drop option to help you create a small business website without making many efforts. This site builder also provides beautiful scroll effects that allow you to add zoom-in or fade-in scrolling, making your site more dynamic and stylish.

Features: More than 500 customizable templates, built-in SEO tools, mobile-friendly, SSL certified, custom domain name, Analytics, Wix chat.

Price։ Free Trial, Paid Subscription

 

WebsiteBuilder logo

WebsiteBuilder

Description: WebsiteBuilder is another great tool for designing your business website. What we like about this builder is that it includes all the e-commerce features you will need to manage an online store, such as tax calculation or product management tools.
This website builder also offers more than 10.000 templates related to different industries. So, you can find a perfect one in just a few clicks and create your own professional website for free. However, search engine optimization and mobile-friendliness of the site are only available for the Premium plan subscribers.
Features: More than 10.000 templates, Contacts Content Management System, e-commerce, responsive on mobile devices, fast load time, website statistics, website security.
Price։ Free, Paid Subscription

 

Squarespace logo

Squarespace

Description: Squarespace is a content management system that will help you create a business site, register a domain name, sell online, analyze the site performance, and many more. Whether you’re creating- a small business website, a portfolio site, or just your own blog, Squarespace website builder will offer excellent templates for each.
Features: Ready-made templates, web design tools, customizable URLs, custom CSS, custom domain name, custom site search engine, email marketing, social media tools, and scheduling software.
Price։ Free Trial, Paid Subscription

 

Weebly logo

Weebly

Description: Weebly proves that you don’t have to be a web designer to build a website that will appear on the first search engine results pages and help you get new customers. That is one of the website builders that can give you a simple website within a few seconds. However, it is not very popular among people who prefer a website with modern touches. This builder is basic but is still useful for small businesses that want to establish their online presence. You can also use it to create your portfolio site or blog.
Features: Tools for SEO, e-commerce tools, blog-related themes, Analytics, animation effects and video backgrounds, category customization, comment management tool, and image editor.
Price։ Free Trial, Paid Subscription

 

Shopify logo

Shopify

Description: As the name of the platform already suggests, Shopify is a place that lets you build the perfect eCommerce site for your small business. Shopify allows its users to manage the online store with the help of a single dashboard. It also has in-built marketing tools to execute and analyze marketing campaigns. The main concern about this platform is that it’s not a drag and drop website builder, so it won’t be easy to build a website that looks stylish and fresh without any web design knowledge.
Features: More than 70 themes, web hosting, easily customizable online store, email forwarding, search engine optimization, social media integration, extremely flexible shipping rates, use of your own domain name, and 24/7 support.
Price։ Free Trial, Paid Subscription

 

BigCommerce logo

BigCommerce

Description: BigCommerce is a great website builder if you aren’t a web designer but still want to design a gorgeous website for small business. If you are tech-savvy, you can do more on this platform by using your coding knowledge and tweaking the HTML and CSS of your business website. This website builder also focuses on eCommerce and offers users to create online stores without spending much time on its creation. Just browse the platform, choose the template that fits your needs and start customizing it.
Features: Mobile optimization, WordPress integration, multi-currency, digital wallets, Analytics, product review opportunity, unlimited staff accounts, checkout customization
Price։ Free Trial, Paid Subscription

 

Strikingly logo

Strikingly

Description: Strikingly is another site builder that offers both free and paid plans. It mostly offers one-page websites that are great for freelancers and bloggers.
However, you can also use it to create a simple business site. It allows users to create a web page with eCommerce features, like shipping and coupons. You can also add a contact form to make it easier for your visitors to contact you.
Features: Domain names, Analytics, simple blog, HTTPS built-in, 24/7 support, sign-ups and contact forms, simple store with full eCommerce functionality.
Price։ Free Trial, Paid Subscription

What to consider when making a small business website?

It’s not an easy solution if you want to design a site. You should consider your own goals before starting so you can implement the right design elements for your goal setting. For example, dental offices would need different websites than architectural firms. The way a website is presented is essential. When you start building a website for your business, you must consider the following key elements:

Things to consider before website design

1. Identify the goal of the website

Why do you want to create a website? This might seem like an obvious question but consider it carefully before building a website for small businesses. Website builders have different tools that help small businesses reach different goals. So try to avoid the confusion right from the beginning and think about your customers and their experience on your website.

