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What Website Builder is Best for Local SEO?

One of the questions every business must answer is what platform they should use for their website to be successful in bringing in new clients. In this episode we detail how to choose between the most common platforms: Squarespace, Wix, Wordpress, and Proprietary Web Builders like GoDaddy or other industry-specific builders.

This is another must-listen for every business owner.

Jamie:    All right, Adam. Hey Jamie. Oh, here we go. Another local SEO in 10,

Adam:    I'm very excited about today's topic.

Jamie:    Oh, good. Well, I know it's not my topic.

Adam:    That's okay. We'll get to one of yours someday!

Jamie:    I'm keeping a very long list. Oh boy. Great. The people's interests you have. I want to give the people what they want. So

Adam:    As do I, that's why today's podcast is what website builder is best for local SEO. This actually comes from a few of our clients who have come to us. And once we take on their, their site and their presence, we realize right away, they are in a bad spot. Ooh. Yes. So that's why today. I thought it was so important just to go briefly over, you know, a few of the most popular website builders, and then just give my opinion about them. You know, everyone's got an opinion, so that's okay. But this is my opinion and it's based on a lot of experience working with each of these platforms and sometimes just going crazy, just getting so frustrated with each of these platforms. So I just want to make sure that for any of our listeners who are out there a great way for you to kind of take control of this yourself before you go too far down a road that you can't come back from this is a good podcast for you to check out.

Jamie:    All right.

Adam:    Okay. So first one I'll talk about is called Squarespace. You, you probably know Squarespace if you're a photographer, these are great sites. They, you build, you can build a beautiful website with Squarespace. Now it is an all in one platform. That means you go there. They have a, what you see is what you get kind of menu options. They have premade templates that are great. That it's very beautiful. So that's being said for SEO purposes, for stuff like schema or site descriptions, stuff that you want to actually add to your pages, Squarespace is really tough and it's really cumbersome to work through. And if you really want to add individual groups of schema to different pages to help with their ranking, you're not going to be able to do it very well. In Squarespace. Another downside I've found is that Squarespace, like some of the other ones is really it's slow.

Adam:    It, it is a, and that, that slowness really, you can't do anything about it. They give you a bunch of suggestions, you know, make your file size, you know, as small as you can and, you know, change your image sizes. So they're really small when you do that, of course you sacrifice all kinds of good stuff that goes with that image. But even if you do that, it's still slow. So Squarespace if you want a website that you, you have to do the marketing for it, I'm not going to suggest it probably two out of five, but if you have a choice you know, look for an alternative, in my opinion, all right, what's one that you do recommend a better than that would be Wix wigs. It is another website builder. They're, you know, they're super aggressive, they're getting larger and larger all the time.

Adam:    They're you know, build a website and, you know, 30 minutes, that kind of stuff. They have some great templates. They do also they've done a lot of work with their SEO. And so that's really good. When you make a WIC site if they have a an SEO wizard that will take you through a lot of the basics. So that's great. That's awesome. If you want to do more, though, if you want to add specialized schema, a Wix is not going to let you do that. So that's not, that's a minus. And just like with Squarespace, you're going to get stuck with slower load times for your website. Another one with Wix is you have to, they have a separate basically interface for making a mobile version of your site. And so you'll make this great, beautiful desktop version.

Adam:    And a lot of times people will forget. They have to fully go into the mobile version and do that one as well. So that can be a cumbersome and it, if you make an update on the desktop version, bam, you gotta make that update on the mobile version as well. So that can be kind of cumbersome. And once again, slow, slow, slow a Wix. We can't get it fast enough, even though they're always trying to make this, then they know that this is a weakness and they're always trying to improve it. That's good. I like that.

Jamie:    Well, that is good. And I think Wix don't, they have tons of plugins and widgets and things to make things a little bit easier.

Adam:    Yeah. Definitely. They do. And I like Wix I'm, I'm a platform agnostic for the most part. Wix is a great platform. Squarespace is a great platform. Wix is kind of more advanced. There's a lot more users that, that use Wix. And they're both of those platforms because they're paid, they're always trying to improve right there. They're great competitors. And so that, that means they're always trying to get faster and try and do, you know, improve their functionality of the site, all that stuff. That's what I really like about both of those companies.

Jamie:    And then the biggest issue though, you know, for this podcast is which one's best for SEO.

Adam:    Well, so that SEO part, that the, a slow part of that, right? The, that affects your SEO. So Google wants your website to be really, really, really fast. And if it's not, that means people will click on your site and then they wait, wait, and then they leave. So Google keeps track of that, right? So they are, if your site's not fast, that can hurt your local or your regular, you know, your SEO. So that is something that you have to really pay attention to. So if you're going to make a Wix page or a Squarespace page, you have to really limit the amount of images, which sucks, right? You want to make a beautiful site, but you also at the same time, you just want it as fast as possible and beautiful, but you know, there's a trade off there. So the sites where I see where it's, you know,

Jamie:    Opening pages, video, and it's like a, like a drone flying overhead or something like that you're saying that Google with does not like that.

