Do you need a website for your small business? If you answered yes, read on â and if you answered no, consider this: According to the Small Business Association, 64% of small businesses in the U.S. have their own websites, and according to Statista, those small businesses are busy online, doing everything from:
- Advertising Products & Services: 89%
- Soliciting Customer Feedback: 64%
- Selling Products & Services: 63%
- Communicating With Customers, Suppliers & Employees: 55%
- Taking Reservations & Set Up Appointments: 29%
- Accepting Payments For Products & Services: 22%
Are you ready to join the competition online and attract your share of customers and sales? In the past, creating an online presence meant hiring a team of experts who could handle the coding and bring their technical knowledge to your team. Today, all you need is access to a do-it-yourself website building service like Wix.
First Things First: Understanding Wix ADI VS Editor
When you decide to set up a website using Wix, you can choose two routes toward your goal. You can use the Wix ADI (Artificial Design Intelligence) option and let the system create a website for you. Or you can use Wix Editor to create your own. Because those are very different options, it’s worth taking a closer look at each.
What Is Wix ADI?
Although much of Wix’s appeal stems from its ease of use that lets even rookie web designers create professional-looking sites, there’s now a free tool you can use to make building your Wix website even easier. When you use the ADI, you answer a few basic questions about your business and then let the ADI do all the work. Much of the content the ADI puts together will be drawn from the social media accounts you allow access to, and you will be able to edit as much as you like.
What Is The Wix Editor?
If you’re willing to try your hand at building your own custom site, the Wix Editor is the platform you will use. Keep in mind that it’s designed to be used by people without a lot ofÂ â or any â coding experience. So don’t let the thought intimidate you. Wix has more than 160 million users worldwide, and while a fair number of professional designers gravitate toward Wix for its variety of themes and integrations, most Wix users are amateurs.
What’s Better: Wix ADI Or Wix Editor?
Both the Wix ADI and the Wix Editor have strong selling points. We prefer the Editor, however, as it gives you more control over your site. Though you can edit the site the ADI creates for you, the process of editing really isn’t much different than the process of creating your site from scratch, and you won’t be limited to social media postings when you do it yourself. Of course, if you get started with the Editor and find it’s more than you bargained for, you can always go back and use the ADI.
For now, let’s take a look at Wix Editor and start building a site.
What You’ll Need To Start Your Wix Website
Starting a Wix website is easy. You’ll need:
- A computer that’s linked to the internet
- A name for your business
- An email address
- A password
When you have those things ready, the first step toward creating your new Wix business website is signing up for a Wix account. That’s it!
How To Build a Website With Wix
You’ve created your account, and the next order of business is discovering how to build a Wix website. Start by logging in to your Wix account, then follow these step-by-step instructions for creating a website from scratch.
Step 1: Create A Site
Once you’ve created your account, you should see a button that says Create New Site. Click on that to begin your webpage design.
Next, you’ll be asked to choose from a menu of options for what kind of website you want to create. You can choose only one option, but you will see that some of them overlap. You probably can’t go wrong with either of the first two choices: Business or Online Store, though you may prefer one of the other options if you see your specialty listed. The last category is Other, which you can choose if you don’t see your business type represented in the list.
No matter what option you choose, you’re likely to be asked to make another choice, this one between using the ADI and creating your own website with the editor. For this example, we will use the Editor to customize our own website.
Step 2: Choose A Template
Wix has a library of about 500 templates to choose from as you start building your website. To help you sort through them, you can browse by category. For example, if you look under the Store tab, you’ll see a dozen options including fashion and clothing, arts and crafts, and sports and outdoors. Look under Creative, and you can browse categories like photography, design, music, creative arts, and more.
You don’t have to stay within your category; if you see a template you like you can adapt it for your own business type. So take your time, view a few templates, and zero in on the one that meets your needs. If you see one you like, hover over it until the View button appears. You can see a quick view of different pages under that theme, or view a full demo.
Step 3: Start Adding Content
Once you choose a template, the fun starts! It’s time to add photos and text to get your message across to customers. Whether your goal is to create connections, share information, or drive sales, you can do it all as you’re designing your Wix webpage. Everything you need to get started should be on the screen in front of you, which is an editing view of the landing page for your website.
You can start by changing the default photos and text. In this example, if you click on the image of the green spoon, a menu pops up.
Click on Change Image, for example, and you can change to a different stock image if you like. Or you can click the orange Add Images button to import your own. Once you’ve created a photo gallery, simply decide which you’d like to feature on each page.