For instance, you wouldn’t go to an Italian restaurant and expect them to serve sushi rolls there.

Like the case with the restaurant, your customers have certain expectations when they enter your website. They would go to an online store to shop and the architecture firm website to hire architects. Knowing the goal earlier will help you create a site that is perfect for you and your site visitors.

2. Find your target audience

You can’t target everyone in your area with your website. There are certain people you would need to target based on your business. Find out who your target audience is before designing your website.

Once you carry out a thorough analysis, you will have valuable data that can help you choose the correct texts, images, style, and color for your website later. All these details will have an impact on your site visitors later.

3. Have a defined budget

So, you decide to create your own website and start the process, but then you realize that you don’t have enough budget to implement all the design ideas and tools you had in your mind. There’s nothing worse than realizing you can’t complete what you started because of the budget you can’t afford.

The best solution is to decide beforehand how much money you can spend to create your small business website. There are several options based on the determined budget.

A WordPress site might sound like a cheaper alternative to website builders, but in reality, it is not. During the development, you may encounter extra costs like finding a hosting company or buying an additional plugin.

Website builders are way cheaper, especially if you pay annually instead of getting their monthly plans. Almost all the annual payments offer discounted rates.

4. Do competitor analysis

If you own a small business, you will know that it’s not easy to think of a new idea these days. What does this mean? That means there are many other companies out there who are offering the same products or services.

You can learn a lot from these companies! Identify your competitors and start analyzing all their steps. What features do you like in their business websites, and what elements are ineffective? The answers to these questions will help you build a better site with all the great features.

5. Focus on the content

Sometimes business owners prefer to build the website first, then create its content. However, it’s way easier to do the opposite.

Having the draft will make the website building process smoother. You won’t have to stop and think about what type of content a certain site block needs. As a result, you will save more time, and your website launch won’t be delayed.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      

How to make a small business website in 6 easy steps

After discovering what key elements you need to consider, it’s the right time to go through the steps you need to take to create your own website. 

1. Choose a small business website builder or platform

You need to choose a website builder or platform that best suits your goals and budget. A WordPress site could be an excellent option for those who already know how to code and can choose from thousands of plugins to create a unique business website.

However, if you are new to website creation, it’s better to choose one of the website builders mentioned above.

For instance, you can use Renderforest Website Builder to create your own website in just a few minutes. 

Renderforest website maker

All you have to do is click on the “start creating” button, and 2 options will appear on your screen. You can either create a business website from scratch or make edits to the existing user-friendly templates. 

Renderforest website builder options

create now

2. Create a unique and engaging website user interface

Your website interface should ensure that your users have all the elements that can easily be accessed and understood. They don’t want to enter a website and feel like they are in a labyrinth trying to figure out where is the information they are looking for.

You will need a user-friendly website to incentivize your visitors to stay at your site longer and affect their decision-making process.

Your website for business should have the following elements:

  • Easy-to-read fonts and relevant colors,
  • Beautiful, compressed graphics for faster loading speed,
  • A design that represents your brand,
  • An intuitive navigation system,
  • Easily accessible contact information,
  • Relevant call to action,
  • Original content to rank higher by search engines.

Here are the main pages that websites for small business usually have:

  • Homepage
  • About us
  • Products or Services (with beautiful images and clear descriptions)
  • Sitemap (for search engines)
  • Contact page
  • Privacy policy
  • Terms of use

You can either hire a professional UI designer to create a unique UI design or use ready-made templates from the site builders. They are already designed based on the requirements mentioned above. All you have to do is browse the templates, find the one that’s relevant for your business and make edits (change the texts, images, and colors if needed).

Here is how you can create a website for small business using Renderforest Website Builder templates.

  1. Click on the “start creating” button 
  2. Enter the website templates collection by choosing the “Start with template” option.
  3. Choose the business category from the left side or search for your industry
  4. Pick the one you like and click on the “apply” button. 
  5. Make changes to the template based on your requirements.

 

Renderforest WM templates

Start creating

 

3. Obtain a good domain name

Your website address is the component that lets people enter your site. It is also known as a domain name. Although it might sound like an easy task, you need to choose it carefully. You can either buy your own domain name or publish your website under a free domain that belongs to another business.

If you have decided to buy your own domain name, you need to register it with the help of a hosting provider. However, you can choose a site builder that already includes the domain name in the subscriptions. So, you won’t have to take an extra step to buy it.

