Wix has become pretty well known over the last few years, in part due to budget-busting marketing campaigns starring stars like Heidi Klum, Jason Statham and Gal Gadot, better known as Wonder Woman. But let’s start with the basics. Today, Wix is the biggest player in the website building landscape and hosts a whopping 160 million websites.
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Wix Review: Summary
Wix offers an excellent drag-and-drop site builder to create small websites. There are 100s of free templates available. Wix provides its own web hosting as well as domain names (free and paid). The App Market makes it easy to add extra functionality such as photo galleries or ecommerce.
Who Should Use Wix?
Wix editor reviewTheir visually impressive layouts are designed for small businesses, restaurants, online stores and artists such as musicians and photographers. They are optimized for mobile devices and can be spiced up with one of the numerous apps available from the Wix App Market.
In a way you can compare Wix to a prefabricated house: the fundamental structure already exists and can’t be changed. You can, however, paint the walls to your gusto (choose a theme) and add the furniture you love (photo galleries and other apps).
In fact, I used it to create our own bilingual company website called Tooltester.net. We had a particular design in mind and just needed a quick way to build it. Also, I didn’t want to have to think about security updates etc. which meant WordPress wasn’t an option.
In the end I considered both Weebly and Wix (our top-rated builders) and went for Wix. With Weebly there was just no perfect way to make our design look good on mobile devices. Working with the Wix editor was a breeze, offering handy tools such as photo filters and animated texts. But before getting ready to swipe your credit card, keep in mind that every website has different requirements.
Wix’s Pricing Options
Wix is available for free for as long as you want. If you need professional features like your own domain name or ecommerce, you must choose from one of their premium plans ranging from “Combo” to “Business VIP”. The cheapest ad-free plan with a custom domain name costs $13 per month.
Now you are probably wondering if Wix is right for you. Let’s find out what’s good and what’s bad about this product:
- $0 Free: Create a free website with Wix ads. Not included: your own domain name.
- $5 Connect Domain: Connect your own domain with your Wix site. Your site will still show Wix ads. (Plan is not available in all countries).
- $13 Combo: Ideal for smaller professional websites. No ads and plenty of storage.
- $17 Unlimited: The right plan if you need a lot of web space (up to 10 GB included).
- $23 Business & eCommerce: Best plan to create an online store or use premium apps like Wix Bookings or Wix Hotels. Higher plans (VIP & Unlimited) available too.
Monthly prices for 1-year contracts; Domain included in selected packages.
From our view, Combo is by far the best plan for regular websites without ecommerce. It is ad-free, includes a domain name for 1 year and provides enough storage for most needs. Find our detailed analysis of Wix’s premium plans here.
Pros and Cons of Wix
- Excellent templates: The most remarkable thing about Wix is its templates. The designs are exceptional and offer pre-built layouts for many different industries.
- It’s extremely flexible: Whereas other website builder limit the extent to which elements can be moved around, Wix allows your to finish your work off “pixel perfect”.
- Adding animations: Wix is one of the few site builders that let you animate text and other elements. But make sure not to overdo it!
- App Market: There are hundreds of website apps that you can add to your website. There is a newsletter tool, live chat software, online booking widgets, etc. All of those can be easily integrated into your Wix website. But keep in mind: many of them are third party apps—if they get shut down you can’t complain to Wix.
- Wix Artificial Design Intelligence (ADI): Wix offers a (relatively) smart assistant to create your website with. But this is only available for some types of projects (e.g. portfolios, yoga sites, etc). For instance, it’ll automatically connect your social media, generate a contact form for you or pick a suitable design for your audience. But don’t worry, if you don’t like something, you’ll be able to change it.
- Automatic Site Backup: Wix automatically creates backup points of your website that can be restored at any time (much like Apple’s time machine system). This way you will never lose any important information.
- Pricing: The cheapest ad-free plan with Wix is called Combo, which starts at $13 per month (compare Wix’s premium plans). The competition offers cheaper options: cheapest plan without any advertising starts at around $8, for example.
- The competition offers cheaper options: Templates can’t be changed easily: Once you have chosen your initial template, you can’t switch to a completely new one. You can certainly change the design within the template, it’s not possible to pick an entirely new one.
- Loading speed: Wix’s page loading speeds are not ideal as our research shows, especially on mobile devices. Although Wix seems to be aware of this issue, most competing website builders show faster loading times.
Wix Review: Conclusion
If I am being honest I had my reservations about Wix at first as their product hasn’t always been easy to recommend. Back in the days it was Flash-based and always a bit different (like your old classmate who had that weird taste in clothes). However, thanks to their neverending improvements they have become one of the cool kids, slowly climbing our ranking to now claim the top position.
Wix and SEO: can we be friends?
They even got Google’s John Mueller to publicly state that Wix’s SEO capabilities are fine for their search engine. So unless you are planning on ranking for some insanely competitive keyword you should have no issues with Wix! In the end, SEO depends a lot more on your ability to create outstanding content rather than the website builder. Wix has one SEO disadvantage, though, due to its relatively slow loading speeds on mobile devices.
Wix’s App Market: all the widgets you will ever need?
One area where they’ve really done everything right is their app store. Most other website builders mainly rely on third-party apps that can break if the company stops supporting them. Wix’s strategy is a bit different: they have created more than 80 high-quality apps themselves. Among those: an appointment scheduling tool (Wix Bookings), the event management app Wix Events, hospitality widgets (Wix Restaurants and Wix Hotels) as well as Photo Gallery and Video tools. And you can bet that there will be more.
The ones not made by Wix can be a little hit and miss: we found a few that were not of really great quality and some of them are also pretty expensive for what they are.
I would recommend it without reservations for smaller websites (not more than 30 pages) that have to look flawless. Why not also for larger projects, you ask? Unfortunately the navigation menu doesn’t really accommodate complex site structures as there is only one sub-level. Weebly usually works better for big websites.
Wix has the widest selection of prebuilt designs for any kind of industry. As it’s not possible to switch to a new theme after your initial choice, it’s more difficult to revamp your site’s design (you’ll have to redesign it manually or start from scratch). On the positive side, this limitation facilitates Wix’s greatest strength: unmatched flexibility within your chosen theme.
And even if sometime down the road you would like to get into the eCommerce game you can easily add a shopping cart at relatively little cost. Read our Wix Ecommerce review to learn more.
What Wix has created here is certainly impressive in many ways with a development speed that is almost breathtaking. Just make sure you try out the free plan before switching to a paid plan to find out if it’s the right choice for you.