The evolution of SAAS site builders

The first designers appeared about 15 years ago. Not so long ago, but not recently, considering that the first site appeared in the ninety-first. Since then, they have undergone many changes and now most designers work on the SaaS model (Site as a Service - site as a service / service). This means that the site can be created using a web application that is developed and maintained by a service provider, which itself monitors its performance and is engaged in updating software and equipment. Maintaining the system, technical support and sometimes some other work are included in the payment, which is usually charged to customers on a monthly basis. At the same time, the end user does not acquire a license for the program, which allows him to save significantly. But at the same time, you need to understand that the designer is, in fact, a rental site, and not its purchase.

From the point of view of developers, the SAAS model completely excludes the possibility of unlicensed use of their product, since the client does not have access to the program as such.

As a rule, the service includes 3 elements: CMS, domain (second or third level) and hosting. Individual items can add design and additional features (modules, plugins, extensions, etc.). As a result, we get a turnkey site.

Often, everything new comes to us from abroad, and SAAS is no exception. While in the CIS countries this technology is not very common. For domestic companies, this model seems unreliable (as well as outsourcing in general). It is better to have something of your own, with the ability to fully control it. In addition, informatization has not yet reached at all some firms in Russia, not to mention the choice of a specific model.

However, in Western countries, recently SAAS designers are becoming increasingly popular (with their help, about 200 million sites have already been created).

What's new / innovation

Over the past few years, the development of the site builder industry has been aimed at simplifying, cheapening and specializing, expanding opportunities. Flash is being used less and less, and old versions of HTML are being replaced by HTML 5, CSS3 is being actively introduced. Developers are trying to solve one of the main problems of designers - the limited functionality and design. Not only the "filling", but also the "cover" has changed - new design options have appeared, following the fashion (recently this is the HTML5 style), layouts have become adaptive. Attention is also paid to improving the SEO-optimization of sites created with the help of designers (previously PS didn’t really like sites on designers, now PS treat them with suspicion, but it's not so bad anymore). In general, the same changes are occurring as in traditional web development.

Narrowly focused designers appeared. So, there are designers who specialize in:
  • promo sites or landing pages (e.g. Landingi, LPGenerator, Flexbe, LP, Borstch and others);
  • online stores (Insales, Merchium, PlatzCart, Skynell, CartEnergy, Shoptus, Malle, Sellbe and others);
  • Mobile sites (Mobilizetoday, Oycii, Wen, Lark, Mpedia, Wapego and others).
  • blogs (Hostenko, InBlog);
  • forums (Mybb, Forum2x2);
  • educational institutions (Maam, Edusite, a2b2, Km-school).

Of course, universal constructors are developing, the most famous of which are Wix, Nethouse, Ucoz, Fo, Setup, uWeb, Jimdo, a5, Umi, Redham, Nubex and others.

The best website builder

Designers ratings can be found on almost every site, one way or another related to this topic. But everything is not as simple as it seems at first glance, because the question of choosing the best is primarily a question of criteria. And the criteria are not always given. You must admit that the same constructor may be in the first place for those who care about simplicity and convenience, and in the last place for those who need a variety of functionalities. If the goal is to make an online store, then one designer will become the leader, and if the blog is completely different. The result is that the “best site builder” simply does not exist.

Website Designers in Russia

The vast majority of website designers in our country (more than 90%) are foreign services whose interface is simply translated into Russian. All such services have a big minus - they are not adapted for Russian users. Yes, they are translated into Russian, but the translation is often lame - many terms are English words written in Russian letters, they are incomprehensible to those who do not know English. Another disadvantage of such designers is the lack of integration with Russian services. These include Yandex services, which are very popular with us (Metrica, Direct, Mail, etc.), social. Networks (Vkontakte, Odnoklassniki, Mail) and others. Online stores often experience payment problems (foreign solutions use PayPal, which is unpopular in Russia). There are several Russian designers, but they are usually

Constructor or web studio?

You can find many articles listing the pros and cons of both options, and even more debate about what ultimately is better. But if earlier designers and web studios actively competed in the site-building market, now more and more often comes the understanding that these are just different things, created for different purposes and intended for different target audiences. Comparing them without taking into account a specific situation is as pointless as choosing between a car and a motorcycle. Of course, a large company that needs a professional website with an individual design, the development of unique modules and further support for the site needs to contact a web studio without a doubt. But the newly minted rock band with the lead singer Petya at the head will perfectly manage the site on a free constructor. In short, the designers need those, and only those who need the site quickly,

In defense of SAAS constructors

We will write a separate article about the shortcomings of the designers (they definitely are, and there are not a few of them), and in this article we allow ourselves to come out in their defense, dispelling several myths.

1. The designer is unprofessional.
It is difficult to agree with this statement. A site created with the help of a designer may indeed look unprofessional (and this is the fault of its creator), but unprofessional designers are very rare. As a rule, a designer is developed by a large team of programmers, layout designers, designers, marketers and other specialists (just professionals). Then hundreds and thousands of people test it. The improvement of such a service occurs constantly, both before and after its launch, 24-hour monitoring is carried out. But what site you will make using the constructor is up to you. There are very good examples (not distinguishable from a custom site), and sometimes on the contrary, I want to cry when I see another “masterpiece”.

Some designers have a service for setting up (filling, designing) a site. That is, in fact, they themselves make customers sites based on their constructor. It turns out pretty well, and at reasonable prices.

Web studios, by the way, are also different, some work with professionals at a much lower level than in designers, although there are very good (and expensive) studios, you can not argue with that.

2. The designer is bad in that it requires monthly fees.
Yes, just like any other site requires monthly expenses for hosting, domain (annual) and site administrator (if any). If you do not want to pay monthly, then you can pay immediately for a long time - in this case, many designers also offer a discount. And some designers provide the opportunity to pay for the site forever (redeem it).

3. The constructor is unreliable.
Not always. There are designers who work very long and stably, unlike some hosters. Plus, if there are any problems, then they are immediately solved not by the client, but by the technical support of the service. In general, the question of the reliability of the designer should be decided separately in each specific case, as well as the question of the reliability of the hoster. True, if you can just change a bad hoster, then you won’t be able to transfer the site to the designer, you must turn on your head from the very beginning.

Also popular now: