Strikingly Website Builder Review 2021
Company Overview, Pricing, and Features
There’s no doubt that free website builders have become quite popular. They allow an average person to easily become their own web designer and have their website up and running quickly. Somewhat surprisingly, the results from these free site builders are astonishingly good.
In this competitive market, it is getting harder for new companies to promote their platforms. However, Strikingly has found its way in, and it comes in the form of one-page websites.
Instead of allowing users to play around with their editor and make a mess, Strikingly lets users only build one-page websites. If you’re not sure what one-page websites are, you have probably already seen multiple examples. Most likely, you simply had no reason to examine them and realize what they were.
Basically, instead of linking multiple pages to one homepage, these one-pagers share all essential content on one, usually long, page. So, you can still have links in the menu at the top of your site, but those links only guide you to the connected sections farther down the page.
These kinds of pages have become quite popular, and if you’re looking to create one, Strikingly could be the right choice for you!
Who should use Strikingly (best for):
Strikingly is best for personal or small business one-page websites that need to look good. It’s even suitable for casual bloggers and small store owners who want to sell a few physical items through this landing page. It allows you to effortlessly move through the editor, add sections and style according to your wishes. It even lets you start a simple online store and sell physical or digital goods.
While it is great for simple projects, you will have problems doing anything more complex with a Strikingly website. If you are an aspiring blogger or plan to grow your business, Strikingly won’t help you much. In this case, you should probably start thinking about competitors like WordPress, Squarespace, and Wix.
Strikingly key features
One-page websites – completely dedicated to building one-page sites that are easily customizable through sections.
Simple-commerce – start selling a single item for free or create a simple online store with ease.
Built-in analytics – quickly see what’s happening with your site, check visits and learn from easy-to-read charts.
Simple blog – write and manage a blog without any hassle.
In this review, I will create a free account and see what Strikingly is capable of doing. I will explore the entire platform, create a free website to understand it better, and hopefully help you in choosing a free website platform you can use for your own first website.
Detailed Strikingly review
- Ease of use
- Design flexibility
- Domain options
- Mobile site optimization
- SEO (Search Engine Optimization)
- Blogging functions
- eCommerce integration
Ease of use
Because of its simple goal to let users create landing pages and smaller personal or business websites with simple sections, Strikingly is quite straightforward to use.
From the very moment that you open the page to register your free account, you will realize that this free website builder is aimed at beginners and people who like simple things. All you have to do is fill in your name and email address along with a chosen password, and your platform is ready to go.
Everything in Strikingly is a joy to use. Selecting templates, as well as controlling the design and settings of your new site is always just one click away. Everything is quite intuitive, and even complete beginners will only need a few minutes browsing around to learn how to create what they need.
If you have worked with any other free site builder companies, you will already know that the first thing that happens after creating an account is selecting a template. Strikingly had just over fifty templates when I did my research (I believe there will be even more very soon), split into several categories.
Whether you decide to choose your template according to the niche you’re in, or by the look of the potential layout, I’m sure you will find one appropriate for your needs. Keep in mind that as you look through the templates, you can open examples in a new window to give them a closer look.
Unlike some other builders that are heavily dependent on which template you select, anything that you choose during this stage can be easily changed later on. I will talk you through the design options in the next section.
Since this platform is dedicated to one-page websites, everything revolves around sections. A section is actually a group of elements that are put together to form a sophisticated unit. For example, you will find parts designed for showing information, social feed, blog, store items, and so on.
Unlike other free website builders that will only allow you to add elements one by one, Strikingly is completely section-oriented. This means that you can’t add individual components, only predesigned section layouts that can be edited afterward.
While this sounds like a big drawback, keep in mind that this platform is tailored for one-pagers. However, each section lets you customize some of the elements included. Users can choose their order, edit content, images, and so on.
Strikingly comes with integrated Unsplash, which means that you receive access to a plethora of free photographs. You can also upload your own photos at any time. If you click on any of the images, you can even edit them directly from the Editor. This means that you can do everything needed without minimizing the window in order to open a 3rd picture app.
I liked their simple customization options and animations that bring one-page websites to life. But, unfortunately, not all section styles are free. In order to have them all, you will have to subscribe to one of the premium plans. More about pricing later.
Just like with all other free website builders, the free version of Strikingly comes with a free subdomain. This means that you can choose one part of your domain name, the result being something like yoursitename.mystrikingly.com. While you start with an automatically generated name for your site, it’s good to know that you can always go to settings and change the name of your website. I had no problems creating fsgtestwebsite.mystrikingly.com.
While there’s nothing wrong with a free subdomain, you should also know that it comes along with Strikingly branding showing on your site.
If you want to use a custom domain and remove their branding, you guessed it – you will have to choose one of their paid plans to connect your domain or buy a new one.
Mobile site optimization
Strikingly lets you quickly review your new website on desktop, tablet, and smartphone without actually having to load the domain onto a different device. To do this, simply click on one of the preview icons, and the Editor will show the result.
This looks great. I am honestly surprised at how great sites created with Strikingly look on other devices.
However, other than the ability to preview a site, there’s not much else you can do to optimize it. If you want to remove a section for mobile users, maybe hide images, or change the font size, that won’t be possible. You just have to hope that everything you placed on the site will behave well when rendered on smaller screen sizes.
SEO (Search Engine Optimization)
Search Engine Optimization with Strikingly is very limited. You are only able to change basics such as titles and descriptions. You can also quickly add social imagery and favicons, but that’s pretty much it. When it comes to pictures, you get to add an alt description, which may help in the optimization.
Since you’re placing everything on one page, it is actually harder to control the optimization for search engines. That’s probably one of the reasons why there are fewer SEO options available. Still, I would like to see a few more options added in the future.
Although not created as a blogging platform, Strikingly does come with a blog section that allows you to start a personal online diary pretty quickly. All you need to do is add the right section, and blogging can start.
Their blogging section comes with helpful customization options, so that you can control the background images, choose how your recent posts show up in the section, and how many articles will get to show on the front page. If you decide to stick one of the posts there, you’re only one click away.
Also, creating new blog posts and managing old ones is quite intuitive. However, you should be aware that you’re stuck with the basics. Yes, writing and inserting media is there. Yes, you can categorize your articles. You can allow or delete comments, and view analytics, but that’s it.
If this is your first site and blogging isn’t going to be your primary focus, you’ll be okay with what Strikingly offers. However, if you have any significant blogging plans for the future, I strongly suggest checking out some other competitors or move directly to a self-hosted WordPress option.
Surprisingly, Strikingly comes with eCommerce options. And to make it even better, your new online store is just another section on your one-page site.
You can quickly start selling physical products on your site. With Strikingly, you can arrange them into categories, manage shipping, taxes, and start accepting payments. Obviously, eCommerce options are limited and Strikingly isn’t your ideal platform if you have hundreds of items. But if you have only a few items to sell, Strikingly can help you to manage everything and actually earn you money too.
Recently, Strikingly introduced an upgrade to their Simple Store. Now you can even sell digital goods, where Strikingly will automatically create download links for your customers. Not bad!
Strikingly pricing and plans
Strikingly offers a free plan with some limitations. All paid plans come with a risk-free 14-day free trial. Plus you have the option to go for a monthly, 2-year, 3-year, 4-year and 5-year plan.
- Free of charge.
The free plan comes with a mystrikingly.com domain and unlimited free sites. You get to use up to 5Gb monthly bandwidth and have 500 MB of total storage (per site). Surprisingly, you can even start an online store for free if you only want to sell one item.
- $12 per month.
The Limited plan allows you to connect a custom domain, and you get to publish two sites with limited features. Monthly bandwidth is increased to 50GB, and you get 1GB of total storage.
- $20 per month.
