The next stage of website builders

While Israel has the website building down pat, there is still a gaping void in the market begging to be filled.

December 13, 2016 12:20
3 minute read.
Top Israeli tech executives talk

Top Israeli tech executives talk. (photo credit: Courtesy)

Yes, we've heard it before. Israel is appropriately lauded for being the startup nation, leading in high-tech and other innovative business ventures. But it's time to collect the credit for excelling in a more specific domain: website building platforms. There are so many user-accessible interfaces  for web design originating from this Middle Eastern technological hub that it's a wonder people are still hiring developers to do the job for them. This twenty-billion dollar industry has taken the world by storm, mainly due to the fact that it's useful to everyone—businesses, artists, bloggers, and the like— and Israel is sitting front and center at the helm.

To be specific, the website building revolution has opened doors to anyone without a technical background or coding experience, but is of particular interest to small and midsized businesses. Before the last decade or so, SMBs needed to hire professional coders in order to make their mark on the online world, a venture that is both time-consuming and expensive. By cutting out the need for a developer, website builders continue to give SMBs a huge break in expenditure as well as provide them autonomy in the design and overall display of their websites. The millions of users this industry has attracted only testify to how beneficial it's been, and Israel's stake in it has been large if not dominant.

Yet, while we've got the website building down pat—see Wix, Webydo, DudaMobile, and many others for reference— there is still a gaping void in the market begging to be filled. The issue is as follows: A website provides a space for a business to showcase itself, perhaps with some descriptions of the company members along with the purpose of the organization, services they offer, and maybe some contact information at the bottom. But that's the extent of it. To conduct any sort of business transaction online, you still have to appeal to external developers or third-party widgets, and neither is particularly efficient— widgets operate individually, so they generally don't sync with one another, and as stated before, developers are usually too expensive for small businesses to afford. As a result, SMBs have no chance competing with franchises and other companies that have the thousands to spend on coders who will program a solution for them. This is a problem that begs the kind of forward-thinking Israel is continuously extolled for.

One such company that has seemingly taken up the challenge is Simbla, a relatively new player in the website-building game that integrates a UI/UX environment with an online database, which will allow users to produce web-based applications. "We want to take the concept of the website builder and extend it to the entire online business environment," says Shlomi Stein, one of Simbla's cofounders. "Websites are just a fraction of what SMBs need. The aim is to provide them with all the tools necessary—for example, applications like CRM, blogs, leads and sales management, and eCommerce—to ultimately result in one unified and affordable solution." What's interesting about this platform is that it will not only provide users with Simbla's applications, but also allow them to create their own custom-made applications as well. In other words, the ability to produce an entire online business environment will be completely in the hands of the business itself.  

Everything that the website builder revolution accomplished until now has led up to this transitional stage. While we've conquered that wonderful first step, it's time to push the envelope of what we are able to provide for our businesses independently; namely, bringing our entire workplace to the web. This freedom will ultimately level the playing field for small businesses and actually give them a fighting chance in the market. Israel has already done a great job by means of website builders, and it has become abundantly clear that the startup nation doesn't fail to disappoint. So watch out, tech world: Another revolution is on its way. 

Kira Goldring is Content Writing & Social Media at Simbla.

Simbla is a member of IATI (Israel Advanced Technology Industries).

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