Jimdo Review – How Good of a Website Builder Is this?
If you want to build a website, you may want to consider Jimdo. This popular website builder is committed to user friendliness, getting rid of any barriers that are stopping you from making a professional website. They work with anyone, from freelancers to restaurant owners, and from shop owners to music bands. Since Jimdo launched its ecommerce facilities in 2010, some 200,000 shops have been created on the platform. So is Jimdo the website builder for you?
What I Liked about Jimdo
- They have useful ecommerce tools available to you, with excellent backend support. You can set automatic emails to your customers, open and close orders, track your inventory, and more. Depending on your plan, you can also create promotions and discount codes, highlight certain products, and so on.
- Jimdo has one of the largest community forums around. People from all over the world help each other out in a range of different languages. Both users and forum moderators help to answer questions, again in multiple languages. This is quite a unique feature. In fact, eight different languages are officially supported through Jimdo’s own moderators.
- It comes with a free platform, the JimdoFree. While this is a limited account, you can still create a functional website. You won’t be pressured to upgrade either, and you can keep your free account for as long as you want. You don’t even have to enter your credit card details.
What I Didn’t Like about Jimdo
- Jimdo is a bit limited in terms of templates, and the quality isn’t fantastic either. There are some other website builders that only have limited templates, but they are all incredibly professional. That being said, Jimdo is clearly trying to improve on this, adding features such as full background videos and slideshows.
- If you use JimdoFree, the advertisement for the service is incredibly visible. In fact, you will have a huge logo on your site. Considering that the service is free for life, this is not overly surprising. What is surprising, however, is that the logo used to be even bigger but, listening to their users, they have now significantly reduced its size.
- The user interface is friendly and intuitive, but it is not really drag and drop. This means it feels slightly less interactive than other similar sites.
Features of Jimdo
Jimdo has a number of key features that set it apart from the competition. These include:
- A blog editor. This is set up in two parts: the in-page editor on one hand and the sidebar editor on the other. Some people find this a bit cumbersome, as the sidebar editor doesn’t really seem to add anything to the blog. You can compose a blog by adding things such as videos, galleries, columns, photos, and, obviously, text. Furthermore, you can set a blog index, which means your readers can see a teaser of what you have written, encouraging them to read more. Comment moderation is also included, although you cannot integrate it with things like Facebook comments or Disqus, unfortunately.
- The ecommerce facilities, which means you can run a basic store with great ease. It takes no time at all to add new products, create some type of variation on your product, list them in certain categories, create a checkout form suitable to your needs, and more. You can also accept a range of different payment methods. The email customization is a particularly strong feature. When your customers make a purchase, you can completely design the email that they then receive. This is unique, because it seems all other website builders have ignored this feature. The editing is also very easy and can simply be accessed through your form displays and product editor.
- The form builder, which is a real necessity because the contact form you get as standard with Jimdo is really limited. All it includes is name, email, and comments. Thanks to the form builder, however, you can customize any forms to suit your personal needs. Plus, any form you make is stored in the Form Archive, which means you can reuse old forms as and when you need them.
- The iOS and Android apps, which means you can edit your website on the go. In fact, there are no limitations at all on what you can do through mobile devices, which is yet another unique feature in the world of website building services. You can quite literally grab you iPad in McDonald’s and completely change your website if you want to.
- It is Retina ready, which means that your site will look perfect on any type of device, regardless of the screen size that it is viewed on.
At present, there are some 120 different templates available on Jimdo. They are of average quality, particularly when compared to other website builders. However, they are committed to listening to their users, which is why they are working on introducing additional options. In their latest update, they added a number of new design layouts. Furthermore, they added a range of advanced features, including the full background video and the full background slideshows. The first comes with tools that enable you to put a video on your site and use it, as it plays, as your site’s background. The latter enables you create some really cool visual effects on the image that you use on your background. So, while the templates continue to be limited, there has been a massive visual improvement and it is also proof that they really care about their users. Remember that this is a relatively new company, so they are improving on the go as well.
Furthermore, Jimdo enables you to access the CSS and HTML editor. Hence, if you have at least a little bit of experience with coding, you can change the template so that it is unique to your personal needs. You can customize every element of the website design through this. If you don’t know how to code, you could always consider outsourcing the task, which is quite affordable. This means that your design can be unique, rather than being stuck with one of the 120 designs that everybody else uses.
