Are AI Website Builders the Real Deal? A Logistics Test Case

Logistics Test Case - Emkal
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Over the past few years, AI Website Builders have been gaining traction as a simple and time-efficient way to build a website without technical expertise. I wanted to learn more about these tools and their benefits, so I took Wix Artificial Design Intelligence (ADI), one of the most highly acclaimed services out there, for a spin. I decided to create a website for a fictitious GTA-based 3rd party logistics (3PL) company. Here are the results.

Clean, Crisp, and Intuitive Interface

Wix ADI is about as easy to use as possible. It asks you a few questions about your company, provides a few different layout options, and gives you an opportunity to add your own logo and even import from an existing website. After answering its questions, which takes only a few minutes, you are presented with a handsome, logically structured website with your company name and relevant stock photos. It also includes pre-filled text boxes. You can edit, add, change, delete, or remove components as you please, all within your internet browser and with zero coding required.

Looking Beyond the Shiny Exterior

Even though Wix ADI was successful in creating a beautiful website in mere minutes, it could certainly be improved while still retaining the ease-of-use which makes it an attractive option. Here are some features which would transform it from a nifty tool to a disruptive and dominant force:

  1. Let you more narrowly define your business. When creating my website, I was asked what type of site I wanted to create. The most relevant option was “Logistics Service”, with no ability to provide further details. Wix ADI does not let you differentiate between being a 3PL or a 4PL, having FTL or LTL capabilities, or specializing in key areas such as hazmat or industries such as automotive. You can only start as a generic logistics company with Wix ADI, which is not particularly helpful when trying to appeal to potential clients.
  2. Ask what makes you special. To further push the limits of website customization, it would be game-changing if Wix ADI would ask questions about what makes your company unique. What are your mission, vision, and values? What are your company’s achievements? What do you do better than any other player in the industry? Having these differentiators weaved throughout your website would help to tell your story and sell your unique value proposition.
  3. Conduct external market analysis. A killer feature would be if an AI website builder such as Wix ADI could identify your close competitors and scan their positive Google Reviews for keywords. These keywords would represent the client’s value most from a 3PL company and could be incorporated into the website to describe your services. The AI could also identify and scan white papers about logistics to capture trends in the industry and reflect those insights throughout your website.
  4. Dynamic multivariate testing. The website could present multiple variations of itself to visitors and track key metrics such as time spent on site and click-through rates, and iteratively modify itself to optimize the user experience and conversion. This would also inform senior management as to what potential clients are most interested in, which could shape strategic planning.

Conclusion

The current state of AI website builders such as Wix ADI is encouraging from an aesthetic perspective. Anyone with a computer and an idea can create a well-structured website in a single sitting. It removes the need for technical skills and is a time- and cost-effective way to give your business some online presence. This service is not entirely novel; pre-built templates have been available for several years, but AI website builders introduce a new dimension of simplicity and flexibility.

However, at this point AI website builders are not a comprehensive solution that will promote your business and directly lead to sales. A large amount of manual work is still required to customize your website and turn it into a powerful marketing tool. There is definitely scope to employ more AI into these websites which will greatly improve the quality and user experience but we’re not there yet. In the coming years, we should expect to see improved functionality which will automate much of the heavy lifting associated with creating, maintaining, and optimizing a website. For now, though, if you are thinking about creating a new website, I would encourage you to play with some of the AI website builders out there but consider it more as scaffolding. You still need to put in the effort to build something truly spectacular which will capture the attention of your would-be clients.

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