WebBuildersGuide.com earns commission from some of the web builders and hosting providers listed on this website. Learn more
Mac users once had their own Mac based website builder, iWeb. But for more than 10 years it has not been supported by the developer, and there are reasons for this.
Question – what is the best website builder for mac? – remains open for Mac users. In this article, I will try to understand Mac compatible web design software in more detail and help with the best choice.
What website builders have replaced iWeb?
The iWeb story will always find intense discussions, and deserves a mention here. This template based WYSIWYG website builder from Apple Inc saw the light of the day in 2006, but had a bumpy ride before the news of Apple discontinuing development on the tool emerged in 2011.
Several problems that website developers and enthusiastic website experimenters faced, including limited HTML editing facility, lack of features for non-MobileMe user websites, separate CSS files instead of single site wide stylesheet, remained uncorrected, and left a great void in terms of a dependable website building tool for Mac users.
Thankfully, there are ample reliable and efficient website building options for Mac users today. What’s more, you can pick from a fair number of options in both offline and online categories of website developers. We tell you more about how website builders belonging to these categories differ from each other, and also introduce you so the most powerful and feature rich website builders for both categories.
Online website builders for Mac
Online website builders is the perfect solution if you need to build a website on Mac or any other OS. The fact is that modern online software has a number of advantages that distinguish them favorably compared to offline website development programs that we have known since the 90s.
The most important advantage of the online Mac website builder software is its ease of use. Indeed, you don’t need to download any distribution to install on your Mac. Instead, you sign up with the website builder itself and start building your website right away. All operations for creating and editing your website will take place exclusively in the cloud. This means that you won’t have the likely technical and security problems that are inherent in many offline software.
Secondly, online Mac website builders are all-in-one box solutions. This means that all the worries about providing a domain name, web hosting, SSL certificate and even updating your website are all taken care of by the website builder. For example, if you use offline website builders for Mac, you will only be provided with the program itself for creating a website. Further, you will have to buy a domain name on your own and connect it to the website, separate SSL and web hosting. As a rule, these are all different services that are paid for and maintained separately.
So we found out why online Mac website builder software is better than offline. Let’s now find out which ones are the best and why.
The easiest way to do this is to put together the 5 best website builder software for Mac in a comparison table. It’s much more visible that way. Below will be a description of each software.
NOTE:Don’t be surprised that all five website builders got 5 points on Easy of Use. Not all website builders can boast of ease of use and intuitive interface. But here I purposefully selected five website builders that are as simple and convenient as possible even for beginners. But if you check out my other review of 10 Best Small Business Website Builders, for example, you’ll see that not all website builders score that high on ease of use.
Undoubtedly among the most highly regarded website builders, Wix is a one stop shop for all your website building requirements. Whether you want to create a vibrant portfolio website with lots of graphics or a full-fledged web store with advanced selling tools integrated – Wix is a very good choice!
Wix is designed in such a way that a websites created on it display perfectly on Mac and Sagari on iPhone. I love that even when you’re editing a website on a Mac, Wix has taken care of a few things that can be a bit tricky for Mac users. An example is the inclusion of a scroll bar in the editor for Mac.
With arguably the simplest drag and drop styled website builder you can get to use, and templates that not only blow your mind at the very first sight but also easily lend themselves to customization for the discerning website builders, Wix is an ideal pick for all sorts of website building projects. If you’re not ok with free version you can always upgrade it to premium one since Wix offers pretty cheap prices for its packages. Let’s explore the amazing features with more detail.
Hundreds of customizable templates and a drag and drop builder: the best of all worlds – You are bound to be dazzled with the number of themes that Wix offers. Then, you can go about customizing all these themes to the extent you want with the easy to use customization tools offered by the interface. To add to that, the drag and drop styled website building interface is easy to use and makes website building a breezy task.
Integrated ecommerce tools for you to scale up your business setups – Enjoy the blessings of ecommerce without investing hefty amount or days of time into creating your web store, as Wix brings to you the world of ecommerce with its simple integrated shopping cart and payment gateways, along with advanced selling tools such as shipping and tax rate calculators and marketing tools such as newsletters.
More visibility for your website via SEO and a mobile optimized website – Expect your Wix empowered websites to quickly register huge traffic, because of the SEO features that Wix packs into its online website building interface. Moreover, you get an automatically mobile optimized website along with the desktop version, thus ensuring that your audiences manage to connect with you at all times.
