July 8, 2020

What is Webflow? The Ultimate Guide for Beginners

This guide is all about Webflow and its features on how to build fast loading, SEO friendly and responsive website.

Ashok Chavada

Webflow Expert

What is Webflow? The Ultimate Guide for Beginners

Webflow is a popular website builder and a complete one-stop shop solution for your business website compared to WordPress, Elementor, Squarespace, Wix and DUDA.

Before we start discussing all the features and how to build your first Webflow website for your business. I’d like to discuss about No-Code or Low-Code first.

What is No-Code or Low-Code?

When you can build Website or Web app without writing a single line of code or using page builders that is called No-Code or Low-Code website.

For some websites you may need to use few lines of code because of requirements but still it is called No-Code or Low-Code website.

Why Webflow?

Webflow is relatively new but the features it offer is all you need to create a stunning website to generate more leads for your business and traffic to your website.

Traditional website building takes too much of your time to get it ready for launch on time but using Webflow you can go live/launch your website within 1-2 weeks of timeframe.

What Features do Webflow provides to build an engaging business website?

Here are the main features that Webflow provides to build a powerful website without writing a single line of code:

  • Drag and Drop
  • CSS: style your layouts
  • CMS (Content Management System)
  • SEO (Search Engine Optimization)
  • Forms: to capture leads
  • Animations: to make your site engaging
  • Webhooks and API
  • Custom Domain, SSL and hosting
  • Webflow Pricing

Let’s discuss all of the main features in detailed. So, that when you try out Webflow first-time you don’t get stuck:

Drag and Drop: for layouts

Webflow is know for its drag and drop feature for creating user-centric layouts because you can easily add headings, paragraphs, blocks, links and buttons to your website just by draging an element to your page section.

For eg. if you want to add a new heading, paragraph, and a button you simply click on Add element tab on the left panel and simply drag your selected items to your page and then just start editing the content.

CSS: style your layouts

A website with modern and clean layouts attract more users and you can increase user engagement rate too.

In Webflow, you can create any modern layout using CSS in which you can take the leverage of CSS Grid Layout and Flexbox to create responsive layouts.

So, now you might be wondering what is CSS Grid Layout and Flexbox in Webflow, right?

What is CSS Grid Layout?

CSS Grid Layout excels at dividing a page into major regions or defining the relationship in terms of size, position, and layer, between parts of a control built from HTML primitives.

Source: mdn web docs

What is Flexbox?

Flexbox is a one-dimensional layout method for arranging items in rows or columns. Items flex (expand) to fill additional space or shrink to fit into smaller spaces.

Source: mdn web docs

Webflow's styling panel let's you change font colors, padding and margin, typography, background images, borders, filters and many more things that requires to build a powerful and attractive website.

CMS - Content Management System

CMS (Content Management System) lets you add dynamic content easily like blogs, authors, tags, categories, team members, and etc. without any kind of hassle.

Webflow CMS is different than other CMSs out there because you don’t need to use any plugin to create custom post types for your website. For eg. if you’re building a blog and then you can easily add category and tags to your blog just by adding new tag and category collections.

If you’re planning to use external data then Webflow offers its Webhooks and API so that you can access your CMS collections from outside of Webflow too.

Learn Webflow CMS from Webflow University

You can also watch our Webflow CMS series on YouTube. Watch it here

SEO - Search Engine Optimization

Without SEO there’s no use of having a website because you can’t reach to your audience on Google or Bing. Webflow provides a simple way to add SEO for your pages and CMS content to rank your website higher on search engine websites.

Add title and description tags properly and you’ll start seeing the results in 2-3 months of time. There’s no need to use any plugins for SEO in Webflow.

Once you done adding SEO content. Simply log in to your Google account and connect with your Google analytics and Search Console to crawl your website for search results.

To learn more about SEO visit Webflow University: https://university.webflow.com/courses/seo-fundamentals

Forms: to capture leads

Goal of any online business is to captures leads. To capture leads you need a form that can easily be added/integrated to your website without help of any developer and that is what Webflow provide.

Webflow forms are very simple to use and you can integrate Webflow forms with Mailchimp, HubSpot and with many more online apps using Zapier and Make (formerly Integromat).

Animations: to make website engaging

These days animation on Website has become a trend. Some websites use high-end animations like 3D and WebGL where some sites using simple but attractive animations to leave impact on their visitors.

Webflow animation panel lets you create simple and complex animations without need of any third-party library/JS.

Does animation slow down the website?

Yes, it does. When you load lots of JavaScript files or libraries into your project then it slow down your website. Otherwise, if you use Webflow’s core animation feature then I promise you it won’t affect on speed of your website when testing on Google page speed insight or somewhere else.

Where can I learn Webflow animations?

The best place to learn Webflow animation is Webflow University

You can also watch our YouTube series on Webflow animations

Webhooks and API

Webhooks and API are the most important features in Webflow because with Webhooks and API you can automate or integrate any third-party apps with your Webflow website.

What are Webhooks?

Webhooks are one way that apps can send automated messages or information to other apps.

Source: https://zapier.com/blog/what-are-webhooks/

For eg. If you want to send/save your Webflow form submission details on Mailchimp or HubSpot you can easily do that by adding a Webhook and connecting it with HubSpot using Zapier or Integromat in minutes.

What is Webflow CMS API?

The Webflow CMS API is a HTTP JSON API and allows you to programatically add, update, and delete items from the Webflow CMS, allowing you to connect external data sources to your Webflow sites.

Source: https://developers.webflow.com/

If you want to learn more about Webhooks and API then visit the source links I’ve shared above.

Custom Domain, SSL and Hosting

Crucial question for any business is making their website live. Now, you can make your Webflow website live in just 10 minutes.

How to connect custom domain with Webflow?

Webflow helps you connect your Godaddy or any other domain provder’s domain with Webflow website by simply adding CNAME, A Records, and TXT Records into your domain provider’s DNS settings.

Learn how to add custom domain in Webflow

Where to host a Webflow website?

Once your Webflow website is ready. You don’t need to purchase any separate hosting provider like HostGator or AWS because Webflow has its own hosting feature and that is cloud based. It means your website will run very smoothly without any interruptions.

For hosting prices check out our Pricing section of this blog.

Webflow SSL:

You know, What all web browsers tell your users when they visit your website? they simply notify visitors to not share any information like contact details because the website is not secured.

But in Webflow SSL is free and you can enable it from your project settings.

Note: This is only available for paid users only.

Webflow Pricing

Webflow is a free website builder with 2 free projects and per project you get 2 free pages. You can play with Webflow’s basic features in a free plan. So, that you can learn and explore more about Webflow.

Webflow is way cheaper compared to other CMS providers. Webflow has different-different plans according to your needs.

Lets say you need a website with CMS then you’ll need to pay for that plan only and you will unlock many features that plan offers.

To view all the plans. Please visit Webflow pricing page: https://webflow.com/pricing

Closing Notes

I hope you’ve got some ideas now about Webflow and its offering features to build a stunning website without writing a single line of code or even hiring a developer.

Thank you for reading!

TweakDesigns is a Webflow certfified partner agency. We design and build Webflow websites, templates and integrate SEO. Subscribe to our newsletter or talk to our Webflow expert today for your queries.

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Ashokkumar Chavada
CEO and Webflow Expert