If you’ve had your website for any length of time, or you’re making your first DIY WordPress website, you’re probably tempted to start tinkering with the code to make changes. Does the phrase sound familiar to you? “I can just copy and paste code! I don’t need to hire a web designer!” Yeah, it’s a phrase we hear a lot around the Internet! While we love good ol’ DIY web design, as professional web designers and developers we know the dangers of Googling code.(HINT: Stuff breaks.)Whether you’ve completely DIY’d your website or you’ve got a web designer who can’t keep up with you – it’s normal to want to dive deeper into code. Before you do that, here are the 8 must-know tips before you copy and paste your way through WordPress code.
Before You Design A Website: Have A Backup Of Your Website
Any good code-lovin’ fool will tell you that it’s important to have a backup of the site before you make any changes to a site. Website backups are like your homeowner’s insurance. It may be an annoying step to take if you never have an issue, but you’ll thank yourself later when you do need it.
Not sure how to backup your website? No problem! Most hosting providers will backup your site when requested. You can also request automatic, regularly occurring backups of your site even if you’re not modifying the code. It’s just a great extra precaution to take.
Have FTP Access Before You Have An Error
I can’t stress this tip enough. If there’s an error in the code you’re using, there is a very real chance of causing harm to your site. When you take your site down, you’ll need a way to get back in to revert the changes you make (aka, delete that code!). But if you’ve taken your site down, you can’t get back into the WordPress Editor to revert the changes.
So how do you get in? That’s where having FTP access comes in. Since you’ve already made a backup of your website, you can use FTP access to put up that backup and fix your site.
Dear DIY Web Designers: Please Stick To Safe Languages
It’s no coincidence that these languages are used so heavily in website builders like Squarespace and Wix. They tend to require less time and experience to manipulate. And before you turn keyboard warrior on us – we said that in the nicest way possible! We also started coding on HTML and CSS back when flash was still cool. They’re THE intro languages.
Don’t be fooled by where you’re touching the code. Making changes in the WordPress dashboard vs off your WordPress website puts you at more risk. When you work directly in the WordPress Editor or Customize section, the changes go live immediately. That’s why WordPress added that pesky popup to warn you before you use the Editor.
Install Your WordPress Child Theme
If you’re familiar with WordPress, you may recognize the terms child-theme and parent-theme. For those of you who aren’t aware, a WordPress theme is typically downloaded as a zip file. Inside the zip file are a parent-theme and a child-theme. You’ll install both on your website but only activate the child-theme.
Why? The parent holds all your WordPress theme’s important information. Occasionally theme creators update their themes and let you know it’s time to update yours. The child-theme will inherit all the functionality of the parent-theme, while protecting your changes when it comes time to update the theme. If you made edits to the parent theme, then updated that theme, all those changes would get overwritten. Nothing sucks more than putting in the time to customize your theme and watching seeing all that work completely erased.
Validate The Code Source Before You Copy/Paste
I’ll be the first to say it – some people suck at their jobs and others had a bad sense of humor. Keep that in mind when you’re looking for code to copy and paste. Before you CTRL + V, make sure you look at the source and ask yourself:
Is it a source you consider trustworthy? Some people just want to cause havoc! If the code is from W3School, WordPress, or a page builder like Visual Composer or DIVI – it’s probably safe. If it’s from Carl’s Code Blog – beware.
Is it relatively new? While WordPress does try to make code compatible for an extended period of time, if you’re copying code from 10 years ago it might not work. We coders like to evolve every decade or so.
Is this code going to cause a security issue?
The good news is that 9.9/10 times it won’t! If the code is going to be modifying something with login credentials, payment gateways, payment processors, or other confidential information then verify it and research the outcome before you use it. You don’t want some pimply teen his parent’s basement to get your customer’s information and credit card numbers. (He’ll probably sell it to his crush for a date to prom.)
If the code meets these qualifications, then it’s probably safe to use. If you’re not sure, do a little more research before you put it inside your site.
Be Careful Using PHP If You’re Not A Web Developer
This is not a diss to your coding or Googling skills – this is a warning made straight from our *experienced* hearts. Remember when we said all languages are not created equal? PHP is one of those languages that’s a little more advanced. Add the wrong line of PHP and you will take your site down.
Not sure what’s what? A good indicator to look out for is anything in your line of code that says “<?php”. There’s a few other things you need to look out for, but we don’t want to bore you! We packaged some of the most common PHP mistakes that will break your site in a short, free download. Grab it by clicking below.
This is an actual must-know tip before you DIY web design. If you’re DIYing, chances are you WILL break your site at some point. Don’t worry, even the pros have broken a website at some point.
When this happens to you, if you don’t have a web developer or FTP access, the first thing you need to do is contact your hosting provider and let them know your site’s down. They won’t judge you for it! They’re used to hearing it. While you have them on the phone, calmly tell them what theme and what file you edited. They should be able to get you squared away. If not, contact a web developer you trust.
Ask Our WordPress Developer Community
Ok, maybe it’s not ours per se but we’re in there! The WordPress developer community is very helpful, partially because WordPress is an open-source CMS. And like we said before, we’re all used to screwing up when we first learn code. So we don’t mind helping other people that may just be starting out.
If you only walk away from this article with one actual tip – let it be that when in doubt – stop, verify, and ask someone else before you copy and paste a line of code on your site. The extra steps may be more work for you now but they’ll save you from definitely having to hire a web developer to fix your site later.
The latest Facebook apocalypse has come and gone. Since then, our inbox, Newsfeeds, and phones have been flooded with business owners panicking over their Business Pages.
What’s the hype about? On January 11, 2018, Facebook announced it’s new strategy to bring people closer together by prioritizing “posts that spark conversations and meaningful interactions between people.” This was a nice way of saying individual users would be seeing less organic content by brands and more posts by their friends and family.
Cue a dramatic gasp from millions of brands and businesses over the world. It happened. Five minutes later the panic really sunk in and people started voicing their concerns everywhere.
Is Facebook marketing dead for business?
Not at all. In fact, Facebook’s strategy shift won’t mean much to brands that are already using good social media marketing practices. Brands that are focusing on engagement over numbers are going to thrive during these changes.
Businesses that have been using the platform as a pitching ground may not be as lucky. If your social strategy was struggling before, you may see a dip in organic reach. Don’t worry. The great thing about social media is that you can change your strategy overnight. You can bounce back from this. If you’re wondering how, we’re here to help.
FUSED Social Media Marketing To The Rescue
During the panic, we heard a lot of fear from our friends and fellow Facebook group members. While they fretted over the Facebook algorithm changes, our Chief Marketing Nerd was actually excited about the news. (She’s a little weird, we know!) She heard the outcry and decided to officially pre-launch our second Facebook Business Page, the FUSED cast, the day after the platform’s supposed doomsday.
This Page is fully dedicated to helping entrepreneurs create business and marketing strategies they can feel good about. We put education first and proved it from our very first post. What was that post? A Live video outlining 3 ways to stay in your customer’s newsfeed. And our audience showed up, took notes, and started making changes that day.
Are you looking for social media strategies to survive the algorithm wars? Check out the video and let us know which of these strategies your business is using to thrive on Facebook.
3 Ways Business Can Survive The Facebook Algorithm Changes
Website content, or copy, is one of the most important elements of your site. Great copy can make or break a sale, so you have to get it right. (If only it was that simple!) We know writing compelling copy doesn’t come easily to everyone. So for those of you who are stuck on what to write on your website, this one’s for you.
These are the four golden rules of writing website content that sells.
Digestible content is king
The first golden rule to writing website content that sells is to break it down into bite-sized chunks, or digestible content. Digestible content isn’t about what’s on your dinner plate. It’s about how you structure the content on your website to look approachable. In other words, write so your visitors can quickly read, digest what you’re saying, and move on to the next step or topic without feeling overwhelmed by one long block of text.
We like to do this by grouping similar information into sections with different headings and backgrounds. Try to avoid talking about multiple services or products at once. Think of it as the difference between an entire school paper being written in one long paragraph or broken up by headings, paragraphs, and even pages. When you write for a website, it’s very similar to your papers. The dissection of information into visibly different sections gives the illusion of it being less overwhelming to read, even if it’s the same amount of content.
The less overwhelming your content looks, the more likely your visitors are to read it.
Be concise, not confusing
Have you ever tried to follow one of those disclaimers at the end of a radio or TV commercial for new cars? There’s always a quick-talking man or woman who manages to fit all the finer legal details into the span of a few seconds. Their ability to talk quickly may be impressive but at the end of the commercial, we’re left more overwhelmed by information overload than intrigued.
