There's a lot of hate floating around theSEO community regarding Wix SEO.
Some people wonder if it's even possible togenerate search traffic using the Wix platform.
Now, Wix obviously thinks you can.
In fact, they launched a contest in 2017 challengingthe world to outrank them for the keyword, “SEO hero.
” Winner takes home $50, 000.
Long story short.
Wix lost and doubts of using Wix for SEO continued.
But does anyone really have proof that Wix websites can't generate just as much search traffic as the next platform? Well, we compared SEO metrics from 3.
2 million Wix websites against the same number of WordPress domains.
And in this video, I'm going to show you the results of our data and a few reasons why some SEOs aren't fans of Wix when it comes to search engine optimization.
[music] What's up SEOs? Sam Oh here with Ahrefs, the SEO tool thathelps you grow your search traffic, research your competitors and dominate your niche.
Now, the goal today isn't to prove that oneCMS is better than the other.
I just want to bring some clarity throughreal data and let you decide for yourself.
So with that said, let's dig into the data.
To give you a quick background, we got ourlist of sample websites with the help of BuiltWith.
com, which is a service that shows you the differenttechnologies websites are using.
Using their API, we grabbed around 3.
2 milliondomains from Wix and roughly the same amount of websites using WordPress.
And with the help of our data scientist, weused Ahrefs' search traffic and backlinks data to draw our comparisons.
It's also important to note that we excludedsubdomains from our sample sites because other technologies or custom set ups could have been done there.
So the first thing we wanted to do was to getraw traffic stats.
So we created two buckets for each platformto better visualize the distribution of websites that get search traffic.
The first bucket were domains that get atleast some level of search traffic, and the second were domains that get more than 100search visits per month.
And here are the results.
We found that around 46.
1% of WordPress websitesgot at least some monthly search traffic, compared with only 1.
39% of Wix sites.
Now, for our second bucket, 8.
26% of the WordPresssample gets more than 100 monthly search visits whereas our Wix sample, was down to 0.
Now, it's pretty clear that on average, oursample list of WordPress sites get significantly more organic traffic than our list of Wix sites.
But it's too soon to make any conclusions.
There are numerous factors that influence organic traffic.
One of the main factors being backlinks, whichin my opinion speaks louder to the people behind the websites as opposed to the platform itself.
So we analyzed the average Domain Rating, average number of “dofollow” referring domains, and average monthly search traffic for each platform.
And if you're unfamiliar with these terms, Domain Rating is an Ahrefs metric which represents the overall strength of a website's backlinkprofile, and “dofollow” referring domains are simply value passing links from unique websites.
As a whole, you'll see that the mean, or average DR for our WordPress sites was nearly 3 times higher than Wix sites.
The number of “dofollow” referring domains wasmore than 22X higher for WordPress sites.
And for search traffic, you'll see that onaverage our list of WordPress sites gets around 49X the search traffic as our Wix sample.
Now, the thing with averages is that they aren't always the best measure to identify correlation.
So we also grabbed the median for each of these statistics.
And as you can see, the differences are wayoff compared to the mean.
So what does this all mean? Here's what our data scientist had to say: “When measuring central tendency of data, it'sbest to calculate both mean and median and compare the two values.
Generally speaking, if both values are not too different from each other, we use the mean.
But a considerable difference between themindicates that the data is skewed.
When the data is skewed, large values havean enormous impact, making the mean larger than the actual distribution that the data suggests.
In this case, the median is a more appropriateidea of the data distribution.
” To paint a super clear picture, let's say we had 10 websites and 9 of them had 0 monthly search visits.
And the one outlier had 1000 monthly search visits.
The mean, or the average, would be 100 searchvisits per month.
Now, if we were to take the median of thesesame websites, then we'd have a value of 0, which would be a better representation ofsearch traffic in this sample.
Looking at our data set again, you'll see that since the mean and median are so far off, the median would be a better representation, making correlation insignificant.
Now, we wanted to look deeper into our twobuckets, which again, were websites that get some kind of search traffic, and those thatget over 100 monthly search visits.
But this time, we added 3 extra layers to our analysis.
We leveled the sample sizes across the board.
So for each bucket, we randomly selected thesame number of WordPress domains as Wix domains to ensure an apples-to-apples comparison.
