14 Nov 2018

15 Website & UX Statistics of 2018-2019 [INFOGRAPHIC]

If you want to be successful online, you’re going to need a website (check out our website builders). However, simply having a website isn’t going to cut the mustard. Web design and user experience (UX) play a massive role in ensuring your website and online presence is successful!

At UK Web Host Review we’ve put together an infographic to showcase the statistics. These are statistics for last year (2018). Later on the year, we’ll update these to include 2019..

Website & UX Statistics of 2018

 

 

1 | 75% of people base credibility by a website

You may have the world’s best team behind your business. But, if your company’s website is not up to scratch, you could lose 1/4 of your customer base! Yes, that’s right. 75% of people base a company’s credibility by how their website looks, feels, and responds to the user journey.

2 | 53% of mobile users will leave after 3 seconds

Speed is everything in 2018. With greater technology comes a greater responsibility to provide content, almost instantly. 53% of mobile website users will leave a site or a web page if it doesn’t load within 3 seconds. The more time passes, the higher the abandonment rate.

3 | 59% of people prefer a beautifully designed website

41% of consumers would prefer a simple design, whereas 59% prefer a stunning website. So, it’s pertinent to remember that if you want your customers to stay engaged, you’ll need something quite outstanding.

4 | 86% of visitors want information about products and services

When you visit a website, what kind of information do you want to see? 86% of surveyed people want information about products and services. It is therefore recommended that this kind of content is readily available and not hard to find. This will ensure that you continue to provide a great user experience.

5 | 1% of users interact with website sliders

Creating the perfect landing page or homepage can be difficult. Knowing what features to include and not to include is vital to creating an engaging user experience. Only 1% of users actually click on sliders, therefore having a plugin or similar on your website probably isn’t doing much to improve things!

6 | 94% of people won’t trust an outdated website

A stunning website is of course important. However, keeping your website and it’s design update is just as important. An outdated website could lose you visitors! 94% of users no longer trust outdated websites, and it’s no surprise given the competition! Make sure your website’s design is in-keeping with trends.

7 | 70% of small businesses miss call-to-actions

Call to actions range from newsletters to guides, specials to purchases. If a call to action isn’t obvious, how can you expect your visitors to click through to where you want to lead them? A whopping 70% of small businesses fail to outline clear call to action buttons, and could potentially be missing out on a lot of business.

8 | 50% of eCommerce revenue is from mobile users

Everyone is going mobile in this digital world that we live in. 50% of eCommerce revenue is produced from mobile users. This certainly backs up the notion that websites should be mobile responsive. Imagine creating a stunning eCommerce website that didn’t work on mobile! You’d potentially be losing half of your customers.

9 | It takes just 0.05 seconds to form a design opinion

Within milliseconds of visiting a website, users will have already formed an impression of what they see. It takes just 0.05 seconds for someone to decide whether they like your website or not, so grabbing their attention is key to your success. Investing in excellent web design is essential to a long-lasting business online.

10 | 44% of users will leave if there’s no contact information

If your website doesn’t contain contact information, 44% of users will leave. If there’s no information available, this could instill a lack of trust into your users about your business. Contact information relates to an address, telephone number, or email address. Make sure your visitors have a way of contacting you via your website.

11 | Slow image loading times can cause 39% of users to abandon

Slow website loading times are frustrating at the best of times. But, if a visitor manages to reach a website, and images don’t load, 39% of users are likely to leave the website. Image optimisation is key to web design; whether you’ve hired a web designer or you’re creating your own website (a fast web host is also recommended).

12 | You have on average 10 seconds to impress

When a user visits your website, you have around 10 seconds to impress them before they leave. Your website should capture a user’s attention within the first 10 seconds and keep them engaged. A good website will provide a smooth user experience and should give visitors a user journey that’s easy to follow.

13 | 2 out of 3 minutes spent online are via mobile

Mobile devices account for 2/3 of time spent online. This is why it’s so important to ensure your website and UX follows a mobile responsive design. If 2/3 of your website visitors couldn’t access your website properly, or features didn’t work, they’d quickly abandon and go elsewhere.

14 | Video content 53x more likely to reach the first page of Google

Video has become much more popular and relied on by businesses in 2018. A website that contains video content is 53x more likely to appear on the first page of results on a Google search. The impact of video is astounding; not only does it boost the user experience, it also increases your website’s SEO score.

