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Portfoliobox website builder review

Intuitive and low-cost website builder for artists and creatives

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(Image: © Portfoliobox.net)

Our Verdict

If you’re a creative looking for a quick, easy, and value solution to getting your work showcased online, Portfoliobox offers an attractive and low-maintenance solution.

For

  • Low-cost
  • High levels of customer support
  • Creative community focus

Against

  • No drag-and-drop function
  • Basic eCommerce options

From photographers to designers, artists to architects, and musicians to models, Portfoliobox is tailored to those in the creative industry keen to showcase their work online.

In this review, we'll run through the features of this website builder, its pricing structure, and ease of use, and find out why over one million websites have been created using this browser-based platform.

Portfoliobox.net review

Portfoliobox's entry-level subscription cost is less than a dollar a month (Image credit: Portfoliobox.net)

Plans and pricing

Although there is a free plan, this is essentially a trial version that allows customers to get the feel of the platform, as it will not allow you to publish your site. Instead, Portfoliobox presents three pricing models for customers, starting at less than a dollar a month for the Light subscription

Naturally, this comes with usage restrictions, permitting only 10 pages, 100 images, 10 products, and 10 client gallery images. Client galleries are password-protected to allow only those you share the password with to log in, view, and add comments to images. 

For those likely to require more than a very basic online presence, the Pro plan comes in at $7.90 per month, and immediately boosts site capacity to 500 images and 50 pages. Additional benefits include a free domain, the removal of the “Powered By Portfoliobox” link, and 24/7 support. 

The Pro Plus plan, at $14.90, increases available images and pages to 1,000, while also boosting the number of client gallery images (5,000) and products (1,000) available.

Portfoliobox.net review

Portfoliobox’s focus on its community can help bolster users’ profiles (Image credit: Portfoliobox.net)

Features

One thing that sets Portfoliobox apart from many other website builders is its focus on the creative community. Its Portfoliobox.art website showcases talented photographers from all over the globe in a bid to raise the profile of those using Portfoliobox to display their work. 

The work of featured artists is discussed in detail, with links out to their individual portfolios, while visitors can browse and buy directly from the Portfoliobox.art store. Similarly, Portfoliobox’s Find Creatives function allows users to search, discover, and hire creative talents in their region.

To get started on Portfoliobox, there's no need to download any software, nor does the platform require any coding knowledge. Instead, all website building is done within your web browser. 

Users simply log in to their account, click Manage Pages, and choose Create New Page. They'll then be greeted by a menu offering a wide choice of content options ranging from gallery pages, services, and music, to testimonials and CVs. Once you've made your template choice and titled the page, you'll see your new page loaded up, ready for you to customize as you see fit.

Although it may not have the capabilities required for those seeking to extensively scale up their business offering, solo artists keen for a small online store from which to sell their work will be able to do so with Portfoliobox's built-in ecommerce functionality.

To create a store, users simply need to select Start Your Store from the toolbar dropdown menu, then follow the onscreen instructions in order to add their products. You'll be required to input the product name, description, imagery, and price. Once this information is entered, Portfoliobox will automatically generate your website storefront, allowing visitors to add your products into their online cart and check out smoothly. 

Payment options, discount codes, shipping, and tax options can all be customized in the store settings. Portfoliobox takes no commission or cut from any sales.

Portfoliobox.net review

The in-browser editor is beginner-friendly (Image credit: Portfoliobox.net)

Interface and in use

With a slick, intuitive, and stripped-back in-browser editor, Portfoliobox removes many of the barriers that non-technical users can often find daunting when it comes to website building. 

With hundreds of preset page templates, users are simply required to customize, rather than design, their web pages. Easy navigation occurs via the top toolbar menu, with a smooth and clear user journey throughout.  

What’s more, users can switch between mobile and desktop views, showing how their site will look on a range of devices. Though, as all templates are auto-responsive and dynamic, users will have few concerns with mobile compatibility.

Support

Portfoliobox's Learn & Support section contains a 16-part video tutorial for beginners detailing exactly how to begin designing your site.

Portfoliobox.net review

Portfoliobox comes with a vast knowledgebase to help beginners (Image credit: Portfoliobox.net)

There is also an in-depth knowledge base featuring a large bank of frequently asked questions and troubleshooting articles on everything from creating pages and content to accounts and billing. And, continuing with the platform's strong community vibe, the forums allow users to seek advice or solutions from fellow Portfoliobox customers. 

For any issues you've been unable to find an answer to, there is also a live chat box on the website, and a support ticket system for all users, though those with a Pro or Pro Plus subscription will be given priority.

Portfoliobox.net review

Users can password-protect pages (Image credit: Portfoliobox.net)

Security

Portfoliobox's web hosting offers unlimited bandwidth and secure communications through HTTPS on CDN servers. For additional protection, there is a password protect option to lock your site, either for site maintenance or if you should wish to restrict access to only those with the password. A similar feature is offered for single pages, which can be used to implement client-specific pages.

The competition

Wix offers a similar in-browser editing experience, but comes with the additional function of being able to drag and drop elements onto the page itself. This gives users greater flexibility and customization choices, but its entry price of $14 is around the same price as Portfoliobox's premium option. 

Creatives seeking something with a bit more eCommerce sophistication might want to consider Shopify, which is another drag-and-drop website builder that requires no coding knowledge, yet comes with increased store functionality.

Final verdict

Those with more complex web requirements may find Portfoliobox.net’s design choices a little basic, while the platform’s limited commerce customizations might prove frustrating for those with larger storefront needs. But for creatives simply looking to showcase—and sell—their work with minimal fuss and maintenance, Portfoliobox is a reliable choice.