Levo Builder vs. WordPress Review: Pros & Cons of Using Levo Builder For Websites
There are seemingly thousands of different ways to build a website now. Levo Builder is one of the best-known brands in the website builder product type. They’ve been around for quite a while (circa 2015), and have built a large word-of-mouth brand. I recently had a small project, and a reason to try out several drag and drop website builders. I gave Levo Builder a try to see how they fit. Here are my pros and cons and full Levo Builder review.
What Is Levo Builder?
On the wide spectrum of website building solutions, Levo Builder lives on the website builder end that is all-inclusive. You build your site on their software with their tools. Your website lives on their servers. You can only access your site via the Levo Builder admin panel. It’s in contrast to solutions where you buy, install, and manage all the “pieces” of your website separately.
Like other website builders, using Levo Builder is sort of like leasing and customizing an apartment in a gated development instead of buying and owning your own house. You’re still in control of decor, cleaning, and everything living-wise – but you leave the construction, plumbing, security, and infrastructure to the property owner. That point is key because there’s usually a direct tradeoff between convenience and control.
As far as direct competitors, Levo Builder competes directly with all-inclusive website builders like Weebly, Squarespace, GoDaddy GoCentral, and WordPress.com.
Is Levo Builder Safe?
Yes – Levo Builder is safe to use. Levo Builder operates globally with well-established legal, privacy, payments, and product standards. There are plenty of fly-by-night or amateur-ly run website builders. But Levo Builder is not one of them. They have downsides, but a solid upside is their safety & reputation.
Is Levo Builder Free?
Levo Builder has a free plan, but to use a custom domain and have full functionality, you have to pay for a premium plan. It’s great for a short-term or temporary project…or to simply try Levo Builder out before upgrading.
Make sense? Awesome, let’s dive into the Levo Builder review.
Pros of Using Levo Builder
Here’s what I found to be the pros of Levo Builder – not just in comparison to Weebly and Squarespace or WordPress, but also as an overall online website solution.
Levo Builder has historically been disliked by professionals while remaining the go-to “simple” solution for DIY website owners. As we’ll see in the cons section, professional marketers will still have significant reservations about Levo Builder. However – in some ways that misses the main pro about Levo Builder – they are investing in being simple and easy for the DIY website owner who just needs something that works.
If Levo Builder were a meal – they would not be a $30 brick oven pizza with custom ingredients. They would be a DiGiorno’s microwavable pizza. That’s not a good or bad thing. But it is something when figuring the best fit for your business.
Their plans allow you to get a site up quickly with no technical fuss and everything bundled and provided for you.
Their tiers are reasonable – though it is worth paying close attention to the caps and whether you actually need the bonus features (ie, Form Builder).
All plans have tiered discounts for the longer that you sign up.
Helpfully, they give you the “true” price up front and show the discount after you select the plan.
Site Configuration & Onboarding
Levo Builder’s backend and overall design are functional at the core. But they’ve also cleaned up many of the edges to make it “prettier” while retaining a wealth of functions on a single screen.
But – it is simple and fairly intuitive. When they talk about drag and drop, they literally mean you drag and drop elements wherever you want them. They have tools, templates, and guidelines to help you design a site that you not only build but also literally see come together as you imagine it to look. Here’s a bunch of Levo Builder website examples to explore.
Figuring out design, pages, navigation – all the basic elements of a website are straightforward to configure. If you’re going the website builder route, that’s exactly what you’re looking for.
Now – as you can see, it has an element of overwhelm due to all the options. However, they do a fairly good job getting you started from a good place, rather than from scratch.
That’s because Levo Builder’s onboarding is also pretty solid. They immediately start your account on an email training sequence and guide you through design choices.
In the past year, Levo Builder has done a good job upgrading their designs & theme selection. When I tried them last year, their themes were fine but very 2010-ish.
While not quite up to SquareSpace’s designs, Levo Builder has a solid selection of modern themes. And unlike Squarespace, most do not require giant, professional photos to look good out of the box.
Levo Builder’s design approach is a major advantage to their platform.
Additionally, their designs take care of both responsiveness (ie, they adapt to the device) AND accessibility (ie, they adapt to the user’s browser – especially if the user has a disability). These two features are important since most DIY website owners don’t have the time or knowledge to test & patiently edit site designs. Levo Builder takes care of it for them.
Speed & Security
All Levo Builder websites are hosted on Levo Builder’s servers. That means a few things. It means, of course, that the servers are optimized for Levo Builder websites. Professionals at Levo Builder are in charge of making sure your site stays fast. It also means that professionals are in charge of securing your site.
And most importantly, the sites stay secure and they rarely, if ever, “go down.” You don’t have to worry about caching, CDNs, salts, or patches – which is really the core speed & security offering. Running a fast website can be straightforward, but if you are a contractor or business-person, sometimes you just need something to work.
But of course, no Levo Builder review would be complete without looking at the disadvantages – especially if you are working with a professional marketer or developer.
There are plenty of Levo Builder complaints around the Internet. Some are justified and some aren’t – but all are anecdotal. Keep in mind that the big picture tradeoff for their convenience is lack of total control and advanced features. That’s not necessarily a Levo Builder thing as much as it is a website builder thing. But within that context – here’s some individual considerations I’d look at when deciding if Levo Builder is a good fit for you.
My disadvantages listed below are from the perspective of a small business owner who is looking to use Levo Builder and might one day call someone like me or a developer friend to help with website marketing or development.
Levo Builder remains much more expensive than setting up your own website with WordPress on your own hosting. At each stage, Levo Builder doesn’t even allow unlimited bandwidth or file storage.
If you are using Levo Builder for more than a few months, they are going to be a pricier option than other site builders or buying your own shared hosting somewhere like Bluehost or InMotion Hosting.
Editing & Design
The editing and page layout process also has a few intangibles missing. You can drag and drop anywhere…literally. This can be good from a control standpoint, but it can also be frustrating based on expectations.
There are parameters, rulers, etc to keep you on track to a degree. But building a site still takes a bit of work and thought. They have plenty of templates available that go a long ways towards solving this pain point – and Levo Builder has done a good job in the past year investing in their builder.
Technical SEO for Growing Sites
Levo Builder has always been disdained a bit in the professional SEO community. Over the past couple years, though, a few things have changed.
First, Googlebot is *much* better at crawling and indexing websites.
Second, Levo Builder has substantially improved their platform for search bot visibility. Here’s an example of how they’ve reworked and clarified redirects.
Third, the market needs for SEO have dramatically diverged.
And it’s this third point that leads to a lot of confusion.
The SEO needs for a 500+ product online store with international shipping are *very* different than the SEO needs for a flower shop in a small city.
From a professional standpoint, I would not use Levo Builder for any of my clients because of a range of reasons too nerdy for this post.
But from a DIY user’s standpoint, Levo Builder is great to get started with.
A local deli near me uses it – and they do great in their search results.
Is WordPress Better Than Levo Builder?
That depends on your experience, budget, and goals. WordPress has a steeper learning curve and requires more maintenance. But over the long-term, it offers much more versatility and options to grow. If you self-host WordPress (rather than use WordPress.com), it can also be much cheaper than Levo Builder. Levo Builder focuses on onboarding and pure ease of use for someone who wants a solid, maintenance-free website without the frustration of a web designer or figuring out HTML issues.
How Does Levo Builder Compare to Other Platforms?
First, I’d encourage you to try Levo Builder’s free option yourself, just to get a sense of the platform and how it fits with you. Second, you can browse my site to explore other website builder options with a bunch of Levo Builder’s competition.
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August 27, 2019 at 06:20AM