Webflow uses two types of plans and that can sometimes confuse which plan is needed in a given situation. In essence, they offer their platform, with which you can build a website, and they offer a hosting service - but they do intertwine sometimes. And if you are building websites with Webflow or just starting out, these tips will come in handy to be able to advise your clients about the best plan for their business. Failing to communicate the pricing structure to your client might come back to haunt you when the site grows and you hit the limitations.
Webflow does a great job of explaining the difference between plans and features they offer, so I’ll go over the differences very briefly. There are two separate pricing plans in Webflow:
- Account Plan - a plan that gives you access to Webflow Designer
- Site Plan - hosting plan for connecting your project with a custom domain
Due to the number of options and the need to combine the two plans, it can quickly get complicated, as I noticed from my experience. Instead of explaining pricing plans in detail by types, I prefer to explain them based on their use cases.
- For designers
- For clients
Being the no-code website building platform, Webflow is mostly used by web designers and marketers to create websites for themselves as well as their clients.
If you’re just starting out, you can use a free Starter Account Plan, which gives you everything you need to get going. You’ll be able to create 2 projects with a two-page limit and 50 CMS items alongside free staging on webflow.io domain. This is great for everyone, who wants to practice their skills and try Webflow with almost no restrictions. You will not be able to export the code, transfer created sites to other accounts, or add embedded code snippets via embed element, but every other important feature works just like on paid plans.
Building websites for yourself
Once you hit the limitation on the Starter plan and want to upgrade, you have two options:
- if you want to create multiple websites with no limitations, you can upgrade up to Lite Account Plan, raising 2 project limitation to 10 with up to 100 static pages. This plan will give you all the necessary options to start building for yourself or for your first clients
- if you want to focus on one website (portfolio for example) and host it on your custom domain, you should get the Site Plan (either Basic or CMS, depending on if you’ll use the CMS function) instead of an Account Plan. This will give you all the features of a paid Account Plan for this particular project, plus hosting.
Building websites for clients
For those of you, that want to focus on your own and client work, you will want to get the Lite Account Plan. This will give you a 10 project limit, which you can always extend with upgrading to the Pro Account plan later.
For each website you build and want to put online, you will purchase a Site / eCommerce hosting plan accordingly. You’ll have a few options:
- creating a new account for a client, transferring the website to their account, and purchase Site Plan with their credit card(or Ecommerce Plan in case of eCommerce website)
- by purchasing hosting yourself and billing client via the Webflow platform (only works for certain countries)
- by exporting code and managing hosting by yourself or send it to the client
Unless you plan to utilize full Webflow capabilities, and plan to act as a designer, you don’t need to buy an account plan, instead, you can only get a Site (hosting) Plan. By connecting your website with a Site plan, you will be able to do the majority of the things you would normally be able to do with an account plan, except for exporting the code in case you wanted to do so and sending the project to another account. You will also not be able to have more than 2 non published pages on your Dashboard.
Option 1: Designer hosts the website
For clients, the easiest and often safest option is to let the designer take care of hosting on Webflow after the website has been built. The designer will bill the client for hosting directly from the Webflow dashboard, and make everything super simple.
Option 2: Client hosts the website
For clients, that want to host their new website themselves, you can do that either
- by transferring the finished website to their account after the project has been completed
- by creating a new Webflow account for a client before the project kicks off
If the client wants to create a new account prior to kick-off, they will also have to purchase either Account or Site Plan in order to enable all functionalities needed for the website development.
Option 3: Designer exports the code
In case the client decides to host with their preferred hosting service instead of Webflow, code can be exported with an active Account Plan. With exporting the code, you lose the capabilities of the content management system if it's used, and will have to build it via an alternative CMS. We would usually recommend this option only for very simple websites, or for those clients that plan on creating a custom back-end that’s not yet possible with Webflow.
Some additional explanations:
What happens, when I upgrade in the middle of the month, do I get money for the remaining period back?
If you upgrade, contact Webflow support and they will make sure you can use the extra balance with the next purchase.
What happens, when I downgrade from a paying account plan to a free plan?
When you downgrade, only the two oldest projects will stay unlocked, and if you have more than 50 CMS items, those will be locked as well, but they will remain in your dashboard. In case one of the existing projects has an active Site Plan, it will be normally accessible and will not count towards the 2 project limitation.
Hopefully, you have a much better understanding of how Webflow pricing works after reading this explanation. If you’re looking to have your new website created with Webflow, schedule a Free Discovery Call with us and we can address the pricing again and advise you personally based on your circumstances.