15 | 70% of people pay attention to bulleted lists

Bullet points are much easier to digest when it comes to lists, compared to other list presentations. 70% of people will absorb information presented in a bulleted list. So, if your website is content heavy, it may be worth considering condensing your content into bullet points.

References:

https://revive.digital/blog/website-design-stats-2018/

https://www.thinkwithgoogle.com/marketing-resources/data-measurement/mobile-page-speed-new-industry-benchmarks/

https://landing.adobe.com/en/na/products/creative-cloud/264699-state-of-content/index.html#Experience-by-Design

https://komarketing.com/files/b2b-web-usability-report-2015.pdf

https://thrivethemes.com/why-sliders-suck/

https://www.mytechlogy.com/IT-blogs/15792/30-insanely-elevated-website-design-stats-for-2017/

https://curatti.com/web-design-usability/

https://www.infront.com/blog/the-blog/8-statistics-that-prove-responsive-web-design-is-essential-to-seo

https://www.sweor.com/firstimpressions

https://www.bluecorona.com/blog/20-web-design-facts-small-business-owners/

https://gomedia.com/zine/insights/business-philosophy/web-design-stats-2018/

https://blog.red-website-design.co.uk/2018/07/16/web-design-stats-2018-2019-infographic/

https://www.roundhaywebdesign.co.uk/27-interesting-useful-web-statistics/

http://www.videoexplainers.com/impact-of-a-video-on-internet-buyer/

https://www.tytonmedia.com/blog/51-insane-web-design-statistics-2016/

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12 Nov 2018

21 Easy Ways to Speed Up WordPress

Why should you speed up WordPress?

WordPress is an extremely popular publishing platform which is used to power millions of blogs and websites around the world. It can be used to create blogs and websites that are rich in features and enables you to publish posts and pages, customise your site with various widgets, themes and bespoke menus and use plug-ins to make your site even more functional and impressive.

In Google’s Webmaster blog, we learn that users don’t want to wait for websites to load. If a site doesn’t load within 3 seconds, there is a very strong correlation showing site abandonment.

One of the main drawbacks of WordPress is that it can sometimes grind to a halt for various reasons. However, there are many steps you can take to speed up the performance of WordPress to save time and make using it more enjoyable.

At UK Web Host Review, we’ve taken the time to outline some of the most effective techniques for boosting the performance of your WordPress site (we currently use all of these techniques and they work VERY well!). 

 

1. Enable Browser Caching

Caching is a way of storing static files (ones that won’t change) like images, CSS, and JavaScript. By enabling browser caching, you can actually speed up your WordPress website. When you enable browser caching, your database doesn’t have to be communicated with every time someone visits your site.

By doing this, and minimising the retrieval of content from your database, your website’s speed will increase. This will enable a better user experience for your visitors, as well as increasing your page speed (which is a rating factor for SEO).

You can enable browser caching in a variety of ways through WordPress. However, my personal recommendation is to use W3 Total Cache plugin. Simply navigate to the plugins section on your WordPress dashboard.

 

2. Remove Unnecessary Plugins

It’s quite easy to get carried away when you first install your WordPress site. There are so many plugins to choose from, all boasting great features and tools to simplify managing your site. The problem is, plugins can cause issues, namely slowing down your site. Out of date plugins, conflicting plugins, and useless plugins can clog up your WordPress site.

It’s really important to manage your plugins effectively. This includes deleting plugins that you no longer use, or ones that aren’t actually necessary for your website. It’s going to take a bit of effort on your part here, researching the best plugins for their desired purpose, but I promise you it’s worth it!

When you’re ready, simply navigate to the Plugins section on your WordPress dashboard and locate the area called Installed Plugins. You can view your installed plugins and choose to delete those that you no longer need.

 

3. Choose the right WordPress host

Reputable shared web hosting providers such as SiteGround or Hostinger will spend sufficient time on optimising performance, though shared hosting does mean sharing resources with a large number of other people. Busy neighbouring sites can have a significant impact on the whole server and therefore your site. We also suggest that you stay away from any free web hosting services as these often have numerous downtime and site speed issues.

You may well wish to opt for a managed hosting service over a shared one. Opt for a managed service and you’ll be able to benefit from highly-optimised server configurations as well as automatic back-ups, updates and complex but valuable security configurations that will enhance the security of your site. This step is regarded as one of the most effective ways to speed up WordPress.

The hosting of your site is widely agreed to be amongst the most important factors when it comes to loading times. Many providers offering “unlimited” bandwidth are unable to provide impressive loading times, especially during peak hours. Furthermore, the vast majority of these providers can’t guarantee more than 99% uptime per month.

 

4. Compress your Images

Images are one of the most resource hungry aspects of a WordPress website. Because they can take up a large amount of space (if not compressed), they can slow your website down. For websites that focus on imagery, like photography or art portfolios, this is a must!

Image compression takes an existing image and compresses it’s size, whilst maintaining an acceptable level of quality. Unless someone is viewing your website on a 60 inch television, they’re probably not going to notice that your images have been compressed.

My favourite image compression plugin for WordPress is called Smush. It’s super easy to download this plugin from the WordPress plugins store and install it to your site. You can configure Smush to automatically compress images when you upload them so you barely have to put any effort in yourself!

 

5. Update your site regularly

Updating your site regularly is essential. Themes and plug-ins are refreshed regularly, and if you fail to take advantage of them, you could become vulnerable to bugs and security issues as well as slow loading times.

Keep on top of the latest updates to avoid performance being affected. Make sure your site, plugins and themes are all updated to the very latest versions.

What’s also good is to update your site with new content regularly. By doing so is looked on very favourably by the likes of Google, who also reward fast-loading sites that offer fast performance with better rankings.

 

6. Use free tools to optimise WordPress

Its really easy to get detailed performance statistics and data regarding your website. Making use of these tools (for free) can teach you all there is to know about your site, thus being able to optimise it.

If you have a well optimised website, your website will load faster and your SEO score will sky rocket. Here’s a list of a few free tools you could be making use of:

 

7. Take advantage of excerpts

WordPress will keep the entirety of each article on your homepage and your archives unless you instruct it not to. This leads to homepages, categories, archive pages and tags loading slower.

If full articles are shown, visitors may not decide to visit the page in question, which means pageview numbers can be negatively affected.

By using excerpts, you can convince users to click through to view full pages and spend more time on your site. The Settings menu enables you to show summaries to your visitors rather than the full text.

 

8. Break comments into pages

Although it’s always great to see vast numbers of visitors commenting on your articles and joining the discussion, loading comments can also take time.

The Discussion part of the Settings menu offers a Break Comments into Pages option that will help you avoid this problem and enable you to avoid slow loading times likely to send guests away.

 

9. Content Delivery Networks

A Content Delivery Network or CDN will help you speed up loading times for visitors no matter where they are. Without a CDN, users in the country where your server is based will experience faster loading times than visitors located elsewhere.

CDNs consist of servers from across the world, with all servers storing static files like images, JavaScript and CSS that make up your site. Using a CDN means users will be served files from the server nearest to them, whilst your own web hosting server will perform quicker because of the reduced pressure on it.

 

 

Most well-known and well-read WordPress blogs are now making use of CDNs in order to cater for visitors across the world effectively. The Max CDN Content Delivery Network has a great online reputation and has been complimented for its intuitive dashboard and generous pricing structure. Furthermore, it comes with video tutorials designed to make the setting-up process smoother and quicker.

 

10. Avoid uploading videos directly to WordPress

Uploading your videos directly to WordPress can also vastly reduce loading times. What’s also worrying about this is that hosting videos directly can be very expensive in terms on bandwidth, and you could be faced with a big bill from your hosting provider, who may even decide to close your site.

Even if you’re paying for so-called unlimited bandwidth, you may still be met with tough penalties. Hosting videos will also make backup sizes swell and make the restoration process much more difficult.

However, help is at hand. You can instead embed videos that you have uploaded to services like YouTube who do have the bandwidth. Just cut and paste the URL into the post and it will be embedded seamlessly, helping you avoid slow load times and penalisation.

 

11. Choose a speedy theme

Though scores of great WordPress themes are available, it’s important to consider speed when selecting one. Some of the most visually-impressive themes have bad coding and can have an adverse effect on load times.

Try to strike a happy balance between performance and visual quality when selecting a theme. You may need to experiment with a number of themes before you reach the best compromise.

Many WordPress site owners opt for simple theme and select a number of high-performance plugins to get the right visual feel and efficiency. Some of the most reputable theme shops include StudioPress and Array Themes and are great channels for obtaining impressive themes that won’t result in snail-like loading times.

 

12. Faster slider plugins

Sliders are particularly popular amongst WordPress users but do have a tendency to lengthen loading times. What’s more is that they can even undermine your attempts at speeding up your site, such as choosing optimised images.

It’s wise to spend time online researching the best slider plugins for your needs. Nivo Slider, Soliliquy and Meteor all have a great reputation amongst leading WordPress experts and veterans.

 

13. Faster gallery plugins

Do you need to display a large number of photographs? As we have already mentioned, photographs that haven’t been optimised can lead to poor loading times. Many professional photographers using WordPress opt for speedy gallery plugs ins that have been designed for speedy loads.

There are many reliable and fast gallery plugins on the market – some of the most reputable and acclaimed include Envira Gallery, NextGEN and Foo Gallery.

 

14. Splitting longer posts into pages

There are many great reasons for adding detailed, lengthy posts to your WordPress site. Long post can provide your readers with detailed analysis and facts about complex topics and really establish yourself as a leading player in your field.

They can also be fantastic for SEO. However, if you do post extensive information supported by a string of images, loading times can be impacted.

One way to get around this is to separate your longer posts into pages. Splitting posts into sections isn’t complex – you simply need to use the <!––nextpage––> tag when you wish to end one section and begin another. Long posts don’t need to have an unwanted effect on loading times.

 

15. Prevent pingbacks and trackbacks

Pingbacks and trackbacks tell you whenever your site receives a link, but they can put your server resources under pressure. What’s more there are other resources you can use to assess links of your site, such as Google Webmaster Tools. The pressure on your server comes from the way requests from WordPress are sent back and forth when link ups are made.

Additionally, hackers and other cybercriminals can exploit pingbacks and trackbacks in DDoS attacks. You can switch off this functionality in the Discussion area of Settings. Simply deselect “Allow link notifications from other blogs (pingbacks and trackbacks)” to disable pingbacks and trackbacks.

WordPress is designed to interact with other blogs equipped with trackbacks and pingbacks. When you are mentioned on another site or blog, data on your own post is updated. Don’t worry about backlinks being lost if you disable trackbacks and pingbacks – you’ll only be losing clutter on your site by taking this step.

 

16. Cut down external HTTP requests

Though it is helpful to use some files from other sites, overdoing things can also impact load times. A large number of plugins and themes load files from other sites, with many making use of scripts, images and more from the likes of Google and Facebook. However, if your plugins make a large number of requests, chances are that loading times will be effected. You can get around this by disabling some scripts and styles.

Alternatively, you may wish to merge them into a single file. This task may seem more complex than many of the other tips and tricks we’ve discussed in this article, but making these changes and gaining a rich understanding of what you need to do to reduce HTTP requests can be worth its weight in gold. There are many tutorials online that will show you how to cut down HTTP requests and disable JavaScript and CSS files from plugins to boost loading times and bring your visitors a smoother and faster site experience.

The process of minification won’t lead to unwanted results but will eliminate unnecessary characters from HTML, JavaScript and CSS files. Minification reduces load times and boosts performance by removing redundant code and unnecessary characters. Various studies have shown how minification makes a significant difference to the performance of WordPress sites. You can also speed up WordPress by minimising page size and reducing the number of calls to JavaScript and CSS.

17. Use GZIP compression

Many computers owners choose to compress files on their computers in order to save disc space after looking for ways to speed up WordPress. The equivalent of this for WordPress users is GZIP compression, which cuts down bandwidth usage and reduces the time it takes for users to access your site. It means the browser unzips your site before they enter it. There are many plugins available that will enable you to compress your files, though you can also add the code below to your .htaccess file.

AddOutputFilterByType DEFLATE text/plain
AddOutputFilterByType DEFLATE text/html
AddOutputFilterByType DEFLATE text/xml
AddOutputFilterByType DEFLATE text/css
AddOutputFilterByType DEFLATE application/xml
AddOutputFilterByType DEFLATE application/xhtml+xml
AddOutputFilterByType DEFLATE application/rss+xml
AddOutputFilterByType DEFLATE application/javascript
AddOutputFilterByType DEFLATE application/x-javascript

 

18. Reducing database calls

Again, this step may seem somewhat complex but you can expect your efforts to pay off if you invest time in understanding what you need to do to reduce database calls.

You will need to gain some understanding of PHP and the template files of WordPress to perform this step. Unnecessary direct database calls and requests can put too much pressure on your server and can result from badly-coded WordPress themes. Even themes that are otherwise coded impressively may make database calls just to get simple information.

The tag <?php marks the beginning of a new database call. If you’re using a child theme to customise your site, the calls can be deleted and replaced with specific information. You can also replace them with static information when using a parent theme.

 

19. Remove unnecessary information from your WordPress database

Once you have been using WordPress for some time, you will probably come across a significant amount of unnecessary information.

The WP-Sweep plugin can be used to eliminate much of this and will get rid of unused tags, trashed posts and much more, giving your database a much-needed and valuable spring clean. Furthermore, you can optimise the entire structure of your database with just one click.

 

20. Cut back post revisions

Post revisions can fill up a great deal of your database, and some experts suggest that they might have a negative impact on plugin database queries. Plugins that don’t exclude revisions could search through revisions when they don’t need to.

However, it’s relatively easy to limit the amount of revisions kept for every article. You can achieve this by adding the code define( ‘WP_POST_REVISIONS’, 4 ); to your wp-config.php file, which will result in only the last four revisions being kept and older revisions being discarded.

If you’d prefer to use a plugin for post revisions, options are available. A plugin called Revision Control enables you to revert to previous versions if mistakes are made and enables you to decide how many revisions you wish to save so your backend isn’t clogged up with scores of old drafts that you no longer require.

 

21. Stopping hotlinking and leaching of your content

The higher the quality of your content is, the bigger the chances of someone else using it without your permission become. When other site owners choose to serve your images from their URLs on your site rather than uploading them to your servers, they are using your bandwith, without you even being able to enjoy extra traffic as compensation. Add the code below to your .htaccess file to stop others hotlinking your images.

#disable hotlinking of images with forbidden or custom image option
RewriteEngine on
RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER} !^$
RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER} !^http(s)?://(www\.)?ukwebhostreview.com [NC]
RewriteCond %{HTTP_REFERER} !^http(s)?://(www\.)?google.com [NC]
RewriteRule \.(jpg|jpeg|png|gif)$ – [NC,F,L]

You may also be negatively impacted by content scraping websites, which take content from your RSS feed to create their own posts. Fortunately, there are many tutorials online which will help you prevent content scraping from your WordPress site.

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02 Nov 2018

5 Best Drag & Drop Website Builders in 2019

Using the modern technology we have available today, this list of best drag and drop website builders in 2018 will show you how easy it is to create a website. The magic really sits behind how quickly this can be achieved; from blogs to portfolios, business websites to eCommerce stores.

Most drag and drop site builders don’t require any coding knowledge, making them a great source for absolutely anyone. We’ve certainly moved along in time from the days where HTML and CSS is a requirement to create a website!

1. Wix

First on our list (which should tell you a lot already) is Wix’s website builder. When you compare Wix to other drag and drop builders on the market, it really does excel. Whether you’re creating a new business, personal, portfolio, or blog site, it’s quick and easy to achieve with Wix.

There’s a great selection of templates to choose from before you get started. Simply filter by category to find the perfect design to suit your needs! The beauty of this drag and drop website builder is that you can tailor each template to your website or business. If you like the design but don’t like the colour, it’s a simple and quick method to change it.

One of the main selling points of Wix is just how simple and easy to use it is. Whether you’re creating a blog, forum, website, or eCommerce shop, the process is very self explanatory. Simply drag and drop existing or new components onto your web page, and within a matter of hours you can achieve the perfect website.

 

Pros:

• Easy to use drag and drop functionality
• Templates sorted by category so you can find your perfect design
• Ability to switch between desktop and mobile views to ensure your site is mobile friendly
• Affordable pricing and scalability dependent on needs

Cons:

• If you want adverts to be removed, you’ll need to pay a higher price
• Once you’ve selected a template and gone live, you can’t change your selection

 

2. Shopify

Shopify is a versatile eCommerce drag and drop website builder. No matter what type of online store you’re looking to run, Shopify will give you the tools to achieve it. Shopify is designed to integrate with lots of other apps, including your social media channels. It’s drag and drop functionality makes it really simple to create the perfect online shop.

One of the main features that stands out for me is Shopify’s analytics. You can monitor your sales, shipping, customer information, etc. allowing you to monitor every aspect of your website. Handy easy to use graphs are available so you can have an instant overview of how your eCommerce website is performing.

You can even add a blog section to your website to engage your customers. That’s right, it doesn’t just have to be a shop, there’s so much more you can do with Shopify, and that’s why I love it.

 

Pros:

• Tonnes of analytics to monitor website and eCommerce performance
• User friendly UI even if you’ve never created an online shop before
• Plenty of templates and designs to choose from for inspiration
• Easy to integrate with other apps and social media platforms

Cons:

• Can be quite pricey dependent on the plan you choose
• Transaction fees apply on sales

 

3. Squarespace

Squarespace is insanely easy to use, which is why it makes it’s way comfortably into our best drag and drop website builders. Because of how user friendly it is, Squarespace is a popular website builder among users all over the world (including celebrities)! No matter whether your website is a portfolio, blog, eCommerce store, or anything else, you can achieve it with Squarespace.

There are lots of professionally designed templates from you to choose from. Creating a wedding website, online food shop, or showing off your musical talents? It’s all really simple to do with this drag and drop builder. You can quite easily get a website live over the space of a couple of hours – I told you it was easy!

The beauty of Squarespace is that it’s not limited – you can fully customise any template to achieve the perfect design. What’s more, it’s an all-in-one package if you want it to be, offering a domain name, SSL certificate, and more.

 

Pros:

• Exquisite and professional templates
• Mobile responsive approach
• Style Editor gives you full drag and drop customisable control

Cons:

• Pricier than other comparative drag and drop builders
• No separate mobile builder

 

4. Ukit

Russian based Ukit prides itself on it’s drag and drop technology. The beauty of this website builder is that you don’t need to know or understand an ounce of code to build your perfect website. There’s several hundreds of templates to choose from, so you won’t be lost for inspiration – that’s for sure!

Once you’ve created an account, you’ll get to select a domain name and input your business details. Ukit is designed for businesses, so if you’re looking for a personal website, this wouldn’t be our recommended choice. Once you’ve got past the initial stages, your basic web pages will be setup for you (home, about, blog, and contact pages).

The only thing you really need to add is your own content, and you’re good to go! There’s easy to use widgets and blocks that you can drag and drop onto your site, placing things exactly where you want them. In my experience, you can get a website live with Ukit in just a couple of hours.

 

Pros:

• Free 14-day trial giving you premium access
• Stunning templates that rival the likes of Squarespace
• Your business and website will automatically be connected to Google Maps, Google Console and Google Analytics

Cons:

• Weekly-based backups as opposed to daily
• Domain names do not include WHOIS protection

 

5. Weebly

Weebly is a long-standing and professional drag and drop website builder. You can create any type of website with Weebly, whether it be for personal or business reasons. You’ll get to choose the type of style you want for your Weebly website straight away, where it’s technology will take over and do most of the work for you.

Weebly’s drag and drop editor is very intuitive, so if you’ve never used one before, it won’t be a scary experience. Getting a website live doesn’t take much time or effort, so you’ll be able to see your website on the internet in no time at all. There’s lots of templates to choose from, so if you’re not feeling creative, there will be something for you.

What excites me the most about Weebly is it’s mobile app. So, if you’re not at the computer and you need to make some changes on the go, you can! Plus, you’ll get to see your website in mobile view which is a bonus too!

 

Pros:

• Mobile app to access your website builder and make changes on the go
• Intuitive drag and drop software
• No experience required to get your website live the same day

Cons:

• Advanced marketing tools are hard or impossible to get working
• Migration to another CMS platform is very difficult

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04 Aug 2018

Wix VS SquareSpace – 4 Differences to Decide Your Winner

Comparing Wix Vs SquareSpace was certainly an interesting task! If you’re reading this, you’re probably wondering which website builder is best for you. Well, it’s a good job you’ve arrived! Website builders generally do have similar features to equip you with the tools to make your perfect website.

However, there are also many difference between them, setting one platform apart from the other.

They’re two of the biggest names in the industry, both boasting individual features that set them apart. I’ve signed up and used both Wix and Squarespace in order to give you an accurate representation of each website builder.

 

1. Responsive Design

User experience is something which cannot be ignored (and shouldn’t). 87% of consumers own and use a mobile device. It’s estimated that 6.1 billion people will be using a smartphone by the year 2020! According to IMPACT, nearly 60% of mobile users would not recommend a business with a poor mobile site.

An important thing to do when creating your website is to test it. If you don’t, how will you know what it looks like to your users? There are various different tools you can use, like Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test which will determine how well your website works on a mobile device. One of my favourite tools is Browser Stack which allows you to test over 2000 devices and browsers.

When designing a website using a website builder, I expect to be equipped with a mobile ready site. I experimented with Wix and Squarespace’s tools and features to see how easy it would be to design a mobile a website. Let’s take a look at the results!

 

Wix

Wix has loads of beautifully designed templates to choose from. However, they don’t provide exclusive responsive templates. That’s not to say that their templates aren’t mobile ready, because most of them do appear to be.

