Introduced in 2012, Strikingly is a website builder that gives users the power to create a professional-looking website with little-to-no experience in web development. For this reason, and many more that you’ll discover in the rest of our review — Strikingly is a go-to for independent practitioners, freelancers, and small business owners.
Strikingly’s templates are designed for one-page websites — and with only 25 templates to choose from, Strikingly’s the library of designs is certainly on the smaller side compared to competitors Wix and Weebly. For what it lacks in variety and range of design, Strikingly’s templates more than make-up for in modern design, functionality, and ease-of-use. The template library is split into six categories, making it easier to find a design for your website:
You will find the largest selection of templates in the business category, although the list of options does feel limited and owners of niche businesses may struggle to find the right template for their vertical. Having said this, all templates – the layout, design, and colors – are fully customizable and can even be switched during the editing process without losing valuable content already on your site.
And while there is no blank canvas template, pro account holders may access and edit their website’s header and footer code to make further customizations.
Strikingly Pro, Header & Footer Display. Here, you can make customizations to your Header & Footer.
Strikingly also allows you to connect your LinkedIn account to Strikingly’s platform and the editor will use your LinkedIn details to create a personalized and professional-looking site. The platform then lets you design and customize the site and connect your own domain name (if you should choose to upgrade to a Pro account).
Once you’ve selected a template, you are taken to Strikingly’s editor. From there, you can access and edit the layout, background, add titles, buttons and more. Within the editor, you can also add links to valuable resources, products, ads as well as additional pages.
Once you choose a template you can “take a tour.” This is not only helpful but offers an in-depth explanation of the toolbar and insightful hacks on editing your site. Its sidebar editor has three main sections – “Styles” “Settings” and “Sections.”
In the Styles section, you can change the color scheme of your navigation menu and site background and are given several options for colors, title fonts, heading fonts and text fonts depending on the template you use.
You can upload your business’s logo and Strikingly will automatically select your site’s color scheme based on that of your logo. From within the Styles section, you can add personalized animations that will change the way your page scrolls, the way your background looks and add effects when users hover over images.
If you want to change your website’s template, you can go to the template library and select your new design from the Styles section.
The majority of your sites valuable features and elements can be edited from the Settings section, including:
- Basic Info: Access to editing “Basic Info” like your site’s name, category, be it startup, personal or business. Through customized language integrations, you can change the site language, which will affect some system text visitors see on your blog, store, and social feed. This feature does not change the language of your site.
- Domains: From the “Domains” section, you can register a new or connect an already-existing domain. If you do not have a Pro account, you can upgrade and claim your non-branded domain name for $24.95/month.
- Sharing Info: Next up, is “Sharing Info” which lets you add a Favicon (the icon that represents your company in the browser’s tab). There, you can enable a feature called “Twitter Card” which displays text whenever your site receives alerts on Twitter. Additionally, you’re given the option to upload a social share image, the image used when your site is shared to social media sites.
- Mobile Actions: Under the tab labeled “Mobile Actions,” you can further optimize your site for mobile usage by enabling the following features: calling, texting, finding directions and emailing.
Note: You can only edit this element when you upgrade to a Pro plan.
- Header & Footer: In accessing the Header and Footer of your site’s mobile and desktop versions you can choose which features to hide, and which to show at any given time.
- Analytics: Through the “Analytics” tab you can gain insight into your website’s unique visitors such as: How they got to your site and where they came from, along with other insights.
- Multiple Pages: Under this section, you can add up to 20 pages. Each link and URL is automatically created, and you can add a drop-down menu to organize the pages and links.
- Legal: This tab lets you show or hide terms and conditions in the footer of your Simple Store checkout section.
- Collaboration: You can invite friends and colleagues to assist in editing and building your site, giving them access to certain or all pages.
- Custom Code: You can further customize your site’s header and footer through this Pro feature, adding countless third-party integrations.
- Privacy: This valuable feature enables you to hide personal info from search engines (available for Pro users).
- SEO: “SEO Checklist” walks you through all of the key elements of good on-site SEO. Essentially, the list ensures you have the best chance of being picked up by search engines. Below are the requirements:
Set a title, a custom domain, meta descriptions, add categories, a social sharing image, a Favicon, verify your site with Google, use keyword heading text and add alt tags to images — this will help to greatly improve the SEO of your site.
- Services: The final, and perhaps one of its finest features is its integration with Google Analytics. From the “Services” tab under “Settings,” you can easily add your Google Tracking number and begin receiving valuable info on your website’s visitors. You can also view info on verifying and submitting your sitemap to Google and access Google Seach Console.