There’s more up Wix’s sleeve; here’s a quick look:
Explore the world of thousands of free images and several fonts to make your website visually delightful
Single page and other templates help you get on with the development work quickly, thus saving you time across the time duration of the project
Password protected web page access privileges to help you control as to who gets to see what content on your website
VIDEO Tutorial – How to build a free website on WIX? Step-by-step guide
Whether you want to nail a killer design for your portfolio website or want to present your literary works and opinions in a stunning format that nobody manages to ignore, Webnode is the online website builder that will help you in your sojourn. A whopping 15,000,000 website have depended upon Webnode and that’s enough to establish the credibility of this website builder. If you are looking for a wholesome website builder to create a website for Mac, look no further than Webnode, and here are all the reasons that can convince you about such a choice:
The quickest route to a great website – With Webnode’s drag and drop website editor, all you need to create content rich pages is to drag the desired content element to the area you want your content to appear at and drop it there, post which you can populate your text, video or image content. Moreover, you get various widgets that make your website look much lively, along with making it functionally richer.
Unlimited bandwidth and round the clock support for your complete peace of mind – As you begin to register more traffic, your concerns about the website remaining up and running 24×7 heighten. With unlimited bandwidth feature, such concerns will be mitigated. Moreover, you will find ready and responsive support from the customer care team so that you don’t get stuck anywhere while creating the website.
Templates spread over dozens of categories – You will find the category coverage of readymade templates from Webnode to be groundbreaking. Moreover, these templates look absolutely dazzling and can be a great boost to the aesthetic appeal of the website you’ve planned.
Here are a few more catchy benefits rolled out by Webnode:
A mobile optimized website that allows your audiences to connect with you even while they are on the move
SEO features that empower your website to reach the higher ranks in Google and Yahoo search engine result pages
Ecommerce features that help you transform your website into a web store, with features such as integrated payment gateways, attractive product pages, and a smart checkout process
Squarespace is a popular website builder aimed at small businesses and solopreneurs. Widely acclaimed for its stunning designs it is among the top website builders for Mac. It powers 2,596,715 sites today. That accounts for 14% of all sites built using website builders.
Initially, Squarespace was considered worth using only for building static, brochure-like sites. Today, it comes with a whole suite of eCommerce and marketing tools that make it ideal for building any kind of website. The top features that make Squarespace shine are:
Allrounder solution – Squarespace is a hosted solution, so you can get rid of the tech handling duties. And it is an easy-to-use CMS, which makes it quick to get started with and excel at. Both these combined, take a lot off of your plate. You just need to select a template, tweak the design a bit to make it your own, and hit ‘Publish’. No need to punch in lines of code or troubleshoot server setups. Plus, you can buy a domain here too, which means all your needs can be met at the same place.
Maximum design and visual appeal – Most website builders offer a few templates and themes for free and many others for a charge. Squarespace offers only 140 templates. All for free though. What sets Squarespace’s templates apart from its contemporaries? Its templates are beyond beautiful. They are professionally designed and so well thought out that you can actually use them as it is. Squarespace also offers royalty-free images from Unsplash’s image library, for free. You can also try Squarespace’s integration with Getty, to find paid image options.
Mobile responsiveness at its best – All Squarespace templates are mobile-responsive. So no matter what device your site is viewed on, it will look stunning. That’s good for user engagement and SEO both.
Other Squarespace features worth applauding:
Squarespace lets you quickly enable Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP), which is a Google-backed project for ensuring faster load times on mobiles
All components of the site are easily editable
It is possible to add custom CSS to your Squarespace site for greater customization
There are many content management and blogging tools available in the Squarespace dashboard. These make it good for blogging too
Creating multilingual websites is simple with Squarespace as the tools are available in-built
If there are two keywords that can succinctly describe this online website builder for Mac, they have to be ‘easy’ and ‘impressive’. You will find tasks getting completed speedily once you get the hang of the amazing drag and drop website editor interface of Jimdo. Then, there are all the enhancement features such as ecommerce and blogging to help you enjoy the maximum capabilities out of your website for Mac. Let’s quickly run through the most prominent features offered by Jimdo.
Innovative elements for spicier web pages – Adding interesting elements such as guestbooks, flash content, Flickr, Facebook, Twitter, blog, store catalog, and RSS feed widgets is just a matter of clicks. With so many widgets to choose from, you can depend on Jimdo to help you with a content rich website. Moreover, you can also plug in multimedia content widgets such as photo galleries, YouTube videos and audio players.
Wholesome support system – With FAQs, forum, video tutorials and detailed guides, Jimdo had a massive library of helpful content that you can turn to whenever you get stuck using any of the features offered by Jimdo. Moreover, depending upon the plan you choose, you will have priority support so that your website for Mac doesn’t fall behind the timelines you planned for it.
These additional features also deserve a quick mention:
Automatically mobile optimized website is created for you as you go about working on your desktop website
You can use Jimdo to integrate a shopping cart into your website with the addition of product pages, thus enabling yourself to engage in ecommerce with minimum hassle and investment
Social sharing tools that help you increase the chances of benefitting from the coveted multiplier effect, along with integrated blogging feature
Weebly is a website builder that lets you create a truly functional site even for free. A feature-loaded free plan is one of the several reasons it is on our list of the best website builders for Mac. Plus, it offers several value-for-money paid plans that you can choose from.
A capable site builder, it is more focused on helping users build eCommerce stores. It currently powers over 50 million sites and eStores. And those on a tight budget can definitely try leveraging it for their needs. Here are the key reasons why Weebly is worth choosing
Simplified drag-and-drop editor – Weebly is focused predominantly on the eCommerce space. Thus, it is not unexpected that it is design-focused. What’s great is that it is also simple to design a Weebly site. All you have to do is drag the elements you need from the left side and drop them on the page. You can add elements like simple text boxes, images, product listings, and more.
Weebly App Center for additional functionalities – The out-of-the-box functionalities that Weebly offers are by no means lacking. But for greater customization and more features, Weebly offers hundreds of more apps. These apps are available via the Weebly App Center for as little as $3.
A wide array of guiding documents and proactive support – Weebly has a lot of resources that are ideal for beginners. The resources include everything from basic setup to SEO and customization. Weebly also boasts of an active phone and live chat support for paid plan holders. Free users have access to proactive and attentive support via email.
Other Weebly features that make it a great pick include:
The Weebly mobile app lets you build your site even when you are away from your Mac. The app also allows working offline and you can sync changes upon connecting to the Internet
A high degree of security and faster page-load speed. These are essential features for any site today
Freebies like a free domain name for a year with all Weebly paid plans. With the free plan, you get to host your site for free on Weebly’s subdomain
Extensive customization ability as it allows using custom code
Easy scalability for growing businesses. You can upgrade your Weebly anytime to meet your increased needs
Hang on, how do I decide whether to go for an offline website builder or one of the online ones? Well, it’s been a tough one to answer, and continues to be so. The best approach is to understand the prime differences between the two modes, and just pick the ones that are most important for you in terms of your website designing experience.
Offline website builders are software packages that can be purchased or downloaded on to the hard drive, and then installed on the Mac. So, you don’t need an internet connection to create your website. These packages make website development easy with their advanced interfaces that don’t require you to know HTML or CSS to be able to create content rich and visually appealing pages.
If you love being in control, it’s an easy pick for you; offline website builders have always appealed to those who like having things entirely their way. If you intend to use the website to create an infallible reputation for your design services, or wish to unleash a blog that has a personality as strong as yours, you would love the limitless website building experience put together by offline builders.
NOTE:According to my observations, many offline website builders for Mac are abandoned by developers. Including some of those described below. Theoretically, you can buy their software and then use it. But you will run into problems in the form of outdated templates, lack of responsiveness, insufficient functional options. Therefore, I still recommend paying attention to online Mac website creators. For more info check out the first comment on this article kindly left by one of our readers.
Mac users find it easy to get addicted to the user experience offered by their computers and laptops, and might not want to be dictated by a web based user interface that online website builders throw at them. If you are one such Mac addict, go for an offline editor for a fulfilling website creation experience. You will be benefited by knowing more about three of the most relied upon offline website builder for mac; here they are:
With a completely code free website building interface, readymade page types that help you come up with finished pages much sooner than otherwise, and stunning themes to base your websites on, all these are just the beginning of what’s arguably the most popular all purpose offline website building software for Mac.
RapidWeaver packs all kinds of amazing website building functions into a neat and intuitive website that’s as easy to navigate as it is effective. There’s a lot more to RapidWeaver than what meets the eye at first, and we explore some of the most integral features of this great offline website builder.
Customizable themes to let you express yourself – With dozens of great themes to pick from, you will have a dazzling look for your website already waiting for you. The best part is that RapidWeaver allows you complete freedom of customization with ample number of options, right from changing the color tones to fonts.
An interface aligned and optimized for quick results – The Project Window provides you quick and convenient access to all recently opened projects, and Bookmarks Manager lets you minimize rework and effort repetition by allowing you to quickly re utilize publishing details. Moreover, there are 11 inbuilt page types that help you publish in a more organized and guided manner.
