Building your first business website is exciting, but if you have no experience in doing it, you might choose to use a simple builder like Jimdo. Is Jimdo any good for starting an online business? What can you expect out of their features? Let’s find out more in this review.
What Is Jimdo
Jimdo is a web hosting and publishing company founded by three friends in 2007. Originally from Germany, the company now operates in 8 different languages and is reported to have built about 15 million websites for hobbyists, professionals, and entrepreneurs.
How Does It Work
Jimdo is typically a WYSIWYG (what you see is what you get) kind of builder. It creates websites through command elements that are fairly intuitive with no coding involved. That means it’s very easy to use even for beginners.
To get started, you need to create an account, select a template and you are ready to go. Here’s a quick video to show how the editing works.
How Much Does It Cost
Jimdo has 3 types of pricing plan – Free, Pro, and Business. Certain features are enhanced as you upgrade the plan.
Here are some of the things that I actually like about Jimdo;
(1) Most simple website builder’s editing interface tend to lag, but Jimdo’s speed is surprisingly fast and smooth.
(2) The company has also designed an app that allows users to create websites on mobile devices. So for people who like to work on the go, this is a great feature.
(3) If you want to design your own template and have some coding knowledge, you can create your own custom template from scratch.
(4) Unlike other website builders, Jimdo actually provides some good articles (in the support area) explaining the basics of SEO, keyword research and using Google Tools to grow your online business. This is very crucial because it helps your website get traffic instead of just having a pretty looking site without knowing what to do.
Again, like most website builders that I reviewed, there’s always something that’s lacking which I think you need to know first hand as a business owner.
(1) Jimdo has comparatively a lot fewer templates than other companies. The last I counted, they only offer about 40 plus. I personally find that this volume is not sufficient to meet the demand for online businesses nowadays that come in all shapes and sizes.
(2) Although you do not have to pay for domains in the paid plans, it can be very ambiguous as to what is free. Chances are, you are paying for the hosting features and the domain is actually owned by Jimdo.
So in case you want to switch hosting company in the future, you can’t take the domain name along simply because you don’t have any access to it. This could affect your business brand significantly.
(3) With the free domain offer, you also do not know if it comes with WhoIs protection. This is crucial because you need to ensure that your business information is always protected from the public, especially hackers.
(4) If you are really keen to buy a custom domain, Jimdo’s fee isn’t going to be cheap. A top-level domain (TLD) extension (.com, .net, .org) would cost you about $20 plus $12 for one email account.
(5) The Jimdo Pro has a few features that I think are not suitable for a business website – the limited storage (only up to 5GB) and no URL redirects. The way websites get traffic is through content creation (text and media) and limiting the storage would also limit your content at some point. URL redirects, on the other hand, is useful for mending broken links and maintaining content ranking. Without this feature, indexing new content would be slower.
(6) When it comes to blog comments, the default system is also limited. If you want threaded comments (multiple messages in sequence), you’ll have to install external tools such as Disqus or Facebook commenting system. A bit troublesome if you asked me.
(7) Jimdo has a fairly comprehensive knowledge base section, but even so, it doesn’t answer a lot of questions that beginners may have when building their first website.
Unfortunately, there’s no forum for user discussion and live chat is only subjected to time zone availability. Hence the only obvious method to get help is through email support, which is limited to JimdoPro and Business users.
So, What Kind of Website Is Best for Your Online Business
I have been running my own online business for 2 years now and if I need to offer you a piece of solid advice, here’s one – invest in something that works for the long term. You don’t want to be spending your time fixing website errors, getting hacked or worse, having to start all over again.
I use SiteRubix to build my first website and the advantages surpass Jimdo in many ways;
(1) SiteRubix hosting runs on WordPress, which is an open-source free platform for building websites. You get to use thousands of plugins and themes to customize, design and boost your rankings on the search engines. In other words, it’s a very flexible yet powerful platform.
(2) It offers very affordable top-level domain fees, ranging from $13.99 to $15.99, which includes email account, support and most importantly, WhoIs protection.
Your domain purchase is also a standalone product, which means you can bring it along if you decide to host your website in another company.
(3) There’s no limit to how many posts/pages/media that you can upload to a website. SiteRubix helps online businesses to thrive instead of limiting their expansion.
(4) When it comes to commenting, WordPress is probably one of the best that you can expect out there. The native commenting system allows you to set threaded comments up to 10 levels deep. This will get a lot of readers engagement going which is also great for your website SEO.
(5) SiteRubix’s knowledge base resources come in the form of online training provided by Wealthy Affiliate, which is a community that helps people to start their own online business from scratch. You’ll learn everything from website building, keyword research to getting highly targeted traffic for your online business.
Here are just some of the classrooms that you can get involved with for questions and discussions.
Start Your Online Business With a Good Foundation
So, is Jimdo any good for your online business? Not for the long term, I would say. What you want at the end of the day is traffic to your site and WordPress, by far, offers much more visibility than any other platform that I know of. Once you start using it, you’ll never look back.
I hope this review has given you some basic understanding of building a business website. If you have any thoughts or questions, just let me know in the comment below and I’ll get back to you as soon.