Ease of use, affordable pricing, ready themes, features, creative freedom, and reliable help and support are the main considerations that users make when choosing website builders. While it might not be in the top 10 best website builders list, the Yahoo Website Builder, also known as Yahoo Small Business, is a practical tool that makes professional web design an easy task.
Two decades ago, web design and development was a skill reserved for specialists experienced in HTML, PHP, and CSS. The few companies that could afford to hire the web development experts got an edge in business as the digital age came to be. However, with pressure mounting to get more businesses online, the tech industry came up with drag and drop or WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get) solutions that enabled users with no coding experience to build websites.
The Yahoo website builder is one such solution and has been tailored towards simplicity. While on the downside it cannot make complex websites laden with functionalities, the tool is all-inclusive and provides the basics you will need to build and grow your site. Unlike other builders, it uses a seamless and straightforward design approach by taking care of all backend processes and leaving you only to manipulate the front end.
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How to use the builder
To use the Yahoo site builder, you need to visit https://smallbusiness.yahoo.com/websites and click on get started. You will be automatically given a free package and provided with the list of themes to choose from.
After theme selection, you will need to add pages that will be generated from the template. You can customize different sections of a page by hovering and right-clicking on individual elements. A context menu will pop up to assist you to make the changes to the sections.
Pros and Cons
- Easy setup – It takes only two steps to set up the platform: selecting a theme and signing up. The bulk of the development work is in theme customization to meet personal preferences. The initial site configurations are handled by the site to allow you to get started without a hassle.
- Themes – The Yahoo website builder comes with a plethora of template website designs that you can customize. The themes follow trending website designs such as minimalism but there are several with the rustic or antiquated look and feel. They are built to be responsive to different screen sizes hence no custom editing is required to accommodate smartphones and tablets.
To make selection easy, Yahoo has categorized the themes in a list consisting of business, health and wellness, restaurant, portfolio, fashion, and many others. You need only to sift through the different designs to find one that matches your desired style.
- Customization – The site builder is user-friendly and does not feel as intimidating to first-time users as its close alternatives. Therefore, you will hardly have to spend hours watching how-to tutorials since the builder is intuitive. The pages are tweaked directly on the front end, thus changes are made in real-time.
Effects such as animations can be easily added as well, though most themes come with a decent number of interactive elements. Special elements such as SEO keywords, Google Analytics tracking code and Facebook Pixels code can be inserted through a top bar navigation menu.
- Integration – The Yahoo site builder has an edge over other builders due to its level of product integration. Apart from the starter package, users get several convenient integrations to the builder which eliminates the need to transact with other parties common in web design.
For instance, users can create custom domains, make email addresses, and get online storage space from the professional package. Further, the builder supports the creation of e-commerce stores, though in separate packages.
- Affordability – Compared to similar builders such as Wix, the Yahoo site builder is relatively cheaper. The free package provides a subdomain with no limitations on the templates to choose from and a decent 3 GB storage space. The most expensive package is incomparably cheaper than the premium offerings in other builders.
- Customer service – The site builder has free customer service for all users regardless of the packages they use. Customer reviews do not show major delays in getting assistance via email, phone, and chat functionalities.
- Limited features – The builder compromises functionality for convenience. Thus, while the quick and easy setup is great, you can only go as far as designing a basic website. You will be severely tied down to the template you chose as the builder does not allow you to fully customize premade sections, especially if you wish to add new elements to a page. Further, your modifications to the template will be constrained by the limited options in the popup menus.
- Integration limitations – While in most other builders developers give users lots of integration options, the Yahoo site builder falls short of user expectations. Besides adding tracking codes for Google and Facebook analytics services, developers cannot include other monitoring services. Further, the range of SEO features supported is underwhelming to most advanced users. With the limited supported add-on products, you will easily be stuck with the builder’s options.
Yahoo Site Builder’s Pricing
The site builder comes in three packages: Starter, Basic, and Professional.
Starter – This is a freemium package that provides all the basic features of the site at no charge. However, your site will be hosted with a yahoosites.com domain.
Basic – Priced at $4.99 per month, this package offers a custom domain option, a professional email, unlimited bandwidth, Yahoo website insights and 5GB of storage.
Professional – The top tier package is priced at $9.49 per month and includes all Basic plan features as well as private domain registration and 10GB of storage instead of 5 GB.
On one hand, the Yahoo Site Builder is an incomparable solution that offers unparalleled affordability and convenience nto new and skilled developers. It has an intuitive interface and provides all the basics to ensure a seamless development experience. On the other hand, the builder is heavily constrained in customizability, which makes it hard to move beyond basic template-based website modifications. Therefore, it is a great starting point for newbies in web design but leaves a lot to be desired by experienced developers who want to get more out of websites.”