Founded in 2006, Wix.com is one of the most popular website building platforms available. Wix has over 105 million registered users arriving from 190 countries.
Wix offers plans to fit a wide variety of site building needs with prices ranging from free to about $25 a month. No payment information is required to get started with Wix which is great for people who want to give it a test drive before making a commitment.
Wix is best known for its intuitive design features, drop and drag functionality, professional looking site templates, and a comprehensive App Market which offers more third-party plug-ins than the competition.
- Features 95%
- User Friendly 90%
- Support 90%
- Value for Money 90%
- Overall 93%
Audio, Video & Photo Gallery
When it comes to sharing audio, video and photos, Wix provides some great choices that will help to make your website stand out.
Photo Gallery – If you need your site to show off pictures or to display your portfolio, you have a good selection of gallery styles to choose from, which can be customized to fit your requirements. And most of them are free!
Video Files – Wix offers several different video player options that let you add Youtube or Vimeo videos to your website. Depending upon the app that you choose to display your video, you can customize the colors, text and buttons so that the player matches your website design. And again, most of the video player plug ins are available at no additional cost.
Audio Files – Like the video players, Wix offers several different free apps that make it possible for you to upload audio files or create playlists for your website. There are even options available that let you share and sell audio files and music, including an iTunes download button and the Wix Music application.
Wix also offers apps which let you add “internet TV” to your website, providing entertainment which will keep visitors on your website longer. For example, the free PlutoTV app lets you choose from over 100 channels including news, travel, food, music, sports, celebrities, or even something as crazy as 24/7 Cats!
Wix offers the ability to connect your website to all of the major social networking sites including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Tumbler, Google+, Pinterest, YouTube, MeetUp, EventBrite, and LinkedIn. In the Wix App Marketplace you can find plug ins, most of which are free, that enable you to insert social media tool bars, to display feeds and to enable add’s, likes and shares directly from your website.
If you prefer to build your own section for comments right on your website, separate from the ones that are made on social media accounts, there are free apps for that too.
Emails & Newsletters
When it comes to keeping in contact with your site visitors, Wix offers a wide range of options – both free and paid. Wix has partnered with Google in order to provide professional mailboxes connected to your domain (there is a fee for this) or you can connect your existing email.
For newsletters, Wix offers several different Apps including their own ShoutOut App. With ShoutOut you can manage a newsletter and promotional campaigns right from the Wix dashboard. The app lets you create custom newsletters which can include text, images, videos and links. Newsletters can be sent out by email or through social media. The templates available with ShoutOut are designed so that they look great and can be easily viewed on desktop computers, tablets and smartphones. When sending out newsletters, you can manage your contacts into groups and select exactly who will receive them. ShoutOut lets you view statistics such as the number of opens, clicks and deliverability
Or if you are using an external contact management system such as MailChimp or Constant Contact, Wix offers plug in apps that will connect your account to your website.
While Wix may not be the best choice for businesses with a very large on-line store, it does a good job with its offerings for small and mid-size businesses that require e-commerce functionality. There are two options, depending upon your on-line store needs.
The first option is to use the fully integrated Wix Store, with its own shopping cart built right into your site. This requires the purchase of either the E-Commerce or VIP plan. With Wix Store you can create a store front that matches the design of your website, complete with product galleries. All Wix stores are optimized so that they can be viewed on any device whether it’s a desktop, tablet or a mobile phone. The app has management tools to help you promote sales, get paid, compute sales tax, track orders and handle shipping.
If you don’t want to use the Wix store, the other option is to use one of the available third-party e-commerce applications such as Etsy, Ecwid, Shopify, Paypal Buy It Now, eBay, or Simple e-Commerce. These are good options if you already have one of these accounts, don’t require a full on-line store, or don’t want to purchase one of the advanced Wix plans.
Wix offers several different options for accepting payments including PayPal, Snapcard and Yandex Money. There are also apps that make it possible for you to sell specific items such as t-shirts, music downloads, online video courses and digital products such as e-books. You can even add coupons to your website.
There are several options for adding a blog to your website with the Wix platform. You can use one of the available external blog apps, several of which are free. As of this writing, the options are Blogger, the AtContent blogging app or Easy SEO Blog. The other option is to use the Wix Blog app which makes it possible for you to easily generate a blog within your website right from the Wix dashboard for free.
When you use the Wix Blog application you can match your blog pages to your website design and it will be fully integrated into your site. Wix blog pages can include videos, images, image galleries, tags, tag clouds, social media share buttons and RSS feeds so that your readers can keep up with your posts. There are many different layout and formatting options and you can even schedule posts for the future.
For people who want to add a simple blog or who just want a place within their website where they can add dynamic and updated content (search engines love fresh content), the Wix Blog app will do just fine.
Wix uses Google Analytics as its primary method of monitoring site traffic such as the number of visitors, visitor geographics and page views. There is also an app which enables you to see Facebook statistics such as likes, comments and viewing trends.
If you are going to build a website without any coding, it’s important to have access to great templates and Wix definitely has this covered – and they are included at no additional charge. Wix offers over 500 professional looking templates and they are always adding more.
To get started creating your website, you can use the template wizard to narrow down your search, or you can choose the option to view all templates. If you use the wizard option, you can easily switch categories. In order to simplify the selection process, templates are broken down by industry, and then by subcategory within each one. You can choose from business and services, music, entertainment, online stores, blogs, hotel and travel, restaurant and hospitality, photography, creative arts, design, retail and fashion, one-page sites, personal sites or you can start with a blank template.