Also, there is an increasing number of third party templates available through Jimdo. Most of them are paid for templates, and they give you quite a lot more design choices. While paid for, they are quite affordable overall. Finding third party Jimdo templates has to be done outside of Jimdo, however, meaning you need to use a search engine to find what you are looking for and then use it on your website builder.
Jimdo App Market
The Jimdo App Market has a number of excellent apps available to you. These include:
- Dropbox, which most people use as part of their ecommerce facilities, keeping all stock information safely saved in the cloud.
- QR-code, which is an excellent feature to offer your customers, providing them with information on certain products and services through these codes.
- Google Analytics, a vital tool for your overall search engine optimization (SEO) efforts.
- Twitter and other social media apps, so you can build a greater social following as well.
In order to build an ecommerce store, you will have to upgrade to the JimdoBusiness plan. Through this plan, you will be able to list an unlimited number of items in your store and access the full experience. It will take you less than a minute to have your store online, ready for you to customize it.
Jimdo is committed to offering a user-friendly experience, which is why they have created tutorials for their online store that suit anybody from beginner to expert. The tutorials discuss the various features that are on offer and how to install them on your site. They claim that it will take you less than a week to become a true store expert. Furthermore, you can ask questions about the tutorials through the comment sections or social media.
Five issues are discussed in particular in the tutorials:
- How to set up payment options by connecting your new ecommerce store to PayPal, which means you actually get paid after a purchase.
- How to create items in your store and organize them in catalogs. This focuses on the real building blocks of online stores. The tutorials have a strong focus on helping you deliver your content in a way that is user-friendly for your customers.
- How to make item variations, set shipping options, and sale prices, which are more advanced features. This is for those who have got the basics down and want to advance the functionality of the store.
- How to create discount and promotional codes, which customers can use when they check out from the store.
- How to manage inventory and orders so that your stocks are always up to date once people start to place orders.
Jimdo has a free forever plan, which is quite useful. There are no catches involved with it and you don’t constantly get encouraged to opt for a paid for plan. Of course, there are significant limits to what you can do with a free site. You will have a Jimdo domain and there will be a prominent Jimdo ad on your site at all times. As part of Jimdo’s free plan, you get 500MB minimum storage, social media, links to Google maps, and more. This is very impressive and no other website builder gives you this much.
Next, there is Jimdo Pro, which costs $7.50 per month. For that, you will receive your own custom domain as well as email. You will also be able to access more support features and statistics. Plus, you can list up to 15 items in your store.
Finally, there is Jimdo Business, which costs $20 per month and gives you everything Jimdo Pro provides and more. The additional features include an unlimited store, a business email, priority support, mobile optimization, and more.
Jimdo offers excellent customer support to both Jimdo Pro and Jimdo Business customers. Their average response rate is between one and two business days, which is not bad at all. Those who use Jimdo Free have a little bit less available to them in terms of support and their questions also are not given priority.
Jimdo also offers a 9am to 5pm PST live chat function. This is quite useful if you need a more urgent answer, or if you simply have a quick question to ask.
There are also some excellent tutorial resources, which are really good. They cover virtually any topic you can think of and they are particularly important in terms of building an ecommerce website. Various topics, such as designs and features, are included. The tutorial section is very easy to use and links in really well with community forum. Plus, you can access free live webinars. Here, topics such as SEO basics, social media basics, and website basics are covered.
Interestingly, Jimdo also recommends that users visit Gud Themes, where you can find more advanced tips and tricks, even though it is a third party domain. Gud Themes also provides extra templates that you can use in Jimdo, although those have to be paid for, of course.
Lastly, there is the community forum. This forum is huge and it is likely that any question you may have has already been asked in the past. All you need to do is search through the community forum in order to find it. This is a great way to get solutions to your problems very quickly. All the questions are answered by both community members and official Jimdo moderators, which means you know they will be correct.
The Final Verdict
There is no such thing as the perfect website builder, but Jimdo comes really close. You get everything you need in a single package, which is perfect for small businesses in particular. If you move up from the free plan, you will get your own domain name, great ecommerce tools, and your own email address. This is quite important in terms of staying in touch with your customers.
Jimdo is incredibly user-friendly and it also offers some good SEO features in a way that everybody can understand. Their layouts continue to be a little bit limited, however, although they are improving on this. These layouts are available for free (third party ones are paid for), and they are fully mobile optimized. However, they aren’t very flexible.
Overall, I 100% recommend Jimdo and you can try it for yourself by signing up for their free plan.