The same goes for your website.
The second golden rule to writing web content that sells is to be concise, not confusing. The more verbiage you use, the more someone has to dissect your copy to determine if they want to buy.
It’s fluff. It’s word overwhelm. It’s time-consuming. And the bottom line is – it’s work. Internet users do not like to do extra work, and they certainly don’t want to feel overwhelmed during the buying process. Fluffy content has no seat at the Internet sales table.
Remember the first golden rule to divide your content into digestible chunks? Well if you want to make more sales online, write less in those chunks. Be more to the point. Don’t say something in 20 words that you could say in 5.
To show we take our own advice, we’ll just leave it at that.
Your website’s not about you
It may seem strange that the website which represents your business isn’t about you, but hear me out for a minute! Who’s going to be shelling out money to buy the products or services you offer, us (the customer) or you (the website owner)?
We are. And not to be mean but we care more about ourselves than we care about you. So when we browse your site, paint us the picture of what our lives will be like with you in it. If you want to highlight your best features, let your customer testimonial do the talking.
Don’t worry! You still have your About page and plenty of other chances to show us who you are.
Be irresistible, not in your face
This one’s simple – we hate being sold to. A general rule about people is that we don’t like pushy sales situations. We like to imagine we’re making up our own minds about how to spend our money.
A great example of this in the real world is the car industry. Many of us associate car dealerships with salesmen and women who swoop in the moment we park, ready to sell us on the most expensive car on the lot. Does that always happen? No, but we still imagine it will because we knew someone who experienced that or we saw it in a movie.
Websites are no different.
When you start writing the content for your site, keep in mind that the point is to be irresistible, not in your face. Internet users are a cynical bunch. We expect company websites to try to sell us on their products and services. As soon as we see ego-boosting content, sales content, or popups interrupting our experience – we’re lost. So hit them in a way they don’t expect. Be irresistible. Talk about what they’re going through, make your customers the hero, or hit them with free knowledge bombs that leave them wanting more. (You can use the tips you learned in the previous rule to guide you!)
First impressions matter
Whether you choose to write your own copy or rely on a professional, don’t take your content lightly. Your website is your biggest marketing asset and often the first time someone is introduced to your company. First impressions matter, so make the words you choose to represent your brand leave an impression that sparks a sale.
It’s so easy to get caught up in how good your web design looks because how it looks has a big influence on if it will sell well. That’s not the only factor that matters. In fact, there are some key supporting design elements that are just as important to include on your website homepage if you want to increase your chances of selling more.
The best part? Most of these elements are easy to add to your existing homepage. So let’s start from the top.
Keep Your Website Navigation Simple
Have you ever walked into a store to look for one item, only to get bombarded with too many options and unsure which to get? Have you ever walked out without buying anything? I have. Website visitors do the same thing.
Website overwhelm is real – real detrimental to sales, that is. When new people visit your site, they don’t want to search or guess which menu option is the right one. The key is to keep it simple.
Keep your main menu options limited and easily recognizable. Don’t have options like “FUSED’s Culinary Creations Directory” when “Recipes” says it all.
Structure Your Website Homepage Content To Make More Sales
From the moment someone lands on your homepage, you are being judged. That’s right! People decide if you’re worthy of their time and money in the first few seconds after they land on your website (even if it hasn’t fully loaded the content yet).
If you’re going to be judged that quickly, you need to have a strong content-design structure in place to catch the visitor’s attention and pull them in to scroll further down the page or further into your website.
There are many ways people do this, but our favorite is to think like a total stranger. If you landed on your own site for the first time, would the above-the-fold content pull you in? (Above-the-fold is everything you can see on the screen when you first land on a web page.)
If it did, what would be the next thing you want to see or know? Is it something right there or did you have to root around the page or website to find it? Arrange your content from top to bottom in a logical order. You can always test this on willing friends, family members, and clients.
Put Your Contact Information On Your Website (everywhere)
Some things are too good not to repeat, your contact information is one of them. No need to go overboard but having your contact details in multiple areas on your homepage increases your chance of sales on a website or landing page.
According to statistics, once they land on a homepage, 64% of web visitors want to see a company’s contact information. That’s over half the web traffic that wants to be able to contact you! Give the people what they ask for!
