My Journey to Webflow

Website Platforms

Christopher Wray

For our company, Soltech, we have decided to develop most of our websites in Webflow.

In case you aren’t familiar with Webflow, you can learn more about the platform and cms here, but in short, Webflow is a hosted CMS platform that has an integrated designer, making it easy to develop custom websites with standard web technologies: html, javascript and css, and then publish changes on existing websites at break speed.

Today, I want to share the journey of how I found Webflow and a little bit about our story of getting to where we are today.

The Start of my Journey

When I first started building websites for customers in the fall of 2017, I had little knowledge of web design and development. My first company website was built on a website builder I don’t wish to name, and soon I divulged into Wordpress development. 

At that time, I had no knowledge of html or css, so I used Wordpress templates and a plugin to build my versions of custom websites. 

Soon, I realized that I wasn’t content with the cookie cutter template options, and wanted to become a real designer and web developer. I wanted to produce work I would be happy sharing with people.

I started taking online courses in html and css, web design, and also studying Javascript and web frameworks.

The day I found Webflow.

I learned a lot in my classes, but somehow through my work, I stumbled upon Webflow. I don’t remember how it happened, but it did, and I’m glad it did. 

Webflow makes it easy to get started, so I signed up for a free account and promptly screwed everything up. 

Shortly after I gave up on Webflow, but kept my account and the program at the back of my mind as I went back to the way it was before and that miserable existence of trying to hack custom sites together with Wordpress.

I decided to give it another try

Months later, I finally went back to Webflow with one goal: Learn how to design a site with the program. 

I spent time in the Webflow University, which is a free online website with a ton of really great tutorials on how to do stuff in Webflow, and I slowly began to understand how to use the program.

I didn’t know it, but the program was also visually teaching me html and css! 

Later, in the fall of 2018, I built my first website on Webflow. To be honest with you, it wasn’t the best design, but it was mine, and I felt like I had finally arrived. I was a website designer.

Webflow has helped us become a professional Web Design Company.

Since then, I have built several sites on the program, and each one gets easier. I’ve also found other reasons why I like the program, and I have seen an increase in organic search visits from sites that I have moved from Wordpress over to Webflow. 

I have continued to study web frameworks, and recently we released a site that was designed in Webflow, but is a web app built on the Laravel framework. Webflow made it easy to build out the front end css and html, and even some of the interactive components.

Webflow was the key tool in our toolbox that took my company from a hack job to a professional service that does work that I am happy to share with people. We still have a lot to learn, but it helped exponentially in getting us to where we are today.

Pick the right CMS for the job.

There are a ton of great content management systems out there, but from my experience, none compare with the ease of use and customizability of Webflow. 

I’ve spent time with Wix, Squarespace, Statamic, Umbraco, Wordpress and others, but Webflow is the quickest to customize and the funnest to use, once you’ve learned the ins and outs.

Webflow is also the only cms that allows you to export html, javascript, and css that you have built right within the program into your own web app.

I am not only a one trick pony when it comes to my clients, and we still evaluate requirements to decide which cms to use, but most of the time, Webflow is our choice. Even if we don’t use the Webflow cms, we will probably design their site in Webflow and export the code to help with templating for their site in whatever cms we use.

If you just stumbled on Webflow like I did two years ago, give it a try, or checkout the University. You won’t regret it.

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