Weebly by Square: Best eCommerce for small business
- Easy to use even for beginners
- Physical and digital sales allowed
- Fully-integrated shopping cart
- 30-day money-back guarantee
- No integration with social networks to sell products
- Payment options are not as flexible as competitors
- Migration process from Weebly to a non-Weebly site can be complicated
Introduction: What Can Weebly eCommerce Offer Your Business?
Everybody's on the lookout for the next big thing in business. A great start to being that “big thing” is to create a robust and stunning online store. How does Weebly eCommerce go about creating – and, eventually, managing – an online store? Will it help you not only gain a constant stream of customers? Also, how can it keep existing customers engaged and convert casual browsers into paying clients? Indeed, the developers at Weebly came up with Weebly eCommerce by Square to create a website builder specifically for those establishing online businesses or shifting from the brick-and-mortar paradigm to a digital platform.
Welcome to our Weebly eCommerce review. Let's dive into the nitty-gritty of this exciting online store builder – primarily Weebly features, Weebly store fees, and Weebly eCommerce pricing. What can the Weebly online store builder offer your business?
Overview: Read our Weebly eCommerce review to size this builder up. Is it for you?
Weebly itself has been a popular option among site developers since 2006 with the Weebly Website Creator. Meanwhile, its eCommerce site builder has only been around since 2016, dating from the time payment solutions developer Square Inc acquired the company.
To date, many of the over 50 million sites built with the platform are eCommerce hubs catering to a rapidly growing online market. This market has grown substantially larger over the past year due to the shift to online retail.
And with the rate digitalisation is going, there's no way but up as far as demand for e-commerce platforms are concerned.
Ease of use:
The thing about Weebly eCommerce is that, like the original Weebly website builder, it’s a drag-and-drop affair. In other words, it simply lets you select the images or elements that you need from a sidebar and place them where they can be most effective in grabbing a site visitor’s attention. As a result, creating your Weebly store is quick and painless work.
Features and Flexibility:
Themes and Templates:
As with the regular Weebly website builder, the Weebly online store builder offers users a choice from over 50 themes – probably not as wide a selection as Shopify which has over 70 design options, but a better deal than Volusion which only has 45 (and for which you’ll need to pay an arm and a leg to use.)
Pro tip from our Weebly eCommerce review: be sure to check in on the Weebly Themes page regularly. Weebly store developers sometimes remove existing themes and replace them with more aesthetically striking or functional options. Indeed, you may see something that you can use to enhance your Weebly store.
Interestingly, the developers behind Weebly recommend six specific templates for creating highly effective and visually appealing Weebly stores. This gives users – especially those who are new to building online stores – a leg up when it comes to setting up their online hubs.
This is where the Weebly online store builder drastically pulls away from the company’s original site-building platform. Customization tools are built right in the eCommerce builder’s UI, rendering every element in it customizable to your specifications. As a result, you can be assured that your online store is in keeping with your brand's visual standards or corporate identity.
3rd Party Integrations:
Because Weebly is part of Square Inc., the latter has ensured that the eCommerce sites built with and/or hosted on the platform can work with its flagship payment facility CashApp along with several industry-specific POS options.
The platform also works with Google Analytics for advanced webstore metrics, PayPal and Stripe to facilitate payment and checkout, Order Desk for custom order management, Shipstation and Easy Ship for shipping and delivery management, and Sales Booster to help drive consumer traffic to one’s online store.
Other options are available via Weebly’s App Center. The downside is that it doesn't interface with social networks like Facebook or Instagram.
If it’s scalable and data centre-redundant hosting you’re after, you’ve come to the right platform. As with regular Weebly sites, Weebly stores are on a cloud-based service that ensures the site loads and runs smoothly even if another site on the server experiences a spike in traffic. Based on tests we’ve run as to the loading speed, Weebly online stores load in as fast as two to three milliseconds. (This applies, of course, to users in the United States. Elsewhere, it could take as long as 130 milliseconds – but this is still quite fast.)
Unfortunately, this is where many Weebly store owners have issues with the platform: it offers no facilities for an automatic file back-up for webstore data. Consequently, this can cause a lot of stress for those running online stores who can’t afford to lose their online presence or transaction records.
Migrating an existing online store to Weebly takes practically little effort. In several key Weebly online store examples, the site owners have actually moved the site's full framework from competitors like Shopify, Etsy, and BigCommerce. There is no need for a third-party program like Optimum7 or Diztinct. This certainly saves you the time of having to build the whole store up from zero.
However, if you’re looking at things from the other way around, migrating a whole Weebly store to another provider poses a challenge. In which case, you may consider several available workarounds for migrating a Weebly-built site to other platforms, including manual and automated migration procedures.
The Weebly store builder is ready to use from the get-go and offers the following key features:
- Fully-integrated shopping cart
- Secure check-out facility
- Inventory tracker
- Ecommerce-specific website builder
- Retail-specific search engine optimisation
- Mobile store/check-out facility
- Global capabilities for taxation, shipping, and payment via PayPal and Stripe
- DIY coupon creation for promotion
- Custom hub design
- Automatic tax calculator
- Business dashboard
At this point in our Weebly Ecommerce review, we need to point out a critical detail. Some of the bells and whistles are only available with the top-tier subscriptions. Moreover, payment options are not as flexible as its top competitors.