We recommend adding a few tasteful different ways to contact you. Get creative with the “how” to get in touch by using methods like your phone number above your menu or even a “Chat Now” floating icon. The easier it is for people to make contact with you, the more they will do it.
Use CTAs Wisely Throughout Your Website
Calls To Action, or CTAs, are arguably one of the most powerful methods of converting visitors to sales you could have on your website. A CTA is essential for you to directly tell your web visitor what action you want them to take. Seems pretty straightforward, right?
Yes, but like most methods of communication, there’s an art to it.
A great CTA, one with the right placement, personalization, and preface, can increase leads and sales by several hundred percent. (That’s not a typo! Hubspot reported a conversion increase of 121% when they implemented CTAs.)
What makes a great CTA? We’re working on a special project to help you create the perfect CTA to make more sales but we do have one tip we can share that will make a huge impact on your sales today.
That tip? There’s a “know, like, trust” factor that needs to be there before you can start asking for a sale with a CTA. Treat your homepage like an in-person relationship. You wouldn’t walk up to someone on the street and ask them to buy your product before they even knew who you are or what you sell, right? The same goes for your website homepage. We recommend including a CTA that leads to a free product or more information about what you want to sell. From there, you can quickly build the know, like, trust you need to turn a visitor into a repeat customer.
The Shameless FUSED Disclosure
In true FUSED fashion, we can’t end this article without telling you that cold-hard truth. Hundreds of factors can make or break your ability to convert visitors into sales on your homepage. These are just four easy-to-implement tips that are proven to provide results. The list doesn’t stop here, though!
That’s why we’re handing the keyboard over to you. We want to know what tactic you’re using to convert visitors to sales on your homepage.
There’s no denying the power a great website can have for business. It’s become essential that every company have one, and not just any ol’ website – it needs to be unique, branded, search engine optimized, and tailored to convert your ideal customer.
The real problem with websites is that there are dozens of platforms available to design and develop your site on. Even though WordPress is our development platform of choice, we’re open minded enough to realize that it’s not everyone’s top pick. Some people want to create their site on one of the many website builders available. So in the interest of playing fair, we dove in and did a side-by-side comparison of two of the most popular website builders – Wix and Squarespace.
Why compare Wix and Squarespace?
Wix and Squarespace are often compared to each other because they’re both considered easy to use, they’re both website builders, and they both charge monthly subscription-based hosting fees for similar services. Website builders allow customers to build a website with no manual code editing. (Think drag and drop online web design.) From the outside, it may seem like their only difference is in price (and name) but when broken down, there’s a lot differentiating these two from each other and the competition.
Website Design & Site Builders Matter
When choosing the right platform to create your site on, the question of “how to create a website” on the platform is one of the most important determining factors you should consider. Do you already have an idea of what you want your site to look like? Can you create it yourself or do you need to hire a professional? What functionality do you need to create your ideal website? (We’ll dive more into functionality options in the next section, but it’s good to have it in mind now.) Here’s how Wix and Squarespace website builders stack up.
The Website Builders
Both Wix and Squarespace offer drag-and-drop website design editors and pre-made themes (or templates). Once you sign up for either service, you’ll be prompted to choose one of their themes as the basis for your own site. You’ll use the editor to plug your own content into the theme to replace any temporary content that comes built into it. Unfortunately, this is where their similarities end.
Wix’s website says they have over 500 pre-designed themes to choose from whereas Squarespace has only 40 or so themes to choose from. This drastic difference may be because Wix only allows its users to access the drag-and-drop editor, so you’ll appreciate a larger variety of options to choose from. Wix’s “no code” web design style could be a good thing if the thought of using HTML, CSS or any code to edit your site has you running, but it also limits you to only the functionality the Wix Editor and market already have built into them.
Squarespace offers a drag-and-drop editor and the ability to customize the HTML and CSS on most of the themes. This means you can create a unique website but you need to know HTML/CSS or hire a Squarespace designer to do it for you. (Again, you do not have to customize the HTML/CSS to design your site on Squarespace, it’s just an additional option.)
We’ve also been told from past clients and the Interwebs, that Wix’s editor is a bit easier and quicker to pick up than Squarespace. This is a completely opinion-based statement, so take it with a grain of salt and don’t let that put you off from a potentially more functional platform.
