You can always tell you've landed on a wix site when you're faced with blank screen for a while.
Edit: 10MB... this page is 10MB. https://i.imgur.com/uAoc05H.png
On the other hand oh my god it's 40MB, this is pants-on-head crazy.
That's 20X the average web-page size, which is already bloated. 20X . I'm starting to think those Alexa numbers are just being inflated by Wix sites.
A few months ago a friend of mine needed a very simple site that he could update on his own (non-technical person). So I gave Wix a try and set him up on their service. I couldn't believe how horrible it was in every possible regard. I incorrectly assumed that given the scale of their business, that surely they had a great product.
But man their editor, while neat, is just so damn slow. <generic comment about how shit was faster years back despite slower connections and processors>
32.56 MB / 26.97 MB transferred
Finish: 25,125,172.23 min
DOMContentLoaded: 735 ms
load: 4.53 s
40.59 MB / 0 GB transferred
Finish: 21.89 s
DOMContentLoaded: 365 ms
load: 4.23 s
(uBlock Origin blocked some 14 requests I think)
Devs are going to run dev tools, take screenshots and scream about it on HN.
Stripe.com's product pages are beautiful examples of how to make gorgeous marketing pages at reasonable size (3MB, <1/4 the size of this Wix behemoth).
Everyone here is disgusted by it because, it is in fact disgusting from the perspective of a developer.
I spent a few hours with with wix earlier this year while needing help a family quickly get a funeral site up they could hopefully have some chance of maintaining themselves. Getting started is actually pretty slick. The designer software is easy to use and gets a basic decent looking site up extremely fast.
Towards the end of the few hours I was hitting roadblocks left and right. Artificial limitations, edge cases not supported, things that could have been fixed on a real site trivially.
Still, what they’ve built, what it in turn allows pretty nontechnical people to build quickly, is impressive. I think it may have been possible to do better on performance and flexibility without compromising for other users. My guess is it’s not mostly because they are just not obsessing on that part much.
I've also found that there's been a steady uptick in clients who are having some success with/through their site, and who suddenly do start caring, for all the reason that we are all aware of (performance affecting SEO, bad mobile experience, the 'visual page builder' not being able to do what they want, etc.).
While it's not always fun work, I do think there's a huge market there for 'people like us'.
I'm not sure what a good analogy would be in other businesses, but perhaps it's a bit like someone with a limited budget starting a cafe with IKEA furniture, finding success, and now having both the need and (some) means to actually buy furniture that can handle the demands of cafe use.
And that's not even considering the huge number of potential customers whose Wordpress site got hacked and who need a solution NOW.
What I like most about this situation is that it's not even entirely bad. Perhaps sometimes it does make sense to start a bar with IKEA furniture because the chance of success is so small. I honestly tell many potential clients to not bother paying me for a good, fast site because all they really need at this point is a decent-ish Wordpress theme or Wix/SquareSpace site.
EDIT: I'm not saying Wix specifically would be an option I would suggest to clients. My experience with it hasn't been too good, and I'm sure there's similar and better options.
In the past, it's been said that Wix has shitty SEO, so they tackled it head on and improved it several levels of magnitude.
Putting aside the performance issues for a moment, I think WixCode introduces a lot of potential for web designers and coders alike. There are a lot of benefits, including cloud hosting, DDoS protection, impressive applications market, etc... All with zero code and no headache. I would love that peace of mind back in the days.
Now, they're taking on the developer market, which is a very demanding crowd. I hope they can live up to the high standards.
Bottom line, I wouldn't rush to decide on the fate of this product just yet.
On the other hand, I've been known to be overoptimistic, so...
Even if this is an outlier, the average page is still around 2-3MB.
Still, that's no reason not to criticize such bloat, especially when they're still quite above average.
Clearly, HN users not their target audience.
This is even more of a lock-in trap than Wix (and its similar competitors, like SquareSpace) usually is. These people want to own you and whatever you're making. Avoid.
The same way Hypercard was not for C programmers.
People have been burned too many times to not be skeptical about using a proprietary piece of technology to power their app.
Now, my experience trying to use sites built with Wix has been uniformly terrible. If I see "wix" anything I simply leave. But that doesn't invalidate the use case.
This tutorial video shows how creating template pages works:
Here's a video that gives you a better idea of how the design tool works:
(Full disclosure: I'm an engineer at Webflow )
As for help, there's a big difference between someone who "knows Wix" and someone who can install, configure and maintain a full site, even if using off-the-shelf software.
A quick look at the HTML confirms, all fields and labels seem to be positioned absolute, each. Might be a good workaround for an MVP form builder, dragging on a grid and using absolute positioning is the easiest way to develop a visual form builder I guess... (although I think a tabindex property would have solved the tab issue, and a simple algorithm sorting divs by top / left would have been able to do it automatically, but this is just MVP).
