How To Use Wix - A Step-By-Step Guide That Will Make You A Wix ProWebsite Builders
The Wix website builder is used by over 180 million people in 190 countries. How come Wix is so popular? There are a few reasons.
- Wix is incredibly easy to use. You can create a website with virtually zero coding knowhow — and you can probably do so in less than an hour.
- Wix offers all the features a website could possibly need — from eCommerce and reviews functionality to blogging and appointment scheduling. As a result, Wix websites are as flexible and as varied as the businesses, hobbies, and people they represent.
- Best of all, Wix is very affordable. You can even publish a basic website with Wix completely for free. For more features and a custom domain name, Wix offers eight pricing plans ranging from $13 to $500. With so many plans, it’s easy to find one that suits your needs.
Wix has designed their website building platform to be intuitive. But, if you’re one of those people who hates fumbling around even a little bit, read on. We wrote this article just for you.
We’ll walk you through everything you need to know to build a website using Wix, step-by-step. By the time you’re finished, you’ll not only have your website built, but you’ll be able to make future updates and changes in a flash. Let’s get into it!
Getting Started with Wix: Wix ADI vs. Wix Editor
The first thing you’ll do when you get to Wix is sign up for an account. Unlike a lot of alternatives to Wix (we’re looking at you, Squarespace), you don’t have to first pay for an account in order to start designing your site. When you host your website on Wix, you can sign up and start designing completely for free. You only pay once you’re ready to publish.
Head over to wix.com and click the “Get Started” button. You can sign up for free with your email address, or use your Google or Facebook account.
Once you're in, the Wix setup wizard asks you a couple of questions to help you get started, like what kind of website you want to create.
After you select the type of website you want to create (business, restaurant, blog, etc.), Wix asks how you want to build your website: using the Wix ADI or the Wix Editor.
We explain both of these next.
How to Use the Wix ADI
The Wix ADI is a new tool that uses artificial intelligence to quickly build a custom website for you within minutes — seriously. Once your website is built, you’ll have access to the standard drag-and-drop Wix Website Editor so you can make changes to the design, and add new pages and functionality.
The Wix ADI is a great choice if you want to spin up a website as fast as possible or you’re not super tech-savvy.
How does the Wix ADI work its magic? It starts by asking you a few questions. Let’s say I’m creating a portfolio website for my freelance photography business. I type in photography and select “Photography Portfolio.”
Based on my answer, Wix suggests website features I can add to my website, like a booking calendar, blog, and Instagram feed. I can scroll down to add more features if I want.
Next, I tell Wix my business name:
Then, Wix allows me to pull in existing content from my current website or Google My Business profile. Wix will use images and text from these to build out my website:
Next, I review my info and confirm everything looks correct:
On the next screen, I choose a design template I like:
Finally, I choose a homepage layout I like.
Then, a few seconds later, I have a professional website created just for me. Visitors can see a portfolio of my work, book services, and contact me.
The Wix ADI is pretty incredible. It took me just a couple of minutes to have a complete website ready to go. A website is never set in stone, though. They’re an ever-evolving piece of internet art for your business, hobby, portfolio, or blog.
To make changes as your website evolves, you’ll need to use the Wix Editor. You can also design your website from the beginning using the Wix Editor, instead of the Wix ADI. Let’s talk about how to do that next.
How to Get Started with the Wix Editor
Once you sign up with Wix, you’ll be taken to the Wix dashboard. Click on “Create a New Site” from the drop-down menu. Then, like with Wix ADI, Wix will ask you what type of website you want to create:
Based on your answer, Wix will show you a curated selection of website templates to choose from. Wix has over 500 templates to choose from, so if you don’t find one you like here, don’t worry — you can easily choose another one by searching by keyword:
Note: Once you choose your template, you cannot switch it out with another one. You can make nearly endless edits to existing Wix templates, as we’ll get into in the following sections, but if you don’t love the overall theme, you’d need to start from scratch by clicking that “Create a New Site” button. Bottom line: spend some time browsing templates to find one you really like!
Once you find the web design of your dreams, hover over it. Wix will give you two options:
- “Preview” lets you click through the theme to see how it works.
- “Edit” gets you right into editing the theme.
