Wix is a widely used and popular website builder first established in 2016. However, popularity doesn’t mean it’s the right choice for your business. In this Wix UK review, we look specifically at the suitability of Wix for UK business buyers. With so many alternatives available, it’s essential you make the right choice based on an unbiased and transparent review rather than because of the impressive amount Wix spend on their marketing.
“We believe anything is possible with the right website builder” is the very first sentence on the Wix website, and it’s hard to argue. The right website builder can transform your business. Equally, it could strangle growth.
What do businesses need in a good website builder?
- It needs to support your business goals – Unless you want your website to be a form of art, you need your site to perform for your business. This is at the top of the list of things you should look for. Unfortunately, most companies are throwing money away with pretty websites that don’t convert. You need a conversion focused website that will generate leads or sales.
- It needs to be easy to maintain – You don’t want to struggle to build the site you want. It’s likely you might be looking to use a tool like Wix as an alternative to hiring an agency or web developer.
- It needs to help you deliver a great user experience – Your website is going to be the first impression of your business. It needs to help you provide exceptional customer experience. That could be through the use of pre-built templates; it could be mobile friendly design or even loading speed.
- It needs to grow with your needs – Your digital needs will grow with your business, and you need a platform that will support that growth.
- It needs to be cost effective – This is the lowest on the list for a reason. Cost is a consideration, but you should not select a platform because it’s free or cheap. Inevitably as your needs grow so will the cost and you might be locking yourself in.
As we move forward with our Wix UK review, we’ll look back at these considerations.
What is Wix?
Wix is an easy to use, drag and drop website builder. It’s easy to use because there are hundreds of templates to chose from and once selected all you need to do is click and edit the text. You can add more functionality or drop new elements on a page, but essentially that’s all there is to it.
The problem is with that ease of use comes strict limitations. For example, you can’t switch between templates, and you’re restricted to doing what Wix allows you to do.
When using Wix you are essentially spending time building a great home, but that home is on rented land. If the rent gets too high or your needs grow, you can’t move your home to a new location. Using Wix gives you convenience in return for being locked in. You can’t even change site templates.
The advantages of using Wix to build your UK business website
Wix has a straightforward sign-up process. I was able to sign up for Wix in a few seconds without any trouble. It’s a little annoying that when you click to get started, you’re taken to the login rather than registration screen. Just watch out for that one.
There are hundreds of templates to choose from, and they’re all ready for mobile. You pick one, go in and start editing.
There are hundreds of plugins to choose from that can give your website more functional.
Good support options including live chat.
The disadvantages of using Wix to build your UK business website
Once you build your fantastic site with great content, you can’t switch the themes. You’re locked into that one design. I couldn’t find an easy way to migrate content over either, so it’s a case of copy and paste each piece of content and re-upload all images and videos.
There are hundreds of plugins, but many of these appear to be freemium. Which means you get minimal functionality and then you need to pay to unlock more features.
Unless you upgrade, a wix.com ad appears on all your pages. Although there is a free plan, if the website is for your business then you need to upgrade. There’s nothing less professional than an ad appearing on your site for your free website host.
The free site you get only comes with a Wix URL. Again you need to upgrade to a paid plan to get your own branded website URL.
How many users does Wix have?
In their latest press release Wix state they have 130 million users. However, our research suggests there are only 3.5 million active sites. There are 1,123 UK sites. Sites that use WiX in the UK include digitalskills.ncl.ac.uk & https://www.ctr.kcl.ac.uk/ . Neither of these sites or the others we looked at have been designed well, which suggests that although the templates look great to being with, they may not work so well in real-world scenarios.
Can Wix support your business goals?
If all you want is a static site with a few pages then yes, Wix will be more than enough, as long as you pay the premium to remove the Wix ads.
If you want more advanced lead generation for B2B, or e-commerce functionality for B2C you’ll need to start looking elsewhere. Wix can do some of this, but it’s not designed for that purpose.
From a pure branding and design perspective, you’re fine as long as you stick to Wix templates. It becomes very tedious even if all you’re doing is adding new elements.
Is a Wix Website easy to build and maintain
Wix focuses on providing build websites. Pick a template form the hundreds available and start customising to your needs. It’s possible to drag and drop new elements on to a page. Those elements can be anything from headings to images.
Wix is easy to build on the front end. However, if you need to get more advanced and need to edit code, it quickly becomes difficult because the code that Wix generates isn’t developer friendly. If at any point you need more than what Wix can provide you, you will be facing challenges.
It’s easy to build a Wix site, but as soon as you go beyond a few pages, it becomes difficult to maintain. Everything requires individual editing, and you can’t make site-wide template changes. So you’ll need to rebuild your site every few years as it becomes dated.
Can Wix help you deliver great user experiences
There are some great looking Wix websites, but plenty more that need work. It’s difficult to blame Wix directly for this. Again, as with a lot of Wix, you’re fine if you stick to what Wix is ready to do out of the box, including templates. Unfortunately, it’s easy to find examples where the design is broken, or overzealous business owners have used too many animations, and their websites look like they belong on Geocities.
Of course, user experience goes far beyond design. In general, I’ve found Wix websites to load very slowly and not work well on mobile. You could start with a blank canvas and build the most user-friendly site. But if it loads slowly, you’ve already lost your visitor.
Will Wix grow with your business?
The short answer is no. The long answer is that it depends on what Wix do with the platform. With a Wix website, you’re tied to what Wix want to do and where their priorities are, which may not align with your business priorities. For example, you may wish to integrate Wix with your email marketing platform for lead capture and nurture. This is a struggle and should be much easier.
Ultimately you will need to move your business off the Wix platform. There are too many limitations, and maintaining a large website on a platform like Wix will be very expensive. There is no way to export your Wix website out, so you will have to invest in rebuilding everything on a different platform.
How much does Wix cost?
Wix does have a limited free plan, but most businesses will need to upgrade to a paid plan, especially considering the Wix ad that appears on all of your pages if you don’t.
The cheapest way of getting on Wix is a £3 per month plan which needs to be paid annually or £4.50 for the same plan if it’s paid monthly. However, in the lowest price plan, you will still see Wix ads on your website.
You’ll need to select a higher price plan to remove the Wix ads. If paying monthly, those pans start at £8 per month and go up to £19 if paying monthly.
If paying monthly form builders for data capture and the ap the call ‘site booster’ which helps with SEO is not included.
Is Wix UK a good choice for British businesses?
The answer depends on what you need.
Wix is suitable for businesses that want the bare minimum web presence just to say they have a website – If you need 5 to 10 pages of static content, an online brochure, and you can live with the templates, then it’s a good choice.
Wix is not suitable that want to use digital to fuel their business growth – If you want to make digital an important part of your business then no. There are just too many limitations, and Wix is not geared towards high ROI websites whether you want to generate more B2B leads or sell more product.
One concluding point potential Wix UK customers should consider. Wix has built-in blog functionality, but Wix themselves don’t use it for their blog.