In 2014, a group of design enthusiasts launched Ucraft. As such, Ucraft is a website builder that appeals to those who also place aesthetics and design front and centre. You’ll see that in the language Ucraft uses – and encounter “designer” often.
It provides a drag-and-drop editor and modern templates for you to build a website without coding (read hassle). Sounds familiar? Ucraft follows the tried and tested path that Strikingly and the likes have trodden on. And so, it’s also an all-purpose website builder with which you can create online stores, blogs, and corporate websites with an emphasis on images.
- Pros and cons of Ucraft
- Who is Ucraft for?
- How easy is Ucraft to use?
- Design and themes
- How easy is managing your ecommerce store with Ucraft?
- Image editing and logo maker
- What marketing tools does Ucraft provide?
- Payment options
- Customer support
- Is Ucraft the right solution for you?
Pros and cons of Ucraft
As an all-in-one website builder, Ucraft takes care of domain registration, hosting, content management system and provides a visual editor.
- Mobile app to edit and manage your store on the go
- Forever free plan
- Multi-lingual support
- Easy to use
- Solid SEO toolset (on paid plans)
- Well rounded ecommerce feature set
- Swift responses from the support team who strives to help you
- Beautiful, mobile-ready templates
There are quite a number of blocks but no search function to find the one you need quickly
No backup function
You can’t downgrade a plan
Not for larger projects
Who is Ucraft for?
Since Ucraft doesn’t require any coding or design skills and comes with a host of modern and free templates, it’s a good place to start for beginners or those looking for a simple solution. With its system of stacking blocks to build a site, you can very quickly set up a site. Its ease of use lends itself as a website builder for small and mid-sized businesses that also want to run an online store and you can manage it with your team. With its higher plans, you can scale your site, especially if it’s for expanding the features set for ecommerce.
How easy is Ucraft to use?
Getting started is straightforward and you don’t even need to enter your credit card details for your free 14 days trial. If you’ve signed up with other website builders, you know the drill, and you start by choosing your template and then you go on to enter a domain. You can start with a free site provided by Ucraft that follows the pattern of yourchosendomain.ucraft.site. You can connect at any time a domain to your site, even on the free plan.
Once you’ve completed the signup process, you’ll find yourself in the editor. In the beginning, I describe the editor as a drag-and-drop type, but it’s more correct to say, that it’s block-based. You add the blocks you want by dragging and dropping the chosen one onto your page and so quickly build your entire site. Blocks are thematically grouped elements like a contact form that contains input fields and a description paragraph. You can add more elements like a button or a video to a block in the same way. If you’re using the same elements in a combination more than once, you can make a block and reuse it and thereby save time.
The interface itself is uncluttered so it’s easy to find all the options. If you’re coming from other website builder, Ucraft may take a bit of getting used to, because it does the one or other thing a bit differently. But if you’re used to working with blocks, it’s really easy to use. Since Ucraft wants to help you make your website look consistent and so professional, you may find that the editor gives you a smaller degree of freedom and so find it a bit rigid but you’ll get a site where no element is out of place.
Design and themes
Nowadays, it should be a matter of fact that all websites have to be mobile-ready and always look beautiful no matter what device you’re using to view it. Ucraft has recognised this fact and provides stylish and mobile responsive templates that let your images do the talking. The templates are easy to customise and categorised in industries like fashion, events, photography, etc to show which business types are supported.
How easy is managing your ecommerce store with Ucraft?
The ecommerce features are only available if you’ve subscribed to a paid plan and cover the basics needed for running an online store like product catalogue, shipping methods, discount codes, payment methods, and more. Setting up your own store is like a walk in the park, there is a wizard that will walk you through the process. The same is true with handling all tasks related to managing your store.
Ucraft’s ecommerce engine comes with handy features like adding SEO to each product, promotions, and coupon codes.
To expand and add more functionality to your site, you can integrate with third-party services listed (like HubSpot, Zendesk, Messenger, etc) in the integrations sections on the dashboard. In addition, you can integrate your online store with online selling platforms, such as eBay or Amazon. Social media integration is built in so that you can easily add Facebook, Linkedin, or other social media to your site.
Image editing and logo maker
As the focus of Ucraft is building image-driven websites, it has a stock image library and integrates with Canva so that you can find an image and also edit it all within the media manager found in the dashboard.
To make it as straightforward as possible for people to build their first website, Ucraft comes with a free logo maker. You can create your own logo in 3 simple steps:
- Select an icon from the stock images
- Customise the icon by changing the dimension and colour of the icon
- Save your new logo in the available formats
What marketing tools does Ucraft provide?
Ucraft provides a robust feature set for you to promote and grow your business. It comes with the usual suspects like a solid tool for SEO (premium plans only) and a blog but it also has lets you add embedded forms for subscriptions and popup forms.
You can edit page titles, meta descriptions for each page, and also for each of your products and blog posts. The SEO editor is only available in the paid plans.
Publish your blog with the articles app. In Articles, you write and schedule your blog posts, categorise and add tags and add a comment section with Disqus. But, it’s not included in the free plan.
Even if Ucraft has not developed an email campaign feature, you can connect it with an email service and send out a newsletter. Their email marketing service of choice is Mailchimp.
The free landing page creator will let you build a landing page within minutes. Just like with your main website, you pick a template, then customise it and add your SEO settings. You can then share it across your social media or link it to your own domain and benefit from the free web hosting. Just know that landing pages have some restrictions, the most evident is that you have Ucraft branding at the bottom right-hand corner of each page.
Ucraft offers the usual payment gateways – PayPal and Stripe on the lowest premium plan. If you need more options, you have to opt for the higher plans. The good thing is that they don’t charge a transaction fee on the paid plans.
All websites built with Ucraft are encrypted with an SSL certificate. There is no built-in backup function or integration with a backup service.
You can access Ucraft’s online chat any time when you’re working on your project. Besides, there’s a FAQs page, a knowledge base, and a community forum. The support team usually answers within minutes of a question. The support team is knowledgeable, friendly and genuinely care about you and your questions.
Ucraft has 4 plans including a free one. You can get started with a 14 day free trial of all the paid plans. A free domain is included in the paid plans. A boon is that Ucraft treats SSL as a matter of fact for running a website and includes it in all 4 plans. The pricing is in line with the likes of Squarespace or Wix.
If you plan on running an online store, be sure to select a paid plan. The two highest plans also include advanced ecommerce features like abandoned cart, inventor tracking, and cross-platform selling (like on Instagram). As an added bonus, Ucraft doesn’t charge you a transaction fee on all the premium plans.
If you’re a freelance creative, agency, and hosting provider, Ucraft could be an even more interesting option with their white-label solution. With this, you can use its platform to create websites but under your brand name. You have to option to either run with the SaaS model or a custom solution.
Is Ucraft the right solution for you?
Ucraft is a website building solution designed for creating personal and small to medium-sized business websites. Its way of presenting content in that it’s image-centric makes it a great solution for visual blogs, portfolios, and also for businesses like cafes and restaurants that are more mobile-focused.
If you’re a startup or running a personal website, Ucraft is scalable and you can upgrade your plan as you grow. If you’re a mid-sized business, you may find you’ll hit the ceiling rather sooner than later.
Is Ucraft not what you’re looking for? Check out other ecommerce solutions.