Wix makes creating websites easy for the user, and actually quite fun. Exploring all the different tools and features that Wix has to offer is a great way to visually express your creativity. However, because the platform offers so much to experience, you might find yourself feeling a little overwhelmed at times.
Thankfully, understanding how Wix works isn’t difficult at all. You simply have to spend a bit of time playing around with things and seeing how they work — and before you know it, you’ll feel like a Wix expert. It just comes down to knowing where to begin.
Once you are logged into your Wix account, you’ll want to click the blue Manage Site button, followed by Edit Site on the next page. For reference, I’ve included a screenshot of both buttons below.
Now that you’re looking at the website editor, it’s time to get an idea of what you are looking to create. Of course, this is entirely up to you and your creative ability, but perhaps my breakdown of the most commonly used tools below can help you better understand how the design process works.
Understanding the Wix Editor
Always on the left side of the screen is the Left Menu. Yes, that is the official name. Easy enough to remember, right? This is where you’ll be spending a good majority of your time in the beginning. It’s where you go to add everything you want to see on your website. From simple text to complex image galleries, the Left Menu will quickly become your best friend.
On the right side of the screen you’ll find what is called the Editor Toolbar. This toolbar can be used to duplicate items, align text, and even adjust sizes of items in real time. While I recommend always having the Editor Toolbar displayed, you can temporarily disable it by clicking the close button in the top-right corner.
And finally, we cannot forget about the Top Bar. Using this area of the editor allows you to quickly manage your pages, enable and disable specific tools, as well as access Wix’s official support site.
Adding Content to Your Website
Now that you have a basic understanding of the surrounding toolbars and menus, let’s begin populating your website with content. In the Left Menu, click the icon that resembles a plus sign.
As you can see, Wix provides you with a whole plethora of features to work with. The options here are virtually infinite. While I plan on covering most of these features in additional posts, for now I’m going to focus on what I believe are most important when getting started.
Text: The foundation of any functional website is text. Whether it be a large and bold heading or simple paragraphs of a commonly used font, implementing text into your website should be a no-brainer. How you go about it creatively, of course, is a different story.
Images: Whether you are looking to use your own images or choose from hundreds of the free stock images provided, Wix offers extensive use of media that is sure to get your creative juices flowing.
Galleries: Tying in directly with images, Wix includes a variety of gallery templates to experiment with. From simple grid galleries to 3D galleries, displaying your images on Wix is an amazing way to present content to an audience.
Interactive Elements: Dramatically spruce up your website using Wix’s interactive elements. From full width slideshows to hover boxes that can change appearance on mouseover, this is one category that you will definitely want to explore.
Buttons: Because who doesn’t enjoy a good old-fashioned button? Dropping a clickable button onto your website is still, to this day, one of the most effective call-to-action elements you can utilize.
Strips: A strip element is a horizontal section of your website that can be used to display a variety of different content types. A few examples include a welcome strip that greets visitors to your website, a services strip that promotes what your business does, and even a parallax strip that adds a stunning 3D effect to your images.
Videos: Nowadays we live in a world that is dominated by video. But is that such a bad thing? Of course not. Wix allows seamless integration of video embeds from the most popular video sharing sites (YouTube, Vimeo, etc.) and even the ability to upload your own videos directly to file storage.
Music: If music is your thing, then you are going to love the deep music integration that Wix has to offer. Just like video, you can seamlessly embed music players from sites like SoundCloud and Spotify. And if you sell your own music on iTunes, there’s a button for that.
Social Media: Promote your social media profiles through the use of Wix’s social bars and direct embeds of content from Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest. Integrating simple share buttons is also an option.
Communication: Make it easy for website visitors to get in touch with you via contact forms, build an effective emal list using subscription forms, and display your business’s location using a Google Maps embed.
Menus: Much like text, every website needs some form of navigation that is easy to use. Wix allows you to quickly set up universal menus that appear throughout your website, whether they’re horizontal or vertical.
Lightboxes: Looking to grab attention on your website? Then you’ll want to integrate one of Wix’s many lightbox varieties. These are perfect for setting up splash pages, promoting a limited-time sale, or to simply collect contacts for your growing email list.
Blog: What would a website be without some form of blog? Keep your website’s visitors coming back for more with original content that is presented in a custom feed tailored to specific categories.
Online Store: Sell physical products and digital downloads right from the convenience of your own website. You can even share coupon codes to help sell inventory. And of course, setting up payments is easy and secure.
It’s Time to Get Creative
Now that we’re all caught up, hopefully you are feeling more inspired and ready to create your website. But like anything in life, there’s no need to rush into things. Approach Wix at your own pace and discover what works for you.
If this is your first website that you’re designing, then even better. Learning the ins and outs of Wix should give you a basic understanding of the fundamentals of web design. Despite what some “experts” may suggest, you don’t necessarily have to know code to create something effective.
New to Wix? Sign up here.