Maybe I'm wrong, maybe nice HTML doesn't matter, maybe they can fix the tab stop problem, maybe responsive forms are not important to most customers. But everything I was taught is wrong in a web form exists in the form that asks me to sign up for a beta to a tool that builds forms without coding.
Maybe this is the way to MVP... maybe that form was built by an intern. Maybe accessibility is not important for a beta (or maybe I'm the only one pressing tab when filling forms) but this just reeks bad web design practice all over it.
*EDIT: Yep, I guess it was, at the bottom it says: "This Website Was Created with Wix Code". Maybe the genius idea was just to build a fixed grid, forget responsiveness, and solve 99% of the problems of a WYSIWYG editor. All in all they built an MVP and I'm just ranting on HN, so perhaps they are onto something...
Is the markup Mythos-level bad? If so, sandblasting might still be appropriate.
Once I reported a notorious scammer who was using their platform to their support team. I provided tons of information (including investigations from the press) and explicitly told them not to pass on my details. That was actually a precondition before I had revealed any information, and they ensured me that they will not pass on my details.
What do they do? They treat it as a DMCA request and give the scammer every single piece of information they had on me (which included my phone number). I woke up to a voicemail on my phone from the scammer saying he's "going to find you motherfuckers" and "kill all of y'all".
After asking why the hell they did that, they basically told me to piss off and denied doing anything wrong.
In short: All your code and IP belongs to WIX.
-- AS IS from their T&C ---
By participating in the Beta Stage, you hereby assign to Wix without any additional consideration, all right, title and interest to your Feedback and all proprietary rights therein, including, without limitation, all patents, copyrights, trade secrets, mask works, trademarks, moral rights and other intellectual property rights.
You acknowledge that Wix retains ownership of all right, title and interest to the Wix Code, including without limitation, its design and documentation, derivatives and versions thereof, and all intellectual property rights therein and thereto (including without limitation, all patent rights, design rights, copyrights and trade secret rights). If requested by Wix, you agree to execute and deliver any documents, statement, instruments, recordings or filings deemed necessary by Wix to protect and preserve its right, title and interest in and to the Wix Code under applicable law.
Pretty sure that just means that if you submit feedback, that feedback becomes property of Wix . From a laymen's interpretation of that paragraph, your content remains your own.
The second paragraph sounds pretty standard for a SasS company.
: They explicitly define 'Feedback' in their T&C as follows:
> In consideration of the non-exclusive, non-transferable, revocable license to use the Wix Code granted to you by Wix subject to the terms hereof, you agree to serve as a “beta tester” of the Wix Code and to provide Wix with useful input on the Wix Code, including on any problems, bugs, failures, deficiencies and other challenges you may have encountered while using the Wix Code, and other input and ideas you may have on how to improve, enhance or upgrade the Wix Code, or any other feedback you may have and deem relevant (collectively “Feedback”).
"Back at the beach, the three brainstormed what to name their new company. Staying true to their idea, they had two requirements for the name: they wanted a three letter word that started with a “W” and something that was easy to remember"
One more reason: https://ma.tt/2016/10/wix-and-the-gpl/
Side anecdote, in college nearly 10 years ago I had an entrepreneurship professor that singled out Wix as one to watch for a good success story. I guess he was right on that bet.
The difficulty with that answer is that the market for web development is becoming bimodal.
On the low end, you have the site builder tools: Wix, WP, Squarespace, and so on. These days you have to include Facebook pages in there as well. You can set up a basic online presence for next to no money with these, and in most cases you can buy a reasonably professional-looking theme to make your site look decent for not much more. Of course you're limited to common features and have few opportunities for customisation, but does a web page announcing your local church events really need any more?
On the high end, you have bespoke development. Someone like me, or no doubt many others on HN, can build you a site that does more or less anything and adopts whatever distinctive branding you need. However, we're going to charge about as much for an hour or two of our time as the whole thing costs with one of the site builder tools, and your final bill is going to have at least two more zeroes on it to do roughly the same job and probably more if we're doing anything that makes it worth using us in the first place.
There isn't much room in between any longer. The days of getting your neighbour's kid's school friend to build your company web site for $500 are gone. The site builder tools have commoditised the low end of the market, and for that kind of money they'll probably offer better results, while no agency nor even any established freelancer is likely to get out of bed for a gig that small.
In short, hiring a professional doesn't really make sense for a lot of small business or community web sites any more. Either you need something truly unique and customised, in which case you need the time and money to match, or you're probably better off just using a site builder if you don't have the resources available to do it in-house.
For some background they are an Israeli company and a few years back they opened up a Wix Cafe space out near dogpatch area. It was totally free with a focus around the Wix platform (kind of like how Amazon has AWS popup lofts). It went away I think but the idea was pretty cool. Hell I didn't mind the free space.
When I saw the title "Wix code" my brain automatically translated it into something similar to "jerk off code".
"Million people jerk off daily"
"Jerking off changed my life."