One of my favorite Mac-based website building tools was upgraded recently, and I hesitated to pay for the new version because I use it less and less and wanted to try it out for awhile before making a decision.
In fact, RapidWeaver is more of a platform these days, with many hundreds of add-on utilities and functions. It starts by selecting a website theme. Then, create a Home page and add more pages and content for each as you require.
Nearly every component you’d need to add to a website page is drag and drop or point and click, and content can be added on the fly to each page and viewed in preview mode before publishing; and the preview sizes match the Mac’s screen, plus iPhone and iPad screens.
Websites are much like snowflakes. No two are exactly alike, and even though RapidWeaver comes with many themes and more are available online, they’re the same themes used by other website developers– until you start customizing the theme.
That means RapidWeaver comes with controls that can turn a simple theme into a fully customized theme within minutes. Changes made to navigation controls roll out throughout the site with just a few clicks.
There’s more to RapidWeaver than just the app. There’s a growing and robust community of developers who produce many hundreds of additional themes and add-on functionality, so there’s much to like and the sum is greater than the total of the parts.
Any niggling issues?
Just a few. The upgrade to the latest RapidWeaver now costs more than the app did back in the early days. That’s the price of progress. RapidWeaver boasts a new upload engine that seems faster that previous versions, but still requires you to upload files to update the site. I’d also like to see an option to connect to Amazon S3 and other non-typical, non-FTP-SFTP servers.
Otherwise, if you want to build your own website, but don’t want the complexity and management issues of WordPress, and don’t know how to spell HTML or CSS, RapidWeaver can be a complete, albeit a bit intimidating option.