Duda Website Builder Review: Is It Easy to Start Building Your Site?

Loaded with options Duda provides nearly everything you require to rapidly build and host a mobile-friendly, full-featured, and e-commerce-ready website; the only stipulation is that you must be able to afford the service.

Overview: Pros and Cons

PROS

  • Powerful tools for the creation of websites optimized for mobile devices.
  • Strong analysis of the traffic situation.
  • Tools for web stores that are capable.
  • More than a hundred models to choose from.
  • Lets you use custom CSS and HTML code.
  • E-commerce capabilities that are robust, including support for digital downloads and memberships.
  • Unlimited monthly data transfers and storage space are included with all plans.

CONS

  • A lack of a free option, in addition to its generally high cost.
  • Small-scale retailer of widgets.
  • Does not allow you to switch between different templates.
  • Completely responsive layout is only available in Flex templates and sections.
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Adaptable, powerful and loaded with capabilities.

Duda’s appeal lies in its uncomplicated design. You can quickly and easily build attractive websites with the website builder, and these websites will look great on desktop computers, smartphones, and tablets. In spite of higher-end tiers that are aimed at professionals, Duda makes it possible to create attractive websites even if you have limited experience with design or technical aspects of the process. Duda, a sleek and powerful website builder, is the Editors’ Choice product for website builders because it provides users with a wide variety of templates, powerful e-commerce tools, and an excellent editor.

Pricing Options

In the past, users of Duda could create a website for free, much like the option Wix that was selected by our editors. Unfortunately, just like our Editors’ Choice pick Gator, today’s Duda does not offer a free tier of service; however, a free trial of the service that lasts for 14 days is available. It focuses on collaborative websites and offers three paid tiers, all of which are powered by the excellent Amazon Web Services. The first option is the Basic plan, which costs $19 per month (but drops to $14 per month if you pay for it annually) and enables a single user to create a single website. Email is your only option for getting in touch with Basic’s customer support team, which is a shame.

The next tier up is called Team, and it costs $29 per month (or $22 per month if you pay for it annually). It brings the maximum number of team members up to four, adds support via chat and phone, and enables site visitors to post comments. At the Team tier, Duda’s larger focus on web agencies, software as a service (SaaS), and web hosting services begins to appear. Additionally, white-label analytics and client management options are added as features at this level. In point of fact, the following tier is referred to as Agency, and it costs $59 per month (or $44 per month if paid annually). It allows you to construct up to four websites, collaborate with ten other people, and create widgets to endow each of your websites with special capabilities. If you require managed services and dedicated support 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, Duda also provides a custom option; however, in order to obtain a quote, you will need to get in touch with the company.

Although each paid tier is designed for a specific quantity of sites, it is possible to add more sites by paying an additional monthly fee. It costs $19 per month, $13 per month, or $11 per month for each additional site that you add to the Basic, Team, or Agency tiers, respectively, depending on which subscription plan you have purchased. This fee is determined by your subscription plan.

E-commerce also costs extra. The cost of the standard eCommerce add-on is $7.25 per month, and it allows you to showcase up to 100 products in your online storefront. You will be able to sell up to 2,500 products, sell on Amazon and eBay, and even create stores that are available in multiple languages for an additional $19.25 per month. The most expensive eCommerce plan, which allows you to sell an unlimited number of products and gives you access to a Square point-of-sale system, costs $39 per month. The accumulation of all of these costs effectively removes Duda from the purview of users who only use it occasionally. The pick of the editors If you are just beginning your venture into the world of online retail, Wix offers business plans beginning at $27 per month.
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Build Your Website Now

When you create a new website, you can select a layout from among more than one hundred visually appealing and up-to-date templates. If you are looking for a particular template, Duda provides a search bar; however, it also provides a number of other sorting options that can assist you in your search. You have the option of searching by the overall color, as well as filtering the results by categories like Online, Travel, Restaurant & Food, and Blog. In contrast to Squarespace and other website builders, Duda will not present you with any questionnaires to help you narrow down your template search; rather, it will simply show you everything it has to offer.

When you click on a template thumbnail, a panel will appear that demonstrates how the template’s appearance adjusts when viewed on a mobile device or tablet. You can even view the sample content on a desktop computer, a mobile phone, and a tablet all at the same time to get a better idea of how it will look. That is a significant improvement over what the majority of website builders do. For example, Strikingly only displays a single preview, but you can reduce the size of the browser window to see how the website will appear on devices with smaller screens.

