Learn Enough To Outsource Your Wix Database
A Wix database is a separate area of your editor and dashboard that allows you to collect or add information like names, dates, numbers, pictures, etc. This simple storage facility of information opens up a new world of possibilities on your site.
You can build your own store instead of using the Wix app, you can create your own membership site, you can build custom forms and quizzes, you can build custom payment systems.
All of this customization and added functionality means that there is often times a steep learning curve when implementing these on your site and although the information can be extensive there are some great resources you can use to learn more.
But for entrepreneurs who don't have time to learn everything about Wix databases but still need help understand them so that you can get what you need on your site then this article was written for you.
Reading below will give you an understanding of what databases are, what they are capable of, and scripts you can use that get you to a successful website project.
Scroll to the bottom of this post for a conclusion that summarizes the key points.
Wix Database Tutorial
If you have never used a database in wix or know much about it then I will run down the basics quickly so you can have a solid foundation.
There is only one database on your site. You create multiple "collections" that exist inside of your database. More on this in the Collections section.
Database collections are automatically included when you add some of the Wix apps to your site like Wix bookings and Wix stores. These will hold product information or booking information that you already entered when building your store or booking service.
If you do not have these apps or want to add even more functionality you will need to add a database to your site.
To do this go into your site editor, hover your mouse cursor over the "Dev Mode" tab and click on "Enable Corvid."
You should see a section on your left side that pops up but if you do not then click on the arrow on the bottom left of the screen.
Scroll to the bottom and you will see your database. Move your mouse cursor over different elements and discover that you will be able to add and delete what are called "collections." More on this below.
When adding a new collection you will go through a series of steps that will allow you to customize your exact accessibility specifications.
You can also access the database from your dashboard as well...
Inside your dashboard click on "Database" on the bottom of the left hand menu and you will see all the database collections that are currently on your site. Clicking into any of these will allow you to see all the information that collection contains.
Once you add collections to your database you can add what is called a "dataset" to any page on your site. These datasets are able to take the info inside a collection and connect it to your site. They can also take any info being submitted on a site and add it to the collection.
This is VERY good for trying to set up custom forms or making one design on a site and displaying lots of information. More on these below.
Wix collections are spreadsheet containers for the information your are adding or collecting in your database. Wix created a great video about how to add a collection that you can see here.
These spreadsheets are capable of exporting and importing as a CSV file so that you can actually build in any spreadsheet program like google sheets or Excel.
If you think about the relationship between collections and your database as folders it can be easier to understand....
Let's say you created a folder on your desktop called "Business"...
Now lets say you wanted to make sure you could properly organize all the material you put inside the "Business" folder.
So you make subfolders called "finances", "marketing", and "client info".
Now anytime you put a budget statement into the "Business" folder you know it is going into the subfolder "finances".
Your database is the main folder that contains all the subfolder (collections) that you want to organize.
Let's say you had a custom form and all information that is submitted you need to keep. Well you make a collection called "custom form" that collects all of that information. The "custom form" collection is inside of your main database.
I mentioned above how to add a collection in your editor and this is the only way to add a collection to your Wix site.
Wix Collections and Dynamic Pages
Dynamic pages are a way of displaying the information in your collection. There is a simple process you can follow in order to set these up on your site.
If you wanted to have a recipe site then you would want a dynamic category page that could show the different categories of your recipes like breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
You would just need to design the page and the information would come from your collection.
Once someone clicks on a category like lunch they will be taken to another dynamic category page that shows the individual recipes. Then finally, they can click on an individual recipe and be taken to a dynamic item page that shows all details for that recipe.
All you need to do is worry about design and the rest of the information comes from a collection.
You can also connect your database collections to a regular page as well.
User Input Fields And Your Database
When building a collection, sometimes you do not want to display your own information but you actually want to capture information for a visitor on your site like a form or quiz.
In order to do this you can add user input fields like text boxes or dropdown selections where visitors can make a choice and then submit that choice to your collection.
This allows you to build custom forms that collect dates, email addresses, phone numbers, names, uploads, ratings, etc.
Guests of your site can use these and a submit button to send this info to your collections. Then you can use this data to improve your business.
Wix Code Database
Your database can be used with Wix code in order to add features on your site that would be difficult for you to create otherwise.
One popular use of this is for real estate listing sites....
Let's say you want to build a real estate listing that includes a picture of each house, square footage, price, and number of bedrooms and bathrooms...
Doing this manually would mean you would have to build every single design individually for every single listing you have.
But if you add a repeater to your site and design ONE SECTION that will take about 5 minutes you can connect a collection to it and all your information will magically apply itself to your ONE SECTION and build out an entire listing for you without you needing to do it.
I will go over more examples on how you can use your database with Wix code but I wanted you to be aware that there are huge opportunities when using your database to improve the functionality of your site.
Always ask Facebook groups or forums if what you are looking for is possible before spending the money to test it out.
How Is A Database Good For My Site
I mentioned some examples above about how to use a database for your site but the possibilities can be endless.
If you need to build a custom form and need to gather all the information, then you can use a collection to capture this.
If you want to build a listing of products or real estate then you can use a collection to store the information and use datasets and dynamic pages to display it.
If you want to build a custom membership site you can use a collection to gather information for your members and also custom member areas that display their information only.
If you are building sites with lots of resources like a recipe site or traveler site then you can host information in a collection and build one design that plugs in all the info.
There are a number of different ways that a database can improve the functionality of your site and understand that the more complex your addition may be the more expensive it is going to cost.
Many times I have seen someone not like the design of a Wix app like the store and want someone to fully build them a new store using a database so they can get it looking better. This tends to be a huge waste of money because building a store from scratch can often cause the site to slow down in speed and ends up sacrificing more to get a pretty design than it does giving your guest the best experience they can get.
Be Prepared For Your Developer
When building a collection you are essentially building a spreadsheet.
This should tell you what information you will need for your developer.
Do you have all your headings figured out?
Do you know what info you need to collect from guests like name, phone number, etc?
Do you know how to build the page and design it for your developer or will you need this done as well? This is not as easy as it sounds...
Do you know how to export the information from your collection or import information into it so at a future time you do not need the developer?
Figure out how much the developer charges for their hourly because more than likely you will need additional work once you start messing around in your database.
1. A database is a library of information. Your database collections are books in that library, each one holding the actual content of the library. These make up a system that opens a world of possibilities for your site.
2. A collection can either hold information that you need to display on your site or it can collect information from a guest of your site.
3. Ask Facebook groups or forums about you issue if you believe you need to use your database for your site. Try to get free advice before giving someone your money.
4. Always ask yourself if the changes you need are worth the effort. When adding functionality to your site you can tend to spend a lot of money. Unless your site is already getting a lot of traffic, your problem is probably not that you don't have the most customized form or pretty gallery. It is probably that you need help getting people to the site at all.
Day 15 and we are half way there! My 30 day content challenge has been a huge investment in time and energy into something that I am not entirely sure if it will pan out but I feel like a big part of this process is less about the SEO and more about me finding my voice and trying to write really good articles
If you need a developer to help set up your database then make sure to read this article first about how to hire a Wix coder to make sure you aren't wasting your money because you weren't prepared.
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