1&1 MyWebsite Review
Summary of 1&1 MyWebsite review
The product called MyWebsite by 1&1 should be well known through their immense marketing expenses for TV commercials. A point that stands out with 1&1 MyWebsite is that they have about 200 customized templates for all kinds of industrial sectors – from the artist to the dentist. People who are sometimes dealing with website builders will find some similarities between the products of 1&1 and Jimdo. That is due to a former cooperation of Jimdo and 1&1 from 2008 to 2009. The product of MyWebsite is built on the base of Jimdo. Compared to other providers 1&1 offers no free version, but a test period of 30 days which has to be actively quitted by the user, otherwise a 12 month contract starts off.
Overview of the Review
|Ease of use||4/5||The editing of the website is pretty easy. But some functions like “order domain“ are not self-explanatory and the user doesn’t know if there are hidden extra costs.|
|Pricing||1/5||The prices for the business plans are between $9.99 up to $29.99 per month. Compared to other products this pricing is a little too expensive.|
|Setup Speed||2/5||During the setup process the user has to enter all bank details for a possible later payment, the process feels like an order in an online shop. The 30 day test period has to be quit by the user, otherwise a 12 month contract takes-off.|
|User Interface||5/5||The user interface is good and well designed; the user gets an idea of what is possible in the first moment.|
|Customizable||3/5||The website is customizable, but a pre-assembled industry template with navigation and text makes it tempting for the user just to adopt a template. This leads to a bunch of similar looking websites. You have to invest some time and brainpower to create an individual, personal website, the template should be just a first idea.|
|Designs and Templates||2/5||Pre-assembled industry templates hold the risk that websites of the same industry look exactly the same and maybe have the same text parts in them. That should not be your goal.|
|Going mobile||3/5||For mobile devices optimized versions of your MyWebsite are possible with the “Plus-Plan“, but not in the cheapest plan. Other providers offer a mobile optimized version already in the free version.|
|SEO||3/5||When you don’t individualize the pre-written content you’ll produce a bunch of duplicate content (see further below). The URLs of the subpages and the site title can be edited but there are some limits of customization which is not optimal for SEO.|
|Analytics||3/5||The basic version offers no statistical figures for your MyWebsite, but you can add your Google Analytics tracking code within the Head area.|
|Special Features (z.B. Widgets)||5/5||HTML widgets can be integrated very easy and furthermore you can use standardized widgets like Google Maps, a weather service or a visitor counter.|
|Total Score||31/50||The 1&1 MyWebsite is a solid base to build your first own website but directly compared to the competitor products this product is not the best deal. The price is significantly higher for similar features than the price of other website builders.|
Registration: For our review we chose to try the MyWebsite Business plan for $19.99 per month. On the homepage of MyWebsite you’ll easily find your way to registration. The prices are not displayed on the site, but you’ll find a star under the “Try it Free“ Button which leads to a link in the footer area. By clicking this link you’ll get to the terms and conditions on a new page, see screenshot.
1&1 claims on the website, that the registration process for your own MyWebsite should be done within three steps, but we counted five steps, see below:
1. Choose your “business category“: Choice from around 200 business categories like restaurant, artist, dentist, architect and so on. If your business isn’t covered in the categories you can choose “Generic Business Template“ and you’ll get a business template which isn’t built for a specific industry.
Further below you enter your Customer Details with complete address and Telephone number, which I find a bit too much for a test account.
2. Domain Selection: Here you’ll get some suggestions for possible domains for your MyWebsite, depending on your pre-entered data in step 1. The Design invites you to click on one of the domains, especially because besides the domains is displayed “is free“. This doesn’t mean that the domain is free of cost, it says that this domain isn’t taken by other websites yet. This is a bit misleading.
3. Your Selection at a Glance: The third step looks like a shopping cart and you’ll see which plan you have selected.
4. Payment Method: Now it’s getting serious and you have to choose your payment method. You can select between Credit Card or PayPal and there is a small note about how you can quit the contract if you don’t want to use the product after testing period, see screenshot:
5. Password: In the last step you’re asked to create a password for your site. After that you’re done and finally can start working on the website.
After the pretty long and time consuming registration process you’ll get a summary of your MyWebsite order. (note: The cancellation of the testing period by calling 1&1 was problem free, but it’s difficult to find the right Telephone number within the website. For all who don’t want to search: 1-877-691-2631)
Business templates: The pre-assembled templates for different businesses is the unique selling proposal of the 1&1 MyWebsite. Unfortunately you can’t see how your template will look like and what kind of design it will have in the end during the registration process. I was a little appalled from the design of my test website, see screenshot. I chose the template “diner“ and find it looks a bit loveless with small header and pale impression. An advantage is the pre-defined navigation with it’s adjusted subpages and pre-written content, this gives you a first orientation of how to structure a website.
The temptation to take the pre-written text and put some individual parts in it is high. That can be a huge issue for the search engine because you’re producing duplicate content, which means that the exact same text is published on different websites. The search engines love unique content and hates duplicate content, so think about taking some time to write your own individual text.
Edit the MyWebsite: The editing process is build pretty simple, on the right side you’ll find an edit menu in which you can define different settings like Design choice or add new elements. Elements which are already integrated in the site such as text elements can be moved to different positions via drag and drop, here you’ll find the Jimdo base again. The updating of changes is very fast, so you can see the changes immediately.
Conclusion: The provider 1&1 follows a different projection than other website builder companies, probably this is due to the company background. While 1&1 is an international enterprise, the other companies are typical online startups with more sense for user needs. Instead of a free version with ads and subdomain there is only a 30 day test period. When the page isn’t canceled during this time a 12 month contract starts. You should know that, before deciding which provider you’ll take.
The base product and the opportunities to realize your own MyWebsite site are solid so you can easily create a website with this product from 1&1. The cost-performance ratio leaves a lot to be desired compared to the competitors and is a bit too expensive.
Users who want to invest minimal effort to their own website have the advantage of the pre-defined business templates.
reviewed on: 2013-11-06 | last Update 2013-11-06 | by Dirk Fuhlhage