Adam:    Not so much I, I'm not a big proponent of putting video at the, at the hero image stage of a website but on other platforms and I, and Wix and Squarespace, they will tend to load the other stuff first. But yeah, that hero image will wait. You know, you'll have maybe a preview image of it and then it'll start. So that's not, not that big of a deal, but just the basic speed of the website with Wix and Squarespace, you don't got them. So next one, a WordPress WordPress is an open source platform. Probably if you know anything about websites, you've heard about it. It it can be you know, the learning curve can be tough, but the good thing about WordPress is you can make your site pretty fast with it extremely fast. There are plugins that you can add that will make your site super fast.

Adam:    That's good for speed. The other good thing about WordPress is you can add schema to your heart's content. You can have multiple schema on one page with the other platforms we discussed. You cannot right now, WordPress, you can, you know, go crazy with schema. That's awesome for me. I love that. So WordPress, very extensible on and that, those that's, that's why most right now, and you, and most of the internet is built on WordPress. But you know, there always, you know, all of these companies are always trying to get more and more of the web basically built on them. So WordPress is really good. So that's probably my, my choice, if I were to be starting a website right now, I choose WordPress just because it's, it's very, very extensible. You can really do everything that you want on WordPress to keep everything fast and do all the stuff you need for SEO.

Adam:    It's got a great history and it's open source. It's good to last one. I want to talk about, and these are the, these if you own a dental practice, if you're a real estate agent, if you're even an accountant, if you're any of these, there are companies that target you and those companies target you and they say, Hey, we're going to build a website for you. That website will charge you 200 bucks a month, or yeah, we'll just charge you 200 for now. And so they go, Oh, wow. And then we'll build a great website for you. And then you'll pay us a hundred bucks a month forever.

Jamie:    And who owns that website?

Adam:    Not you.

Jamie:    Who owns that domain name?

Adam:    You do hopefully. And the other thing is all the content is it's not unique to your business, right? So they don't right. And you can test, you can test, you can test that, right? You can do a copy paste into Google search and you can see how many other companies use that exact wording. That's no good, very, very bad for SEO. Very, very bad. So the other thing that these companies get with these website builders, the problem with them is a lot of times they're built on an engine that's super old. So instead of, you know, if you say, I want to put a button, Oh, okay. That's a call to support, or I want to make another column, Oh, that's another call to support. And a lot of times support just emails you back and says, sorry, we're working on it.

Jamie:    Yeah.

Adam:    And then nothing changes. So if you're one of these in, in one of these industries where you're targeted by these companies, you want to really, really understand that once you're in there, you're in there and getting out of those contracts or getting anything, moving away from them, they make it as extremely uncomfortable and difficult as possible.

Adam:    And, you know, I understand who can blame them, I guess. But you know, when you're stuck with a website builder and we, we definitely have clients that are, and the functionality of them, very, very limited. If you say, Hey, we want to put schema on this page, they freak out. Cause they've never heard of it. So that's really, really you know, that's bad. So if you, you know, you, if you're thinking of going with one of these companies, you want to ask them, can we just go on use WordPress? And almost all of them will say, yeah, no problem. Because they can put a widget on that WordPress site of yours and add all the functionality to your site that you, and you'll still keep that, that site you'll keep everything speedy and extensible, all that stuff, all the good stuff. So that's, you know, just say, no thanks, but you know, if they have great if they have a great functionality functionality, like for a real estate website, you know, they have ways that where you can check the, you know, open properties and stuff like that. They're always a way to integrate into your WordPress site. There's always a way. So that's why WordPress is great. Those website builders, you know, don't do it.

Jamie:    Got it. Well, it sounds like you're either going to pay upfront or are you going to pay down the road?

Adam:    Yeah. And if you pay down the road, you're going to get, you're going to get really, really upset because you know, you, you're in a two or two

Jamie:    Years yeah.

Adam:    Two year contract with somebody and you've paid, you know, three or $4,000 for a site that you can't really do what good things with, with SEO. So stay away if you can or make sure that you're able to just add it, add that functionality to your WordPress site, and then you can just pay hosting fees. That's that's also nice.

Jamie:    One of my cousin does websites.

Adam:    That's a whole other podcast. We want to make sure that you're, you're, you're the person or the company that you choose, you know, they're, they're able to explain why they're doing something and then what they're doing for you. Right.

Jamie:    Got it. And so don't use your seventh grade cousin either.

Adam:    Yeah. Cause you know, the point of all this of SEO is so that your website is a marketing machine for your business. Not the other way around. Right. If you're doing the marketing for your business only then you're why do you need a website?

Jamie:    Well, yes. And it's kind of a billboard for how professional your businesses. So if it looks like it was done by a middle schooler, you know, that's your, that's your outward appearance on the internet. So that's a, I see it all the time. It's a, it's tough.

Adam:    So do we, we just, we want to make sure that your, your website, its function is to be bringing in business. Yeah. That's what its main function is. And if you have your, you know, your, your homie do it for you, then it's gonna fail at that number one function.

Adam:    But what if they took classes at the community college? Yes. Go for it. Then you can call somebody like us and we can help. That's all. That's, that's a good, good way to end this.

Jamie:    Yes, exactly. It's a million more questions. So definitely if you have questions, reach out to us on our Facebook page, local SEO in 10, make sure to share this podcast out with any business owners that you know about, especially solo preneurs, cause they seem to get taken advantage of the most. And also if if you can, we would certainly appreciate it, you taking the time to write a review of five stars, of course, on whatever platform you are listening to. And it really helps our rankings really gets the podcast out and we help more business owners.

Adam:    That's right. Thanks a lot. Everybody have a great day.