If you wish to upgrade to Pro, you’ll gain access to yet another key feature, Facebook Pixel Install. This lets users better target key stakeholders in hopes of increased conversion.
Once you exit “Settings” from within the editor you can click “Add New Section.” There, you can add new, manipulate existing sections of your website and change the order of your site (available through Pro).
This gives users access to both free and pro features:
- Simple Store
- Simple Blog
- App Store & HTML
- Social Feed
- Content in Rows
- Content in Columns
- Big Media
- Info Boxes
- Plain Text
- Contact Form
- Sign-Up Form
- Banner Image Slider
- Text + Button Slider
- Make Your Own Section
Users can edit the contact widgets in the footer of the page, add personal emails, numbers, and links to social media.
Below, you can see the various views available to Strikingly users:
The website through tablet view.
Strikingly mobile view.
Viewing your content before it goes live is important, but Strikingly’s preview feature goes beyond that and actually lets users interact with the website as if they were a real end user. You can, therefore, fix any pressing bugs you see throughout this process.
Tip: Play with as many templates as you can, as you may just discover you prefer the look of, feel or responsiveness of a certain template. Your content will even remain there if you choose to switch templates, but it’ll likely need to undergo slight adjustments.
- Over 12 fonts and the ability to create custom colors and color schemes
- Three different kinds of header font (designed for SEO purposes
- With the purchase of a pro plan, images are included for “free.” These are not traditional images, however, rather more like animated images or clip art
Header & Footer
- You can customize your Header & Footer using custom HTML code
- This feature allows users to protect certain private pieces of info such as home phones, and other things that might show up on Google’s radar as a result of having purchased a domain
- Here, you can add custom code and connect to third-party features
- You can create a multi-page website, a traditional website if you will. It allows users to go to focus only on the information you’re presenting on the page at the time
Strikingly sites are mobile-friendly, and each of its templates is easily manipulated for mobile. Users can select which features to hide on their mobile site, and which ones visitors will see. They can choose from the following sections: navigation menu, navigation menu on mobile, navigation buttons and the footer at the bottom of the page.
The company recently introduced its mobile app, which is available for both iOS and Android-enabled devices. The app lets you manage your website on the go, and to create new sites for quick publishing. Once you start editing the website, everything is quite intuitive.
Directly from the app, you can access the following:
Mobile Editor: Within the “Mobile Editor,” you can add new sections, manage pages, sections, content, upload images and more. This comes with iPad Editor, which is more functional and ideal for managing a website when given the option over a mobile device.
Simple Store Order Manager: This alerts you when new orders come in. You can also complete or refund orders that use Paypal or Stripe as a method of payment.
Form Response: Here, you can respond to customers who leave messages.
Users can choose from the below apps to enhance their site and can access them through the “Add New Section” in the editor. All apps and are free (minus MailChimp, HTML, and ECWID):
- HTML (Pro feature)
- ECWID (Pro feature)
- MailChimp (Pro feature)
- Baidu Maps
- Google Calendar
- Google Form
- FaceBook Comments
- Google Maps
Strikingly has 18 apps, split into five sections for easy sorting: eCommerce, Business, Media, Documents and Social. Among the 18, there are a few standout features we’d like to highlight:
PayPal: A free feature, PayPal lets users add a payment button to their site to receive payments.
MailChimp: A part of the Pro package, users can embed an email signup form on their site, and use MailChimp to create, send and track beautifully-designed email newsletters.
ECWID: This feature is a full eCommerce setup designed to manage products as well as receive payments.
HTML: Here you can add any third-party code you wish, or create your own.
Strikingly even has something for your inner blogger, allowing you to start your own blog and enhance it with multimedia, images CTAs, quotes — and give it some extra attention via SEO optimization using proper SEO headings provided by Strikingly.
The look is clean and simple, and there are four sections:
Blog Posts, where you can create a new post.
Blog Settings, where you can manage comments, RSS Feed, Subscriptions, SEO Boost, and Blog Categories. Access the Customs Code section where you can enter the code to customize your site’s Header and Footer. And you can add Google Analytics and view all the specs of your site.
“Simple Store” is an eCommerce feature that enables users to add a monetization aspect to their site through PayPal and Stripe. Its most basic plan on the other hand, only allows you to add one product.