Follow the same steps to change the default text. Click on a text block, then make your edits. You can click the button that says Get Text Ideas if you’d like suggestions based on your answers to some simple questions about your site and its purpose. There’s a gallery of media from Wix, which you can access free of charge. You can even access high-quality Shutterstock images, though those come with a price tag attached.
It’s very easy to move elements around on the page using the drag-and-drop Wix editing tools, so don’t feel limited by the default layout. You can resize images and text boxes, adjust font choices, colors, and sizes.
Step 4: Personalize Your Pages
Remember, Wix specializes in websites for non-technical users. If you have coding experience or have access to someone who does, you can click the Dev Mode link at the top of your screen to see some options. For the rest of us, playing around a little with the Editor quickly shows how easy it is to use. For example, click the top button on the left side of your screen to access your site menu. You’ll see a list of pages that the template offers by default. The standard pages are:
Click on the pages one at a time to see your options for customizing them. At the bottom of the menu that pops up, you will see a button that allows you to add pages, as well. All of the pages will use the layout and colors associated with the template you chose to use. You can drag the pages if you’d like to rearrange the order they are in. Any changes you make in the site menu will appear instantly on your home page.
Each page of the Wix template you choose comes with default text. Some of that just serves as placeholders, but some of it offers helpful advice you can use as you think of how you’d like to tell your business story and present yourself and your products to customers.
If you find yourself at a loss for what to write, you can click the button that says Get Text Ideas if you want suggestions. Answer a series of questions about your web page and why you’re online, and the Editor will generate suggested text that you can personalize with your information, for your intended audience.
You can add effects to your page, as well. Click the icon to the right of the Get Text Ideas button, and you can add an animation effect. Choose from a library of animations or develop your own custom option. Continue customizing pages, adding more as needed, until you have your site looking just the way you want it to. If you want to add an element that you don’t see in the default, click the “plus” button in the menu on the left side of your screen. A list will pop up that shows you a plethora of options, from buttons to blogs, and menus to forms. It’s easy to add whatever you like to ensure your website will actually help you meet your business goals.
Step 5: Add Products
There are many reasons for starting a website that don’t involve sales. However, if eCommerce is one of your goals, you’ll want to spend some time adding sales pages. The template default includes a Shop page. Select that from the menu, then get to work adding physical or digital products, using drag-and-drop editing tools to make the job easy.
Add images, set prices, put in product descriptions, add inventory, create collections, and more. You can add more sections if you want to deliver more information to customers, like your return policies or care instructions. You can also add customization and options like color and size, if you offer them to customers. And, if you’re looking to add products to your inventory, there’s a built-in option that lets you find products to add to create a dropshipping inventory for your online store.
Step 6: Add A Payment Method
If you’re not interested in making sales through your website, you can skip this step. However, if eCommerce is a part of your business plan, you’ll need to add a way to accept payments from customers who want to buy from your online store. From your Products page, you will see a link that allows you to Add Payment Method. Click on that to see your options, which include accepting cash, checks, and other forms on in-person payment manually or with the Wix Mobile app. Your store settings default to Wix payments and PayPal, so you need only click Connect Me to set those up. If you want to use Wix Payments or PayPal, you will be required to upgrade to a paid Wix plan.
Wix eCommerce plans come with varying price tags and tiered additional benefits. Prices listed are broken down by month but based on an annual payment and range from $23 to $49 per month. You can choose to pay monthly, at a slightly higher rate. There’s also an Enterprise-level plan that includes VIP customer support. Call Wix for pricing information on that.
Because the basic Wix website you’ve already created comes at no cost, when you add on a paid plan you activate the 14-day free trial period. That’s a nice feature that gives you a chance to test your site and make adjustments before you fully commit. So don’t waste a day of that trial period: Add on payments only when you’re ready to take your site live and start making sales.
Now Launch That Website!
If you’ve made it through all the steps to this point, your website is ready to go live and represent your business to the world at large. Before (or after) you publish your site, you can make your store function even better for your business. Here are some useful apps you can add and some top features you should consider activating:
- Add A Custom Domain
- Visit The Wix App Store
- Brush Up On Your SEO Skills
- Hone Your eCommerce Marketing Strategies
- Harness The Power Of Social Media marketing
Let’s face it, your website looks great, but if you’ve got the time â while you’re waiting for the online orders to start rolling in â you can always experiment with small changes and add-ons to make it function even better for you. Even better, ask customers for feedback and incorporate their suggestions. That’s one way to build strong customer relationships and boost sales in the process.
The post How To Build A Wix Website In 6 Easy Steps appeared first on Merchant Maverick.