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The True Cost Of Building And Maintaining A Shopify Or WIX Website

Before using a popular website builder, here are some things you should know about the true cost of building and maintaining a Shopify or WIX website.

Shopify Secrets

Shopify is popular but it isn’t perfect for building and maintaining your website. Here are some things to consider about the true costs of Shopify.

  • Customization -  A poorly designed site could cause customers to shop elsewhere or affect search engine optimization. Shopify offers a lot of themes, but limited design customization. For significant changes to the look and feel of your store, you may need to hire a professional designer and/or consult an SEO expert to support you with your technical SEO and content strategy.
  • Cost - You need to pay a monthly fee in order to use it, and then you also need to pay for premium features that you want to use.
  • Fees - Shopify charges a transaction fee for each sale that you make. This is a fee that you have to pay in order to use the Shopify platform.
  • Email - Shopify does not include email hosting in its plans. You’ll have to find another provider if you want to set up an email address for your store.
  • Automation - Automation is key when you want to scale your business and Shopify doesn’t offer marketing automation tools as part of their plans. You’ll need to find another provider or pay a monthly fee for a Shopify app if you want to automate your marketing tasks.

What WIX Won’t Say

WIX has some good qualities and some bad ones. Here are some things to be aware of.

  • Business - The largest cost of using WIX is a hidden one.  It’s the cost of your website not getting found or not functioning properly. A poorly built website that lacks functionality will cost you business.
  • Performance - Looking good-looking and performing well are not the same. WIX makes It ‘easy’ to build a website, but building a good website is not an ‘easy’ task. If it was ‘easy’ to build a website that works then there wouldn’t be so many blog articles about search engine optimization (SEO), content structures, on and off-site reputation management, and conversion optimization. You need to figure out what your business needs for your online presence, including content structure, image sizes, page titles, the header text for each page, the calls to action that appear in search engine results (SERPs), and conversion optimization.  You’ll also need to implement online tracking to see how your website is performing and set up Google tools to get insights that can drive marketing decisions. This is why it shouldn’t be ‘easy’ to build a website.  What looks good doesn’t necessarily perform well.
  • Complexity - WIX makes it easy to design websites but what you see isn’t what Google sees.  Google doesn’t care about nice-looking buttons or stunning images, Google cares about how your page titles are structured and what they say about the page, but for some WIX websites, this is neglected. You need to be aware of all the things that go into your web presence like SEO, off-site business listings, reviews, etc. Your website is only one element of your online presence, there are also backlinks, business listings, and citations. Without all of those you may not get found by your customers, and your beautiful WIX website will not deliver results. 
  • Hosting - The problem with platforms like WIX is that if you have an issue with them or outgrow them, you’ll probably need to start over. When you develop your website using WIX you have no place to go, they host your website and you’re stuck.
  • Data - You can’t easily migrate your WIX data. If you want to add features that aren’t supported in Wix, or want a major overhaul because you’ve outgrown your website, it’s very difficult to move your content away from Wix. If you think you might outgrow WIX, remember to consider this potential future cost if you’re thinking a full web development is outside of your budget right now.
  • Cost - With the free plans you’ll have WIX branding on your site, and the icon in the browser bar will be a WIX logo. You can’t use Google Analytics without upgrading to a premium plan. The WIX ‘app store’ has many apps that start with a ‘freemium’ offering but more functionality will cost you.

If you want to know more about building and maintaining websites, read our article, “How Investing In A Good Website Can Help Your Work-From-Home Business”, or contact us.

Tags: website, Shopify, WIX

Geoff Strauss

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