Quick Disclaimer: Several free website builders will let you design a decent site – but the one thing none of these builders will give you is a custom domain. If you want your site to look professional (and keep in tone with your brand), you need a paid plan.
As far as I’m concerned, Squarespace is my absolute favorite. It has the best-looking templates around, and even its cheapest plan includes a free custom domain plus unlimited storage. Squarespace has a 14-day free trial, so you can test all of its features before you buy.
There are tons of website builders out there that all promise to help you set up your boutique, which means that picking the best one can be challenging. Plus, not all of them can give you the presentation and sales features you need. Choose wrong and your brand might never see the light of day; choose right and your sales could increase dramatically.
As someone who has done a lot of online shopping – oh yeah, and also tested out all of the web builders on this list – I have a good sense of what works and what doesn’t. The builders on this list all have different levels of functionality, depending on what you want to offer your current and prospective customers. No matter which one you choose, you can rest assured that you’ll end up with a good looking site, with minimal effort on your part and money still in your wallet.
Short on Time? These Are the Best Website Builders for Boutiques in January 2022:
- Wix – Tons of features specially designed for boutique e-commerce sites
- Squarespace – High-quality & customizable templates with great e-commerce features
- SITE123 – Excellent option for your boutique shop if you’re new to web design and development
Each of these web builders come with features or functionality that make them particularly well-suited for online boutiques. Let’s take a look.
If you’re planning to host a boutique website on Wix, you’ll have multiple options for creating it. In addition to Wix’s proprietary drag-and-drop builder, Wix offers a selection of boutique templates. Whether you’re running a flower boutique, fashion boutique, or even a high-end jewelry boutique, you can find a template to fit your needs.
Building a boutique website through Wix provides you with all the following standard features:
- 20GB storage
- Unlimited bandwidth
- $300 in ad vouchers
- Website booster and form builder apps
Also, Wix offers a wide variety of apps in its App Store that can help you add features to your website and boost sales. For example, you can include PayPal functionality, live chat, forms, and other standard features. Some other apps that can help you boost sales include:
- Visitor Hook – Display promotional pop-up offers to customers
- Store Mapper – Provide a map and directions to your brick-and-mortar store, if you have one
- Birthday Club – Create loyalty programs for your customers
- Impressive Slideshow – Show off highlighted products with captivating captions and animations
Note that to sell products on Wix, you must sign up for either its e-commerce or VIP programs. The other plans offer no online store capabilities. To read more about Wix plans and features, check out our in-depth review.
The only significant downside to using Wix over other builders is that the templates aren’t automatically mobile responsive. This means that you may have to use the mobile editor to make adjustments to ensure your site looks good on all devices – this is super important since a lot of online shopping happens on our phones!
If you’re looking to create a website with a distinctively modern aesthetic, then Squarespace is the way to go. Though it might not have a “boutique” category, Squarespace offers over 100 highly customizable online-store templates. Emphasis on customizable.
Thanks to Squarespace’s grid editor, you can edit any template as much as you like until you have the perfect site for your boutique. Even the ones that aren’t store-specific.
All you need to do is go to any page and add a “Products” section. With that out of the way, you can go to the Commerce menu and add products, sales, payment methods, and more.
Besides that, Squarespace offers features such as:
- Unlimited storage
- A free custom domain
- Advanced SEO
What’s more, any Squarespace plan gives you access to third-party extensions such as:
- AfterShip – Advanced shipping management plus a branded tracking page.
- FreshBooks – A one-stop platform for managing financial information.
- Mailchimp for Commerce – A marketing platform designed to keep customers coming back.
If you’re interested, you can check out our in-depth Squarespace review.
Squarespace doesn’t have a free-forever plan at the moment, but you can try any plan with the 14-day free trial. At just [-], however, the Business plan is more than worthwhile to sell your products online and see your business grow.
SITE123 will let you create a boutique website quickly, but some of your design options may be limited compared with those you’d get from other builders. SITE123’s themes and templates offer a quick way to get your store online, but it doesn’t provide as many specialized templates for boutiques as other platforms do.
Your best option would be to find a webstore theme or template that best suits your personal style and customize it using your products and images. SITE123 does support a wide variety of third-party plugins, allowing you to customize your website how you wish. This is where you can add features such as live chat, specialized photo and product galleries, and more.
