One of the world’s best known web hosting services is Jimdo. They offer a variety of different options, including JimdoBusiness and JimdoPro, which are premium services, and JimdoFree, which is, as the name suggests, a free service. The company is operated by a Hamburg, Germany company Jimdo GmbH. While there are many different website builders around, some of which having existed since the internet was first developed, Jimdo is neither one of the newest nor one of the oldest out there. However, they have been able to establish themselves in the website builder world and have been able to build a solid reputation.
In February 2007, Fridtjof Detzner, Christian Springub, and Matthias Henze founded Jimdo. It didn’t take off quickly, but when Yahoo! announced the closure of GeoCities in April 2009, Jimdo jumped on the bandwagon and encouraged previous GeoCities users to migrate over to them. They launched what they called the “Lifeboat for GeoCities”, an intensive promotional campaign to help users migrate over to Jimdo with ease. They also gave all past GeoCities users who signed up for JimdoPro a 10% discount, and extended this to Google Page Creator as well.
Suddenly quite popular, Jimdo was able to extend the services that they offered. As such, in 2010, they developed their store service, which enabled Jimdo users to launch their own ecommerce stores. That same year, however, Jimdo’s board changed because United Internet withdrew from it. Two years later, in February 2012, Jimdo had managed to launch its 5 millionth website and they continued to grow very rapidly. In fact, by November 2013, they have 10 million websites. At the last count in June 2015, they had exceeded 15 million.
On June 8, 2015, the announcement was made that Spectrum Equity, a company based in this country, invested in Jimdo at a price of 25 million Euros. This made Spectrum Equity become a major shareholder in Jimdo GmbH, holding a 26.7% share.
To date, Jimdo remains a website builder, offering three different tiers of packages, one free and two hosted. They also have store functionalities, enabling people to build ecommerce businesses through their websites.
Jimdo is known for a number of excellent services, including:
- The JimdoPro and JimdoBusiness packages that offer users a free domain name. It is also possible to redirect an existing domain name to them. Additionally, these plans offer free email, which can be accessed and managed through Jimdo itself.
- It offers two sublevels of navigation. While this is good, it is not as deep as what many other website builders offer.
- It comes with a range of widgets for users to add to their website. These include great photo galleries and the ability to embed YouTube videos. They also offer full social media integration, including Facebook in this. Furthermore, there are Dropbox widgets, which allow for the easy management of files and images on the website. Lastly, it offers an integrated photo editor, which has been found to be very good.
- It is possible to monetize a Jimdo site using things like Google Adsense, banners, and so on.
- Jimdo has a strong focus on helping people create online shops. Their store comes with an order management system, as well as a variety of payment options. Furthermore, those who choose the JimdoPro plan can add 15 different products to their website, whereas JimdoBusiness does not impose a limit on the number of products someone can add.
- Jimdo also allows people to engage in SEO (search engine optimization) to enable people to have their site found. As such, they enable users to change the meta description, page title, image ALT tags, and URLs, although not in the free plan. Besides offering the latter, the JimdoBusiness, in particular, also enables users to set a number of pages so that they are excluded from search engines. Furthermore, users can create 301 redirects in that plan.
- Jimdo offers users a blog, but this is quite complex to set up. Once figured out, however, the blog offers a range of standard features such as pings and trackbacks. Unfortunately, it does not come with categories. Comment features are not included as standard, but it is possible to install Disqus for this.
- Jimdo fully integrates Google Analytics in their website, which means users can get detailed stats on their visitors.
- People can include a contact form with fully customizable fields. Additionally, it is possible to edit the confirmation message that visitors receive after completing a contact form.
- Jimdo users are able to access security settings, protecting individual pages or the site as a whole. The exact level of security that is offered depends on the Jimdo plan that someone signs up for. It is possible, for instance, to password protect specific areas of the site, using different passwords. It is not possible, however, to password protect any blog posts.
- Interestingly, Jimdo no longer offers a newsletter tool to its users. However, they allow for easy third party app integration, which means that you can install an external newsletter service to your site.
- You can add a range of tools and widgets by changing the HTML code.
- Depending on the package that is chosen, the storage space also varies. With JimdoPro, users get 5GB of storage, but with JimdoBusiness, it is unlimited. Because of this, you are also not required to get a different hosting contract.
- While there is no forum installed with Jimdo, they do offer a guestbook.
- One of the unique things about Jimdo is that it is really fun to use as well.
Overall, Jimdo’s main strength is in its simplicity, while at the same time being innovative in its feature sets. The packages that are available are innovative, which means users have everything they could possible need available to them. These include the website builder itself, and also the domain name, the blog, and the email address or addresses. Additionally, ever since it added the ecommerce functionality, Jimdo has become even more relevant to most people.