WordPress vs Wix: The Ultimate Battle 2021

WordPress vs Wix is an ongoing debate topic among web developers and designers. So, we decided to compare these two tools and see which one is better.

Although you can create websites with both tools, there are several key differences. And comparing them is a tough thing to do but we decided to do it anyway.

I love WordPress and for me, it’s the best tool for website creation, but the reason behind this comparison was the recent Wix campaign that caused some controversies.


Table Of Content

What Are The Differences Between WordPress & Wix?

We can’t talk about every different aspect of these tools but let’s discuss the main ones.

First of all, WordPress is a Content Management System (CMS). It is a fully featured application that allows us to create any kind of website. You need to have a hosting where you install WordPress, connect your domain, and then build websites with themes and plugins.

WordPress powers 40% of the web

There are hundreds and thousands of free or premium WordPress themes and plugins. You can modify them, add templates, create your own custom themes, etc.

On the other hand, Wix is a totally different tool. It is a platform where you can register, choose one of their template which has simple customization options, and create a website. You can use your custom domain your their default domain.

Recently Wix added a new tool called EditorX which is a more powerful tool and allows us to create more customizable websites.

So, with both tools, you can create any kind of websites like blogs, portfolios, eCommerce websites, and more. But they work very differently.

I think that Wix is a great tool but it’s better for simple websites like small portfolios, landing pages, etc. For blogs, eCommerce, and big websites, we recommend WordPress. Also, Wix is more beginner-friendly.

Process Behind This Case Study

The idea of WordPress vs Wix was born when Wix started mentioned the marketing campaign. But I didn’t know how to compare them because both work differently.

I thought a lot and decided to compare them with Google’s Lighthouse tool and see how they perform according to Google. It gives websites a score in four metrics:

  1. Performance
  2. Accessibility
  3. Best Practices
  4. SEO

Google gives a score for each category from 0 to 100 where 0-49 is bad, 50-89 means it needs improvement, and 90-100 is a good score.

In addition to that, I also measured for web vitals which are very important for Google. We check these websites for three vitals:

  1. First Contentful Paint (FCP) – Marks the time at which the first text or image is painted.
  2. Largest Contentful Paint (LCP) – Marks the time at which the largest text or image is painted.
  3. Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS) – Measures the movement of visible elements within the viewport.

And I chose 30 websites randomly. Fifteen of them were built with Wix and the other fifteen with WordPress. Because we wanted to compare different types of websites, we chose five blogs, five portfolios, and five eCommerce for each platform.

As you can see there are a variety of websites to compare. Of course, there are hundreds of other websites built with these tools, but for this WordPress vs Wix case study, 15-15 websites were enough.

Now let’s see what the results were for this ultimate battle.

WordPress vs Wix Results

The first half of the results show how well these tools performed in Google’s four categories – performance, accessibility, best practices, and SEO. Where was the problem, which platform had the best performance, and more.

In the second half of the results, we show you how well optimized they were for FCP, LCP, and CLS. And it was tested for mobile devices.

Let’s start and see the results.

Performance battle

Performance shows how well-optimized a website is for speed and how fast the page load is. According to Google, it is one of the most important things for website ranking.

It tells us how optimized images are, how different scripts are loading, what is blocking the page load, etc. And it was the toughest category for both tools and the worst results were in this category.

Also Read: How To Optimize Images For Better Speed

The lowest score a website got in performance was a 2 and it was a Wix website, an online shop. The best score was 100, which was the blog built with WordPress.

On average, more than 30% of WordPress websites had a bad score but more than 70% of Wix websites had a bad score. No Wix website had a good score.

WordPress vs Wix performance test

And the interesting thing was that only eCommerce websites had a bad score for WordPress, where all three types of Wix websites had a bad score.

It means that the main speed issues WordPress has been in online stores. And it is weird that all the Wix blogs had a score below 50. The average score for blogs was 28.

WordPress website speed and performance is depended on different things such as the quality of hosting, themes, and plugins. Because not every theme and plugin is optimized. Also, VPS or cloud hosting has better performance than shared hosting.

But in Wix it’s different. They host websites on their platform and although they have different plans, there is not a big difference in performance between plans.

So, that was the most awkward thing for me. The highest performance score a Wix website had was 73 and only four websites had a score between 50-89.

Accessibility Battle

Accessibility results were better than performance for this WordPress vs Wix comparison. Websites had a much better score in total and there were no major issues.

This category checks websites for different thing such as color contrast between elements, alt attribute for images are buttons clickable, etc.

Also Read: Web Vitals Case Study

Only two websites had a score below 50 and both were using WordPress. But nothing special – one had 48 and another 49.

The highest score was 100 and it was on the Wix website. On average, 73% of Wix websites had a good score and only 40% of WordPress websites had a good score. Wix is a winner here.

accessibility results for WP and Wix

In general, there were no major issues here. Apart from that two websites, all the websites performed well and all the minor issues could be improved easily.

It seems that Wix is optimized better for accessibility than WordPress but the average score for WordPress was 81 which is not so bad.

Best Practices Battle

Best Practices is all about trust, safety, and user experience. It finds bad scripts, safety issues, detects vulnerabilities, and more. So, it is important to have a good score in this section.

There were no major issues here. It was not perfect but easily improvable. WordPress website had the lowest score which was 67 and the best was 100 – still WordPress.

The average score for WordPress was 83.5 and 87.4 for Wix. No big difference. And the average score for all 30 websites was 85.5.

Google's best practices score

From these fifteen WordPress websites, 40% of them had a score above 89 against 46.67% of Wix websites. The most issues WordPress had was in eCommerce.

But the issues for both tools were very minor. Nothing special. All in all, every website was pretty well optimized.

SEO Battle

And the last metric is SEO which checks how well websites are optimized for search engines. It’s very important for ranking.

And Wix was the winner here because more than 70% of websites had a score above 90 which means very good. Unfortunately, only 40% of all WordPress websites had a good score.

SEO metrics for Google

But the difference was not big. From fifteen WordPress websites, nine had the Needs Improvement score but 7 of them were between 85 and 89. So, it is almost perfect.

But it was the same with Wix. No website had a score below 82 which is an amazing result. It shows that Wix is very well optimized for SEO.

But you have to remember that, although WordPress themes can be optimized, you have to do additional optimization for SEO.

And Wix is already an optimized platform and you don’t have to do many tweaks yourself. But this doesn’t mean that Wix is not good. Results show that Wix is the winner in SEO.

FCP, LCP, And CLS

Now it is time to see how well optimized these thirty websites were Google’s web vitals. We test them for First Contentful Paint, Largest Contentful Paint, and Cumulative Layout Shift.

Who won this WordPress vs Wix battle in this category? Well, there was no winner. Although WordPress had a better score in LCP, Wix was better in CLS. So, it is a tie.

first contentful paint

FCP was almost the same but Wix had the problem in LCP. According to Google, the best score for LCP is 1.2s or less. And on average, Wix websites had 8.82 which is very high. The lowest score Wix had was 4.7.

LCP for WordPress

The average for WordPress was 5.33 and the lowest was 2.5 and it was a blog. So, on average WordPress performed much better than Wix in LCP. But eCommerce websites had a tough time for both platforms.

And for the last parameter which is CLS, Wix was a big winner. Cumulative Layout Shift measures how well an element is fixed on a page. If an element like button bounces during page load, it is bad and will have a low CLS score.

WordPress vs Wix CLS

CLS mustn’t be above 0.1 and on average, Wix had a score of 0.01 which is amazing. Actually, only two websites had CLS score above 0.

Where WordPress’s average score for CLS was 0.31 which is a bit high. There were WordPress websites with 0 scores but there were websites with 1.98, 0.45, and 0.35.

So, FCP was almost tied, LCP was won by WordPress, and Wix won the CLS battle.

WordPress vs Wix Battle Winner

Now, to pick a winner from WordPress vs Wix battle, we have to look at it from a different perspective. I can’t say that one won over another.

In one way, Wix becomes the winner because there were seven categories and Wix won four of them, where WordPress won only on three.

Here are the winners by categories:

  • Performance – WordPress
  • Accessibility – Wix
  • Best Practices – Wix
  • SEO – Wix
  • FCP – WordPress
  • LCP – WordPress
  • CLS – Wix

But if we look at it from another angle, there is a different picture and a different winner.

The most important thing for a website is speed and although both tools had the worst score in this category, WordPress still was a winner. Also, FCP and LCP have much more importance than CLS. Still, WordPress was the winner here.

Although the percentage says that one was better than the other, there were very few differences in scores. So, we can say that it is a tie.

Also Read: Top Ad Networks For Monetization

Also, WordPress performance is mainly dependent on hosting, themes, plugins, developers, etc. And Wix is not. So, it is more difficult to say that Wix is better than WordPress or vice versa.

But to say that WordPress is glitchy, or has problems, or slow is not right. Every tool or technology has its pros and cons, strong sides, and issues.

Both tools are great for creating websites and you can build amazing, modern, and professional websites with WordPress and Wix.

So, I say that result of WordPress vs Wix is a tie. Both are great tools. Everything is dependent on the situation, type of website, and personal preferences.

Full Results Of WordPress vs Wix
WordPressWix
Performance60.235.13
Accessibility81.4693
Best Practices83.5387.46
SEO88.892.93
FCP2.792.89
LCP5.338.82
CLS0.310.01

You can clearly see that there is no big difference. Both tools are optimized for Google in almost the same way.

Conclusion

It was fun and very interesting to do this test. This small WordPress vs Wix case study showed us that both tools are great and you can create any website without problems.

You can use which one you like and it will work. But for beginners and simple websites, I recommend Wix because it’s easier. But you can create any kind of website with WordPress. Also, it is a much more powerful tool with more customization freedom.

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