All freelance web developers need web development software to create a website. There are many free and paid web designing software are available for web designing and development. All of them have their own pros and cons.
If you are ambiguous about which web designing software to choose for your project, read on.
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BEST WEB DESIGNING SOFTWARE
Adobe Dreamweaver is the best overall web designing software. If you want to create a truly unique website that doesn’t look like any others on the internet, with full customization of each element! This is your best choice.
Their dynamic live view editing allows you to edit and preview your site in real-time to make sure it looks great on any device. If you want to switch it to split view, you can adjust the split view panels by moving the cursor in between and dragging up and down anytime. You add or make changes in the code or text here at the bottom, you can see the changes in the preview above it at the same time.
Available for both Windows and macOS, Dreamweaver is not cheap on their home page, they do offer a seven-day free trial to purchase it. By itself, the cost is around 21 dollars per month if you go through creative cloud bundle with photoshop premiere pro and many others included it will set you back a whopping 53 dollars per month or if you’re a student or teacher you can get the adobe suite of apps heavily discounted for just 19.99 per month.
If you’re a developer with coding knowledge, Visual Studio Code is an excellent source code editor and web designing software that gives you the ability to design a site the way you want it without the use of pre-designed templates. It’s made by Microsoft and is completely free to enhance its functionality.
More than 28,000 extensions are available for free. Visual Studio Code is available for Windows, Linux, and mac.
Sublime text is for those of you who refuse to use anything Microsoft-related. It’s also a very good code editor and web designing application for experienced programmers.
It’s free to evaluate with a one-time purchase of 99 with free updates for up to three years. Sublime text is also available for the three major operating systems Windows, macOS, and Linux.
Next is actually two different sites with similar names wordpress.org and wordpress.com. I’ll go over the features of each and point out their differences.
Let’s begin with WordPress.org; this one is free and open-source software that can be installed on your computer, and it’s intended for web designers that want to self-host their site instead of having it hosted elsewhere. It’s quite popular for in-house design teams to create websites, including well-known companies like Sony Music, Clorox. Bloomberg, and the Walt Disney company.
They have a massive number of design templates which they call themes, at this time they have more than 8,500 free themes to choose from to create your site. They also have more than 50,000 plugins to help customize your site the way you want it.
While no coding experience is needed to use WordPress.org, it does have a slightly higher learning curve than most with the large number of choices you have at your disposal on their site. You’ll find helpful tutorials that will teach you how to use it. WordPress.org can be installed on Windows, Mac, and Linux.
On the flip side, with wordpress.com instead of your site being self-hosted, they provide free managed hosting which is financially supported with paid upgrades. There’s no software to install, running a modified version from WordPress.org.
It’s web-based and can be used in any browser no coding experience is needed and their advanced editor where you build with blocks makes it easy to customize the placement of each element along with the color and size. You’ll find thousands of themes and add-on plugins to use for your project, some of which are free, while others labeled as premium do cost money.
For those of you creating smaller websites, the free plan should fit your needs. But it is supported with wordpress.com ads. To remove their ads and get a free domain for a year along with other features; their plans start at four dollars per month if paid annually and come with a 14-day money-back guarantee.
Some of you might recall that it began as a blog hosting service in 2004. Since then, it’s changed quite a bit with features for web designers that make it a great all-in-one solution, especially for those of you with no coding experience.
They get a lot of praise for their high-quality templates which are available in more than a dozen categories including fashion, health and beauty events, weddings restaurants, and many others. With fewer templates than many of its competitors with just over 100 to choose from, it’s possible you could end up creating a site that looks similar to others on the web using square space.
If you’re looking to sell online, their e-commerce tools will help you to optimize your business with SEO and analytics tools built-in to help get your site a higher rank on search engines. You can also track how your site is performing.
Square space does not offer a free tier, instead, it offers a 14-day free trial, so you can try it out. Paid plans start at 12 per month if paid annually and include a custom domain for free.
Weebly-owned by the square is best for those of you involved in e-commerce with no coding experience to create a professional-looking website with an online store. Its drag and drop tools make it easy to use when building your site.
While lacking in-design templates with only 63 at last count, they’re all professionally designed and feature-packed. If used for e-commerce, it includes a fully integrated shopping cart with secure checkout and inventory tools to manage your stock.
Other features include apps for android and iPhone to manage your online store anywhere, anytime. Free hosting, filtered product search, and a lot more the free plan includes the basics but limits your storage to 500 megabytes and does not allow you to connect a custom domain unless you upgrade for additional features.
Those plans start at six dollars per month if billed annually, with a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Webflow is another high-quality web-based choice for those of you with no coding knowledge. It includes a good amount of pre-designed templates with a drag and drop interface to create your own site. Their free plan does limit you to two projects.
For additional features and to increase the number of projects, those plans start at 16 per month if billed annually. Just beware of their terms of service, a major issue with webflow is that their paid plans are non-refundable.
Wix is a web-based web designing application. It’s easy to use, and it’s great if you run a small business, or you’re a beginner with no coding knowledge or any web design experience. Wix is feature-packed. They now have more than 500 high-quality templates for you to choose from that can be used in the drag and drop website editor.
Advanced SEO tools to rank your site higher in search engines, along with animation scroll effects and video backgrounds for e-commerce. They’re also one of the best if you plan to create and run an online store for your business.
If you use the Wix free plan, the bandwidth and storage limit is 500 megabytes with their premium plans that start at 14 per month if paid annually. You get additional storage you can add a custom domain and get access to google analytics all plans also include a 14-day money-back guarantee.