 

 

It’s great if you’re simply looking to make a few changes to an existing template! But, if you want to add/remove features like blogs and forums, things get a little more tricky. Wix has a mobile interface editor which allows you to view a mobile version of your website and edit content as you please. The issue is that this can cause the process of creating a website to take a lot longer than other website builders.

 

 

If you’ve got the time though, Wix’s mobile editor is actually very powerful. There’s lots of advanced tools allowing you to create a mobile version of your website that’s either the same or entirely different to your desktop version. In my opinion this offers a lot more flexibility and control over how your mobile visitors view your website.

 

Squarespace

On the flip side, Squarespace’s templates are all mobile responsive. They can be used on desktops, laptops, tablets, and mobiles, with absolutely no effort or changes required. Their templates look absolutely effortless and I for sure love them!

 

 

Because all of Squarespace’s templates are designed by professionals, there’s a level of guarantee that other website builders don’t offer. If you’re not sure how your website will look, you can easily view it on a selection of devices and test it’s responsiveness in front of your own eyes.

 

 

SquareSpace has a built-in responsive designer. When you create content, images, etc. it will resize where appropriate to fit a range of devices. This means you won’t have to put in too much effort in order to ensure your visitors are getting the best experience. You won’t have to create multiple versions of your website, because SquareSpace’s intuitive responsive design does this for you.

It can be quite common for some content not to look great, and that’s down to the content you’re using. Instead of leaving you in the dark, SquareSpace helps it’s customers to resolve these common issues. When banners are cropping or images are distorted, SquareSpace explain how responsive design works. This helps to understand how you can choose the right content to ensure your website looks fantastic.

 

2. Features

When you’re paying for a website builder, you want to be reassured that you’re getting the most for your money. I certainly do anyway! Features are of course dependent on what your own needs are, but it’s also possible to make a general assumption as to which builder offers more.

 

Wix

If you’re a complete beginner to building websites, Wix is a great choice. You can build websites, blogs, forums, and more, all with a few clicks. It’s not possible to list every feature that Wix offers, so I’m going to break down the main ones here:

 

 

  • App Market: Whether you’re looking for a form builder or newsletter signup, the app market has it all. Apps unfortunately aren’t free, so you’ll need to pay a price on top of the standard Wix fee.
  • eCommerce: You can build an online store within minutes! Wix’s store manager allows you to organise and filter products into collections, as well as creating options for sizes, colours, etc.
  • Blog: It’s super easy to integrate a blog into your website. You can manage posts, social media, and comments all in one place.
  • Forums: Does your website have a need for a forum? Sure it does! It’s simple to add a forum to your website where users can interact with each other and post thoughts/ideas.

Many website builders use elements. Elements can describe a range of items like images, shapes, videos, etc. Wix has an insanely large collection of elements for you to use. Anything you could possibly need for your website is available (with even more added on top).

In my personal opinion, I love the amount of choice Wix offers. However, I can understand that too much choice can also be a problem. Users don’t like to feel overwhelmed, but I don’t think that’s the case with Wix’s elements. There’s so much to choose from but I don’t feel they’ve gone overboard.

Some of Wix’s elements don’t feel that intuitive. Sometimes it comes across like they’ve given lots of choice but haven’t thought about how each element interacts, or where to find it. But Wix is extremely flexible; whether you’re looking for shapes, icons, navigation, buttons, etc. you’ll be able to find something that suits your needs.

 

Squarespace

Squarespace offers very similar features to Wix, bar the app market. What I feel sets Squarespace aside though is their advanced approach to existing tools and features. Don’t get me wrong, Squarespace is really user-friendly, but I feel it offers more to those who aren’t just beginners:

 

 

  • Import/Export: As well as creating your own blog with Squarespace, you can import content. That’s right, if you have WordPress, Blogger, Tumblr, etc. you can bring your content over to your site.
  • App management: If you need to make any changes to your Squarespace site on the go, there are iOS and Android apps to access your account.
  • Developer platform: Confident with code? Squarespace allows you to change any code on your website so you’re not stuck with your template looking the same as everyone elses.
  • Access levels: Having a team of people manage your website can be useful. Especially if you’re running an eCommerce store. Squarespace gives you the option to manage multiple contributors with different access levels.

 

SquareSpace has a gigantic array of features. Like Wix, they also use elements to assist users in building and designing their website. SquareSpace appear to think outside the box, offering their customers solutions to annoying problems like restaurant menus. When you create a menu using a website builder, you’re restricted to size and things can get a bit tricky.