Like we said before, Wix offers over 500 pre-designed themes to choose from and Squarespace offers a little over 40. How professional or amazing the themes are is based on opinion, so we won’t get into that here. We will mention that with Wix themes, what you see is mostly what you get. There is some more functionality offered through apps on their Wix App Marketplace, but the design of the theme will remain all but unchanged once you put your content in. Squarespace offers fewer themes, but they also offer HTML and CSS customization.
The biggest difference when comparing Wix and Squarespace designs come when you want to change your theme. Wix’s website states that once you choose your theme, it is not possible to change to another theme. If you no longer want that design, you must make a new website (including a new Wix domain) and start from scratch.
Squarespace is less cut and dry. They do offer the ability to change your theme at any time, but they also warn users that doing so may break image links and content because the two themes may not line up the same. This is common enough with any platform you choose to create a website on, but don’t be too surprised if you need to do more fiddling on your site once you switch themes.
Both Wix and Squarespace themes are inherently mobile-friendly and both websites suggest you check your mobile site on multiple devices, just in case. Wix offers an additional feature, however, which allows you to fully customize (via drag-and-drop) how your mobile site looks in their Wix Mobile Editor. That gives you more control of the end design and a way to change thing up if something doesn’t look as stunning in the mobile mode as it does in desktop mode.
The ease of website building editors are important, but sometimes pre-designed themes don’t offer all the functionality you want your site to have. Examples of additional functionality may be as simple as connecting your website to an email marketing service (like MailChimp or Convertkit) or creating membership-level access to your content. E-commerce is another important functionality to consider, but we’ll talk more in depth about that in the next section.
Plugins & Apps
Plugins and Apps allow you to have extra functionality or third-party services on your site without having to do much if any, coding. Wix offers an App Market on their website where you can browse apps by category or type in the specific feature or service you’re looking for. Many apps in the App Market are developed by the Wix team and are subject to be created, supported or canceled at Wix’s discretion. Any third-party created apps are assumed to be supported by the companies that created them. Most apps are free to add to your site but some require you to be a Wix premium member (paid) and others may require you to pay for a membership or subscription to a third-party service.
Squarespace doesn’t have a marketplace on their main website. They have what they call “Squarespace Integrations” (a.k.a. plugins) built into the editing platform. These integrations allow you to add extended functionality and third-party services to your website. Plugins are developed by Squarespace and by outside companies, but only plugins developed by Squarespace are supported by their customer service. Outside companies are responsible for supporting their plugins at their own discretion (often at an additional fee).
Forums & Live Chat Features
Many companies or websites find it vital to have Live Chat support capabilities or at least an area where users can interact with each other in a forum. Often times, website visitors look for these features when comparing you to the competition. So, how do the site builders meet these needs?
Wix has both forum building apps and live chat apps in their App Market. You can add the apps to your site and customize them in the drag-and-drop editor. There is instructional documentation on their support site to help you.
Squarespace also has several third-party live chat integrations to choose, some developed by them and some from outside companies. They don’t inherently have a forums feature, though. According to Squarespace Quora threads, many users have been able to work around the lack of forum plugins by creating a site outside of Squarespace with a forum and linking back to it on within their Squarespace site. A better understanding of website programming and customization is needed to add this functionality and may require the assistance of a professional developer. From what we hear, it’s messy but doable.
Memberships and Subscription-Based Websites
Membership websites are on the rise. There are memberships and subscriptions for virtually anything you can think of, from business coaching to personal training to digital marketing strategies. If you’re looking into Wix or Squarespace for membership or subscription capabilities – read this first.
Wix allows its users to create member pages, where the content is only accessible to users who sign up to be a “Site Member”. Website owners can approve, remove, or automate managing Site Member sign ups. That being said, if you want to charge a subscription fee for membership, you’re out of luck. Wix does not support subscription fees being charged. Their suggestion on how to get around this is to offer a PayPal button to Site Members before their membership is approved. Sounds kind of the same, but this method creates several extra steps for website owners and forces you to use PayPal, as opposed the other payment processing services available.
Squarespace refers to memberships and subscription-based services as “recurring payments”. They don’t offer built-in options for recurring payments, but their customization features allow you to tap into third-party services that will integrate to Squarespace and handle all the subscription levels and payment processing. Some of the most popular sites used are MoonClerk, MemberSpace, and Gumroad. From what we read, integration is fairly easy and professional Squarespace designers can be hired to set up your membership pages and subscription levels.