The Pro plan also comes with a custom domain and three sites with PRO features. This plan comes with unlimited bandwidth and 3GB of storage. You get access to the Strikingly App Store, mobile action buttons, and more.
- $49 per month.
Comes with everything from the PRO plan and increases storage up to 10GB. With this plan, you get to send newsletters to up to 2000 contacts, and your simple store lets you sell up to 500 products.
Strikingly has a complete knowledge base that helps you learn how to move throughout the editor and work with settings. There are even videos recorded for beginners, so you can learn how to change language settings, add background images, change the style of your site, and much more.
Unlike some competitors that act like they’re trying to hide contact information, Strikingly has everything ready for you in the corner of the page. So, accessing documentation is just a click away.
After contacting their support, I immediately received an automated response. And even before I managed to open and read the email, an actual answer popped up! I was amazed by the fact that it took them less than two minutes to respond! Wow, and that was even on a Sunday during lunch hours. There’s no question – the support is fantastic, and you can obviously count on them no matter when you decide to work on your new site.
Strikingly pros and cons
Ease of use – Strikingly is extremely easy to grasp. Even first-time website owners won’t need much time to learn how their editor works.
Support – everything is well-documented, and the support service responds extremely fast (less than two minutes in my example).
Focus – while most of their competitors try to do everything, Strikingly focuses mostly on one-page sites, even when it comes to an online store. This is a huge plus, as it doesn’t make things complicated, and they do the job well.
Editor – the editor looks & works nicely. It’s comfortable to work with and comes with all of the options you want from a simple editor.
Mobile optimization – while it’s possible to preview a mobile site that’s automatically created for you, it is not possible to edit any parts of the responsive website if you decide to move or remove an element or section.
Pricing – if you decide to remove Strikingly branding and connect a custom domain, you will have to pay more than what competitors are charging.
Examples of sites built with Strikingly
To understand what you can create with Strikingly, you should take a look at a few sites already built with their system.
If you’re not sure about Strikingly, these three websites will make you want to start your new account immediately.
Tribewanted — Created with Strikingly
Red Paper Plane — Created with Strikingly
Edd Baptista — Created with Strikingly
Can I have a free site with Strikingly?
Yes, Strikingly lets you create a free site. You can actually create as many free websites as you want with your account. You get to use up to 5Gb monthly bandwidth and have 500 MB of total storage (per site). Another great thing is that you can even start an online store for free where you sell only one item.
Can I sell digital products and services with Strikingly?
Yes, Strikingly allows you to sell digital products and services via their Simple Store. Everything is as simple as the entire platform – just upload a file and add a price tag. After a customer purchases a digital item from your store, they will receive a download link and have up to 72 hours before the link expires.
What transaction fees does Strikingly charge?
If you’re interested in selling through Strikingly, you will be happy to know that there is no fee! Start your store, add items, and start selling without having to pay anything extra to Strikingly.
Can I use my domain with Strikingly?
The free version of Strikingly comes with its subdomain. However, it is possible to use a custom domain if you opt for any of their paid plans. Then, you can quickly connect your existing domain or purchase a new one that will show your Strikingly site.
Can I start a blog with Strikingly?
Yes, definitely. Strikingly comes with a blog section that allows you to start a blog quickly. It is relatively easy to write new posts, manage existing ones, add media files to them, and so on. Since the editor is user-friendly, you will also get a chance to style your blog section easily and focus on the articles you want. However, Strikingly is not suitable for serious blogging as it lacks a number of features and options that other platforms offer.
Unlike other free website builders, Strikingly targets users who only want to build one-page websites. And it does that quite well. If you do not have any specific design requirements in mind, Strikingly will be able to satisfy your website needs.
Adding a blog or creating a simple online store is available easily, but be prepared for only the most basic settings. As soon as you decide to step up your game, you will need a different site, so you have to understand that Strikingly comes with a single purpose – helping beginners create a simple landing page that does not need to grow into anything more. If you’re okay with that, go ahead and create your account – it’s free.