SquareSpace have created their own coding language which ensures the likes of restaurant menus are no longer an issue! It may seem like a minor problem, but I for sure would choose a website builder that offered solutions like this.

 

3. Customer Support

Whether you’re hosting a website or building one, customer support is incredibly important. Although many website builders are intuitive and offer helpful hints and tips, there’s always going to be occasions where you require additional support.

Customer service (for me) takes into consideration a few elements. In my opinion, great customer service offers the following:

  • A variety of contact methods
  • Instant support available (like live chat)
  • Quick response times
  • Helpful customer support agents

In my experience, both Wix and Squarespace have offered outstanding support. In fairness I’ve never really needed to contact them, but as a test I did. I wanted to see if they ticked the boxes in terms of customer support.

 

Wix

Wix’s help center is divided into categories in order to provide quick navigation. Categories include getting started, billing, mailboxes, domains, and lots lots more. They have a trending topics section too, where you may find the answer to your question.

If you want general help and advice, Wix points it’s users to it’s help center. If for some reason you can’t find the answer there, you can open a support ticket. Their support tickets get answered in a very reasonable time frame (in my experience), but don’t provide instant support.

 

Highlights of Wix’s customer support include:

  • Every element in Wix has an icon you can click to learn more
  • Large help center
  • Videos and how-to articles
  • Ticket support
  • Phone support (Mon-Fri 5am-5pm PST)

 

Squarespace

SquareSpace’s knowledge base provides a similar feel to Wix’s help center. There are plenty of categories to find answers to burning questions you may have. My favourite thing about SquareSpace’s support is their popular guides. They offer advice on some key features that your website may need, like how to increase SEO.

They have step by step tutorials, video guides, and related articles to ensure you receive the best advice possible. They also provide a community forum where you can chat to other members who may be able to help you further.

If you’re still stuck, you can contact SquareSpace by choosing the relevant option on their contact us page. They’ll provide potential solutions to your chosen topic, or you can contact them via email or live chat.

Highlights of SquareSpace’s customer support include:

  • Tutorials
  • Workshops held in New York office
  • Wide knowledge-base and guides
  • Forum
  • Email support
  • Live chat support

 

4. Pricing

Both website builders offer a range of pricing plans catering to different requirements. Wix has 5 plans and Squarespace has 2 plans for website users and 2 plans for eCommerce users. It’s hard to directly compare all of the prices available as they differ so much, so I’ve tried to outline some key elements for you:

  Wix Squarespace
Pricing Connect (£3/month)

Combo (£6/month)

Unlimited (£8.50/month)

eCommerce (£11/month)

VIP (£16/month)

Personal (£10/month)

Business (£15/month)

Basic (£20/month)

Advanced (£30/month)

 Free Plan Brand ads on Free No free option
 Domains 1-year domain on Combo+ Free domain on all plans
 SSL SSL licence additional Free SSL licence
 eCommerce Online store on eCommerce+ Online store on Business+
 Marketing $75 ad vouchers on Combo+ $100 AdWords on Business

 

Wix

Overall, Wix’s plans are cheaper than Squarespace’s. If price is all you’re worried about, Wix would seem like the sensible option. You can choose Wix’s free plan, but you’ll have a Wix branded advert displayed on your website at all times.

 

 

You’ll also have a Wix domain e.g. (mywebsite.wix.com) which in my opinion doesn’t look very professional. If you’re willing to pay for your website, Wix offers tiered pricing to suit all users, from beginners to experts, blogs to online stores.

 

SquareSpace

Squarespace is more on the pricey side and they don’t offer a free plan. If you want to try their services, you can opt into their 14 day free trial.

If you know what you want from your website builder, Squarespace offers more features than most I’ve seen, so their hefty price tag really does seem worth it. If you’ve never used a website builder before and want a more professional look, give Squarespace a go for free to start off with.

 

Conclusion

To be honest Wix winds hands down. I’ve used it for many sites over the past few years and it’s my “go to” website builder.

Wix is a great platform if you’ve never created a website before. It’s also pretty handy if you want to edit the entire content of your site including it’s positioning on desktop and mobile. Wix’s ease of use makes it a perfect choice if you’re not too fussed about having every feature available to you.

You’ll honestly have a different experience with both website builders; neither of them are sub-standard to the other. They have both positioned themselves well in their market, providing the tools and resources to build a professional website from scratch at their reflected prices.

Visit Wix.com

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