photo by Jonnie + Garrett
For those of you who may not know me, my name’s Gabby and I’m the Editorial Intern here at Junebug Weddings! In addition to the fun I have by sharing weddings with you all, I am currently planning my very own wedding. As soon as I picked my dress, selected our wedding venue, and secured our photographer, I immediately hunkered down and started researching the best wedding website hosts available. After all, building an excellent wedding website is the easiest and most fun way to inform your guests, hype up your wedding, and show off your amazing engagement session photos!
These days, most wedding website builders offer the same baseline features: a dedicated spot to link to your registries, an integrated event schedule, RSVP features, and sometimes even free e-invitations and e-save-the-dates. So, what sets these wedding website builders apart? We broke down each of our favorite sites by price and unique features to bring you the best wedding websites of 2016!
engagement photos by Pike + Maia
Price: One-time payment of $39-89
What We Love: There are so many reasons to love Appy Couple. Each site’s interface is flexible, there’s spreadsheet-compatible guest list management, and the overall flow and graphics of each site are modern and user-friendly. Best of all, each site comes with a free app for guests to download that offers a live day-of photo stream, AirPlay compatibility, and even games! For all of these amazing features, Appy Couple offers the best value with a reasonable one-time payment that includes unlimited publishing time and tons of site designs.
What’s The Catch: While most of Appy Couple‘s designs are stylish and trendy, they’re not necessarily as current and minimal as some you’ll find on more premium sites. Additionally, the fact that this site is so customizable actually results in a lack of straightforwardness and ease. For example, there are multiple ways to configure your site’s layout but the options aren’t all given to you on one prompt within the builder. Pro tip: after selecting your intial design, you can toggle your layout version under Dashboard > Settings > Wedding Website > Wedding Website Layout.
Price: Free or one-time $35 premium payment
What We Love: Minted is a superstar in the wedding world, and for good reason! Most of Minted‘s free wedding websites have corresponding wedding paper suites so you can have a comprehensive style theme in all of the material you offer your guests. Building a website on Minted is fast, intuitive, and straightforward – perfect for couples who want a simple and seamless wedding website building experience.
What’s Not Working For Us: The simplicity that Minted offers results in a basic, no-frills html page which means there aren’t fun graphics or interactive features like the more premium sites. It also places a big emphasis on floral and rustic designs, which we love, but that results in a lack of trendier modern designs.
What We Love: After years of waiting, there is finally a reliable wedding website builder with a corresponding app that is completely free! Joy offers most of the features that the more premium sites offer (think: fast and intuitive user interface, modern fonts, and sleek site organization design), along with one of the more unique and user-friendly site layouts we’ve seen. Joy is the perfect choice for the modern couple who wants a totally free wedding website experience!
What’s Not Working For Us: Joy‘s customizable site designs are pretty generic but can be avoided by selecting a custom color instead (I chose a bright coral). Additionally, their photo uploader doesn’t let you resize or change photo placement which can be a pain when you’re working with large photo files. Joy also doesn’t offer custom URL domains.
Price: $16/month or $144/year
What We Love: Looking for the perfect wedding website to show off your gorgeous engagement photos? Then Squarespace is for you! Between slideshows, custom galleries, and beautiful ways to display images on your homepage, Squarespace lets your amazing e-sesh speak for itself. This website hosting behemoth offers six beautiful layouts to organize your wedding site. In addition, Squarespace features one of our favorite building experiences with the ultimate balance of highly customizable and intuitive design offerings.
What’s The Catch: Squarespace‘s site design is so modern and minimal that it relies on your uploaded photos to carry your page’s design. That said, Squarespace offers a great logo maker that can help jazz up your wedding website’s header with something special (and it’s totally free)!
Riley & Grey
Price: $35/month or $240/year
What We Love: Riley & Grey‘s gorgeous wedding website builder features seamlessly beautiful backgrounds and a wide variety of ways to organize your wedding details. You can choose your homepage graphic from a list of incredibly current and modern art trends like freshly marbled paint, abstract boho botanicals, and even a hip illustration of tattooed knuckles! Bottom line: Riley & Grey offers a straight up stunning site builder experience with a highly intuitive user interface.
What’s The Catch: At $35/month or $240/year, publishing a site on Riley & Grey tops off as the priciest on our list. Do you know some friends that are also looking to publish a wedding website? They offer a discount referral program where you and a friend both get one free month if you both publish a site with them!
Price: Free or $10/month
What We Love: Wix offers three modern and minimal wedding site layout options to start, but once you commit to one, you’re free to use any of their hundreds of fun and stylish background options (or your own image, like I did). Wix‘s photo uploader is one of the easiest to work with, plus their interface is very intuitive, easy to navigate, and highly customizable. If you love being able to click, drag, change the color, and resize every text box and graphic as much as I do, then Wix is for you!
What’s The Catch: Wix‘s free package includes a pretty intrusive footer banner and tab at the top of your wedding website advertising their hosting services (shown above). It costs $10/month to upgrade and get rid of their banners.
At the end of the day, there are so many great wedding site builders available that it’s easier than ever to find one that works for you and your partner! Now that you’ve weighed the pros and cons of the best wedding websites out there, it’s time to start selecting your vendors. Check out this article on everything you need to know about hiring your wedding professionals!