If you are one like me, you often wonder about the complexity of all of these website frameworks. It always seems like a new framework or SaaS is coming. The web world evolves very quickly, and to be up to date, one needs to constantly be researching. Still, it often becomes difficult to select and choose the perfect one for you. According to me for any framework to be good it should have these basic characteristics -

  • Easy to use, preferably drag and drop type builder
  • Gives customisability (if not everything, at least to a certain extent)
  • No Vendor Lock Ins (very important)
  • Must allow for custom domain

There are definitely several services like Squarespace, Weebly, Wix that are really good drag and drop website builders - but they are paid, have massive vendor lock ins. You cannot shift to another host or platform if they run out of venture money or change their Terms of Service, which is very important for me to select.

There are definitely frameworks like WordPress , Ghost , Drupal , Joomla , etc. which seem to solve all of these problems. But according to me they are kinda outdated and modifying themes is a huge problem. Also you need a server to host it (also they are not statically rendered, requiring query lookups everything). JAMStack solutions like Hugo (on which this website is built on), Gatsby , Jekyll are definitely really awesome, but they are not that beginner friendly nor easy to use. The advantage which they have over everyone else is that you can host it anywhere you want and also probably for free as there is no need for some server to do all rendering, its pre rendered.

And then I met aspect.app , found it out from a Hacker News post. It is by far the best easy, ready to get started, drag and drop builder with super easy to use layout. It allows you to download the actual HTML and CSS files for your website. Did I mention if you use it, the exported website doesn’t use any JavaScript? It is the perfect tool for creating a landing page, or a simple basic website with a wireframe and then modify the code as much as you wish. Really impressed and happy with the tool. Also, the exported code, is super humanly readable with the ability to link your own custom domain with a click.

https://time.aspect.app/ - Created this webpage in less than 2 minutes

My Personal suggestion

A lot of people have often asked me to setup website for them. I would often go with Wordpress because it is a well established player and you can easily migrate it whenever needed. But Wordpress is complex and for normal people, its overwhelming to use. Even Aspect.app , although it provides great flexibility and freedom for a new beginner or just a small business, it’s overwhelming. That is why I would just recommend Blogger or even better Google Sites . It has a super easy to use interface, you cannot mess it up. It also provides ability to link your own custom domain. Did I mention it is free? (So, if you are not happy, there are no strings attached). Yes there are some privacy concerns and need for a cookie banner, etc, but for basic personal websites or for a local NGO or business, it is perfect in my opinion.

Note: People also do say Substack or Medium are good options. I believe Substack is primarily focused on providing newsletter service and growing your audience rather than having a digital presence. Whereas, Medium has a horrible ToS regarding ownership of content. And I do not fully comply with that.