Integrate site resources like never before – Whether you want to bring in PDFs into your web pages, or any other content element for that matter, all you need to do is to drag the resource into the RapidWeaver sidebar. Then, there’s Theme Consolidation feature that compresses multiple style-sheets in order to ensure fast loading time for your design heavy website.
You might also want to quickly scan through some more features:
SEO stats to provide you actionable inputs for fine tuning your website’s content to attract more traffic
Easy addition of custom code into pages for the more discerning website stylists
Add-ons that enhance the functionality and capability of your website
Automatic navigation menu creation reduces the work load on you and also ensures that there are no embarrassing broken links in even the most complex navigation menus
Automatic XML sitemap generation to make your website easily searchable for updates by search engines
Rage Software product catalog offers you a whopping collection of downloadable tools that help you build a killer website on your Mac, and then lend you advanced functionalities to make it a rage! Right from the offline website builder called EverWeb to the SEO tools like SERank and Domainer, along with newsletter tools like MailShoot, the Rage Software collection is a fully loaded artillery for your website creation needs on your Mac.
Satisfaction for code-o-phobes as well as code maniacs – You will find EverWeb to be a perfect and convenient drag and drop styled website builders that doesn’t even require you to know the first alphabet of coding. However, code lovers don’t have to get disappointed, as EverWeb lets them unleash their coding expertise for creating truly customized websites.
All your SEO needs duly catered to – Unless you’re an SEO expert, you would be at a complete loss of ideas to rely on for making your website visible on search engine result pages. Thankfully, you get the complete catalog of SEO tools, performing tasks right from the submission of your website via automatic XML sitemap creation and submission to smart and layered SEO.
Websites that are accessible everywhere – EverWeb helps you with an automatically mobile optimized website, that can be accessed from all sorts of mobile devices without the layout getting messed up. This saves you a lot of time and makes your website more easily and widely reachable.
EverWeb lets you enjoy your Mac’s user experience along with offering you some more fabulous features such as:
Asset management, using which you can organize your website assets such as documents, images and videos in structured folders
Master pages to help you affect mass changes to your website’s pages, and powerful hyper-linking to ensure that you are able to knit your web pages as well as external content into a great and coherent unit
Readymade themes to help you quick-start your ride to a stunning website
Dozens of image frames, Google Fonts, and shapes for the easy creation as well as visual enhancement of your web pages
How about creating your first website in less than half an hour? If you think that’s beyond the realms of possibility, you need to check out Sandvox, a smart, light and intuitive offline website builder that helps you create an up and running website with 5-7 pages in merely 30 minutes. Select a theme, populate it with pre-made content, and publish your website – that’s the simple 3 step route to a website when you are using Sandvox website builder.
With a super quick drag and drop website builder that you can manage without touching a line of code and advanced features such as social media integration into your website, Sandvox is a winner all the way. Here’s more on it:
Customizable photo galleries – If you are looking to create a visually delightful website, try out the amazing photo gallery options put together by Sandvox. Lightbox effects, slideshows, and a lot more – all these amazing presentation options await you in the form of the drag and drop styled website building interface provided by Sandvox.
Raw HTML objects for widget integration – Don’t be perturbed; it’s nothing that requires coding knowledge. You can use the HTML content element, drag it to where you want the HTML widget to appear, and then paste the code of the widget. In this manner, you can integrate buttons such as PayPal’s Buy Now and Google Maps right into your web pages.
Ample flexibility for HTML, jQuery, and CSS enthusiasts – This offline website builder doesn’t hold you back in any way, and you can use the Code Injection functionality to tweak your web pages or even the entire website to the way you want it to look.
Want to know more about Sandvox? Here goes:
Extensive support to help you make the move to Sandvox from any other website building tool, along with detailed guides that help you sail past sticky issues
Integrated blogging to help you engage your visitors in content exchange through interactive blog posts and comments
Easy video addition, just by dragging the video content element at the position where you want the video to appear on the page
Both Sandvox and RapidWeaver are dead projects. I bought both and Sandbox has not been supported for the past 3+ years and RapidWeaver is no longer actively being developed.
Sandbox was the last true drag-drop website builder app, but it has always been limited by late 1990s style templates and extremely limited advanced functionality.
With RapidWeaver, you have to buy many add-ons like Stacks ($50) after paying $100 for RapidWeaver itself. There are very few free add-on or plug-ins, all cost from $15-$60 each, themes alone will cost $20 or more each. You can easily spend $250 or more on RapidWeaver and the interface is far, FAR from intuitive and no at all WYSIWYG. It is powerful, but there is a steep learning curve and it only works with Stacks and all the add-ons that you will need to buy to make it useable.