I was about to give Wix some props, but they didn’t give me a chance to, after browsing their website for merely 2 minutes.
First off, they have disabled text selection on their homepage. Are we back in 2001, anyone?
They claim to be SEO optimized and all that… I wonder how is that even possible given that their premium plans page is not responsive:
And they have an annual advertisement budget exceeding $100M.
Sure, Wix is not the only site builder out there. Squarespace and Weebly are popular alternatives, too.
Shopify had started with the eCommerce space, yet small businesses, including bloggers and photographers, have switched to Shopify for their own web platforms, too.
The professional web development industry won’t see any notable impact due to generic site builders filling out the space. But that doesn’t account for site builders who set up WordPress with a premium theme for $200 or less (I believe that you can order a similar package for $50 – $150 off of Envato’s market).
Bloggers, solopreneurs, small businesses running a 5-page business website may pick Wix for their needs. And that’s fine – they rarely need to stand out when they just start out.
The more they keep growing, the more likely it is to outgrow the platform. Think of integrating a modern marketing automation platform, a CRM, a powerful eCommerce platform handling shipping across different countries – anything that a slightly larger website has to support.
But shifting away from web development for small businesses is not a new trend. Facebook took the initiative by introducing Facebook Pages back in the day. Coffee shops, small restaurants, other local venues report higher engagement and lower ad costs when supporting their page as a main website.
The website of a local coffee shop really has to include their address, working hours, a shiny profile photo, and some daily/weekly promotions or “packages” (think of ordering a croissant with an orange juice for a dollar less every morning). A Facebook page does that, along with their entire audience, reviews, shares, and then some. Add Google My Business to the mix and you are good to go.
This is rarely the target of web developers. Those who specialize in building complex web solutions will keep doing so. They may prefer a specific framework – or a CMS – but custom development isn’t going anywhere, anytime soon.