You are not able to change templates for your Duda site once you have selected one and begun personalizing it in the same way that you are able to do so with Squarespace and Simvoly. This is due to the fact that Duda sites, despite the fact that they satisfy the requirements set forth by search engines for mobile presentation, are not responsive in the most conventional sense. This indicates that the elements do not stretch or compress themselves regardless of the size of the browser window. When referring to the websites that it develops, Duda uses the term “responsive,” which correctly denotes that the presentation adjusts itself depending on whether you are viewing it in a desktop browser, a tablet browser, or a smartphone browser.

The approach that Duda takes, on the other hand, gives you a lot more control over the design of your website and allows you to customize how it appears on mobile devices. If you want to rebuild your site from the ground up, you can at least save some data (like images and store content) so that you don’t have to begin completely from scratch with a new template. If you want to rebuild your site from the ground up, click here.
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Flex templates, which are advanced editing options that do allow you to create fully responsive websites, are another one of the new features that Duda has introduced. However, because this is a relatively new feature, you are only provided with a small selection of templates to choose from. You can also add Flex sections to traditional Duda templates, which will give you more freedom in the way that you arrange elements within those sections of your website. You can even limit the ability to edit Flex to specific members of your team.

Next, you build your site utilizing the selected template, which is already pre-populated with dummy content. You replace this dummy content with your own assets and continue building your site. It is possible to pull images and other media directly from an existing website or Facebook page. In order to test things out, we began with the DigiStore template.

Website Design Tools

The interface of the site builder includes a user-friendly left sidebar that provides access to various tools for managing and designing your website. You can also add and manage pages and site settings by selecting options from the left panel using these, which give you the ability to customize the colors, text, and navigation of your theme. This sidebar can be collapsed using the arrow to provide a more comprehensive view of the page. The Undo and Redo icons are useful as well because they work regardless of what it is that you are doing on the site. Additionally, pressing Ctrl+Z will work. Additionally, you can always get assistance by clicking the chat bubble icon that is located in the bottom right corner; this is a very convenient feature.

When you click the Widgets button, the fundamental elements of the page, such as images, text boxes, buttons, and dividers, will appear. Because widgets are typically extras provided by a third party and not these fundamental site elements, this might come across as a little bit confusing to you. As is the case with Weebly and the majority of its rivals, you simply drag the elements onto your webpage. You can only drop elements in allowed areas, with the exception of Flex sections; however, it is not difficult to add columns or change the spacing in order to customize the layout to your preferences. When you hover your mouse over any part of the page, a button labeled Row will appear. Clicking this button will bring up a menu from which you can select either Add Row or Add Column.

The Widgets group in Duda incorporates third-party components, such as comment modules for Facebook and Disqus, but the platform does not provide a comprehensive collection of third-party integrations like Wix does. The Duda App Store has received a couple of new additions recently, including EmbedReviews and Amy Chatbot, and the company has continued to roll out these updates. Using a website builder such as Bluehost, on the other hand, will connect you to the significantly more extensive WordPress plug-in ecosystem. After starting up Duda, you will be presented with an overview of the most recent updates to the service, which may include new apps, templates, and features.
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Yelp, vCita online scheduling, OpenTable, and PayPal are some of the additional services that can be integrated with Duda. For example, the integration between Duda and Yext embeds structured schema data into your website, which makes it simpler for other websites to read the content using automated means. In particular, it makes it easier for search engines to interpret the content of your website.

Additionally, Duda makes it simple to integrate social sharing buttons, such as those for Facebook Likes, comments, and albums, as well as a Twitter feed and a WordPress feed. When we added the Click-to-Call feature to our test site, all that it did was display our phone number as a link that, when clicked on, brought up the phone dialer on the user’s smartphone.

The editor offered by Duda has a very organized and well-organized layout, which is a large part of the reason why it works so well. You can switch between pages, undo your most recent edit, save your work, preview your site before publishing it, and view your site in each of the three different screen sizes that are available. This toolbar is always present along the top of the page. The toolbar also provides access to your Dashboard page, where you can manage all of your existing Duda sites, begin new ones, and connect them to a personal domain. This page can be accessed by clicking the Dashboard button on the toolbar. There is an option to buy a new domain name through Google Domains or Hover, and Duda provides specific integrated assistance for making use of a custom domain acquired from one of the major registrars of domain names.

