TL; DR: Websites are crucial for online businesses. But their importance doesn’t make them less tricky to create. Wix has recently introduced an AI chat experience to help business owners design and develop websites to suit their needs and branding. Its chatbot can hold human-like conversations and ask users specific questions to formulate website recommendations tailored to their answers. We spoke with Guy Sopher, Head of AI Assistant at Wix, about the chatbot experience, its challenges, and how AI helps solve user pain points.
Like they say, reality doesn’t always meet our expectations. At least, that’s how I can describe my first go at website building. After creating test websites in computer classes for years, I figured building a real one couldn’t be that hard. After all, I was still going to use a website builder.
But creating a website for your own brand was in a completely different ballpark from creating a fun and cute one for a middle school project. There were so many moving parts I didn’t understand. I wanted my blog to look professional and showcase my personality at the same time so it could be a proper home for my writing portfolio.
Before I knew it, I was lost on everything: design, plugins, layout, content, etc. So I shuffled onto YouTube and watched several tutorials to get back on track. But my experience can be avoided, especially now with AI. Wix, the leading website-building platform, has created an AI chat experience to help business owners design websites suited to their needs and brands.
“With the chat, we assist the user to understand what they need and how to build an online business. We do that by asking the user the most relevant questions about their business,” said Guy Sopher, Head of AI Assistant at Wix.
Business owners don’t always know what to expect when designing a website. So, Wix steps into the journey early on to guide users through the process. By asking the right questions, the AI chatbot will ensure every user gets a personalized website, which they can edit for more customization.
AI Chatbot Streamlines Website Building
If you have little experience with web design, it can be difficult to understand what should go into a website, especially from a business perspective. This problem is why Wix built its AI chatbot solution. The team wanted to create an experience that would simplify website building and meet the user right at the starting point of their journey.
“The goal is to offload all the hard work on the user. When users came to Wix, they didn’t understand what a website and an online business entails,” said Guy.
Wix had a questionnaire even before the AI chat experience. But Guy said those questions didn’t do much to streamline the process. Wix AI chat experience, however, helps businesses determine their website building needs by asking them focused questions about their business. This allows Wix to find the information they need to configure the best possible website.
“We’re asking them to tell us about their business, which is easy, and they love talking about it. Then, we use AI to convert these answers into the information we need to build the site. What kind of online business? Do you need an online store? Or do you need a booking service,” said Guy.
The more in-depth the answers are, the more personalized the final website will be. Once the questionnaire is over, Wix curates recommendations with essential components, including templates, images, text, and other applications. The user can then make personalized adjustments from the Wix dashboard.
“The fact is that the users love it, and it makes life much easier. All you have to do is talk about your business, which everyone loves to do,” said Guy.
The Journey From Wix ADI
Wix’s AI chat experience isn’t the company’s first go-around with AI. Wix was the first hosting company to integrate AI for website design and creation. In 2016, it launched Wix ADI — Artificial Design Intelligence, which helped eliminate significant challenges from the web design process.
“We started ADI, which is Artificial Design Intelligence. Starting from there, we understood how much AI can contribute to website building. And we started understanding the use cases and the best way to use AI to build websites and online businesses, said Guy.
But more AI technology has emerged since 2016. With the release of ChatGPT, the Wix team noticed an AI evolution was coming and started development immediately to provide users with more updated solutions. And the chatbot was one of the first solutions to come from that research and development process.
“Since we have a lot of experience with AI, we have a lot of user feedback and understand what AI features and content users are willing to use. So we use that depth of knowledge and feedback to help us create this product fast and with great quality,” said Guy.
Creating an AI chatbot with human-like conversational capabilities doesn’t come without challenges. The team had to reduce the likelihood of hallucinations — perception errors made by an AI model that results in inaccurate outputs — to establish the functionality and reliability of its large language models. Wix did so by focusing the conversation on what it knows users need to build a website. It also introduced several mechanisms to check the LLM and ensure accuracy.
“The beauty of Wix is that we give the user an editing capability of everything the AI suggests. So we give them a better starting point but also encourage them to review our recommendation to make sure that it is what they want their business to represent,” said Guy.
The Future of AI Is….
The future of AI is here, but there is still so much more to unfold. Evolving with speed, AI is on pace to revolutionize technology as we know it. Guy said he is grateful to be a part of a company that enables AI to be experimental and a revolutionary product. He also shared his thoughts on AI’s future.
“The future of AI is as a companion. I think one of the most promising parts of it is the fact that you are not alone. Users often have to go into uncharted territory. But suddenly, they have companions that can help them build an online business and succeed,” said Guy.
AI has helped companies across industries improve their processes and productivity. For Wix, it is no different. The Wix team has also released its AI Text Creator which enables users to create anything from creative titles to personalized text precisely formulated for their website, as well the AI Meta Tag Creator helping to improve SEO efficiency and visibility. And Wix’s AI innovation doesn’t seem to be going anywhere soon.
“Wix has the ability to create, set up, and manage businesses. All of that is going to be accompanied by a relevant AI product. Our other AI products are only the first step of a greater vision for generating websites using AI for Wix,” said Guy.