I build websites for living, and I’m curious about the competition. Are automated website builders getting so good now that I’m going to be out of job? To answer this question, from time to time I go set up a website with a company such as Wix or Squarespace to see how easy it is. And so far, it always cheers me up.
The Wix Law Firm Test is off to a Good Start
Wix feels great as you get started. It asks you the type of business you have, asks you a few questions about what services and pages you offer, and then offers to generate your website for you.
Because we build a lot of law firms for websites, I told Wix that I run a law firm and made up a law firm name. It gave me a list of services I might offer, such as drafting wills and notarizing documents, and I checked them all off. I tried to add some practice areas, such as Transportation Law, but it only gave the option of adding appointments and classes and other services like that, so I guessed I could add practice areas later.
Then it generated three decent looking homepages for me, complete with stock photos of legal-looking offices and people. And presto, I had a live website!
Wix Fail. What Do I Do Now?
Except the colors weren’t right. When were they going to ask about the colors?
And I’d need to get rid of these stock images, which were so obviously stock images that they felt off-putting. The thing is, the design was about 75% about the photos. Without those, it looked pretty generic. Would it look okay with my own photos?
Then there was the organization. The second section on the homepage listed the services I’d selected, such as drafting wills. But my law firm isn’t about people cranking out wills, which you can do online anyway. It’s about more complex issues. How would I replace this services section with practice areas?
And suddenly, the great concierge-like experience of the initial set up was over and I felt like I was on my own.
I found a way to add a section from a list of section templates, but then wondered, how do I change the number of columns? How am I going to link these elements to pages that provide more detail? Is there any way to automatically associate attorneys with each practice area? Or do I need to manually add them to each practice area page?
Instructions appeared when I clicked on some of the buttons on the page, attempting to guide me through the process. But none of the hints answered my questions. I realized I was going to have to take a significant amount of time learning how this interface worked, what I could do within it, and what its limitations were. Would I invest this time only to find out that something’s just not possible on Wix?
I had to stop this playing around get back to my own business, and I imagine that a lot of people are going to have the same feeling. “No more time to waste figuring this out,” I can imagine other business owners thinking. “I’m going to hire someone and get back to what I do best.”
Businesses Need Personalized Help
Wix sites may be a good fit for some businesses. But they can come with unanticipated challenges.
A couple of weeks ago I got a call from a real estate broker who needed help with his new Wix site. A web designer had built it for him on Wix, then run into limits and ultimately ghosted him. Some of the site was garbled, with pieces not working, and he needed someone to come to the rescue.
It’s hard to beat getting someone on the phone who will just take care of things for you. We had him straightened out in no time.
Website building software is going to keep getting better, but people are going to need personalized service for a long time.
That’s what we provide at little guy branding, custom websites built with personal attention.
Give us a call or email us if you need help.