Urgh. Slow-to-load websites, is there anything worse? We've all been there. You've clicked through from Google, a Facebook ad, an email, etc., and the website takes forever to load. There's nothing more frustrating, and within seconds you click off the site, right?
The moral of the story: Loading times are crucial to visitor retention and the overall user experience. The faster the site, the more benefits it reaps…and every second makes a difference. Pages that load within two seconds have an average bounce rate of 9%, whereas those that take five seconds to load suffer a whopping 38%.
Larger brands are no exception. In fact, the BBC loses 10% of users for every extra second their site takes to load!
Don't worry; there's a solution to this pesky problem: Enter Wix Turbo.
In this review, we'll look at this new technology and how it improves existing Wix Sites. There's lots to discuss, so let's jump to it!
Wix is arguably the most intuitive and easy-to-use website builder on the market. Its drag and drop editor allows you to create stunning websites within minutes (with no coding or web design experience needed). Just choose a template and mold it to suit your brand using the many design elements Wix has to offer – image galleries, buttons, videos, widgets, etc.
Wix is the website building platform of choice for over 160 million people worldwide. With 500 templates to choose from, you're bound to find one that works for your industry. Whether you want to launch a personal site, online portfolio, eCommerce store, etc., Wix is sure to have the theme for you.
Wix comes as a monthly subscription. However, there's a freemium package available – which is great for familiarizing yourself with Wix's interface. But to connect your own domain name and unlock more storage and features, you'll have to upgrade to one of their affordable paid-for plans.
In recent years, Wix has continued to innovate its product, introducing Wix Corvid into the mix. This empowers web developers to build web applications with serverless computing and hassle-free coding. On top of that, Wix's new Editor X (read our Wix Editor X review) enables you to develop fluid sites with flexible grids and better breakpoint control.
And finally, Wix continues to help you build increasingly professional websites with its latest addition, Wix Turbo, the free technology that makes your Wix website run faster.
What's Wix Turbo?
Wix Turbo is one of the newest additions to Wix’s toolbox. It's the brand’s answer to fixing slow website loading times. Having partnered with Marvel Studios, Wix released Wix Turbo in early 2019 and achieves these quicker load times by optimizing Wix code and increasing its global load centers.
This is the secret sauce for enhancing the user experience on both desktop and mobile devices. Wix Turbo also aims to provide a pixel-perfect page layout, so that your visitors can enjoy your site at its very best.
What Wix Turbo Has to Offer
Wix Turbo is a free technology included with all Wix sites, and in essence, aims to improve or provide the following features:
With dramatically improved loading times, Wix Turbo ensures your images are near-on instantly visible. All your website's assets load in preview and boast picture-perfect results from the moment visitors clicks onto your site.
Wix Turbo uses CSS functionality (Cascading Style Sheets) to maintain the look and feel of your site with crystal clarity and minimum page load time. On top of that, your Wix site is also served by the data center closest to the website visitor, which guarantees a faster loading time and a better user experience.
Wix has also rewritten its site viewer to reduce IFrame applications. As a result, on-page animations are faster to load and feature higher quality.
Resilient Server Maintenance
Wix has distributed its data centers (DC) and content delivery networks (CDNs) across the US, Europe, and Asia, and has multiple backup servers worldwide. As a result, Wix sites are resilient against server maintenance and network outages.
Well, if a single DC's affected, the site's support by the other servers. So, no matter where your site visitors are located, they'll still be able to access your website from the nearest functioning server.
Wix also uses a multi-cloud approach, so if there's an issue with one of the clouds, it can switch to another to keep your site running smoothly.
Better Site Security
Wix Turbo comes with secure signup and login pages. The brand also continues to provide SSL certificates for all its sites. Plus, Wix regularly updates its software to patch up any vulnerabilities. So, rest assured, you'll never need to update the platform manually as you would with, say, WordPress.
Wix partners with Google to ensure your website's indexed with the search engine. You can even connect your domain with the Google Search Console to create a customized sitemap for Google to index. The process doesn’t take longer than thirty seconds, and it makes it easier for Google to rank your website – win-win!
Wix also makes it simple to customize your metadata, headings, meta tags, alt text, and more. All this is hinted at in Wix's SEO Wizard. This resource walks you through how to optimize your site for search engine optimization.
The Wix Speed Test Tool
If you’re unsure whether Wix Turbo has made a difference to your website, you can use Wix's Turbo Speed Test Tool. This checks your Wix website as though it was a regular visitor, providing insight into:
- How your audience perceives your site
- How long it takes to load
- When it becomes visible
- When animations and videos are ready to be played
- When buttons, menus, and other interactive elements can be clicked and used
While there are different site speed testing tools out there, like Google PageSpeed Insights, Wix's test is explicitly built to evaluate Wix websites. It also provides more insights, as the Google tool focuses only on when the site becomes visible. In comparison, Wix also tells you when your site actually becomes interactive.
Do I Need to Install Wix Turbo?
Good news! Wix users don't need to install Wix Turbo, and any updates are automatically applied to your website.
Bear in mind, however, that if you're using an older Wix element, you might need to follow some simple steps to update them. This is true for the old online store, blog, or list builder. Wix also no longer supports the old Flash Editor. All major browsers are phasing out Flash elements. However, Wix offers a tool that converts existing flash sites into HTML – so you don't need to worry about handling that yourself!
Wix Turbo also doesn't work with their old HTML editor, which is gradually being phased out. As such, Wix recommends switching to its newest editor to benefit from all the perks Wix Turbo has to offer.