The larger the plan you take, the more products you can add — up to twenty in fact. You also don’t have to worry about processing fees through Strikingly itself, only PayPal and Stripe. To add “Simple Store” head to the “Editor” and select “Add New Section.”
Once you do this, you can add your products, and try out different layouts to customize your new store. After this, set up your payment method (PayPal or Stripe).
The eCommerce feature enables you to add things like product descriptions, pricing and more.
The “Simple Store” editor gives you access to:
- Manage Your Products & Orders
- Offer Coupons
- Manage Payment
- Currency Preference
- Email Notifications
You can contact support via email and should receive a response within a few hours. Unfortunately, there is no phone support, but the company’s email support has proven to be quite effective for those who have used it in the past, and another bonus is that you can access live chat from within the editor itself, for all of your most pressing questions.
From the live chat button, located from within the editor — you can open up a world of possibilities, like launching the help center and watching video tutorials.
You can also head over to Strikingly’s customer service page and find FAQs and get answers to your questions.
Lastly, you can contact Strikingly through its community forum-like platform (Knowledge Base) where users share suggestions on how to improve the Strikingly user experience.
Any domain registered through Strikingly includes domain privacy as well, a great asset for protecting sensitive personal information typically attached to your account. This includes things like emails, telephone numbers, etc.
If the domain you’re looking for is not available, Strikingly will present you with a number of options that are similar.
With just three plans to choose from, Strikingly makes the process of buying a domain, hosting and building your website as easy as 1,2,3.
To obtain a personalized domain, you’ll need to purchase a Pro or Limited plan, or a domain for $24.95. If and when you decide to upgrade, remember, you have access to all of the features completely free for 14 days, although you will be asked to enter credit card information right away. Even though you have to enter credit card information, you are not charged until after the 14th day of usage.
If you go with a yearly plan, the price of the domain will be subtracted from the overall total price you pay in the end.
Regarding freebies, there are tons, and there’s no catch to Strikingly’s free features. There are buy-ups along the way, and this is how Strikingly makes money. We did find this to be extremely transparent in the way it was done. Through of one of its key buy-ups — users can purchase a non-branded domain name. For this, the cost is actually rather slim compared to other website builders — a one-time fee of $24.95.
Below, you can see a pricing breakdown of Strikingly’s monthly plans. Following that is a breakdown of its annual plans.
Note: If you subscribe to a yearly plan today, you will receive a 14-day trial with no payment due until after the trial. If you wish to have the domain right away you will have to pay $24.95 for the domain. If you decide to move forward with a yearly plan, Strikingly will deduct $24.95 from the total balance.
- Available free of charge
Social Media Profile Yes
- Links to profiles embed social feeds on-site through Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, and Instagram
Social Media Share ButtonsYes
- Share, like &, follow buttons
- Can respond to customer questions and feedback submitted through the online form, there is no email feature
- Not available
- Strikingly offers this service to Pro users, allowing them to send email newsletters
- Not available
3rd Party Reviews No
- Not available
Tracking Tools Yes
- Strikingly Analytics Dashboard
- YouTube & Vimeo
- Paypal, EventBrite & ECWID (Pro)
There are a few important things to consider for the future — the first, a one-page website is not a viable option for more than a few years. If your site grows, you will want to create more pages which can help improve SEO. This feature is available through Strikingly Pro.
Additionally, since you cannot add code to the platform (other than the paid version), it is difficult to fully optimize your site.
The platform does innately yield itself to small business owners who are looking for an inexpensive (or free) and easily-navigable website that can be done within a matter of minutes.
Pros & Cons
- Strikingly’s mobile app allows users to manage all aspects of their website, and do so on the go
- From its free to its most expensive plan, Strikingly offers 24/7 customer support
- Its ease-of-use is unmatched
- In terms of imagery, Strikingly has a vast amount of stock images to choose from, which are offered through Unsplash for free
- No phone support, just online
- Lack of SEO tools (although there are some)
- The platform has just 28 templates
Find Out If Strikingly is Right For Your Business
The company prides itself on simplicity, from everything from its name to its user interface, it is clear developers at Strikingly want users to have a simple, hassle-free time when creating their website.
In the end, if you are looking for a beyond-basic website builder with a bit more capabilities, Strikingly just may not be the proper website builder for you. What it does succeed in, is building a strikingly beautiful and minimalistic website.
Overall, I recommend using the service, but also recommend spending a bit of money to ensure the branding removed from your site, and acquire your own unique domain name. Strikingly is a nice website, that doesn’t feel overwhelming AT ALL.
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