Webflow was founded in 2013, has raised $72 million (source) and is a smaller competitor to giants like Wix and Weebly. So should you use it over other website builders? To help you figure that out, we put out this query:
For people who have used Webflow for building a website or hosting one, can you recommend it? What did you like/dislike about it? All comments welcome (as long as you have actually used Webflow), the more detail the better.
Of the 10 Webflow users who have responded to that so far (if you’ve used Webflow, please add a comment here), here’s the rundown: Webflow is generally highly regarded, and appears to be a good service. But like anything else, it’s not without its disadvantages. Many people have said it’s easy to make a beautiful website with Webflow, as you do not need any coding skills, there are loads of great templates, and there are plenty of good tutorials on how to use it (though there are at least a couple of people here and here, for example, who also say it’s not the easiest tool to figure out how to use at first). In the comments below, there have also (so far) been no complaints about slow website loading times, as was a large criticism for Wix (one comment even praised Webflow for having a fast pagespeed when used with Amazon Cloudfront and Fastly).
So from what has been reported so far, Webflow is a good tool for building great-looking websites that have decent loading times.
The main disadvantages of Webflow that have been reported so far, by comparison, include the following:
- Can be expensive if you’re a single user
- Limited third-party integrations
- No live chat support
Have a read through the comments we’ve received so far (they’re reasonably succinct and there aren’t too many yet, so it won’t take too long) for more information. And again, if you’ve used Webflow, and especially if you disagree with anything printed here and would like to counter it, please add a comment.
we’ve been using Webflow for quite a while now and although I was skeptical in the beginning, I now (mostly) really love it.
My relationship to Webflow is somewhat complicated. But at any rate, leaving it would feel like a huge loss. While I was skeptical when we first started using Webflow for our first company page, I now love it. Most of the time.
Looking back over the last couple of months, there are a few things that cost me some nerves.
1) I'ts just not perfect for multi-language sites yet. The official guidance is to work with subdomains for every single language version you’re target. However, from my experience that is not very optimal for SEO and other reasons.
2) I’ve lost my progress. More than once. My current belief is that this is due to me having Webflow opened in multiple tabs. My advice: Don’t. Ever. I’ve lost minutes and hours of progress. And it’s so frustrating. There is a backup function, but if there are multiple versions at the same time, it doesn’t work that well.
But it also brings a lot to the table:
1) The tutorials and community are great. Start with the (really well-made and entertaining) tutorials. If you should then ever be stuck, there is a great Facebook community eager to help. So far I could always find an answer.
2) Collection pages. Webflow has this amazing mix between static, customizable layouts and CMS pages. The latter are crucial if you want to create structurally equal pages like blogs, where only the content changes.
3) The SEO functionalities. While Wordpress has some great SEO plugins, in Webflow you basically don’t need them. They’re there already. From meta tags to canonicals and href lang - If you know how, you will be able to easily create and maintain tags across your site.
4) It’s so flexible. This is certainly the biggest strength. Webflow is one of the prime examples of the so-called „no-code movement“. They offer you (well, almost) all the possibilities you have when building a homepage from scratch using code. But they make it so much easier. While I definitely recommend some basic understanding of HTML and CSS, you won’t have to code anything yourself. But you’ll be able to build any website you want.
All in all I can highly recommend using Webflow. There is certainly still room for improvement and advanced functionalities - But right now it already offers a lot of value and high customizability.
--Alexander Heinle, ZAGE
In my previous company, we used Webflow to build and host our website. I found that it has great levels of design customization and you don't have to be a coding guru to use it. There's an excellent range of templates that are suitable for e-commerce and dynamic content. However, it is relatively difficult to use for a website builder, especially in comparison to Wix or WordPress. Plus, the plans are expensive especially for a young startup or someone who is just starting out. They do not offer live chat or phone support, which is another big turn off. That's one of the reasons why we switched to another platform.
--William Taylor, VelvetJobs
Personally, I find Webflow easy to use. It lets you customize your own designs by letting you edit dozens of templates. You can also create your own by starting from a blank canvas. It also has an advanced CSS and JS managers allowing for both granular control over styles and animations as well as easy site-wide management. It provides fast and easy two-click deployment to a staging environment and/or your custom domain right from the Webflow designer. Despite of all these pros, every software will always have their fair share of cons. Webflow has a rather steep learning curve expected from those who have never dealt with web development previously. The website builder interface is still not 100% compatible with Firefox and Edge. With the Webflow’s e-commerce kit still in active development, online shop capabilities require additional polish and minor improvements to be called an outstanding feature.
All in all, Webflow is a hybrid solution especially well-suited for those who are prepared to spend a certain amount of time getting used to its powerful features for the sake of a unique mix of capability and automation.
--Carolyn Cairns, Creation Business Consultants
I absolutely recommend Webflow for building websites. I used to use WordPress 100% to build and optimize websites, but ever since I made the switch to Webflow, I don't see myself going back. The ability to customize the design completely without using a drop of code is remarkable. The code of the website essentially starts from scratch. Combine that with Amazon Cloudfront and Fastly means that your pagespeed is going to be lightning fast. The Content Management System is also a huge tool once you get the hang of it. It allows you to easily add information to other pages dynamically, meaning it updates by itself once you set the parameters.
