Wix vs WordPress SEO. Which content management system (CMS) is best for ranking in search engines?
Which CMS you used depends on what you’re trying to do with your site.
Are you just making a website because you’ve been told you need one? Are you looking for a glorified business card? Do you just want a place to send people so they can find all of your important information online?
You shouldn’t. That isn’t how the internet economy works.
If you are using your site like a business card, you need to somehow convince people to type in your web address in the first place.
But the way people find businesses today is by typing a keyword phrase in to Google, like “plumbers near me,” and clicking one of the first three names that pops up.
They’re not typing in your address, because they don’t know about you yet.
Search Engine Optimization, or SEO, solves this problem by boosting your position in the search engines.
So if you’re a plumber whose site has good SEO, then Google will rank you on the first page when someone types in those keywords.
Having a Wix website is like having a business card. Everyone has one. You can design it yourself for very little money, and it requires no prior web design or internet skills to set up or manage.
Ranking in the search engines, though, requires customized site content, as well as clean code on the backend. WordPress provides all that and more!
In this article, we will cover four key points on the SEO functionality of Wix and WordPress sites:
- The intended use of each platform
- Custom page URL’s
- Clean code
Using Wix vs WordPress
Wix is a popular, easy-to-use website builder. Designed to be accessible for non-technical beginners, it uses a drag and drop interface where “what you see is what you get.”
This makes it appealing for people who don’t have web design skills, or the budget to hire someone else.
However, its ease of use comes at a cost: its customization is quite limited. You can only use the templates that Wix provides, which means that every Wix site basically looks the same on the front end, and is exactly the same on the back end.
WordPress, on the other hand, has a definite learning curve.
WordPress is designed to let non-coders make functional websites, but it is not simply a “drag-and-drop” software. WordPress definitely requires training to use, and in order to get the look you want, you may need to make an additional purchase of a theme or plugin.
These different themes or features you use, however, can change the look and functionality of your site without altering code.
This customization is wide-ranging, allowing for complete flexibility regarding layout and design, ultimately allowing each and every site to have a unique design.
When people compare Wix and WordPress, they’re often looking at the usability differences. Wix fits the needs of a particular market segment that wants a website as a business card. They just want a place to send their visitors.
WordPress, however, can build a website that is designed not only to look beautiful once once visitors get there, but also to attract visitors by ranking well within search engines.
Ask any web developer or digital marketer about Wix vs WordPress, and the answer will always be WordPress.
For SEO, WordPress’s unchanging core code and customization features can be a significant advantage.
Using Wix For SEO
So is your Wix site doomed when it comes to SEO?
Not quite, but the platform isn’t always ideal. One of the biggest SEO problems in Wix is the way that it generates page URLs.
Let’s say you’re a plumber in Winchester, Vriginia.
On WordPress or other platforms with customizable permalinks, your URL might be:
It’s straightforward, it’s optimized for the term “well pumps,” and it’s easy for both search engines and people to process and understand.
But on Wix, you end up with something like:
That’s not nearly as pretty, and it’s not great for SEO, either.
Unlike in WordPress, in Wix, you can’t just edit and customize the permalink. That’s a pretty big turnoff for SEO professionals, developers, and marketers.
Those funky URLs are just the beginning. On the whole, Wix’s site builder may create nice looking sites from a visual design perspective, but the underlying code is messy.
That doesn’t bode well for SEO, either. Good Seo requires making your site easy to crawl for search engines, which helps them to figure out what your business is and where to rank you. Bad code just makes that harder.
Finally, Wix also doesn’t offer any SEO plugins to help you with your on-page optimization.
This is challenging for professionals, but it’s even more of a problem if you’re trying to build your personal or business website by yourself.
Also, if you ever want to migrate your Wix site to another platform like WordPress, it can be challenging, confusing, and oftentimes require massive redesign work.
Wix can work with SEO, but truthfully, that’s not what it’s intended for.
The SEO Benefits of WordPress
WordPress is the gold standard among content management systems, and for good reason.
It has a learning curve, but it’s not too difficult to learn. Plus, it’s versatile, customizable, and offers a huge range of plugins and themes.
That’s why if you ask a developer whether to use Wix or WordPress, they’ll almost always tell you that they prefer WordPress.
WordPress is great for SEO for three main reasons:
- Clean code
As we’ve already discussed, the URL’s in WordPress are clean and easy to read for both site visitors and search engines.
While some have argued that WordPress code is a mess, Daniel Pataki of Kinsta, a hosting company, says this:
Not using WordPress because “the code is a mess” is – to put it plainly – a dumb and shortsighted reason. While the core code is a bit of a jumble it is fast and secure. Any code written on top of that to extend the system can be written well.
The third place where WordPress stands out far and away from the competition is in providing excellent SEO plugins.
These plugins are downloadable software which you can put on your site to grade each page for its SEO structure, and to point out issues which may be causing you to rank lower than you should.
Two of the most popular are Yoast and All in One SEO, but these are far from the only options. These plugins guide you in optimizing your content for the keywords you’re trying to target, and make it easy to add a meta title and meta description.
And if you’re stuck, not sure what to do next or how to boost your rankings on your site, there’s a wealth of information available online.
There are tutorials, forums, and other resources that provide endless information about how to get the most out of WordPress. There is a whole industry built around WordPress, providing hosting, plugins, development, software, tutorials, and more.
Just so you don’t think that we’re the only ones advocating for WordPress, take a look at this statistic:
WordPress powers 26% of the web.
As only one of a multitude of content management systems, to have a quarter of the market as their market share, WordPress must be doing something right. They’re easy to design, edit, customize, and find online.
WordPress is Better than Wix for SEO
Wix is popular because it’s easily accessible for non-technical beginners, but its ease of use comes at a cost; it’s not very customizable and it generates messy code.
This isn’t great for your SEO.
If you really want to rank on the first page of Google for relevant keywords, then in a head-to-head match-up of Wix vs. WordPress, WordPress has a clear advantage.
There are good reasons why it’s the world’s leading CMS, and why so many websites are built with it. The next closest competitor only has 3.3% of market share. WordPress dominates on all levels.
Even if using WordPress for your website means that you need to pay a web developer instead of making the website yourself, the advantages of WordPress are worth it.
The only way to get found online is to rank well in the search engines, and WordPress can help you do just that.
If you have any questions about what type of site is best for you, or how to narrow down your goals and company objectives, don’t hesitate to contact Enable.
We specialize in strategic marketing, because we realized that your marketing is only as good as your strategy. That’s why we focus on building a strategy that doubles your leads, engages your clients, and wins your market.
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Jeremy is the Lead Designer & Owner of Enable. Jeremy is a small business connoisseur who helps the little guys conquer big. When he’s not designing websites or writing blogs, you’ll find him spending time with his wife and family.