How to Improve Your Website Speed (Further)
There are a few steps you can take to ensure Wix Turbo works even better for your site. As such, it's vital to follow the best practices listed below so that your site performs to its full potential:
Caching is usually automatically enabled on most Wix sites. However, you can manually turn it off inside of the Wix editor. Don't do this. Caching allows you to create a cache when a visitor clicks on your website. If another visitor boasting a similar demographic profile clicks onto your site, this cache is reused to speed up the website's loading time further.
In short, caching enables your website to improve its loading speeds based on temporarily saved information. Make sense?
Avoid Too Much Media
Avoid too many images and videos on your website. This kind of dynamic content significantly slows down your site’s performance.
Optimize Your Images
When uploading images to your Wix galleries, they're usually their full size. But, this isn't always ideal for loading times or image quality. This is why its best to optimize your images by compressing their file sizes, keeping the final display size in mind (before uploading them to Wix). Then once you've done that, upload and publish them onto your website.
How Much is Wix Turbo?
As we've already hinted at, Wix Turbo is a free update to all Wix sites, new and old. You don’t need to spend a dime to benefit from this speed and performance boost. If you’re not yet signed up to a Wix site, you'll need to subscribe to one of its plans. These range from $14 to $39 a month for website plans, and $23 to $49 a month for their business and ecommerce plans. Wix also provides a free package which is excellent for testing its website builder and features.
Thinking of Switching to Wix Turbo?
Fast loading website speeds are certainly an excellent reason to consider a website builder, especially when this gives you an edge over other sites. But, here are some of the other advantages of using Wix, which are certainly worth bearing in mind:
Ease of Use:
With its drag-and-drop editor and easy-to-use visual elements, Wix is incredibly intuitive. You’ll understand its user interface within minutes and be able to create your website using one of their customizable templates just as fast.
Wix also benefits from a thriving community and in-editor assistance. So, rest assured, you'll get all the support you need to design, launch, and manage your website. Simply click the help symbol if you’re unsure about an element, and you're led to the relevant documentation page.
Wix boasts some of the most affordable pricing on the market. For a personal website or portfolio, its lower-tier plans provide everything you need to hit the ground running.
Wix has over 500 professionally designed templates to choose from. These cover various categories, from portfolios to personal websites, small business sites, and informative websites and blogs. With its visual editor, it's easy to make the most out of over 100 design elements to customize your site.
Wix also provides access to a library of stock images to spruce your site up with. This is perfect for newbies and anyone wanting to create a quick, good-looking site.
It's also worth noting that with Wix's higher-tiered plans, you can access your site’s CSS code. This is especially handy if you have a bit of coding know-how for bringing your exact vision to life. That being said, if you're a web designer, Wix's capabilities aren't as sophisticated as its competitors. For instance, you'll find a more complex image editor with providers like Squarespace.
Expand Your Site’s Functionality with Wix's App Marketplace
Wix's app market provides hundreds of plugins you can easily install with just a click. Many of these are tested and approved by Wix itself and will integrate seamlessly with your site. These work wonders for extending the functionality of your website, giving you the chance to add an online store, blog, social media integrations, and much more.
The Disadvantages of Using Wix
Now, for the drawbacks…
You Can't Switch Between Templates
Once you've decided on a template with Wix, you're stuck with that template. Whereas, other website builders allow you to switch between templates without losing your content, making it easy to redesign your site and add a new flair to it. In contrast, if you want to change your template with Wix, you lose your existing content and have to start from scratch.
You Can’t Transfer Your Website
Similar inflexibility is evident in as much as you can't transfer your site to another provider. So, if you ever decide to leave Wix, you'll need to rebuild your site from the ground up with your new platform.
Premium Plans are Single-Site Only
This might not be a drawback if you only need one website. However, agencies and freelancers likely won’t find what they need in Wix, as it only permits them to work on one site from their account.
Some Important features are Reserved for Pricier Plans
Yes, this is a common grumble with any SaaS provider – and Wix is no different.
This is a question of how much you're willing to pay for more sophisticated features. For instance, tracking and analytics require a premium plan – which, if you're serious about your business, are undoubtedly worth shelling out for.
Similarly, you can also only remove Wix's branding when you upgrade to the paid service. Overall, this is common for the industry. The Wix free plan is mostly a good way to test their editor to see if it's possible to create the site you want using their platform.
Wix Turbo – Our Verdict
Wix Turbo is just one of many innovations Wix provides to its customers as it continues to evolve. With this new and improved technology, website load times are better than ever before, images are clearer, and site uptimes are more resilient.
In our opinion, there's no downside to this upgrade, and for Wix users, it's entirely free. Even better, you don’t need to put any effort into getting it up and running. Most sites automatically update themselves to start using Wix Turbo.
This new feature certainly adds another advantage to using Wix. However, in the end, the core features and pricing of the website builder remain crucial factors as to whether Wix is the best website builder for you.
While the platform offers many perks and constant innovations, it remains best suited to those looking for a fast and intuitive experience. If you're after a simple website, Wix gets the job done.
However, if you're looking to create:
- A more complex online store or blog
- Require advanced design features,
- Want to build an extensive and nuanced website
…then Wix Turbo isn't enough of a reason to switch providers.
We hope you’ve enjoyed this review. Let us know in the comments below what you think of Wix’s newest upgrades. We look forward to hearing from you soon!