Renderforest Website Builder, for instance, offers free subdomains. Once you’re done with the editing of the template, you can publish your website for free with the help of the Renderforest subdomain. Just choose a relevant name and click on the “publish” button. A great choice for small business websites. 

Renderforest subdomain

If you aren’t sure how to choose a good domain name for your small business, here are some tips for you:

  • Use simple words: Avoid jargon, slang, or any other made-up word. These words will confuse your visitor as they will have no idea what that website is all about.
  • Short is gold: The shorter the domain, the easier it is to remember.
  • Don’t use numbers or hyphens: Numbers will be harder to remember, so try to create a domain name that consists of words.
  • Think of broader names: A broader website address will give you the chance to include other services and products on your business website. For instance, Amazon.com can include various types of products on their website, but bookshop.org is only about books.
  • Avoid extraordinary names: You may think that Google and Yahoo are catchy names, but it’s more expensive to brand these types of names. You have a small business, so you should consider your budget before choosing such catchy names.
  • Search for that name: Google the domain name you want to use to ensure a similar domain name doesn’t exist.
  • Think of an SEO-friendly URL: Do your best to create a domain name that consists of a keyword.
  • Use online domain generators for inspiration: You can always use online generators if you aren’t sure about the name you should choose. DomainWheel is one of such websites.  

 

You can watch this video to learn more about the differences between paid and free domains and get answers to your questions about this topic:

 

4. Add a clear description of your small business

Your website visitor should know who you are and what you do immediately after clicking on your website address. Ensure that your hero image and other homepage banners represent your products and services. Besides that, it’s always a nice idea to have an introductory text blurb on the top of your site that describes your small business.

Your “about us” page should also be easily accessible. Make sure you include it in your main and footer navigation menus. It will allow your visitors to learn about your small business more if they want to.

One of the advantages of website builders is that you will already have the main blocks for your small business website. The templates show where you need to add your content to make it easier for your visitors to notice them.  

Below you can see an example of a Renderforest Website Builder template that will help you create clear content for your small business website:

 

Renderforest templates for WM

 

5. Optimize your business website for search engines

SEO is one of the most important parts when it comes to your website visibility. You need to make sure that search engines index your business site and rank it accordingly. Remember that you need to have quality design and content to rank higher on search engine result pages.

Main SEO components you need to consider when building a website for small business:

  • Research keywords and implement them in your content
  • Have an optimal website code
  • Create a mobile-friendly site
  • Ensure your business website has a fast loading speed
  • Install an SSL certificate for security
  • Include internal links in your small business site to keep your users in your website
  • Add external links/backlinks that will lead to your site
  • Create social media accounts to link it to your website.

Keep in mind that optimizing your site for search engines is an ongoing process. So, you need to carry out a website audit at least twice a year to make sure you are on the first pages of SERP (search engine result page).

 

6. Publish your small business website 

After carrying out all the previous steps mentioned above; it’s the right time to publish your website!

  • Preview your site during the editing process and make changes if needed. We recommend you to check the following parts before publishing your site:
  • Preview how your site would look on different devices and make sure the content is readable everywhere.
  • Read your content one more time to ensure no mistakes were made.
  • Remove the content you think isn’t necessary for your site.

Are you done with the last-minute checks? Great. Now you can finally publish your small business site by clicking on the “publish” button. 

Renderforest website publish button

Congratulations! Now you can enjoy the endless possibilities of the Internet. Promote your site on different social media platforms and implement email campaigns to draw more traffic to it.

 

To sum up

If you want to promote your products or services, you will need to create your small business website. Hiring a professional web designer may not be affordable for you. Most small business owners have a better solution, like creating a website through site builders.

The main advantage of site builders is that they already have ready-made templates you can use to build a site. And you don’t even need to be tech-savvy for it. You can create it in just a few steps with the help of the drag and drop feature most builders provide.

Moreover, you will be able to publish your site without buying a domain name if you choose a site builder like Renderforest. Just customize the template based on your business needs and publish it through a Renderforest subdomain for free.

Ready to establish the online presence of your small business with Renderforest?

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Sona is a Creative Content Writer at Renderforest. She is passionate about helping people enter the world of IT, branding, and video creation through easily digestible articles and tutorials.

Read all posts by Sona Hakobyan
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