Wix and Squarespace eCommerce Websites
Easy web design is nice, but if your goal is to create an eCommerce website – the most simplistic editing in the world won’t replace the ability to have an actual shop. The good news is, both Wix and Squarespace offer online shop features and templates. Each comes with their own features and limitations, so we broke down the pros and cons for each platform.
Shop Editor & Templates
Both site builders allow you to choose from having an online shop-only template or a regular template with a store page added to it.
Wix allows you to have a shop unique to your site or connect to an Etsy shop. Currently, these are the only two shop options available through Wix. Both eCommerce options are managed through the editor or Wix Stores editor. The Wix Store checkout process is secured by HTTPS / TSL encryption (Transport Layer Security).
Squarespace refers to their eCommerce shops as “Commerce”. It doesn’t allow automated connection to an Etsy shop, Amazon shop or any other online shop that we found. They offer several automation options, data insights, SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) certificates, and other options that may be useful for online shop owners.
Payment Processing Services
A smooth checkout process and trusted cart service is key to a successful online shop. Both Wix and Squarespace obviously kept this in mind and came up with different solutions for their shop owners. Wix Stores gives the owner a choice of 12 payment processing services. Some of the most notable are Stripe, PayPal, and Square. Squarespace offers integration with Stripe, PayPal, and ApplePay. Both platforms accept all major credit cards and are subject to payment processing fees, determined by the service you choose.
Importing and Exporting Your Site (How to move to or away from Wix and Squarespace)
We should supersede this section with a disclaimer – no switch from one CMS, website builder or any other website platform to another is guaranteed to be seamless. When you’re going from one type of platform to another, you should expect some level of incompatibility, a lot of time and energy, and even some data loss. We’re not trying to imply that only Wix and Squarespace are susceptible to the issues discussed below, we’re just letting you know what to expect if you want to move your website to or away from Wix and Squarespace.
Importing data to a website may be as easy as uploading a .XML file or image, to as complicated as moving an entire website (database and design) to another website. It goes right along with the ability to backup, export, or download content from your website for those “just in case” scenarios. It’s also very handy when you want to move away from that domain or platform completely. We looked into both Wix and Squarespace to see what they had to say on both these capabilities.
According to Wix’s main site, “Your Wix site and all of its content is hosted exclusively on Wix’s servers, and cannot be transferred elsewhere.” The company goes on to explain that “specifically, it is not possible to export or embed files, pages or sites, created using the Wix Editor or ADI, to another external destination or host.”
This is a significant point and we want you to fully understand what it means. What Wix is saying, is that once you create your site on Wix’s servers, you will have no option to remove it, as is, from their servers without manually copying each word and pasting it into another platform or site. Images? Make sure you keep all your original images because those won’t copy over, either. You’ll have to start completely from scratch and either invest the time necessary to convert your site or hire a professional web developer to do the work for you. This issue also applies to people only looking to change their Wix domain name.
Customer support can be an important resource when something goes wrong so you want to make sure whatever website platform you choose has a solid support system in play. (If you don’t plan on hiring a professional web developer who can step in as customer support, this is more important for you).
Both Wix and Squarespace offer multiple ways to get in touch with their customer support representatives, have online documentation on many or all aspects of their services, and offer online video tutorials to walk you through creating your site on their platform. Wix offers an online help center with popular topic solutions and a ticket submission option. Their technicians will receive the ticket and call you during option hours, which are Monday through Thursday, 6 AM to 5 PM PST. Squarespace offers their customers 24/7 email support or live chat support during operation hours (Monday through Friday, 3 AM to 8 PM EST).
Squarespace Pricing vs Wix Pricing
On top of site design methods, functions capability and customer support – pricing is pretty important. You don’t want to get trapped in a money-suck and realize not only can you not easily move your content – you may not be able to move it at all. Wix and Squarespace are comparable in price, but there are some minor differences that should be noted. We’ll also include some helpful charts below with the breakdowns.
Wix offers pricing plans with varying features for each. You can have a forever free website, listed as a subdomain on the Wix site (for example, www.fused.wix.com), or a paid hosting option that ranges from $4/month for a two-year plan to $30/month for a month-to-month pricing plan. Two important aspects to point out are that the forever free website will have ads and branding from Wix and that online store capabilities don’t begin until the $15/month price range. All paid domains on Wix will also incur a $14.95-$15.95 yearly renewal fee.