Duda will assign your site a URL such as mysite4036.multiscreensite.com if you do not select a custom domain; however, you have the option of selecting your own prefix if it is not being used by another user. In the event that you have constructed some pages but are not yet prepared to publish them, you have the option of saving your edits for later publication. Just like Weebly, Duda enables you to schedule the publication of your entire website for a particular date and time.
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When you hover your mouse over any content on your website, you will notice a button that provides access to the appropriate editing options. Additionally, it supports right-clicking, which enables you to access a menu that is sensitive to the context of each element. The content can be easily edited, aligned, or removed using this method. You have the ability to move elements around the page and resize them; however, your choices for where to move items are restricted, as is the case with the majority of mobile-friendly site builders. You are able to pull content from another site, edit the text, format it, and even hide it for certain device types using the context menu when you are working with a paragraph object. You don’t have to select it from a page menu like you do in some other site builders; instead, all you have to do is click on a page navigation link in the site designer, and you’ll be taken to that page on your site. There is, however, a dropdown menu that allows you to switch between your pages.

The options for search engine optimization (SEO) and navigation are tucked away in a gear icon, making the Manage Pages panel uncomplicated and easy to understand. It also allows you to import images and information about a site that already exists. To create a new page on my website, you merely need to tap the button labeled “+New page.” There are ten different page types available for selection, and they are as follows: Blank Page, URL Page, About Page, Contact Page, Photo Gallery Page, List Page, and Complex Page. Through the gear Settings menu, users have the ability to password-protect individual pages. When you move your mouse over the thumbnail of a page type, you will see the layout of that page type on the three different device sizes.

Duda also provides a blogging tool that is quite functional. This gives you the ability to save and preview posts, which you can then format and customize by adding images. You can edit the spacing in pixels, the CSS code, and if you have a premium account, the actual HTML code for the element through the Settings tab, which is included in every option dialog for every element on the Duda site.

You will be able to use secure socket layer certificates (SSL) with this service, which will result in HTTPS appearing in the address bar of the browsers used by site visitors. This level of security is especially important with the arrival of GDPR, and the majority of modern browsers will automatically attempt to make HTTPS connections if they can. Duda provides all of the tools that are necessary to remain in compliance with the privacy regulation that applies to site visitors from Europe. You have the option of enabling a cookie notification, putting in place a privacy policy, enabling opt-in consent for contact forms, and providing a way to delete personal data.

Building a website with Duda is, in the end, a pleasurable experience: The majority of the interface can be accessed very quickly, in contrast to other builders such as 1&1 Ionos MyWebsite, which can take anywhere between an eternity and a day to load modules. Moving objects around can be a finicky process, as is the case with most services of this kind; however, Duda helped us achieve the results we desired.
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Using Images

You can add images to your website by making use of the stock photography that has been provided, by dragging and dropping pictures from folders on your computer, or by importing pictures from online sources like Dropbox, Flickr, Facebook, or Instagram. The included stock photography selection has significantly improved since our previous test; for instance, when we searched for “thrift shop,” we were presented with a large number of photographs depicting clothing racks. You can even search for images on the internet by entering the image’s URL or performing a web search to find the picture you want. Are you trying to upload multiple images at the same time? It is not a problem in any way, shape, or form, regardless of whether it is an entire folder or multiple images that have been selected from within a folder.

For some online photo editing and effects, you can crop, resize, and even open an embedded image editor to work with the photos. That is superior to the fundamental and constrained image editing offered by Web.com. During testing, we modified the Alt text and added a tooltip in addition to adding a clickable link to the image-editing dialog. If you want more control, there is a gear icon that will take you to the HTML and CSS code.

There is a plethora of customization available to you when you add a photo gallery. Some of these options include the image size, frame style, spacing, and even animation. When you add an associated Facebook page, any public images from that page are automatically imported into the images manager in Duda. This is another feature that we really like. You also have the option to link an Instagram account, allowing your photo gallery to pull images from that platform.
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Design of Mobile Sites

Duda offers separate site-builder views for desktop, smartphone, and tablet designs. Our test The Duda website appeared just as professional and was just as easy to navigate on an iPhone as it was in a web browser on a personal computer. You can conceal any image you want on your desktop computer, tablet computer, or mobile phone thanks to a cool option. Because some content does not translate well to the more compact formats, choosing this option can be very beneficial.

The other component of mobile development is the capacity of mobile devices to be used for the construction or modification of websites. Duda doesn’t offer a mobile app for site building like Weebly does. Instead, it provides a version of the site builder that is optimized for mobile web use. This has a design that is optimized for use with touch devices and a menu bar for adding and editing widgets. Additionally, this enables you to upload pictures to your website directly from the tablet.
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Social media

You can add buttons to your Duda site that connect to your Facebook, Twitter, and other social media accounts. As is the case with Weebly, Duda gives users the option to select various sizes and colors for their buttons. You can also add buttons using an older-style Share bar, but these buttons are not customizable in the same way that the other buttons are. You don’t get a choice of button designs, and you don’t even get to choose which social networks are included. It is strongly recommended that you stick with the Social Icons option. You also have the option of including a Twitter feed on the page, as well as a Facebook Like button and Facebook comments.

