When it comes to content management systems, we know that the undisputed champion is WordPress. But there is a broad content management system landscape that essentially competes among each other for second place.
In terms of market share, the top 5 content management systems are:
- 65.2% – WordPress
- 6% – Shopify
- 3% – Joomla
- 2.5% – Wix
- 2.6% – Squarespace
Today we’re going to look at WordPress and compare it to one of these contenders in the second tier: Wix! More specifically, we’re going to compare them in terms of their site performance and speed. And even more specifically, we’re going to compare their Core Web Vitals performance.
The following assessment is based on websites that have scored a “good” in terms of the specific Core Web Vitals metric.
WordPress versus Wix
First Input Delay
First Input Delay measures how long it takes for a website to become interactive (for users to be able to interact with links, buttons, dropdown menus, etc).
In this round, WordPress comes out as the winner.
Between May and July of 2021, WordPress’s First Input Delay performance increased from 89.4% to 95.7%. To be fair to Wix, they were not far behind, and its performance in May was better than WordPress. Yet its improvements to July were marginal compared to WordPress, which overtook it.
Wix’s First Input Delay between May and July increased from 93.8% to 94.6%.
Largest Contentful Paint
Largest Contentful Paint measures how long the main content takes to load and is ready for a user to interact with it.
In this round, Wix is the winner.
Between May and July of 2021, Wix’s Largest Contentful Paint increased by 4% from 29.2% to 33.4%. Meanwhile, for WordPress, they showed much less improvement and also started from a lower level. From May to July, its Largest Contentful Paint score went from 27.5% to 28.1%
Cumulative Layout Shift
Cumulative Layout Shift measures how much elements shift across the page while it is downloading. Pages with jumping elements can be extremely frustrating and leads to users jumping ship in search of other sites.
In the final round, deciding the winner in this battle, Wix came out on top.
From May to July, WordPress’s score for Cumulative Layout Shift actually worsened, going from 60.5% to 59.9%. Contrastingly, Wix’s Cumulative Layout Shift score went the other way and increased, increasing by 7% to 80.5%, making it clearly better than WordPress in terms of Cumulative Layout Shift.
Overall Core Web Vitals Performance
Between May and July of 2021, WordPress improved its overall Core Web Vitals performance by 2%. This is a breakdown of its monthly development:
- May: 17.1%
- June: 18.9%
- July: 19.1%
Meanwhile, Wix improved its overall Core Web Vitals performance by 6%. This is a breakdown of its monthly development:
- May: 22.6%
- June: 28.3%
- July: 28.5%
From this macro perspective, we can see that Wix has a 9% edge over WordPress when it comes to the performance of Core Web Vitals.
We can see that back in May Wix only led WordPress by 5.5% yet since then Wix has surged ahead and by July, Wix’s lead stretched to 9.4%.
So what is happening?
The approach undertaken by Wix in terms of managing their web tech is simply superior to WordPress, given that it is better able to control and tweak each page element. In contrast, because WordPress operates in the open (as an open-source CMS), it has thousands of third-party devs that contribute plugins and themes, etc, which likely negatively impact the performance of a page.
So for now, strictly in terms of Core Web Vitals performance, Wix edges its largest competitor, WordPress.