Switching your website from Weebly to Wix is a detailed process that requires careful planning and execution. This guide will provide you with step-by-step instructions, ensuring each paragraph contains at least five sentences for clarity and thoroughness.
Step 1: Preparing Your Weebly Site
Export Your Blog: If your Weebly site includes a blog, you'll need to export it. Weebly allows for blog export in a .xml format, which can be imported into Wix later. This step is essential for preserving your blog posts, including their formatting and metadata. Double-check to ensure the export file includes all your blog content and is not corrupted.
List Your Website Structure: Documenting your website's structure is important for a smooth transition. Create a detailed list of all your web pages and their hierarchy. This list will be invaluable when you set up your new site on Wix, ensuring no pages are overlooked. Pay special attention to any subpages or complex navigation structures.
Check Third-Party Services: Many websites use third-party services like email subscriptions, forms, or e-commerce tools. Identify these services on your Weebly site and understand how they can be transferred or reconnected on Wix. This might involve checking with service providers for Wix compatibility or finding alternatives available on Wix.
Step 2: Setting Up a New Site on Wix
Create a Wix Account: The first step in moving to Wix is creating an account on their platform. If you don’t already have one, visit the Wix website and sign up. This process is straightforward and user-friendly, guiding you through each step. Ensure you provide accurate contact information for future correspondence or support needs.
Choose a Template: Wix offers a wide variety of templates for different website types. Browse through these templates and choose one that either matches your old Weebly site’s design or provides a fresh look that suits your needs. Consider your brand identity and user experience when selecting a template. Remember, while it's important to maintain a consistent brand image, this is also an opportunity to refresh your site's design.
Customize Your Template: After choosing a template, use the Wix editor to customize it to your liking. This step is where you add your unique brand elements, such as logos, color schemes, and fonts. The Wix editor is user-friendly, allowing you to drag and drop elements onto your pages. Take your time in this step to ensure your website accurately reflects your brand and appeals to your target audience.
Add Pages: Using the list you made of your Weebly site’s structure, start adding pages to your Wix site. Ensure that the new site mirrors the old site’s navigation and hierarchy. This continuity is important for user experience and for maintaining any established SEO value. Pay close attention to detail, ensuring that each page is laid out correctly and that all necessary elements are included.
Step 3: Transferring Content
Transfer Text and Images: Now, it's time to populate your new Wix site with content. Utilize the backups you made of your Weebly site to transfer text and images. This process might be time-consuming, especially for sites with a lot of content, but it’s crucial for maintaining the integrity and consistency of your site. Make sure to check that all text formatting and image placements are as intended.
Recreate Your Blog: If your Weebly site included a blog, use the previously exported .xml file to import your posts into Wix. This process should transfer most of the formatting and content, but you might need to make some adjustments manually. Ensure that all links are working and that images are correctly displayed. It's also a good opportunity to update or remove outdated blog posts.
Add Apps and Features: If your Weebly site used special features or third-party apps, look for their equivalents on Wix or reconfigure them to work on the new platform. This might involve using Wix's App Market or adjusting some settings. It’s important to test these features thoroughly to ensure they function as expected on your new site.
Set Up E-commerce (if applicable): For those transferring an online store, Wix offers robust e-commerce solutions. Carefully set up your product listings, payment options, and shipping settings. This step is crucial for businesses as it directly affects your sales and customer experience. Ensure all product descriptions and images are correctly transferred and that the checkout process is seamless.
Step 4: Setting Up Domain and SEO
Connect Your Domain: A crucial step is connecting your existing domain to your new Wix site. If your domain was purchased through Weebly or another domain registrar, you can either transfer it to Wix or point it to your new Wix site. This process involves changing some settings with your domain registrar and can take a few days to propagate across the internet.
Update SEO Settings: To maintain your search engine rankings, update your SEO settings in Wix. Match these settings to what you had on Weebly as closely as possible. This includes updating page titles, descriptions, and keywords. Wix offers a range of SEO tools to help optimize your site, so take the time to familiarize yourself with these features.
Set Up 301 Redirects: To preserve your SEO ranking and ensure a smooth user experience, set up 301 redirects from your old Weebly URLs to the corresponding new URLs on Wix. This step is essential to prevent 404 errors and to signal to search engines that your site has moved. It also helps users who have bookmarked pages or follow old links to find your new site.
Step 5: Going Live
Review Your Site: Before making your new Wix site live, conduct a thorough review. Check for any missing content, broken links, or formatting issues. It’s a good idea to have someone else review your site as well, as they might catch errors you’ve overlooked. Ensure that every aspect of your site is working as intended.
Make Your Site Live: Once your review is complete and you are satisfied with your new site, it’s time to publish it on Wix. This will make your site live and accessible to the public. Remember, once your site is live, any changes or updates will be immediately visible to visitors.
Update Google Analytics and Webmaster Tools: If you use Google Analytics or other webmaster tools, update your site’s information with your new Wix URL. This is important for tracking your site's traffic and performance. Failing to update these tools might result in inaccurate data collection and analysis.
Notify Your Audience: Inform your audience about your new website. Use email newsletters, social media, or even a temporary banner on your old Weebly site to direct users to your new Wix site. Clear communication helps in retaining your audience and guiding them to your new online presence.
Monitor Your Site: In the days and weeks after going live, monitor your new site closely. Check for 404 errors, monitor traffic patterns, and watch for user feedback. This monitoring will help you catch and rectify any issues quickly, ensuring a smooth transition for your users.
Test Everything: Before going live, test all aspects of your new Wix site. This includes forms, e-commerce checkout processes, and functionality of third-party integrations. Thorough testing prevents post-launch issues and ensures a positive user experience.
Seek Help if Needed: If you encounter difficulties during the transition, don't hesitate to seek help. You might consider hiring a professional web developer for more complex issues. Wix also offers customer support, which can be a valuable resource.
Be Patient: Transferring a website between platforms can be a complex and time-consuming process. It's important to be patient and methodical in your approach. Remember that it may also take time for search engines to re-index your new site and for users to adjust to the change.
Switching from Weebly to Wix is a significant undertaking that involves meticulous planning, content transfer, and technical setup. By following these detailed steps, you can ensure a smooth transition with minimal impact on your site’s performance and user experience. Remember to back up all data, carefully recreate your site's structure and content on Wix, and pay close attention to domain and SEO settings. After going live, continue to monitor your site and make necessary adjustments to optimize performance and user experience.
If you own a large website with a long history and don't want to lose any content, visitors, and positions in search engines, you need the help of professionals. In our portfolio, you can find many websites that have been ported to Wix from other platforms and are already receiving bonuses and benefits from the new platform. Contact us if you want to move your website to Wix as quickly and safely as possible.