Things are starting to take shape with our fantasy DIY couple: Me and Fictitious Chris Evans. We picked the venue, made the guest list, picked out the invitations, the DJ, and even started on picking out the bridal gown and groom’s tux. I am very excited how my perfect wedding is coming along. Now it’s time to get moving on some of the other tasks… like the wedding website.
One thing I want to mention before I get started is that I don’t have any affiliate links in this article. These opinions I have are mine and mine alone and are not influenced by which sponsor compensates me the most. I think that’s important.
Ten seconds in Google-ing ‘wedding website’ and you get 800,000 results – and that’s page 1. Let’s talk about what your wedding website. It’s easy to get washed away in the endless options for your wedding website. One thing that takes precident over every other point when making your website: It should reflect you. It should be a demonstration of what you and your SO are individually, and also how you compliment each other together. A lot of times I see the wedding website – entire weddings actually – that reflect only one of the people who the wedding is celebrating. With that in mind, what I have seen often is that one SO is much more into the details of the wedding and making it happen than the other one. Just be mindful of your SO and you’ll do great.
Mountainside Bride has a beautiful article about their top picks for wedding websites, it seems to overlap quite a few of my picks. Things I was looking for was: Price, aesthetics, user interface, guests access, and additional resources. Of course – keeping the budget in mind -the ones I was really looking at were all free. There are premium platforms out there for wedding websites, but if you’re focused on a specific budget to stay under, this is a good expense to cut.
The first thing you do when you search for a website platform is hit Google. And the first one that comes up is The Knot.
A little bit about me: I was supposed to be married before. It was 1997 and the Knot was just at the beginning of it’s run. I remember being so impressed at the website! And that was before (at least I hadn’t discovered it yet) they even had wedding websites!
Things I like about theknot.com is the impressive resources available to the bride-to-be. It’s a trove of brilliant resources like managing your guest list, making an inspiration notebook, and keeping track of the tasks left to do. It’s a brilliant – and one of my favorite – wedding resource that I have time and time again referred my DIY clients to utilize. It’s easy for the user to use, it’s easy for guests to use… since planning a wedding is hard, it’s nice to have some easy now and again.
This website real similar is WeddingWire.com. It’s also free to use, has great resources available, and it’s a little simpler to use than TheKnot.com. TheKnot just has so much, I think they could organize their platform a little better. They are both impressive though.
Next would be the specialty websites: WeddingPaperDivas.com & Zola.com. Zola.com is another platform that has a lot of resources but aimed more at your registry. They also offer Guest list management and tasks check list. It’s an easy platform and there’s a lot to add onto your registry.
WeddingPaperDivas.com falls into this same category because it’s focus is on stationary. However, they are closing their site by September 12, 2017 as they add their products to Shutterfly’s Wedding Shop. On a side note, they really are fantastic when it comes to the stationary so if you’re still in the market, consider using them.
The last type of site I want to address are the build-your-own like wix.com and wordpress.com. Depending on your tech skills, and how much time you have to spend, this can be a great option for you. Fiscally responsible, they have many low cost or no cost website templates that fit wedding websites to a tee. One of the things I like so much about the Knot or Wedding Wire options is that there’s one place to go – not 100. I have had clients set up on theKnot.com, give me access, then they have more open dialogue between their planner and their tasks. They get to see what’s next and what’s done. It gives them a little peace of mind.
There are so many others out there, don’t think these are your only options. These just are my personal go-to when a client asks me about wedding websites. When you’re DIY’ing your wedding, keeping track of your budget is a huge task. Hopefully, these free resources will help you all too.
Next, in DIY Brides #11, we are going to review what’s coming up for 2018. Rustic was all the rage in 2016 & 2017, but 2018 promises something a little more polished.
*This post was originally published 08/19/17, updated 11/10/17*