This guide has been put together for IRIE! dance theatre students in year 2 and 3 to support them during their professional portfolio website assessment. Following extensive testing and research, Wix.com has been chosen as the recommended website builder for this assessment.

 

Recommended website builder

Wix.com: Pros

  • hundreds of professionally looking and creative templates, bigger choice of portfolio style templates than reviewed alternatives (weebly.com, WordPress.org, WordPress.com)
  • free access to fully customisable templates, no need to pay upfront unlike competitors (NB Some features such as Members Login or eStore will not become available until signed up to a payment plan)
  • templates can be easily customised as they stand, no coding or design skills required
  • advanced editing options
  • create as many sites as you like
  • straightfoward domain and hosting packages, easy to upgrade (deals between £6-18 + VAT/month, annual subscription)
  • student discount on hosting with Student Beans
  • guidance on SEO (how to be found on Google), accessibility, GDPR, cookies, privacy policy etc.
  • free ad vouchers and analytics if you upgrade
  • in-built get feedback function
  • easy to unpublish website

Wix.com: Cons

  • up to 500 MB media/file storage & up to 500 bandwidth (how much traffic your site can handle & how fast it loads for visitors) included in the free version
  • Wix ads (free version)
  • difficult to change between templates as every single one is unique, some of the content would have to be re-inserted (depends on the template)
  • can’t be used offline
  • difficult to transfer content to a different supplier due to different templates and design, website would most certainly need to be built from scratch
  • not recommended for sites with an estore (weebly.com better option) or hundreds of subpages (WordPress for blog style website)

Getting started

You will need to be connected to the internet at all times. You are strongly advised to use a laptop or tablet.

Before signing up

  1. check you have the latest version of Chrome, Safari, Edge or Firefox needed (not compatible with IE or Opera)
  2. allow third-party cookies for Wix.com
  3. for info: student discount on web hosting available through Student Beans

Create a free account & select a template

  1. sign up with your personal email
  2. Don’t upgrade or sign up to any additional services yet, simply create a free account, skip the rest.
  3. choose a template: select Portfolio & CV category or Blank Template to start from scratch
  4. click View to check out how the template looks on a desktop and mobile
  5. Edit this site (top right-hand corner) to start play around with it

Add your tutor to your site

Portfolio guidance

Think carefully about your template as you won’t be able to easily change it once you’ve started customising it.

Things to consider before you start designing

  1. make your website accessible: accessibility guidance & checklist
  2. make sure you comply with copyright regulations & know your rights
  3. you own all rights to your content: intellectual property explained & know your rights
  4. cookies & your privacy policy: informing your visitors about cookies
  5. complying with GDPR: how do you collect, store and use your visitors’ data

Basic editing

Save your work regularly! No need to publish, keep your site private to begin with. Unpublish if need be.

  • Access editing mode: on your Dashboard click Site Actions < Edit Site
  • Site layout & width: recommended by Wix for best possible experience using different devices, so don’t design outside of it unless for decorative purposes
  • Switch on editor tools: make sure all tools, rulers & gridlines are enabled (Tools tab in header)
  • Editing options: If using a template, click on existing elements and editing options will pop up. Right-hand click will open additional editing options. Also see right-hand toolbar.
  • Left-hand menu: customise background, navigate between pages & add a new page, add media etc.
  • Left-hand menu – Plus icon: add stock images, music, videos, vector arts, shapes, social media tools etc.

Further support

Finding copyright compliant media

  1. check out free Wix photos, video & cinemagraph collections
  2. also see other sites recommended by Wix such as Pexels Video, Pexels Images, Unsplash, Mazwai Videos, Pixabay etc.
  3. use Google Custom Image Search
  4. Gratisography: quirky, odd images
  5. Creative Commons Search engine: over 300m images
  6. Google Free Image Search
  7. Nappy.co (“beautiful, high-res photos of black and brown people“)
  8. the 20 best royalty-free music sites in 2019
  9. europeana collections: artworks, artefacts, books, films & music from European museums, galleries, libraries and archives
  10. flickr creative commons
  11. more suggestions: art & stock photography
  12. The Gender Spectrum Collection: Stock Photos Beyond the Binary

Adding & editing images

Further support

Adding & embedding videos

<strong>Embedding videos</strong>
As your data storage with the free plan is limited and total video minutes capped to 30 mins (10 mins max per individual video), embed your videos from YouTube or other players rather than uploading it into Wix directly. If adding from YouTube, ensure the video is set to public and embedding is allowed. 

  • Adding a single video: Left-hand menu < plus icon < Video < Single Video Players < select YouTube/Vimeo/FB etc.
  • Adding and arranging a video stream/channel in a particular layout: Left-hand menu < plus icon < Video < Wix Video < select a layout
  • once added, click on the video container to manage individual videos, settings, layout etc.

Further support

Get feedback on your draft portfolio

Ready to take it to the next level? Upgrade to get your domain, remove ads, get found on Google & increase storage