Spruz is a free website creation and hosting service. Users can create a custom website with social media features, blog, and more quickly and without any specialized knowledge of HTML or coding.
Spruz was founded in 2007 by Jay Roberts. The company is based in Tennessee.
Spruz offers most of the advantages of Ning, without the cost. The real differentiator is the ability to create and host a complete, functional website quickly, easily, and completely free.
Once registered, users are prompted to use the Site Content Wizard to set up the website. The first step is to categorize the site, choose the text for the title bar, write a short description, and add tags. This information may be edited later. Next, users indicate what the social community is about and choose a theme for the site. Themes are abundant, but unappealing. There are several game-related ones, and many are either too plain or too busy. Completion of these steps leads the user to a control panel where the site may be fully customized.
Users may add blog content, members, photos, events, groups, videos, and forums with a user-friendly drag-n-drop interface. Page elements, widgets, and additional pages may be easily added. Hundreds of interesting widgets are available to be added.
The application is generally easy to use and intuitive. Full customization is possible over time. All menus are self-explanatory. Very simple for a beginner to get a website/blog with social integration set up quickly.
Users choose a web site name, which may be changed later if desired, and a custom domain name. Once chosen, an email address, display name, password, full name, and date of birth are required.
The basic site is free. It limits members to 250, and has a monthly transfer limit of 5G and 100MB file space. Upgrades are available to increase the transfer allowance and file space. Plans range from $9.95/month to $49.95/month. The $99.95 plan includes 20G transfer allowance and 2,000MB file space. For $19.95, users get 100G transfer allowance and 10,000MB file space. $49.95 buys 250G transfer allowance and 25,000MB file space. Other add-ons such as removal of Spruz branding, registering a domain, adding a shopping cart, addition of video uploader and player, and support plans are à la carte at $10-100 per month.
This application could be interesting for anyone who would like to create a website. Regardless of background knowledge, users can completely customize the site with elements of their choosing. It is most likely to appeal to newcomers to web design as the menus, etc. are very simplistic.