One of the most popular, maybe even the most, website builder is Wix. It’s also one of the more seasoned ones, as it has been around since 2006. You can take it that a lot of its bugs and kinks have been ironed out while many useful features have been added.
Wix is a cloud-based service centred around a drag-and-drop editor so that you can jump right in and create your website. Not only does it support all languages that are UTF8 conform but is also multilingual, hence it’s used in over 190 countries and hosting more than 4.5 million websites according to Builtwith.com.
This userbase along with its employee number of around 3000 lends Wix its long-term prospects, that is it reduces the risk of its business imploding and dragging down your website with it. To give you a better idea, Squarespace was launched in 2003, has around 800 employees and hosts 4.1 million websites; Prestashop started service in 2007, has around 100 employees and hosts 700’000 websites; and Duda was established in 2008, has 200 employees and hosts 800’000 websites.
Wix is headquartered in Isreal and has offices in Canada, Brazil, Germany, India, Ireland, Lithuania, the United States, and Ukraine.
- Pros and cons
- A little bit of background story
- Who is Wix for?
- How easy is Wix to use?
- Wix templates and design
- How to manage your ecommerce store in Wix?
- Wix's integrations
- What are Wix's marketing and SEO tools?
- Payment options
- Wix security
- Wix customer support
- Wix pricing
- Is Wix the right website builder for you?
Pros and cons
As an all-in-one solution, Wix offers domain registration, hosting, website building, and a content management system (CMS). You can create all kinds of websites from appointment booking, a forum to an online store, as it’s an all-purpose tool.
- Ease of use
- The editor gives you a lot of freedom, which can also turn out to be a disadvantage, as you have to put in more effort so that your design stays consistent
- Large choice of templates
- Mobile app to manage your site on the go
- Solid SEO tools
- Progress history so that you can restore any previous version of your site
- Absolute positioning may not necessarily make your website look good on all the different mobile devices or screens with different resolutionsLimited scalability, since the navigation menu only allows one sub-level
- No live support via chat, phone, or email
- Lockin so that you can’t transfer your site
- Pixel-perfect and absolute positioning translates into not fully mobile-friendly websites
A little bit of background story
When Wix started its service, its technology-base was Flash – and we all know the problems that come with using this technology as well as that Adobe stopped support for it end of last year. Knowing this, Wix changed its technology base to HTML5 in 2012. This helped reduce the bugs and glitches users encountered.
Who is Wix for?
Wix strives to lower the hurdles for people of all walks of life to build their websites. No matter if you’re running a small business, cafes, restaurants, hotels, or other hospitality-related business, or are a musician, photographer, designer, or consultant, Wix is a good place to start.
Interestingly, you have 2 options to build your website with Wix. The first is the traditional approach, where you choose a template and with the help of the editor, customise it to suit your preferences and needs.
The second is with the help of AI. An AI website builder usually asks you a series of questions such as the kind of website you want and what your design preferences are. The AI builder (called Wix Artificial Design Intelligence – or Wix ADI) also follows this convention. It will allow you to import content from an already existing presence. As the last step, you’ll edit the content and customise the generated pages just as when you work with templates. The second option is likely the easier way to start creating websites with Wix.
With both approaches, it’s easy to set up a small business site, upcoming event, personal project, or online store.
How easy is Wix to use?
Regardless of which method (classic or with the AI builder) you chose to create your website, it will only take you a few minutes to familiarise yourself with the Wix drag-and-drop editor.
The classic Wix editor gives you more control over the design and options than the WIX ADI editor. Most people have worked with Powerpoint to create a presentation, and working with the Wix editor feels exactly like it.
The classic editor has a long list of options, features, and elements. It gives you a much higher degree of freedom to drag any element anywhere on a page – not dissimilar to working with the elements in Powerpoint. But the downside to this is you have to guides or structure to place the element and your design may look inconsistent if you’re not careful or disregard the helpful guidelines.
Just like working in Powerpoint, you need to regularly save your progress. There are also undo and redo buttons. What sets Wix apart from the other website builders is that you can add dynamic content with the help of its repeater feature. Think of it as a really simple database or a list that has the same design but different content. This will help you save time when you want to show listings for events, staff members, news, services, or prices.
Wix templates and design
Wix boasts a large choice of templates – there are hundreds to choose from. They are neatly categorised and searchable. The design range from clean and minimalistic to exuberant.
The templates are all mobile optimised. In Wix’s editor you can place any element exactly – really pixel-perfect – where you want. This pixel-perfect placing is called absolution positioning. It means that the element is positioned by pixel and not relative to the mobile device’s screen. The advantage is as mentioned that you can place your element where you want, but your site will not adapt as well to the different screen sizes as relative positioning. This means your website will look absolutely perfect on your device but may not look that nice on a different device or a mobile.
Be careful when you choose your template, unlike other tools you can not change it without losing your content.
How to manage your ecommerce store in Wix?
In order to run an online store, you need to subscribe to one of Wix’s ecommerce plan so that you can accept online payments. You can test out the solid ecommerce features in all plans. These are built-in when you started with an ecommerce template or told Wix ADI to add an online store. And you can get started in a jiffy – just configure your payment options and your ready.
The ecommerce feature set is robust for small to mid-sized businesses. You can sell an unlimited amount of products (physical, digital, or service-based). You can configure shipping regions with their rates and set tax rates. You have other options such as discount coupons, abandoned cart recovery, or subscriptions.
You’ll manage your orders, products, and customers as well as carry out other essential tasks for your store within the store dashboard. Commendable is that there also options for automation, tasks and reminders, and workflows for your customer relationship management (CRM).
If you’re selling physical goods, you may be delighted to know that you can do that also in physical locations and sync your inventory. This means that if you have sold a product in a physical location, your inventory will be updated accordingly in your online store.
If you want to add more features to your site, check out the app market. Wix and third-party developers offer their services and products so that you can add online chat, social media integrations, and marketing tools. The integrations can be free or paid if you want to add more advanced features. The other way to extend the functionality is by embedding custom HTML.
What are Wix’s marketing and SEO tools?
As you have seen, the ecommerce feature includes options for you to successfully market your business. But it doesn’t stop there. Wix has pulled them into a suite called Ascend Business Tools.
As should be standard with all website builders, you can edit the site title, site description, and keywords that are valid site-wide. You also have control over how your products appear on Google. You also have control over your bitmap.xml and robots.txt file and can create 301 redirections.
Wix also provides built-in integrations for
- Google Analytics
- Google AdWords
- Google Tag Manager
- Facebook Pixel
- Yandex Metrica
Of course, when you have added Google Tag Manager, you can add another tracking service like for example, Pinterest Tag.
As an all-rounder, Wix also provides a solid blogging tool. You can write blog posts, group them into categories, and add a comments section and a search. You’ll find that Wix didn’t stint on the blogging tool as it has the standard blogging features like authors, drafts, and scheduling. It also has some cool additional features like view and like counters. As
If you want to run email campaigns, you’ll be happy to know that you can do that in Wix itself. Create emails with the help of the easy-to-use drag-and-drop email builder and send them to your mailing list. To help you manage those, use the built-in CRM as see under the section about ecommerce.
Depending on your location, the payment gateways can vary but they include the usual names such as Paypal and Stripe. Wix has its own payment gateway, simply called Wix. The terms and prices correspond to what Stripe offers. It’s also good to know that Wix doesn’t take a cut on each sale you make.
Wix secures all sites with SSL. It has a site history, so you can revert to an earlier version of your site. For the paranoid among us, it’s also nice to see a duplicate site function that you can use to backup your site.
Wix customer support
Even if the interface comes with a ton one instructions and tips (just look at the question marks beside each editable element), you may still encounter one or other question. Then you can always consult its support centre. Not only is the support centre extensive and neatly organised, but it’s also searchable.
No matter how long we looked, we didn’t find a way to contact a real person be it via chat, mail, or phone. It seems that we go directed back to the support centre in a loop.
The prices are within the range of what you see with other website builders. Take Business Basic as an example, it’s priced at $23 per month (compared to Squarespace Basic at $26 per month).
Is Wix the right website builder for you?
All in all, Wix is an all-purpose website builder that allows individuals, and small to mid-sized businesses to build a website with a ton of features. Anyone can build an interactive website for their blog, online store, or let users book an appointment without coding skills.
In general, Wix has a ton of options and features and unlike other website builders most notably Squarespace, it doesn’t curate them. When all and everything is thrown at us or any other user, it may make the tool difficult to use. The second thing to note is that the editor gives you unparalleled freedom. This freedom is a double-edged sword. On the one hand, you can design your website from scratch – there is even a blank template. But on the other hand, you may end up with an inconsistent website.
Do you want us to review a solution? Let us know in the comments.