For the sake of example, let’s pretend I’m creating a website for a personal training business. I select the “Personal Trainer” theme, and hop straight into editing.
Once you click Edit, you’ll see your theme in Wix Editor mode. Here you can access all the tools you need to customize the theme and make it your own.
How to Use the Wix Editor
The Wix Drag and Drop Editor is so easy to use because it overlays your editing menus on top of the theme.
At the very top, you’ll see your Wix menu.
Here’s where you can save, preview, or publish your site. Under Settings, you can also edit your site by adding a favicon, or check your website analytics. You can review Wix’s support documentation or contact their support team by clicking “Help.”
On the right, you’ll have your Editor Toolbar.
You’ll use this to edit the appearance of your elements. That’s what Wix calls all the individual things on your website, like an image block or header text. You can change an element’s alignment, size, rotation, and more.
Sometimes, this toolbar will sit on top of an element you want to edit. You can either drag the toolbar out of the way, or you can hide it altogether by clicking the X button. When you’re ready to bring it back, just click Tools in the top Wix menu and recheck Toolbar.
On the left-hand side of the editor you’ll see even more menus.
We’ll review these in detail in the following sections, but at a high-level, they include:
- Menus & Pages - Here you can edit your main menu and organize your webpages (such as creating sub-pages).
- Background - Here you can change out the background image for your Wix site.
- Add - Whenever you want to add a new element to the page, click this. You can add text, images, buttons, galleries, interactive elements, lists, forms, videos, menus, social sharing, embedded elements, and more.
- Add Apps - This is your area to shop for Wix apps. Wix templates include most things a website needs out of the box, like contact forms, media, and blogging. Wix Apps include everything else, from PDF viewers and website pop-ups to industry-specific apps like restaurant order forms and hotel reservations.
- Media - This is where you’ll access your Media library, upload new media, and edit the media you already have (including editing tools for photo and a videomaker).
- Start Blogging - This opens up the blog editor.
- Bookings - Some apps will create their own side button for you to manage them from. This is an example of one such app. The Bookings app lets you add services, connect a payment method, and add your service list so customers can make appointments.
Now, let’s walk through some of the basics of customizing your Wix website template.
Designing a Website with Wix: How to Edit a Wix Template
Below we’ll discuss how to do the following in Wix:
- How to Add Text
- Customize Your Fonts
- Edit Your Menu
- Change Your Background Image
- Add a New Element
- Add Sections
- Add Images and Videos
Note: If at any time you want to revert an edit you made, you can either click Ctrl+Z on your keyboard (or Cmd+C on a Mac) or click the undo arrow in the top menu.
How To Add Text in Wix
Your Wix template will already have some placeholder text included throughout, such as a headline at the top. To edit any of the text, just click on it, select the “Edit Text” button, and then type in your new text. When you’re done, click outside of the text box.
While you’re editing, you’ll see a new Text Settings menu appear. Here, you can make changes to your text like you would in a word processor, such as highlighting the text, changing the color, or bolding or italicizing it.
How to Customize Your Wix Template’s Fonts
Your Wix template comes with its own set of themed fonts built-in. These font styles include six different heading styles and a few paragraph text styles. These have been selected based on web design best practices to provide a cohesive look to your template, but you can create your own themed fonts, too.
Start by adding a text element using one of the included template fonts, like Heading 1. Then, adjust the font size, font, or color. Once you start making changes to the default font style, a new option will appear at the top of the Text Settings window that says “Save Theme.”
Once you click this, Wix will give you an option to update your Heading 1 theme style to the new look. Click “Save,” and the updated style is automatically applied to all the text on your site that uses that Heading 1 style. Pretty cool, right?
How to Edit Your Wix Menu
Your Wix template will come with a default menu, usually at the top of the homepage. If you want to make changes to what shows up here, you can do so by clicking the Menu button on the left.
Whenever you hover over one of these pages, you’ll see that your cursor changes to the double-arrow. That means you can drag and drop these to change up the order in which they appear. You can also drag one menu on top of another to “nest” it under that menu.