Within each website template you have multiple options for page and content layout or you can start from a blank canvas. You can use pre-designed color themes or you can pick your own colors. The same is true for fonts. Templates start with pre-set images but these are easily changed and Wix offers a large collection of 1000’s of free fully customizable images, clipart and icons or you can import your own. If you like the layout and format of a template that is filled with pictures that are “not in your industry” you can change the pictures to suit your needs.
While websites built with Wix will adjust to different platforms, none of the templates are what would be called fully Responsive Design. In order to create a mobile version of your website, Wix offers a unique editor that will generate an optimized mobile website with a single click.
When you use the mobile editor, you have the ability to manually adjust the content that will appear on the mobile version of your site. This makes it possible for you to move things around, to limit the pages that can be seen and to control the amount of content that appears on the mobile version.
You can also enable the “click to call” feature so that your visitors can easily contact you without having to dial the phone number.
As you are working in the mobile editor from the Wix dashboard on your desktop, you will be able to see exactly how the mobile version of your site will look to viewers.
While Wix does create a good working mobile site, if your goal is build a native App then Wix is not the tool to do it with.
All of the Wix plans, including the free version, include hosting so there are no additional charges. Wix boasts reliable hosting with over 99.9% uptime and uninterrupted service. If you chose one of the Premium plans, your domain will be registered with Wix and connected directly to the hosting. It is important to note that sites built using the Wix platform can only be hosted with them, not any other hosting provider.
Storage & Bandwidth
When choosing a platform to host your website, it’s important to take in to consideration whether or not it has the capability to keep up with your needs. This is where storage and bandwidth come in to play.
Storage refers to the amount of space available to hold the contents of your website. This includes the structure of your website (for example, the template used and the number of pages), the text content, images and graphics, as well as video and audio files (if they are actually stored on the server).
In simple terms, bandwidth refers to the amount of data that is transferred through your website, as well as the speed at which that data is transmitted. This number is greatly influenced by the number of visitors to your site and the amount of time they spend on it. When your site first gets going, you won’t need a lot of bandwidth.
Wix offers different plans designed to meet varying website needs:
- Free – up to 500MB of storage and up to 500MB bandwidth
- Connect Domain – 500MB of storage and up to 1 GB bandwidth
- Combo Plan – up to 3GB of storage and 2 GB bandwidth
- Unlimited Plan – up to 10GB of storage and unlimited bandwidth
- E-Commerce Plan – up to 20 GB of storage and 10 GB bandwidth
- VIP Plan – up to 20 GB of storage and unlimited bandwidth
With Wix, you have the flexibility to start small and upgrade to higher level plans as your website needs grow. Wix keeps track of how much storage space and bandwidth you are using, and this information is easily accessible from the site dashboard. The first time that you go over your bandwidth or storage allotment, Wix sends you a message with no additional charges, so that you can make any necessary adjustments for the future.
One of the things that makes Wix a powerful choice for non-professional website builders is the availability of 100’s of applications that you can simply plug in to your website, many of which are completely free. Some of the Apps are made by Wix and others are provided by other companies. As of this writing, Wix offers more third-party web applications than other website building platforms.
In addition to apps for social media, newsletters, communications, e-commerce, audio, video and photo galleries, blogs, SEO and traffic generation (all of which are further described below), Wix offers a wide variety of other plug ins that can add increased functionality to your website, making it more inviting and useful for your site visitors.
Wix makes it simple to add things such as forms, calendars, weather forecasts, Google maps, quotes, hit counters, polls, testimonials, QR codes and scheduling features into your website – with no programming or coding skills required.
All of the websites built using the Wix platform are search engine friendly and Wix guarantees that site content can be indexed and crawled by major search engines such as Google and Bing. You also have the ability to individually add page titles, Meta descriptions and alt tags from the site dashboard. When you are ready to have your site “seen” by search engines, you simply click a button during publishing.
In addition, Wix offers over 10 different apps that are designed to boost traffic, increase SEO and achieve higher ranking in search engine results, all of which will help you reach more customers and build your business.
Whenever you need help, Wix offers a 24/7 support center with several options including email, phone, a knowledgebase help center, forum support and video tutorials.
Wix has been building its database of questions and answers for years, so in most cases you can find what you need by using the support system which will walk you through your questions. If you still need help, you can either submit a ticket to get an answer by email or you can request help by phone. Unlike many other phone support systems, there is no waiting on hold for a representative. Instead, you schedule a time for someone to call you – when it’s most convenient.
Another option for finding the answers you need is to visit the support forum where you can see questions that have been submitted by other users. You even have the option of following the discussion.
ComboFor Personal Use
UnlimitedEntrepreneurs & Freelancers
eCommerceBest for Small Businesses
VIPEverything and More
While there are some limitations to what can be done with the Wix DIY site builder, ultimately it is one of the best tools for building professional looking business websites. Some of the enhanced features that it provides for specific industries such as small and medium businesses, online stores, restaurants, hotels and hospitality businesses, professionals who want to showcase pictures, and anyone who wants to feature their videos or music, make it great choice.
One thing that makes Wix stand out from a lot of the competition is the availability of numerous applications – both made by Wix and third party apps. With these plugins, you can add both entertainment and increase functionality to your website.
Wix provides 100’s of templates, all of which can be used to not only create a site that will look fantastic on any desktop but with the use of its mobile editor, they will also function well (and look good) on any mobile device.
Since Wix offers unlimited access to its free version, there is no risk to sign up and take it for a test drive. If you are considering one of the paid versions, you may still want to start out with the free one until you learn all the basics.
Industry specific features & Functionalities
Ease of use
Lots of features and plugins
Reliable hosting service
Mobile ready websites
Can’t change templates
No export or archive capabilities
Site must be hosted with Wix