doula websites wix

Looking for a simple, attractive Website Builder? I’ll start this post by acknowledging that you’ve probably had a few dear doula friends tell you how much they love Wix. A lot of their reasons are really solid and good;  it is indeed very easy to use, and has some beautiful templates to choose from. I get it, it’s a really tempting, and seemingly affordable solution.

I don’t want to burst your dream website bubble, but there are some really good reasons to think twice before choosing Wix for your doula or childbirth education website. Here are six of my top concerns about Wix that I share with birth pro clients who have been considering it as an option to build their website:

1) Slow Loading Times!

The way Wix websites are coded means that they will likely have a slower loading time than other types of websites.  Research has found that even a split-second difference in page loading time can make a big difference in the likelihood that a potential client will both stick around on your website to learn more, and make the decision to purchase services from you.  Like it or not, we are living in an age of quick results, and your website needs to deliver the content clients are looking for – fast.

2) You’re Stuck!

Once you pick your template in Wix and start entering your content, you can’t change templates.  If you want to change your website structure, you’ll have to enter your content – from scratch.  That, my friends, would be no fun at all.   You may imagine that you’ll be happy with this template for years to come, but with time comes new clarity, and this means that most of us want to do significant site upgrades at least every 2 years.

3) You Can’t Play with the Code

If you’re going to build a template site using a tool such as Squarespace or Wix, and you don’t want it to look like a template site that matches those of hundreds of other doulas across the country, then you need to be able to access the background site code to make changes.  You may not know code, but there are plenty of great tutorials online, or consider just a few hours of website doula care to help bring your site to the next level.  Unfortunately, Wix does not allow users to customize the background code of sites, resulting in far less flexibility and a more standard website.

4) Your page names will be funky

This may not seem like a big deal to you, but it is.  For example, if you looked at search results and saw a site linked as:

www.awesomedoula.com/birth-doula-atlanta
or
www.bestdoula.com/#!birth-doula-atlanta/c23d3
or even worse:
www.bestdoula.wix.com/#!birth-doula-atlanta/c23d

which one would you be more likely to click?  We need our sites to be professional, clear, and tidy on every level, from our content and images to our page URL address!  Your clients need to feel they can depend on you, and a dependable page name without a lot of extra #3!2# characters sends a strong signal of professionalism.

5) Not so Great SEO

There are multiple reasons why Wix isn’t as strong on SEO as many other template & custom site options out there.  From their content structure to the javascript code used to build the sites, and of course the funky URLS described above, many birth professionals have found that their sites simply don’t show up in search.  While Wix has improved on this greatly in recent years, it’s still not what it should be.

If you aren’t worried about finding clients online, then perhaps this isn’t an issue for you.  If you have great word-of-mouth referrals and the website only serves as a confirmation of your services & a place for them to sign up, then you don’t need to worry as much about SEO.  For most birth pros, however,  it will make a big difference in your number of clients if you show up in the top 3 – 5 listings on the first page of search results.

6)  It’s not as Free as it Looks

It seems like a great deal, right?  Build your website for free?  Except… you can’t actually have your own domain name (such as www.awesomedoula.com) unless you buy a premium plan, that will cost you anywhere from $4 – $24 / month depending on your needs.  Yes, you could launch the site for free at www.awesomedoula.wix.com, but that will both harm your rankings on Google, and can be seen as unprofessional by potential clients.  You could have a self-hosted wordpress website for $5 – $10 / month in hosting fees at your very own domain name, and if you have the flexibility to change templates or hosts as you wish.

I know there are lots of birth pros out there who are truly happy with their Wix sites. Like any medium, with the right tweaks and plenty of loving attention, a Wix site can absolutely work for you. Still, my feeling is that there are plenty of other great options out there – Weebly and Squarespace for template “drag and drop” sites, and WordPress for those of you ready to invest more in your online presence – that will serve your birth practice with more flexibility and room for growth in the years to come. I welcome your experiences with Wix sites here – both love notes and words of frustration!

About Sarah Juliusson

Hi there, I’m Sarah Juliusson, The Website Doula. I support your practice growth with creative website design, seasoned business guidance, and plenty of great resources to help you find your way. With 20+ years as a doula and childbirth educator, I believe in the value of your work as much as you do. >> learn more about my work as the website doula