The HTML Site Builder software started arriving on the scene, Frontpage, Dreamweaver, Cold-Fusion there was a proliferation of either cheap but essentially useless or expensive but technically complex products hitting the market. The frustration continued. People who just wanted a simple, professional-looking website, but who didn't want to spend weeks learning a new tool were still out in the cold.And then everything changed again
Online HTML Site Builder tools like Wix & Weebly came to the party. These enabled simple attractive sites to be developed quickly, but also came with a few drawbacks. Most notably that they hold the site captive to their own hosting provider. Free development, but you must host with us !!
And so we look elsewhere...
Enter Mobirise. First, before we dive in - THREE key facts to hold in your head:
Good news! Despite being freeware, there are no annoying Adverts - unlike lots of other “freeware” bad experiences you may have had, Mobirise is not loaded with annoying pop-up/under or banners - its just a simple clean UI with your document on the left and a collapsible container for all the templates, widgets, containers and frames on the right. You can switch between screen and mobile layouts with one click - and edit in either view. When adding your own images, there is a basic image formatting tool as well.
Speaking of templates, 5 basic templates come for FREE. Beyond that, there is an ample supply of professional designs for all applications. You want an online portfolio - there's a template for that. Setting up a diner? Want a site with an integrated menu? - yep. Website for your church? Got that too. Currently, there are 75 themes and over 200 templates. Each template can be purchased individually for $49 each - or simply subscribe for around $150 and get access to all assets for a year.
The user is totally spoiled for choice when it comes to add-in widgets and frames. There are frames & extensions for custom content, maps, teams, social media connectors, video containers, gallery frames, countdown timers, online shops, shopping carts, and web-form builders. There’s even a blogging plug-in module.
Finally, for those who really really insist on it, an editor extension that lets you hand adjust the HTML/CSS code.
The key to getting a new website noticed is getting it crawled and indexed by the big search engines. Unlike some other applications, Mobirise sites are 100% Google crawler compliant and Mobile-friendly by default. Mobirise also provides the tools to set site metadata (Also beloved by search engines) and keywords per page. Finally, to really understand your site visitors there is a Google Analytics extension bundled with the tool.
So there we go - You've selected your template, populated the content, checked the mobile compliance, loaded your photos, and configured the contact forms. Your site is ready to go and looks great! Unlike some of the online WYSIWYG providers - the site you develop is entirely and unequivocally yours. Save it, tweak it, edit it. Choose your hosting provider, upload it, and go.
Creating a new website should be easy. Most sites do not need to be highly complex technically advanced affairs, and should not need highly skilled engineering resources to create and host them. Detailed knowledge of style-sheets should not be required to sell book-keeping services, or publish your online cv, or promote your gardening business. Sites need to be attractive, performant, and reliable. They need to be compliant with relevant standards so they are easy to crawl and index. And, having put in the effort to create a site, you should be able to host it wherever you like. Mobirise ticks all those boxes. Even better, it’s free to get started, but for a low (And flexible) subscription you can have access to literally hundreds of professional templates and tools.