After all, there's no point comparing a wholearmy to just a few soldiers.
For each of our buckets, we looked into thenumber of keywords the websites ranked for in Google's top 10 search results.
We also summed up the traffic that these keywordsaccounted for.
We removed keywords that were exactmatches to the domain.
This would exclude traffic the domain getsfrom keywords referring to its own brand.
Here are the results for bucket #1.
You'll see that WordPress is higher than Wixsites for both the number of top 10 keyword rankings as well as the traffic these keywords account for.
But again, our data is insignificant as themean and medians are still quite a bit off.
Now, looking at the second bucket of websitesthat get over 100 monthly search visits is where things get interesting.
Both the mean and median aren't too far apart, and they show the same trend.
WordPress websites had a slightly higher numberof top 10 organic keyword rankings, but Wix sites got more organic traffic from their keywords.
Looking at this bucket a little deeper, you'llsee that Wix websites had a higher Domain Rating, but a lower number of “dofollow” referring domains.
So what this might be telling us is that oursample of Wix sites are getting more search traffic based on non-link related factors.
The first one that comes to mind for me are branded queries.
For example, Long John Silver's, a popularrestaurant chain, is a website that uses Wix.
And according to Ahrefs' Site Explorer, you'll see that they get around 139, 000 search visits per month.
Now, looking at their Organic keywords report, you'll immediately see that the majority of their traffic is actually the result of a strong brand name as opposed to more generic keywords, like ranking for “seafood restaurant.
” Now, there are no clear-cut conclusions where we can say that one platform is better than the next based on organic search traffic figures alone.
But there are a couple of clear things thatwe've seen based on our data.
First, it seems as though more “SEO” mighthave been done on WordPress sites than Wix.
And we're able to see this based on the hugedifferences in organic search traffic as a whole, as well as the number of referring domains pointing at these websites.
The second thing is that there doesn't appearto be a relationship between the platform used and being able to rank in Google's top10 search results.
On average, WordPress sites got more searchtraffic than Wix as a whole and for our first bucket of domains that got some kind of search traffic.
But Wix had more search traffic on domainsthat get more than 100 monthly search visits.
So unfortunately, there are no clear-cut conclusions.
But there are certain things you should know as an SEO practitioner or website owner about Wix vs.
First, when it comes down to the absolute basics of on-page SEO like titles, meta descriptions, and URLs, Wix is for the most part OK with pages.
But there are certain things in Wix that can't be customized, which can be more annoying than anything else.
For example, from my observation, the blogstructure seems to take on the URL structure of domain.
com/post/slug, which I'm personally not a fan of.
Also, when it comes down to anything custom, advanced, or technical, you're going to run into additional limitations.
In fact, Wix says: “We are unable to providesupport for external HTML codes that are added to Wix sites as the codes have not been tested by Wix.
” One example is if you plan to do multilingual SEO.
Wix doesn't support the hreflang tag at thetime of making this video.
A moderator said on their forum: “There is still no way to access code directly, even with WixCode.
As far as I know – due to security reasons.
So, if this tag is not in the SEO settings for the site – then it's impossible to add it.
” Another technical limitation related to SEOis the inability to modify your robots.
txt file, which is quite important in my opinion for larger sites.
Barry Adams said in this Twitter thread: “Wix relies on client-side JS to show content & links in most cases.
No JS equals no indexable content & no crawlable links.
Which, as you know, is terrible for SEO onmultiple levels.
” So here's my two cents on using Wix for SEO.
It all comes down to what you value.
Based on our data, if all you need are theabsolute basics for on-page SEO, then rest assured that our data supports that Wix sitesdon't necessarily have a hard time ranking in Google.
Wix is great for simply getting a basic website up fast and for regular maintenance like changingtext on your site, even if you don't have a technical bone in your body.
But if you plan on using SEO as a long-term strategy, or you're hiring an agency to do SEO for you, it may be advantageous to look into other platforms for scalability and customization.
Now, I'd love to hear from you.
What have your experiences been like usingWix for yours and your clients' websites? Let me know in the comments and if you enjoyedthis video, then make sure to like, share and subscribe for actionable SEO and marketing tutorials.
So until the next tutorial or data study, keep grinding away, and I'll see you in the next video.