Square, Weebly’s parent company, offers Weebly Promote, a dedicated marketing support app (available, unfortunately, only to those with top-tier subscription plans). This feature allows you to create unique marketing tools such as promotional emails and periodic newsletters. In terms of usability, it is markedly better than, say, either MailChimp or Yahoo Mail’s marketing facility.
The platform also offers discount code and coupon generators, an inventory management facility, and options for customers to leave reviews and recommendations. Again, however, these are only offered to top-tier subscribers.
SEO and Mobility:
You get SEO functionality already built into the Weebly (eCommerce) user interface. As a result, users can easily edit meta descriptions, title tags, a sitemap, and SEO-friendly HTML formatting. With this capability, you can boost your site's chances of appearing within the first two pages of an online search.
All Weebly (eCommerce) pages look well on any mobile device. Likewise, if you need to manage your online store away from your desk, it isn’t a problem. The Weebly eCommerce management app is available for Android and iOS devices, helping you look after your store even while on the go.
Weebly boosts page speed by compressing images you upload – enhancing SEO. Moreover, tests confirm that Weebly sites have a 99.97% uptime, which is impressive.
Support and Resources:
In this Weebly eCommerce review, you can expect to be taken care of should you need help or assistance. You can look up their impressive online resources using their FAQ section. There are useful and detailed articles giving you tips about eCommerce. Moreover, a Weebly community section can let you seek out more experienced Weebly users for guidance. Moreover, Weebly social media accounts on Twitter and Facebook are great sources of information as well.
If you want to contact their support team, they're reachable through live chat, telephone, or a ticketing system. However, only those subscribed to the “Pro” Plan and above can get phone support.
Weebly eCommerce Pricing:
Of course, this Weebly eCommerce review tackles the most important criterion of all – the cost.
Weebly Online Store Builder Plans:
The platform comes in 3 pricing options for online stores: Pro, Business, and Business Plan. Weebly online store pricing goes up as the features become more advanced.
- Pro – This includes free domain + $100 of Google Ads credit;
- Business – This includes free domain + $100 of Google Ads credits, and all the functions necessary for building and running an eCommerce hub;
- Business Plus – This includes free domain + $100 of Google Ads credits, all the functions necessary for building and running an eCommerce hub, as well as provisions for email marketing
Note: We recommend that you go for Pro, the most basic of the three business plans. The Free and Connect plans do not have provisions for eCommerce and online store building.
Free trial/refund policy/money-back guarantee:
A 30-day money-back guarantee applies to all paid subscriptions as per their Terms of Service page. If you’re not happy with the service, Weebly offers a full refund. The condition is that you cancel the account within 30 days of activation or within 30 days of service contract renewal.
Our Weebly eCommerce Conclusion and Recommendation:
To wrap up, here's our Weebly eCommerce review conclusion;
What is it best for?
This platform is a great choice for those who are gaining critical mass with their online clientele. It offers numerous tools with which to grow one’s business and various integrations for managing both the front- and back-end.
What is it not best for?
Given that you need to pay extra to avail of the more advanced features, Weebly online store builder is probably not an option for start-ups.
Weebly Store Alternatives:
Here's a list of the best Weebly eCommerce alternatives to create a an online store:
|1||Shopify (and Shopify Plus)||Best All-In-One eCommerce solution|
|2||Squarespace||Best for design and creatives|
|3||Webflow||Best for advanced design tools|
|4||Square Online||Best for ease of use|
|5||BigCommerce||Best for medium to large stores|
|6||WooCommerce (with Nexcess)||Best for Wordpress Users|
|7||Wix||Good for general use|
|8||Big Cartel||Best for very simple sites|
|9||Ecwid||Best for adding to an existing website|
|10||Volusion||Best for advanced analytics|
- Weebly vs Shopify. Shopify would still be the most viable alternative to Weebly eCommerce, given its customization, marketing, metrics, and scalability provisions.
While it still has certain limits, Weebly (eCommerce) is becoming a product that a growing number of online business owners are swearing by. And why not? With an easy to use building platform and numerous options for store management, marketing, and promotions, it gives entrepreneurs a much-needed edge in today’s increasingly competitive online market.
Trying this platform wouldn't hurt. Enjoy a risk-free 30-day money-back guarantee on all Weebly paid plans!
How much will a monthly subscription cost?
It would depend on the plan you’ll choose to get, but it will set you back between $12.00 to $38.00 monthly.
Will it help me create an SEO-ready webstore?
Yes, as the platform already has SEO tools built into the user interface.
Does it have provisions for marketing, shipping, and inventory management?
Yes, including Square Inc.’s proprietary Weebly Promote marketing system. Numerous options can be selected from the App Center, which offers numerous eCommerce and marketing solutions.
That’s all for now:
Thanks for reading our Weebly eCommerce review. Don’t forget to keep an eye out for our ever-growing blog of review and comparison articles of eCommerce platforms, SEO software, screen capture tools, webinar and conferencing software, education platforms, website builders, and more such as;
- Wix vs Weebly
- Weebly vs Squarespace
- Weebly vs WordPress
- Review of Weebly website builder
- Weebly vs Wix vs WordPress