One thing that SITE123 does better than other website builders is website translation. You can build your website in more than 80 languages to make it multilingual. This is perfect for those wishing to tap into multiple markets where people speak a different language. If you’re curious about all the features SITE123 has to offer, check out our in-depth review.
With SITE123, you’re going to be forced to use Premium if you want to sell. However, its Premium service is somewhat limiting. You get only 10GB of storage and 5GB of bandwidth, which may be restrictive depending on how much media you host on your boutique website. This plan would be much better with unlimited bandwidth and storage.
If you want a bit more control over your boutique website, then WordPress.com may be for you. It offers the most extensive variety of templates in the world with a massive number of boutique templates. There’s a boutique template for every type of store you might want to run.
Also, you can find WordPress plugins for all the following features:
- Live chat
- Shopping carts
- Credit card, PayPal, and e-Wallet integration
- Sales tax calculator
- Shipping calculators
- Gift card creation and redemption
- Specialty product galleries
The downside to using WordPress.com is that it does not offer drag-and-drop functionality. While WordPress’ templates are easy to use and there’s a world of support for them, some features will require more involvement from the designer. To learn more about the pros and cons of using WordPress, check out our in-depth review.
For boutique websites, you must use either the Premium or Business plans, as the Free and Personal plans don’t allow you to sell products on your website. The good news is that you get unlimited Premium templates so that you can save money on your website design.
If you’d like a little more help with building your website, Jimdo may be the builder for you. Its Dolphin website builder uses an intuitive AI that will help you design your boutique website in about three minutes. Of course, you can always go the route of using the standard creator program and customize an appropriate boutique template.
I’d like to tell you that Jimdo offers products and features that the rest of these providers don’t, but that would be a lie. Its standard features are comparable to those offered by other builders. However, it don’t offer any apps or specialized plugins for its products.
What Jimdo does better than the other builders on this list is support. If you need help setting up your boutique, Jimdo provides fantastic tutorials that will walk you through everything, like adding products to your store and integrating PayPal functionality. All website builders on this list have great support, but Jimdo takes it to the next level. To learn more about what Jimdo does right – and what it could do better – read our in-depth review.
You must upgrade to at least Business to run a boutique website on Jimdo. Online store functionality is not available for Pro or the Free plan. You do get unlimited storage and bandwidth along with optimized SEO that will help your boutique rank better on Google.
Showcase Your Products With a Stunning Boutique Website
You have an eye for beauty, so you understand the need for your website to pop and connect with your customers. When you pick the best website builder for boutiques, you give yourself the tools necessary to dazzle your customers while providing them with a way to buy your products seamlessly. With the right builder and right design, you put yourself in the best position to open and operate a successful boutique website.
Any of the options here would work out just fine for your boutique website. However, after having tried out each and every one of them, I have to say that I have a couple favorites.
If you are looking for a lot of functionality, check out Wix. You’ll have tons of apps that can help with everything sales and marketing related.
On the other hand, if you are new to web design and development, Squarespace gives you plenty of help with the design. When it comes to visual elements, this company is pretty hard to beat.
|Wix||Tons of apps and templates specifically for online shops|
Beautiful high-quality templates and great e-commerce features
|SITE123||Build your website in 80+ languages|
|WordPress.com||Plugins designed for e-commerce and marketing|
|Jimdo||Intuitive AI helps you build a website in no time|
What is the best website builder for online stores?
It’s hard to say definitively what the best website builder is for an e-commerce store – it depends on what functionality you’re looking for. Any of the builders on this list can help you build a good looking site without too much effort. That said, Wix stands out from competitors based on the number of templates and features it offers, specifically for boutiques. On the other hand, if all you need is a basic site that can be up and running quickly, SITE123 is a good choice. How do I create a website for my boutique?
A boutique website doesn’t have to be overly complicated. If you want, you can just include your branding alongside some basic information like your hours and location. However, some web builders also provide greater functionality, like online sales and automatic inventory updates. To help you get started, check out our step-by-step guide to creating an online store on Wix. What is the best cheap online store builder?
The good news is that you don’t have to pay a lot to design your online boutique. All of the options on this list have a free option, however, you may lose some of the more advanced e-commerce functionality. Take a look at our coupon page to make sure that – no matter what – you get the best deal on your website builder.