How to Change Your Wix Background
Your Wix template has a background. On the theme we’ve selected, it’s the image of a woman running. Since this is a generic photo, you’ll probably want to change it to something that represents you and your website, whether that’s a photo of your employees, a city skyline, or a picture of your cat.
To change your Wix background, click the Page Background button on the left. If you gasp when you see this screen, we get it. There are so many options! You can:
- Go with a simple color background.
- Upload your own image background.
- Upload a video background.
- Choose another image or video background from Wix’s free media library.
Once you've updated your Wix background, you can further customize it with parallax and scale effects:
Finally, you can choose whether you want to use this background just for the page you’re working on, or apply it to other pages on your website.
How to Add a New Element in Wix
Whenever you want to add something new to a page you’re working on in Wix — whether it’s a form, a button, text, or something else — click the Add button on the left. Then select the element you want to add. Eech of these will open up a sub-menu with additional options.
For example, the Button menu includes sub-menus for themed buttons, text & icon buttons, and more.
Once you click on one of these options, Wix adds it to your page. Then you can move it around (hot pink gridlines will appear to ensure you align it with the rest of your page). Finally, you can edit the text inside the button, change the color, or add a link.
Note: If you ever want to remove an element, click on the element. Then click the trash can button in the Editor Toolbar.
How to Add New Sections in Wix
Let’s say you want to do more than just add a button or text here and there. You want to add a whole section to your page. That’s super easy, too. Wix calls these sections “strips.”
To add a Wix strip, click the Add menu on the left, and select “Strip.” As with everything, you’ll see that Wix has conveniently added several templated strips for you to use, including ones for your services, contact information, customer testimonials, and more.
Once you click a strip, Wix will drop it onto your page. (Pro Tip: Before opening up the Add menu, scroll to the place on your site you’ll want to place the new element. Otherwise, you’ll need to drag it up or down to wherever you want it to live.)
Once the strip is on your page, you can click to edit any of the individual elements and open up additional customization options.
The strip will also have its own default menu of options, which will appear whenever you click on the strip. For example, the testimonials strip allows you to swap different columns (way easier than copying and pasting each element manually), adjust the column proportions, or swap out the strip background.
How to Add Images and Videos in Wix
You can add images and videos using the same Add menu in Wix. You can upload your own media or choose from Wix’s free library of photography, illustrations, videos, and music.
To change an image or video you’ve already placed on your website, simply click it and select “Change Image.”
How to Use Wix Forms
You may use forms throughout your site to help people get in touch with you, make orders or reservations, and register for events.
To add a Wix form, click the Add button and select “Contact & Forms.” Here you can browse among the different form options:
Once you've added the form to your site, you can add new fields or change the color or design:
How to Add Pages in Wix
By now, you’ve created a spectacular home page. Next, it’s time to add other pages to your site, like an About or Contact page.
To add a page in Wix, click the Site Menu button, and click the blue “Add Page” button.
Wix will automatically create a new page for you, called “New Page,” placed beneath the home page.
You can then give your page a name, and move it under the appropriate page in your menu.
How to Create Page Templates in Wix
You can also copy or duplicate page templates in Wix. Let’s say I really like the way I designed my “Nutrition Coaching” page on my imaginary personal training website. I spent a lot of time customizing it with elements and formatting, and I’d like to avoid doing that work all over again.
If I want to add another page using the same template, I can click the three-dot menu next to the name of the page in the Site Menu screen, and then select “Duplicate.” This will create another page in my menu that uses the same format.
If I’d like to reuse that template on a completely separate Wix site, such as one I made for my travel blog, I can select “Copy” instead. Then, when I open up the Site Menu on the other site, I can click the same three dot button and select “Paste.”
But that’s not all. What if I used a different Wix template on my other site? If I paste this page template, it will look out of place. Wix is way ahead of you. You can choose to paste the page as is, or to paste it and apply the theme of your current site. This will maintain the text, images, and elements from the other site, but adjust it to match your current template!
How to Use the Wix Blog Editor
Want to add a blog to your Wix website? No problem.
Click the Blog menu (it’s the pen button on the left) to get started. Then click “Add Now.”
The Wix Blog wizard will do its thing for 30 seconds or so.
Once it’s done, you’ll see a blog tab added to your site menu at the top, and a preview of what your blog will look like.
If you click “Manage Posts,” you’ll be taken to a list of all your blogs. Wix includes three sample blog posts to help you out (feel free to read these; they all share tidbits about blogging on Wix). You can click on the three dot menu to delete these:
To adjust the design of your blog home page, navigate to your blog page within the Wix Editor. Then click anywhere in the white space of your blog so the Settings menu appears.
From here, you can toggle through the different blog settings to do things like:
- Decide what appears on your blog (e.g. author name, publish date, reading time, comments counters, etc.)
- Change your layout
- Change the color, font, and button settings for your blog
Once you’re done customizing the design of your Wix blog, you can start blogging. To add a new blog post, go back to the Blog menu and select “Create a Post.” Then, start writing!
Pro Tip: Before you publish, make sure to toggle over to the SEO Settings menu. Here you can edit the URL of your blog post, and add a title tag and meta description to enhance your visibility in the Google search results. Every page on Wix can be optimized for SEO using this menu.
How to Add an Online Store to Your Wix Website
Maybe you’d like to sell stuff on your website, and why not? eCommerce is huge right now.
Adding an online store to Wix is just as easy as adding a blog. From the Add Menu, click “Store.”
Click “Add to Site,” and a new Store menu appears on the left hand side of your Wix Editor (it looks like a shopping bag). Click “Get Started.”
Once you’ve added the store functionality, you can use this menu to add new Store Pages for your products, product categories, shopping cart, and more.
You can also decide how to display products throughout your site, such as with product galleries or featured products.
With Wix’s eCommerce features, you can create a fully-functional online store. You’ll have the ability to:
- Customize the look and feel of your online store
- Sell both physical and digital products (like ebooks or videos)
- Manage shipping and order tracking
- Add as many products as you want
- Sync with Facebook and Instagram to sell on social media
- Process payments online
Pro Tip: Using Wix to build your online store? Check out these top Wix eCommerce templates for driving conversions.
How to Use Wix Apps
Wix includes so much functionality out-of-the-box, that it’s hard to imagine that you’d ever need anything else — but just in case you do, there’s the Wix App Market. Wix boasts over 250 applications that help you get more out of your site, from third-party apps for Mailchimp or Shippo to original Wix apps for event management or forums.
If you ever find you need to add functionality to your Wix website, but you can’t find a way to do it using one of the standard Wix elements, make your way over to the Wix App Market. You’ll find a solution there.
You can navigate the Wix App Market by searching for an app in the search bar at the top, or browsing the app categories on the left-hand side. For example, here’s a quick look at the Wix marketing apps:
You can see an app’s star rating, how many people downloaded it, and whether there’s a free plan available.
Before you install a Wix app, we recommend reading the reviews to see what other people think about it. It’s also a good idea to confirm their support options work for you. For example, this app (which shall remain nameless) has a lot of poor reviews, and their support team is only available via email:
Each app includes a quick setup wizard. Once it’s added to your Wix site, you can start customizing the app. For example, after I installed the Constant Contact app, it added an email newsletter popup form to my site.
I can click this to edit it, or I can navigate back to the App Menu, and click “Manage Apps” to access the app’s menu:
When I click on Open, the full Constant Contact menu comes up, providing me with additional settings options:
The steps will be different depending on which Wix app you installed, but they’re all generally pretty straightforward to use.
How to Configure Your Wix Website Settings
Once you’re done designing your Wix website, there are a few settings you’ll need to review from time to time. Click the Settings menu in the top navigation of the Wix Website Editor.
You’ll see lots of options. Here’s what each one does:
- Connect Domain: Click this to connect an existing domain to your website, or register a new domain.
- Get a Mailbox: Here, you can set up a branded email address that matches the domain of your Wix website.
- Upgrade: Whenever you want to change your Wix plan, this is where you’ll do it.
- Get Found on Google: This takes you to the SEO website settings we discussed earlier.
- Favicon: Your website favicon is that tiny icon that appears in the browser tab and in mobile search results. Typically, it’s a small square version of your logo. Knoji’s is a blue speech bubble, for instance. You can upload one for your Wix website here.
- Business Info: Here you can fill out your business contact details, like your address and phone number.
- Social Share: This feature lets you set a default image to appear whenever someone shares your website on social media. You can also connect your Facebook page here.
- Tracking & Analytics: In this section, you’ll set up the tracking pixels for Google Analytics if you want to monitor your website traffic, or if you plan to do any Facebook advertising.
- Roles & Permissions: If you plan to expand your website team beyond you, here’s where you’ll add users. You can define permissions for each user, so people only have access to what they need, such as a particular app or the entire site. You can also assign roles, like a blog writer who can only write blog posts but not publish them, or a bookings administrator who can manage bookings through the site but not make any website changes.
- Accessibility: This lets you make your site more accessible to users with disabilities, by letting people use their keyboard to navigate your site or add visual indicators to make it easier for them to see what they are looking at.
- Mobile-Friendly: This is where you’d go if you ever wanted to turn off Wix’s default mobile-friendliness. We don’t recommend messing with this setting.
- Image Sharpening: This setting affects how “sharp” images appear on your site. Wix offers several image presets, from sharp to mild. You can read their guide to find the best setting for your site.
- Multilingual: When you turn this setting on, Wix walks you through a wizard to translate your website into other languages. This is a good option for websites that plan on serving visitors in different countries.
- Error Page (404): A 404 page is the error page that appears when someone visits a broken page or outdated URL on your website. When you upgrade to a paid Wix plan, you can create a custom 404 page for your Wix website. Although, the default 404 page Wix designed is pretty cute…
How to Make Sure Your Wix Website Is Mobile-Friendly
Once you’re ready to publish your site, stop. There’s one more thing you need to do.
Make sure it looks good on mobile, of course!
The majority of internet users access websites using mobile devices, so you gotta make sure your site looks snappy for them.
Thankfully, Wix’s templates are all responsive. That means they adjust according to the size of the screen they’re being viewed on, whether that’s a desktop computer or an iPad. In other words, they’re already mobile-friendly.
However, it’s a good idea to double-check you like the mobile-friendly version of your Wix website. To do this, click the smartphone icon at the top.
There may be a few minor changes you want to make. That’s fine. Any change you make to the mobile version of your site will apply only to the mobile site; your desktop site will not be affected.
Wix offers a few special features you can add just for your mobile visitors. You can access these by clicking the wrench button on the left. If you add a “back to top” button, for instance, your visitors can simply tap it any time to go straight back to the top of your website (this is a super useful feature for long web pages or blog articles).
How to Choose Your Domain Name and Publish Your Wix Website
Once you love how your site looks, it’s time to show the world.
Anyone can publish a website for free with Wix. The catch is that your domain name will be yourusername.wixsite.com. Not so cute. And your site will show Wix ads, which looks a bit tacky. Finally, you can’t have an online store with a free Wix plan.
To publish your website with a custom domain and no Wix ads, you’ll need to first upgrade to a paid Wix plan. Wix offers eight paid plans, all with different features. The cheapest plan is $13 per month. If you’re not planning to have eCommerce functionality, this is a good option — especially when you're just getting started and unsure of what you want your website to look like. You can always upgrade to another plan at any time.
If you will be having an online store, the cheapest plan with eCommerce functionality starts at $23 per month. Still very affordable!
Whatever plan you choose, make sure to save with these Wix promo codes.
Before you click that bright blue “Publish” button, you need to choose a domain name for your Wix website. Your domain name is the main part of your URL. On this site, for example, our domain name is knoji.com.
All Wix plans include a free domain name for up to 1 year. To choose your domain name, navigate to your Wix dashboard (www.wix.com/dashboard), and click “Connect Domain.”
Then, you can either buy a new domain name, or connect a domain you already registered.
Once you’ve connected your domain name, you're finally ready to publish your Wix website! Click “Publish,” break out the champagne, and give yourself a hearty pat on the back.
Moving forward, whenever you want to make a change to your website, you can click “Edit Site” from your Wix dashboard to access the Wix Website Editor. Make your changes, and click “Publish” to push them ive.
We hope this Wix site tutorial showed you how easy it is to use Wix. But if you’re not sure Wix is for you, check out the pros and cons of these popular alternatives to Wix: