Gone are the days of handing out hundreds and thousands of dollars to get a web developer to build you a website, and then have the decency to charge you to make changes because you do not like their work. Wix is a DIY website builder that you are in control of, so you can design your website to look and feel how you want. The good thing about Wix is that you do not need to have any experience creating websites… There is no coding whatsoever!
Getting Started With Wix’s Website Builder
Signing up to Wix is as simple as heading to the Wix website and creating an account. In fact, it is easier to sign up to Wix than it is Facebook! The next step is to choose a template that you want your website to look like. At this stage, look for structure, because changing the colour and pictures is much easier than changing the structure. Templates are divided into categories, so if you are a restaurant, choose the “Restaurants & Food” category.
In this example, I am going to setup an online store selling T-Shirts. In the online store category, there is a template called “T-shirt Market”, so I am going to use that to base my website off.
Everything on Wix is drag and drop, which makes designing and customising your website a breeze. You just need to click on the object you wish to customise and all the settings and configurable options appear. You have so much flexibility:
- Changing fonts, colour, style, position
- Adding removing background images
- Adding site features such as blogs and pages
- Adding social media icons
- Changing the page layout and more…
Managing your Online Store
If you are building an online store, Wix makes it incredible easy to sell your products. You have a lot of flexibility with your online store, more so than other eCommerce platforms available. Below is just some of the configuration options that you have with Wix.
- Product Name
- Product Groups
- Inventory Tracking
- Product Options
- Product Information and Return/Refund Policy
- Discounts and Coupons
- Payment Options (Credit Card, PayPal, Offline Payments)
- Shipping and Tax
- Store Details
Publishing Your Website
Once you are happy with your design, have added all your pages and features to your Wix website, you are ready to publish it. The free Wix plan gives you a Wix URL that you can showcase your website, but it is strongly recommended that you upgrade your plan and purchase a domain name.
I spent 15 minutes changing the design of my new Wix website, and it is ready to go live. If you want to check it out, you can do so here. It is not the best website in the world, but in 15 minutes, it’s a pretty good effort. Of course, for your website, you will spend a little more time on customisation to get things looking just right.
Wix pricing is up to $25USD per month for the eCommerce plan, which boasts a range of features. It is a competitive price, and is so easy to use for those who do not have any experience in web design and development. If you have web development experience, or would like to have something a bit cheaper, I would recommend purchasing a shared hosting account for under $5 per month and installing WordPress. However, this may not suit everyone.
Further thoughts and comments
I think Wix is a great DIY website builder that anyone can use. Even though it is so easy to customise, it does not give you absolute freedom in what you can build. This can be quite a limitation for those who want to create something unique on their website. My biggest reason for not using Wix would be how page URL’s are structured. To view my FAQ page, I have to browse to http://jackcola.wix.com/t-shirts#!faq/cee5. This URL is not friendly at all. If Wix had the ability to load http://jackcola.wix.com/faq instead, it would make things so much better. Apart from that, Wix is a pretty good platform.