Squarespace offers four pricing plans from $12/month to $40/month, billed annually ($16/month to $46/month when going month-to-month). Ecommerce sites start at $18/month. All domains purchased through Squarespace will also incur a $20 yearly renewal fee. Squarespace does not offer a free plan option.
Conclusion: Is Squarespace or Wix Better for Business Websites?
While there are several pros and cons to choosing Wix or Squarespace as your website builder, the choice ultimately comes down to which one has the design and functionality you want for your website.
Your website is the single most powerful marketing tool for your business and it’s a big decision which you choose.We can’t make that decision for you though, and even if we could offer an easy solution – we’d be biased. We’re professional web developers who a) charge for our services and b) specialize in a variety of languages and CMS’s outside of the website builders here. (WordPress forever!) We could tell you all about the benefits of WordPress and how Wix and Squarespace match up to WordPress, but that’s another topic for another day that won’t help you decide between these two website builders.
So, if you want our professional opinion – here’s the best we’ve got.
If you absolutely never want to touch code, you’re only trying to create a simple blog, never want to hire a professional web developer, and don’t foresee needing extra functionality or a more sophisticated website/shop – go with Wix.
If you plan on this being a starter website/shop, a simple blog, want the option to hire a professional designer, or expect growth to force you into needing a more sophisticated shop or functionality down the roach – go with Squarespace.
To the hands-on entrepreneurs and bloggers wearing every hat in your business – we salute you. Running a business is hard work and adding social media marketing to the mix often ends in what we call social overwhelm.If you’re feeling social overwhelm, you’re not alone! Thousands of business owners have been there, including us. You may feel like you need to be everywhere online, do everything perfectly, and have a million followers right out the gate. Pressure, much?The good news is that we have a few suggestions to help you run your social media management a little smoother – and you can start making these changes today.
A Picture Says A Thousand Words On Instagram
Powerful, vivid images are what makes people slow their scroll on social media. We’re attracted to cool places, vibrant colors, and inspiring messages that resonate with us. Have a great image? That will catch your audience’s attention long before your description on platforms like Instagram or Facebook. Some of the most successful Instagram accounts have very little verbiage to accompany their photos. This doesn’t mean every image has to be perfect or that every post needs to be concise – it’s all about balance. If you’ve got a picture that can speak for itself – let it! Take that extra time to relax or move on to more important agenda items, like coffee.
Use Helpful Social Media All-In-One Apps
There’s a smartphone app for everything nowadays, and many in the social media market are designed to make your life easier. Apps like HootSuite, Buffer, and Tailwind allow you to access and schedule to your social media accounts, across different platforms, using one app. These companies even allow you to pre-schedule your content based on the best day and time to attract your audience. (Thank you!) This set-it-and-forget-it method is great and a huge time-saver!
Be forewarned, pre-scheduling won’t do you much good if you don’t also engage with your audience. Try putting a little reminder on your phone each day to show up and engage. Your followers will appreciate it and you’ll still have time for Netflix.
Social Media Crowdsourcing Is Your Friend
When we say crowdsourcing, we’re not referring to fundraising. We’re talking about sharing images your customers have posted with your product or service highlighted or in use. Those candid shots of real people interacting with your brand are amazing marketing content and a type of word-of-mouth validation that goes a long way.
Just note, you don’t need to pay for this content and you should never repost someone else’s photos without their permission. Respectfully contact the person in the comments or on a direct message (DM) and ask if you can share their photo and account with to your audience. Let your customers do the work sometimes and you may even increase their loyalty toward your brand.
Limit Your Social Media Platforms
You can’t be everywhere and do everything in real life, so why pressure yourself to do so on social media? You’re busy running your business, so it’s especially important to use your time on social media efficiently. Don’t fall into the trap of trying to show up on all the “hottest” platforms. You’ll wear yourself out, produce lackluster content, and your page will suffer.
The biggest key to simplifying your social media is to limit the number of social media accounts you have. Your ideal audience isn’t actively using every social media platform, anyway! They’re on two, maybe three platforms daily. Know where your audience is and build your social presence there. Save yourself the headache of posting to all the major social media platforms every day. That’s a quick way to kill your passion for your business and a marketing platform that has the potential to elevate your brand recognition.
