I love experimenting with new and interesting ways of building websites.
I’m not a web developer by trade, but I know enough to throw together an okay looking and functioning site.
My first foray into building websites was all the way back in the days of dialup Internet and Microsoft Frontpage. Since then, it has become a heck of a lot easier to build a good website.
The likes of WordPress, and then even easier platforms like Wix and Squarespace, have made building yourself a decent website more accessible than ever before.
But what if you want an even easier option? Maybe you don’t need a huge amount of flexibility or customisation – you just want to be able to put up a simple, one-page site (or maybe even a few pages) with a nice template and great mobile responsiveness?
Wouldn’t that be nice?
I first came across Strikingly when talking with a consulting client (Nick Burns from Sell More Tech – you should check this guy out, he is truly one of the most talented people in the tech sales space that I know)
Nick was telling me how he used Strikingly to turn his LinkedIn profile into a basic, yet attractive and functional website. I knew I needed to try it!
What Is Strikingly?
Strikingly is a simple website builder. It’s in the vein of Wix, Squarespace and Weebly, but even simpler.
It is primarily focused on helping you build single page landing pages, portfolio sites, single product sales pages, and otherwise very basic “brochure type” sites.
You don’t need any coding, design or programming knowledge. As long as you can type (and drag and drop) then you’re in business.
Sounds Great – Where Do I Sign Up?
You can sign up here for Strikingly.
How Much Does Strikingly Cost?
Strikingly has three pricing plans:
I’m a Pro customer, for reference.
The current prices are:
- $0 per month for free (wow, who would have thought that?)
- $12 per month for limited
- $20 per month for Pro
That is the month-to-month pricing. There are actually some very tasty discounts available depending if you’re willing to stump up for a year or two year pricing at one time.
I’m just paying month-to-month as I wasn’t sure how much I was going to like Strikingly, but when renewal time comes I’ll probably be buying at least one year at a time.
My recommendation is to sign up for free and enjoy a 14 day trial, and then decide from there if you want to continue with a paid membership.
What’s The Difference Between Free, Limited And Pro?
There is a massive difference between the three pricing tiers.
Here’s what you need to know:
Basically, free is a waste of time because you cannot connect a custom domain.
Limited is okay, but really I think that if you have any intention to use Strikingly in a commercial sense, then you’ll be wanting to opt for Pro.
Pro has so many more features for such a marginally higher price, that you’d be crazy not to take it in my opinion.
Things I Like About Strikingly
- It’s beyond easy to build a decent looking site. Seriously, I know that plenty of excellent websites exist that simplify the website creation process (for example, I use Weebly quite frequently and that is a real time-saver). However, Strikingly takes this to the next level. I honestly believe anyone with half a brain could make a nice one-pager site on this platform.
- LinkedIn import tool. This is my favorite feature ever. I have a detailed LinkedIn profile that I’ve been building up over a number of years. All you do is allow Strikingly to view your LinkedIn profile, and it will import all the content, such as your profile description, job history etc. You can then tweak this and edit it into a great looking portfolio/resume site.
- Easy to add sections, content etc with lots of widget types available.
- Setting up custom domain is easy.
- Great pricing.
- Fast load times.
- Mobile responsiveness.
Things I Don’t Like About Strikingly
- No ability to add tax to non-US store widgets. This is actually quite a big issue for me, and something I really hope that the Strikingly team adds. At the moment – if you’re based outside of the United States – you can’t add tax to the product/store widget on your site. Strikingly claim this is because it would be too difficult/complex to implement.This is problematic as I sell services to businesses, and generally they expect to see pricing “ex GST” (GST is the NZ sales tax). I’m wanting to sell ‘pre-packaged’ consulting packages – 0.5/1/2hr sessions – at fixed prices. I normally charge $299 + GST to a client for this. However, if I want to sell it on my Strikingly site, I have to make the price $343.85 incl. GST. This makes the pricing look awkward and may confuse clients who cross check an invoiced consulting gig with the pre-packaged options on my site. What Strikingly need to do is add the ability to add a generic tax line and give it a label, regardless of where you are based.
- Cannot customise shipping and receipt emails.
- You will hit limits in terms of customisation and flexibility.
- Limited SEO optimisation capability.
I’m a big fan of Strikingly. Not because it’s the most advanced or feature-rich site builder, but simply because it kicks ass as a platform for turning your existing LinkedIn profile into an attractive, functional website that you can use to boost your personal brand.
I created my new business website, samfrost.co.nz, using Strikingly. It took me about 15 minutes from account setup to have a decent-looking and functional site launched.
I’ve probably spent no more than a couple of hours total (excluding writing blog posts) to get this ticking over nicely.
The biggest issue I have with Strikingly is with regards to its in-built eCommerce solution. It could be really good for selling individual products, but it falls short due to the lack of tax control and confirmation email customisation. If these items could be fixed, it would make a massive difference.
To conclude my Strikingly review, I believe this platform is definitely worth your while to check out. If you know that all you need is a simple, attractive site that acts as a bit of an interactive brochure (maybe with some basic extra functions like a blog included) then Strikingly could be a perfect solution.
I think it is especially good for anyone who wants to create a basic “personal brand showcase”. Take a look at my website, samfrost.co.nz, to see what I mean. With regards to consulting, my name is my business. If you are looking to do anything similar, then Strikingly is a great choice. This is even more the case if you intend on importing your LinkedIn profile and turning that into an attractive, functional showcase site.
Overall, I think that if you value speed and simplicity over complex features, then you won’t go too far wrong with Strikingly.
Click here to sign up for a 14-day free trial and see if you agree with my opinion!
Ease Of Use
If you want to build a portfolio/personal profile website (or any other kind of simple single page site, such as for an individual product) then Strikingly could be a great option for you. It's easy, straightforward and effective, as well as affordably-priced. Just bear in mind the limitations and you'll be good to go.