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Is a WIX website a good idea for a local Hawaii business?

WIX websites are very easy to use with their drag-and-drop builder. It can be a great option for anyone who wants a basic DIY website that doesn't need to be fancy. Here's a little insight from a Hawaii web designer about what you'll get out of them as a local Hawaii business owner.

We've all seen the WIX ads blasting on YouTube. They all sound the same:

"Need a stunning website for your business? First, go to WIX.com..."

The commercials are impressive. It looks like WIX is a simple step-by-step process where you drag, drop, and build your website without any problems and at the end of they day you get a gorgeous website with big, beautiful photos and bright colors.

But is a WIX website a good idea for a local Hawaii business?

Let's find out.

My professional opinion about WIX for Hawaii websites

Before we get to the nitty-gritty pros and cons, here's my bottom line professional opinion about local businesses in Hawaii using WIX.

When I build any website for my clients this is what it must have a perfect score on:

  • Mobile responsiveness (it looks good and works well on all screen sizes from desktop to phone)
  • Ease of use for the local business owner
  • The website grows and can become better with the company

Mobile responsiveness: We've seen websites that look horrible on our smartphones especially here in Hawaii where some of the websites are poorly made or are just really old. In this day and age where everyone uses their phone for the internet, it is vital for today's websites to look great on a phone. Why? How many times have you left a website because it loaded slow or it was confusing to navigate on your phone? We've all done this before. And every time someone bounces off your website, your reputation in Google's algorithm sinks a little lower.

WIX on mobile responsiveness: 4/10

In any website, you want it to load fast AND neat on both desktop and mobile devices. While WIX looks great on desktop while you're designing, its mobile responsiveness needs to drastically improve. That means as people visit your website with different desktops, tablets, and phone sizes, they'll sometimes get a website that looks like the positioning needs major work. It doesn't matter how awesome your products or services are. When people land on a website that doesn't look right (or is difficult to use), it's a fact that people bounce and look elsewhere. A bounce off your website means you've lost a potential sale.

Ease of use: Making and maintaining a website is easy for me because that's what I do on a daily basis. But for a local business owner in Hawaii...not so much. Your valuable time has been spent improving your craft and getting better at what you do best. That's why I always take into consideration how my clients will handle their website if/when I'm not in the picture. Some clients are more tech savvy than others, which means I need to choose a website platform that matches their level.

WIX on ease of use: 8/10

As for WIX websites, their drag and drop builder is really simple and easy to use - which is great because it was built for simplicity. Local Hawaii business owners who do not have any experience building websites will find that WIX builder is easy to learn and quick to get the hang of.

Grow with the company: Usually when you start a new company, you're in it for the long haul. So I always ask my clients what their future plans are, how big they want to be, and what they want their website to do. Do you want to start sending newsletters? Do you want to have a blog? Do you want customers to leave picture reviews? All of these things will affect the speed, power, and how your website is designed.

WIX on growth with the company: 3/10

WIX websites are easy to get started for non-techies because nothing is more simpler than drag and drop. However, if your business grows and you want to update your website to match your next level of professionalism, more often than not you'll have to redo your site on a different platform. WIX templates usually aren't enough to deliver your brand's message and the lack of customization and special widgets can hurt your reputation.

The pros of using WIX for local Hawaii businesses

  • Out-of-the-box: You make an account with WIX and everything you need is within the WIX platform. Purchasing a domain, email marketing, forms, etc. can be done with WIX. However, note that some of these options may not reach your expectations.
  • Easy-to-use drag and drop builder that is quick to learn: WIX currently has 4 types of builders: WIX ADI, WIX Editor, VELO by WIX (formerly CORVID by WIX), and Editor X. For local Hawaii business owners who are not tech savvy, but still want to make their own website, WIX ADI and WIX Editor are your choices for a drag-and-drop website builder.
  • Free version available: This plan is free to use indefinitely, but know that you won't have access to all of its capabilities and your website will have a very obvious WIX button on the top of your website prompting your website visitors to try WIX out.

Long story short, there's a flip-side for every advantage WIX gives you.