Social Media Marketing Plan Strategies
We left this one for last because it requires a little more time than the others, but it may be the most important thing you can do for your business. Having a strong Social Media Marketing Plan and routine in the back of your head makes a huge difference in your day to day life. It can include all the previous tips listed (and more) to make the time spent running your social media presence that much smoother.
Your plan can be as detailed as you want it to be or as simple as you need it to be. Having a plan and routine cuts down hours of pondering what you should post that day; taking 40 forgettable photos just to capture 2 powerful shots; writing twenty articles on random topics instead of 5 relevant, goal-oriented posts; and cross-posting to every platform you have access to. It’s a short-term time commitment for long-term success.
Save Your Sanity and Work Smarter
As business owners, it’s easy to get wrapped up in the idea that we need to be everywhere to be seen by anyone. Articles come out daily telling us that this or that is the new platform to be on. The number of accounts and time wasted trying to “do it right” adds up quickly and leaves us burned out. Applying these tips won’t guarantee a stress-free marketing experience, but it helps. No matter what your business is working smarter, not harder on social media will help you.
Have more tips for spending less time on social media marketing? Drop them in the comments below!
Time is money on the Internet – literally. Statistics show the more time someone spends on your website or landing page, the more likely they are to make a purchase. So knowing your bounce rate (how long someone spends on your website before clicking away) and how to improve it are going to help you make more sales.
But what makes someone bounce off your website? There are a million factors that go into this question but we got nerdy (again) to dive into the statistics of what the most common reasons why website visitors bounce off a website are. Here’s what the numbers said.
Bounce Rate Reason #1: Bad Web Design
This may come as a shock, but the Internet is a vain space where the most attractive websites are the ones that succeed. The statistics show that given 15 minutes to consume content, nearly two-thirds of people would rather read something beautifully designed than something plain. That’s 67 percent of the Internet, ladies and gents. The days of simply having a website being enough to attract customers is over if it ever existed. Today, not only do you need a website but it has to have an attractive design that appeals to your ideal buyer.
The Page Load Speed Is Too Long
Whether you’re on a desktop or mobile device, the amount of time it takes for your web page to load is one of the biggest determining factors for keeping a visitor engaged. According to the numbers, 47 percent of people expect a page to load within 2 seconds or less, and nearly 39 percent will stop engaging (bounce) if the images are the only things taking too long to load. To add more pressure to the pile, every one-second added to page loading time results in an average of 27 percent drop in sales. Bottom line? Get your page loaded as quickly as possible.
Contact Information Isn’t On Every Page
That’s right, a whopping 44 percent of website visitors will leave a company’s website if there’s no contact information or phone number. And that doesn’t just apply to a “Contact Us” page. If we’re on a page of your website and we have a burning question that’s going to decide whether we buy your product or service – we don’t want to search around or click to another page for your contact information. We want to know how to get in touch with you *right now*. Having as few barriers as possible for people to buy or contact you will increase your inquiry rate and the chances of making a sale. This is one of the reasons why Live Chatboxes and contact forms in your footer have become more common.
The Website Isn’t Mobile Responsive
Internet browsing via a mobile device now accounts for nearly two out of every three minutes spent online. At all. (Don’t even get us started on how much time online is spent on social networks!) That means website owners now bare the burden of making sure our websites look dang attractive on a desktop and mobile device. Especially when faced with the fact that 40 percent of people will choose a different search result if the first is not mobile friendly and 62 percent of companies who designed their website(s) for mobile platforms increased their sales. Do you want increased sales? We did! Mobile-friendly website designs matter.
There’s Too Much Content
We’ll be the first to admit that we can get a bit wordy and long-winded. Being wordy is fine for in-depth blog posts and articles, but it can negatively affect how people view the rest of your site. According to folks surveyed, 38 percent of people will stop engaging (bounce) if the content on a page is too long. That means the page has too many words, too many images, too much overwhelm that distracts and un-attracts the visitor. On non-blog pages, get to the point so your visitor understands your message without having to read too much. Being concise is the best design plan and saves everyone a lot of time.
Our Bounce Rate Conclusion?
In the end, people have a million reasons why they choose to click away from websites. Internet viewers, including us, are fickle. We often don’t even know what makes us click away until presented with the question. Our take away from the numbers? The best web designs are tailored to your audience and towards helping prevent them from bouncing. Design your website and the copy with your customers’ experience in mind.