snappages review

SnapPages Site Builder: Simple, Useful, Awesome

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SnapPages, whose design philosophy is, “Make it useful. Make it simple. Make it awesome,” was launched in 2008 with the goal of providing the simplest way to create a website. With its drag-and-drop website builder, you can create a custom, DIY solution that doesn’t look cookie-cutter, even if you use one of the provided templates.

snappages review

Features

SnapPages claims that it was one of the first companies to launch a true drag-and-drop editor, and over the past decade, the company has fine-tuned and refined their product to the point that anyone can use it to build a beautiful website, regardless of how much (or how little) design experience and technical knowledge they have.

SnapPages is not a full content management system (CMS) the way WordPress, Drupal, and Joomla are, but the site builder does come built-in with support for blogging. The blogging feature isn’t just a simple text editor, and it includes features like comment boxes, index page layouts, advertisement injection points, and so on.

If you need to add third-party services, such as YouTube, Shopify, or MailChimp, you can do so easily using the built-in integration that allows you to add custom code snippets throughout your site.

Images are an important part of a website, so SnapPages comes with customizable photo galleries that allow you to organize and display your photos to your customers in an aesthetically pleasing way.

To gather information and connect with your users, you can use the form builder to help facilitate things like commenting and mailing list signup. You can add fields such as text boxes, radio button selections, name and address fields, and more to the forms you build.

Building your site with SnapPages means that you get access to secure cloud hosting. Additionally, the company takes care to perform regular, automated backups, so you don’t need to worry about losing your site completely if there are any server-related issues.

snappages review for bloggers

Templates

All of SnapPages’ provided templates are responsive, which means that you don’t have to create a separate version of your site for mobile users. Everything automatically adjusts and scales based on your visitors’ screen sizes, which means that you don’t have to put in any further work.

Further, with the rising number of mobile users, SnapPages’ templates opt for page sections over tabbed pages. For mobile users, scrolling is faster than clicking, so site content consolidated onto fewer (but longer) pages is the way to go. SnapPages’ section templates make it easy to build the individual sections that you then put together to form a complete page.

SnapPages offers ten different website templates from which you can choose.

Using SnapPages

When viewing the different website templates available to you in SnapPages’ gallery, you can click on one of your choices to begin the registration process. Next, provide your full name, email address, and a password. The following steps asks for a name for your site and the category your site falls under (such as Business, Personal, Photography, or Restaurant). At this point, you’re ready to get started with building your site using the drag-and-drop editor.

When you launch any portion of the SnapPages editor for the first time, you’ll take a guided tour that shows you where all of the features you might need are located. There are five basic areas within the editor:

  • Pages: The pages area allow you to manage and edit your existing website pages or to create new ones. When editing your pages, you can use the live preview to see how your most recent changes will appear to your visitors and save your changes without publishing and making them public. Only when you decide to publish your changes will they become publicly available.
  • Theme: The themes area allow you to change the overarching theme for your site. This is distinct from the themes area in the page editing area, since the latter allows you to change minor things related to your themes, such as color, font, and header and footer layout.
  • Blog: The blog area is where you would go to write your blog posts.
  • Storage: The storage area is where you would upload your personal images and files, as well as add the custom code snippets that allow you to integrate with third-parties, such as YouTube for videos or MailChimp for email marketing.
  • Settings: The settings area is where you would change things like your website title and category, manage SEO-related options, inject custom code into your site’s HTML file, and, if you own a custom domain, point it to your SnapPages site.

Domain Names

All SnapPages sites can be reached using the provided sub-domain. If your site name is “Taco Loco,” your site’s free URL would be tacoloco.snappages.site.

If you have a custom domain you would like to point toward your SnapPages site, you can do so in the Settings area of your dashboard. If you don’t have a custom domain, SnapPages has partnered with Google Domains so that you can purchase one.

Pricing and Billing

As a new SnapPages user, you’ll get a free, fourteen-day trial of the basic version. At the end of your trial, you’ll need to upgrade to a paid subscription plan to keep your site.

SnapPages offers three different plans from which you can choose.

The Personal plan is good for those looking to build just a simple, personal site. Your final site will be relatively simple, since you don’t have access to most of the customization features available, and you’ll see a SnapPages-branded footer at the bottom. All in all, it’s probably easiest to list what you can’t do with the personal plan:

  • Use a custom domain name
  • Exceed 500 MB of disk storage
  • Upload files
  • Use custom code snippets
  • Build a site with more than five pages

The Basic plan is ideal for those building a professional site, yet are new to the world of web design and development. You get enough features to build a nice site, but because the dashboard and site editor remain relatively uncomplicated, this option results in the building process being less confusing for novice designers. You’ll get:

  • The ability to use a custom domain
  • Ecommerce capabilities
  • An unlimited number of pages for your site
  • No SnapPage branding or ads on your site
  • 10 GB of disk storage space
  • The ability to upload files to your site
  • The ability to create custom code sets
  • SEO options

The Advanced plan gets you every feature offered by SnapPages. You’ll get everything in the Basic plan, but SnapPages has removed all restrictions so you can customize every aspect of your site. This is a great option for those with website designing experience or those who consider themselves to be very tech savvy. Additionally, your disk storage maximum goes up to 20 GB.

Regardless of which plan you end up choosing, you can pay for your subscription on a monthly basis or you can pay upfront for a full year. If you opt for the latter option, you’ll receive a discount that is equal to two months of free service.

Refunds

If you’re ever unsatisfied with your SnapPages subscription, you can receive a full refund if you cancel your subscription within 30 days of activation or, for existing customers, 30 days of your subscription being renewed.

Check out SnapPages site builder »

Support and Customer Service

SnapPages maintains a searchable knowledge base that provides answers to many common questions; the user interface is a bit lacking, so searching for your topic is more likely to yield a satisfactory result as opposed to using the links provided on the home page of the knowledge base.

If you want to get in touch with someone at SnapPages, you can send messages to the team using the provided chat window. We were unable to find the SnapPages team’s hours of availability, but the chat window will tell you if the team is available to respond to you immediately or not.

The SnapPages staff seems to be active on Facebook or Twitter, so you can certainly use these social platforms to get in touch. The team blog is updated with less frequency.

snap pages sign up

Summary

SnapPages is a solid website building tool that has something for almost everyone. If you’re new to the world of web design and development, its Personal plan is a great way to get started without too much confusion. If you’re tech-savvy, the Premium option allows you full customization of your site without requiring you to hand-write CSS, HTML, and JavaScript. Regardless, you’ll end up with an aesthetically pleasing site that works well across devices of all sizes.

Katie is a C# developer-turned-technical writer. She’s also an avid reader, swimmer, doer of the NYT Crossword Puzzles in ink, and sweater knitter. She has a love/hate relationship with JavaScript and thinks that package managers are the best things since sliced bread.
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