There are a few downsides of Webflow. For example, if you need FTP or cPanel access for some reason, Webflow does not give you access to that part of the backend. There are also some other weird nuances, such as you will not be able to remove the /blog URL slug from your blog posts. Webflow also does not have the plugin capabilities that other CMS's carry, however, there are lots of integrations currently, and they continue to grow as Webflow becomes more popular.
In the end, unless you have a specific need that Webflow cannot handle, I would recommend the platform because of its strong customization and performance capabilities.
--Karr Fager, Digital Red Panther
I used webflow to build thecareertoolkitbook.com. The benefits are good individual pricing compared to other services and powerful tools.
The downsides are limited third party integrations (they recommend paying for yet another third party service in some cases) and expensive team plans. For example if you're a sole practitioner, you might have a web designer create the site and regularly modify, but you also need access to occasionally update marketing copy. Now you need to jump to a team plan even if two people each modify for only thirty minutes a month.
--Mark Herschberg, The Career Toolkit Book
I had the privilege of using Webflow when I needed a small, visual content-based website. I have to say, this particular builder was nothing like I'd used up to that point in time.
Webflow's builder side was different enough, but I soon figured out that it's also a CMS, too. Truth be told, this is quite apparent when you take a look at the main interface of the builder - not only is it very unique in its layout, but it's also quite difficult to get used to, at least at first. Webflow has many extensive features, but I felt that it doesn't really do a good job at introducing them to the user in an easy-to-follow manner.
Having said that, though, the templates offered by the site creation tool were truly among the best I've seen and used in a while. They weren't only modern and sleek, but also interactive and unique - definitely a win in this regard.
Quite frankly, Weblfow possesses all of the main features that you'd need from a website design-driven builder. My only notable quirk with this tool is that it's quite difficult to figure out at first, and I'm saying this from a position of someone who's used a lot of different builders before - for a complete newbie, it can prove to be an even greater challenge.
--Aaron Smolen, MyBestWebsiteBuilder
Webflow definitely has its pros and cons. Things I really enjoy about Webflow are that its an extremely flexible tool that make creating beautiful, usable sites a breeze. Webflow has thousands of templates to chose from and you don't need any special training to manipulate them into exactly what you need. One thing I don't love about Webflow is the price point. It can be great if you're an agency and can afford the price and you have multiple users as Webflow allows for up to 20 users.
--Jon Torres, jontorres.com
After 7 years of building websites on WordPress, which is a great CMS, I decided to try out Webflow and launched our new website last month. It was a huge learning curve to use the Webflow designer and understand the dynamic content and features which are very different from a plugin-focused CMS; but I absolutely LOVE it! In just a few weeks, we launched a beautiful new website for our relocation tech startup, Avvinue, and have even seen an increase in SEO. I would recommend taking the Webflow 101 training and using a template if you’re new and not a designer. Understanding the basics before using the Webflow designer will make a huge difference for your experience. Now, I recommend Webflow as the best CMS out there.
--Nicole Caba, Avvinue
For building a website, I would 100% recommend it. There aren't many websites that require a feature- set not available within Webflow at the moment. What is an advantage for our team, is that developers don't have an eye for detail, so with Webflow now designers can build websites. There is no similar editor that does this. Also, this is not the editor for regular people, this is mostly for tech-savvy people with a background in coding.
I like the flexibility and feature set. Also, I'm a fan of the no-code community so this was something I wanted to start using a long time ago but never gave it a go.
Webflow is bringing flexibility and speed to InvoiceQuick. Anyone can just join in and do its part. A content writer can change text only, designers and developers can work inside the editor. Designers on the visual part, developers on some additional features needed to be custom coded. Webflow doesn't remove developers from the equation, it just makes their job what it was supposed to be, not replicating pixels designers made.
With hosting involved Webflow allows us to have all sites in our ownership (of our team account) and we can also bill clients for their part of the hosting, its being handled by Webflow, not us.
--Alex P, InvoiceQuick
For designers and non-designers alike, I would highly recommend Webflow for creating a website where you want full control and customization without the coding. The magic happens when you can see your website come alive as you’re actually designing, and with a click of a button, view the live preview at every breakpoint. I am a designer who usually works with a developer for our websites, but in an effort to decouple while she worked on our app, I took up the design and dev of the website. As soon as I signed up, and started browsing the examples and clonable templates in the showcase, it was game on! Webflow makes it very easy to plug in and start creating with all their resources, forum and tutorials available. There are also some great YouTube videos by SketchTogether, Flux, PixelGeek and several others that helped me along the way from getting familiar with the elements library to setting up the CMS for dynamic pages like our company blog!
Webflow overall has been a game-changer for our team. We're able to collaborate on our website together and quickly without any dependencies. A couple of my team members are content editors so they can go into Webflow and edit pages. Our developer, when necessary, can export the code. I can share a staging link with the team to review before I push the website live. It's amazing how much time Webflow has saved us, not only from a development standpoint, but also QA! Great tool and the whole experience of working in Webflow is exciting! Claps all around!
--Savitha Pal, Listory
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