Features of E-Commerce

A complete sales system, including shopping carts and checkout pages, is included with Duda. This system is comparable to the ones provided by Weebly, Wix, and Squarespace. In addition, you are able to integrate PayPal buy buttons into any page of your website, provide site visitors with printable coupons, and create customer memberships. Assuming they have paid for the eCommerce add-on, all Duda users have the ability to incorporate a 10-page web store into their sites. The procedure is smooth, unambiguous, and well-guided.

Duda generates a new page for your website that contains a sample catalog when you add a store to the eCommerce section, and it also displays a Help box that explains how to configure the store. A tooltip tour will walk you through the features of your store, including the shopping cart, search, and store management. You can add products, configure shipping and payment options, and access this page through a separate Control Panel for your Store. Transactions made with credit cards always use the more secure SSL protocol.

You will be guided through the process of setting up your store by another well-designed wizard. The addition of images and the formatting of text, as well as the assignment of product categories and SKU numbers, are both simple tasks. You can also change the localization so that it supports currencies other than the US dollar. There is an integration with UPS and FedEx for shipping options, and you also have the option to set your own rates. The options for processing payments that are currently available are FirstData, PayPal, and Stripe. It is possible to import product lists using the CSV, XCart, or LiteCommerce formats. Last but not least, Duda enables the sale of digital downloads, which the company refers to as “e-goods.” However, the maximum file size that can be sold is determined by the eCommerce add-on that you use. The file size limit for the Standard plan is 100 MB, while the Advanced plan allows up to 1 GB, and the Unlimited plan allows up to 10 GB.
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Customer Service

There are a few different customer support options available through Duda, the nature of which is largely determined by the service level you have purchased. To put it another way, the higher the price you pay, the more favorable will be the support you receive. As was mentioned earlier, the only mode of communication available with the Basic plan is email, but with the Team plan, you also have access to web chat and phone support.

Even more impressive was the priority priority support provided by the Agency tier. When you contact support at this tier, you will initially be directed to a bot that will take your questions and attempt to direct you toward an answer that can be found in Duda’s Knowledge Base. If that does not answer your question, you can click “Get in Touch,” which will put you in contact with a real-life representative. During our test, it took fewer than 30 seconds to reach a representative, and 20 seconds after that, we were given responses to the questions that we had asked. Exceptionally receptive!

You can also get connected with verified partners known as Duda Experts who can provide you with even more insightful advice on how to enhance your website through the use of Duda. The directory provides information on the types of services that specialists offer, the locations from which they hail, the levels of expertise they possess, the fees they demand, and how highly they are rated.

High uptime

The percentage of time that a website is accessible to users is one of the most essential elements of a hosting service. If your website is down, potential clients and customers won’t be able to locate you or get access to the goods or services you offer.

Over the course of a week and a half, we tracked the availability of our test website hosted by Duda by using a tool that monitors websites. Pinging our website once every 15 minutes, the tool will send an alert if it is unable to make contact with the site for an uninterrupted period of at least one minute. The results of the tests indicate that Duda is remarkably stable; during the two weeks that the software was put through its paces, it crashed only twice, each time for a period of a few seconds. We’re going to chalk that one up to some standard web hiccups, considering how short the downtime was. In a nutshell, Duda is a reliable and consistent person.
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Wonderful, Duda!

In the future, it won’t surprise us to see Duda pivot even further toward teams looking for enterprise software that can be customized to their specific needs. One of its most recent updates includes an expansion of features related to client billing, which suggests that it is moving in that direction.

Despite this, Duda is still a highly capable and user-friendly website building service that offers many impressive features, and this is true even for users working on their own. If the appearance and operation of a website on mobile devices are particularly important to you, Duda is an excellent option to consider. Its editor is among the best we’ve tried, and its site traffic statistics offer more granularity than those offered by the majority of website construction services.

Techexplains Team

Techexplains Team

We are a team of digital marketing experts with years of experience in website builders. CRM tools, project management software helping businesses of all sizes achieve their marketing goals. We are writing about benefits of using SaaS for businesses, and sharing our top picks for the best tools currently available on the market. Whether you are a small business owner looking to streamline your marketing efforts or a larger enterprise seeking to improve your marketing efficiency, we hope that you will find this useful and informative.