Pricing (weighted 12%)
Free - IM Creator offers a free option. It is about as tantalizing as the other free website options offered by other website builders. It gives you 50mb of hosting and a site that is a subdomain of IM Creator.
Premium - The premium plan has a few different pricing options. You can choose how often you are billed, and that determines how much you pay.
If you pay biannually (twice a year, not every two years) then you pay $9.95/month.
If you pay yearly then it is $7.95/month.
If you pay once every two years (also biannually) $6.95/month.
If you pay every three years they will charge you $5.95/month.
The premium plan gives you unlimited hosting and bandwidth, ten custom email addresses, and better support options.
Pro & Whitelable - This is IM Creator’s most expensive option at $250/year. It allows freelancers to rebrand IM Creator as their own product to sell to clients. You also get better support options.
These pricing options are quite odd. You probably won’t want to be stuck with IM Creator for three years so some of the pricing plans aren’t really worth it. If you are committed to IM Creator as a platform then they are a great value.
Free - Weebly has a free option. It has limited hosting options, and will give you a silly URL that has Weebly’s name in it.
$8/month - The basic account will give you a free domain name for one year.
$12/month - This beefs up your ecommerse options and gives you the ability to have HD video and audio.
$25/month - This plan removes the fee that Weebly charges on ecommerse transactions.
Weebly is probably the better value here. You pay less for IM Creator, but you don't get nearly as much.
Design (weighted 12%)
IM Creator's templates are fine if you want to show pictures or text, but beyond those simple applications they fall flat on their face.
The sites can be perfect for designers or artists who want an easy online presence and don't want to muck about too much creating a website, but those would be the only people who will find IM Creator useful.Weebly provides a much more fully featured editor and better templates for a variety of uses. IM Creator isn't up to snuff.
Weebly's editor is very nice and easy to use. The templates offered are fully featured right out of the box. They feel like complete websites.
Weebly's sites are much more flexible than IM Creator. The app store alone adds a lot of functionality, like eCommerce and email marketing.
When it comes to design, Weebly is better in every way. IM Creator just can't compete; their templates and designs are simplistic and not very useful. Weebly provides sites that can have a bunch of different applications.
Frontend Features (weighted 12%)
The websites don't really do much, but they look good. This seems to be the point of IM Creator. They are mostly for words and pictures, not much else.
IM Creator is not very good at mobile optimization. The provide mobile templates, but you will have to set those up separately. This is a big problem if you expect to get visitors using a mobile platform, which you most certainly will.
Weebly provides all the standard website building tools. You can embed videos, add maps, and add flash players.
The websites look great on both mobile and desktop, and are easy to navigate. The mobile preview is very helpful. Weebly just has more ways to make your site usable and pleasant than IM Creator.
Backend Featuers (weighted 12%)
The backend is very very sparse. It is just a black window with a bunch of options for creating a new site. This is even after you have made your first website.
There is really nothing to see on the backend except the editor. This makes IM Creator feel kind of cheap. It doesn't help that the whole design of their interface feels very dated.
There is just nothing here. IM Creator is a whole lot of empty space.
The backend is very animated and friendly. Everything looks welcoming, and their app store is integrated well. It feels like part of the design interface.
It is easy to navigate the backend of the site. You can get to statistics easily and everything is laid out clearly for you. Weebly feels very civil and polite, though there are not many features.
Weebly's backend is a little sparse, but it is nothing compared to the lack of features in IM Creator. Weebly is much much more fully featured.
Hosting & Security (weighted 12%)
The free plan has hosting only up to 50MB, which is very very little. The paid plans will give you unlimited hosting. You may host to your heart’s content!
There are not very many people that use IM Creator. This makes websites made in this platform a low priority for internet bandits. They also automatically include any security updates.
The lack of third party integrations also makes IM Creator a more secure platform. Add-ons are notorious for causing a lot of security problems, but IM Creator avoids that by not having any. Of course, this makes their platform less usable, but it is great for security.
IM Creator does not offer any SSL encryption of any kind. They direct you to third party alternatives when asked. That is too bad, especially since Weebly has the option to put SSL on every page of your site.
Weebly has hosting for all of their plans. The paid plans include a free domain name for one year. After the one year you will have to pay for it. That strikes me as impolite.
Their security is pretty good. They automatically update your sites to include the most recent security fixes. In contrast to their domain name policy, this is very polite.
You can choose to have SSL encryption on your entire site, or just on your checkout page. Weebly handles all of that internally, so there is no messing around with third party encryption services.
Reports & Statistics (weighted 12%)
There are no native statistics in IM Creator. You'll have to go elsewhere for your fancy-pants reports. They do integrate with Google Analytics. You'll have to fill out a short form before you statistics appear on your account.
There is really no reason for IM Creator not to have statistics. The backend is so empty they need stuff to fill it up. Why not fill it up with statistics?
The free version of Weebly has a small statistics section that only tracks page views and unique visits.
The paid versions add a few extra features. They let you see which of your pages are the most popular, how your site is found, and which websites are giving you traffic.
They also have a Google Analytics plugin that you can use to expand your reports.
Weebly makes IM Creator look like a wimpy little kid when it comes to statistics.
Extensibility (weighted 12%)
There is no real extensibility to speak of in IM Creator. They don't have an app store or any third party integrations.
IM Creator is all about putting basic websites out there with a minimum of hassle, and they don't require add-ons to do that.
That said, it is disappointing that they don't have at least a few key integrations. It would really increase the usability of their site.
Weebly has an app center with 77 different integrations. This is solidly in the middle of the field when it comes to integrations. They are put into the editor in such a way that it is easy to find and include them.
77 integrations is 77 more than IM Creator has. Weebly will have way more usability if you rely on plug-ins for your website.
This is really the difference maker. The app sore makes Weebly actually useful for creating websites, and the lack of an app store leaves IM Creator in the dust.
Support (weighted 12%)
IM Creator offers support tickets, a FAQ, forums, a downloadable manual, and one hundred and twenty-three how to articles. They are very proud of the one hundred and twenty-three how tos. And why not? One hundred and twenty-three is an awful lot of how to articles.
They respond to support tickets pretty quickly, and the downloadable manual is a very useful resource for most basic questions.
They have a knowladebase and FAQ section as well as live chat and support tickets. Their live chat is available Mon-Fri 5am-5pm PST and Sat-Sun 7am-4pm PST.
They also offer phone support for higher paying customers.
Weebly has much better support than IM Creator. Their live chat is very responsive, and the support representatives are very helpful.