It should be kept in mind that each freelancer(designer or developer), studio or agency has to make decisions about their business model and what tools (software, hardware, processes, etc) best meet their needs and hopefully the needs of their clients. Personally, I’ve tried a number of tools and services along the way in my career – a few bad, some good but very few great. I’d put Webflow in the great category! I’ve found it a quality solution for me as a designer and for my clients. However, It comes down to if a product or service doesn’t meet the needs of you or your client(s) for you then, well it just doesn’t and you have to find something that does fit your business model.
As far as the new pricing – the pricing changes were pre announced back in mid November
(Upcoming new features and pricing changes - #36 by seank), all current sites with hosting were grandfathered in forever and a 50% discount on new sites until July 2017. That seems like more than fair notice of changes and a generous amount of time to examine your business plan and pricing to make sure Webflow works for your business model.
A few things to keep in mind about the hosting. It’s top notch, Amazon & Fastly, secure, automatic backups, it’s easy to maintain both for you and your client. No worrying about patches (plugins, WP, security) it’s all taken care of…your client isn’t met with updates or other concerns when logging in to the Editor. Compare the new Webflow prices (without discount) to managed hosting like WPEngine or GetFlyWheel and it’s very competitive. With Webflow you are getting SSL, CDN, backups, security, form processing, Tier 1 hosting, scales for traffic surges and no headaches or time managing server-side hosting. If you are comparing this type of hosting to the basic entry level Godaddy for $5 then it’s not a fair comparison.
On the pricing of Webflow hosting – before the pricing change “basic” was $5 and is now $7.50 for new sites (still $5.00 for grandfathered sites) but it now includes SSL so that’s benefit considering SSL is going to more import for rank in 2017, and if you had SSL it’s a decrease in cost as “basic” with SSL would have been $10 before. Before a “CMS site” was $10 or $15 with SSL, plus $5/per site for Editor branding, plus another $6/per collaborator, plus if you needed extra CMS items ($10) it added up quickly. The community voiced concerned about the complexity and that scaling upward increased costs. Now you can run basically the same CMS site with all the features for $40/month less. Even without the 50% discount. For existing sites and new ones until July you get all that for the same $10 without the add on fees.
One thing, I’m not sure about is how some users in the UK or other parts of the world find the pricing prohibitive but other users in those same countries seem to be building solid business with the Webflow service and hosting as their base. I wonder if it is a difference of wanting/needing to make a bigger profit margin on hosting as opposed to selling design, development, UX, and conversion strategy.
@chiefmonkey I’m positive people were paying for extra collaborators and probably for white label as well. Regardless, I think it’s about now being able to offer three collaborators without having to talk about an up charge as well as the increased number of CMS items. White label is now for every site under the account. There hasn’t been anything “deceptive” about the Webflow pricing change or @PixelGeek post …if anything this change makes pricing clear and easier. And the SSL question/pricing was covered by Webflow staff here Webflow SSL Hosting - #84 by brryant.
Hey, @Matty I’m a little confused by some of your comments because you seem to be critical of the Webflow hosting prices but then say it’s not actually hosting. You can point hosting at Webflow and let the client keep their email directed to a service like Gmail. (not sure if that is what you were talking about) Also, I don’t think GoDaddy or hostgator are going to touch the same quality, features or performance as Webflow for those cheaper rate plans. The “extras” you mention used to be add-on features but the community was asking for a simpler pricing structure that scaled better and the Webflow team responded. On existing CMS they will be $10 forever AND you get the extra features. Once they $20 per site that’s still competitive pricing.
A final note, the clients I have setup on Webflow are happy, love that we could build full custom sites without having to break the bank, have no issues with the pricing, are surprised that in a year or more we haven’t had to fix, update or tinker with things on the backend that cost them money. The clients I’ve moved from WP to Webflow and that use the Editor wonder why we didn’t do this earlier.