The cons of using WIX for local Hawaii businesses

  • Mobile responsiveness isn't ideal: WIX uses "absolute positioning" which can make your website look a little wonky on different screen sizes (not all, but some). This can distract customers and distractions stop customers from buying, calling, or finding out more about your product/service.
  • Difficulty to grow with the company: As your local business grows, you may find that your Hawaii website needs to change along with the company. Evolving a WIX website and making it perform better is difficult mainly because WIX has several limitations to start with. Yes, at first glance it's an easy drag-and-drop builder, which is what most local Hawaii business owners gravitate towards for their first website. But that also means you lose customization and most local business owners end up spending more to redo their site completely on a website platform that better fits their needs.
  • Building from scratch with new templates: When you make a WIX website, you choose a template and design your website according to that template. Unfortunately, if you ever want to change your template, you'll have to do a complete redesign starting from scratch all over again. Take it from me, changing templates is something you will want to do often especially if you're just starting off with website building.

Personally for me, mobile responsiveness and difficulty in updating your WIX website as your local Hawaii business grows are two big cons for me. It's hard for me to suggest WIX for most Hawaii businesses, just because there are other options available that are similarly priced and give you a much better package. However, it does remain a popular choice for local business owners who want to go the DIY route because of how easy it is to use right away.

What kind of local Hawaii businesses should use WIX?

WIX paid account for local business owners who want a DIY website

If you're a legitimate business in Hawaii that wants to appear professional, then I suggest a WIX paid plan is the way to go. The reason why I don't recommend the free version is because you'll have a noticeable WIX button on the top of your website distracting potential customers from their buying experience with you. Any of the paid plans, even the cheapest one at $14 a month, will get rid of the WIX branding and allow you to link your domain to your WIX account. However, keep in mind that if your business grows and you want your website to do more, you may end up having to move completely away from WIX since it does have its limitations when it comes to website customization.

Keep in mind, if you decide to move away from WIX, you'll either hire a website designer or do another DIY website on your own time. Another DIY website means you'll have to learn a new website platform from scratch, which could eat away at the time you currently spend on your business.

WIX websites for established Hawaii businesses without a website

Because WIX lacks great mobile responsiveness and it's difficult for the website to grow and evolve with a business, I suggest WIX websites for established local businesses in Hawaii that have already found success without a website. This means you already have a loyal customer base, people know about you, and you already have word-of-mouth marketing working for you. For example, if you babysit children and you already have parents calling you up, a WIX website would be a great fit.

You might be asking yourself: why would a successful local babysitter need a website then? Couldn't they continue like this without a website?

The answer is SURE! But maybe this babysitter wants their customers to start making reservations online. That means they don't have to answer the phone all the time and confirmations can all be automatic by email, freeing up the babysitter's time to focus on their own family. If parents have to suddenly reschedule, they could potentially cancel the babysitting request all online without the babysitter having to lift a finger. Everything would by synced on their online calendar and all notifications would go straight to their phone. They would also be able to link up an email system to their website and start emailing parents about upcoming events, their vacation coming up, and changes in schedule.

Just by implementing online reservations on a WIX website, a local babysitter in Hawaii could increase their free time and have their schedule fill up and stay updated leaving no room for human error. This would be a great situation where a WIX website would work well for a small local Hawaii business.

WIX websites for non-business websites

Another situation where a WIX website would be great in Hawaii would be for non-business websites such as casual events, parties, weddings, etc. If you run a garage sale once a month, a free WIX website would work well for you. No one is expecting you to have a professional website so the WIX branding wouldn't be a big problem. You'd be able to direct all of your customers to your website where they could get information about your next garage sale, a sneak peek to what you have in stock, and any announcements such as a date change.

A WIX website is also a good idea for anyone in Hawaii who just wants to get used to a drag-and-drop web builder. The free plan lasts forever and you can get a good understanding of its capabilities and limitations as you try it out.

WIX looks great right off the bat especially if you aren't tech-savvy. There's a solid drag-and-drop builder and you can potentially have a website that is capable of some extras. It's a great choice for anyone who wants to build their own Hawaii website or are on a budget and just need a basic, informative website that they can point their customers to. I personally wouldn't recommend it to most of my clients since if they're going to hire me as their Hawaii website designer, I would want to give them a website platform that doesn't have the long-term cons that would affect their company's growth.

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