While performing my semi-annual site review for CfBlogs.org to determine active blog sites, I came across an article from DebugBear. This article indicates that the average lighthouse score for WordPress is 32%, and the average for Wix is 72%.

After reading the DebugBear article, I wanted to see how these scores compare to ColdFusion-based sites. A recent test by Brad Wood from Ortus suggests that ColdFusion is the second fastest-performing web language.

If Brad's findings are correct, ColdFusion-driven blog sites should perform better than most of these platforms, as Wix is similar to node.js in that it uses JavaScript, and WordPress uses PHP, one of the slower languages, according to this study.  

In this article, we will analyze the active ColdFusion-oriented blogs driven by ColdFusion or WordPress and see how they compare.

An Image is Worth More Than 25 Thousand Words!

First impressions count. Google recommends using a hero image of at least 1200 pixels wide for every post. However, an optimized 1200x500 pixel .jpg image can easily exceed 150kb!

According to Quora, 1KB is equal to around 167 words. Using this math- there are approximately 25,050 words in 150kb! 

Unfortunately, even though Google recommends using images for visual appeal, Google does not factor images into its lighthouse score. Achieving a high lighthouse score is much easier when a site lacks images, but these sites also lack visual appeal.

While my results do not change the lighthouse score, I have added two extra columns to indicate the blog site's visual appeal. The banner column indicates if there is media in the top section of the page and/or a background image. The hero column specifies if most of the posts have a hero image, which can also be a thumbnail. 

Testing Hardware

Google Lighthouse Performance scores depend on the hardware and internet connection they are tested on. The scores may be higher or lower, depending on the machine. See https://developers.google.com/web/tools/lighthouse/variability for more information.

In this test, I used Windows 11 Home running on a workstation with an AMD Ryzen 3900X 12 Core/24 thread processor, 32 GB RAM, and an RTX-3070 GPU using a dedicated gigabit ethernet connection.

ColdFusion Blogs Testing Methodology

I tested ten different popular blog sites that were driven by Adobe ColdFusion. I used the cfblogs.org aggregator (that I maintain) and tested all of the known sites with a post within the last two years and verified that all sites were driven by ColdFusion. 

Most ColdFusion blogs were driven by non-ColdFusion software, such as Blogger and WordPress. I did not include these non-ColdFusion-driven sites in this test. 

Five of these ColdFusion blogs use BlogCfc, an older library that is no longer maintained. Two of the blogs are custom ColdFusion sites, one site uses Mura, one site uses ContentBox, and one is driven by Galaxie Blog (the blog that you are reading here).

I tested the blog's landing page, not an individual post. I tested each site at least three times. I discarded the lowest score and rounded up the average. These tests took place on Saturday Evening, 4/27/2024. The lighthouse scores may be elevated a bit as the network traffic on Saturday evenings is probably lower than it would be during the normal workday.

ColdFusion Blogs Lighthouse Scores

30% of all ColdFusion Driven Blogs Have Perfect Google Lighthouse Performance Scores!

  1. Ben Nadel's site, one of the most popular ColdFusion blogs, has perfect scores across the board! Google Lighthouse rewards a perfect lighthouse score with animated fireworks scene. If you have never seen this, head over to  https://www.bennadel.com and run a Google Lighthouse test.
  2. Charlie Arehart's blog also had a perfect Google Lighthouse performance score. Charlie's blog has been running for over 17 years and has over 600 ColdFusion-related posts. It is one of the most improved sites since my last annual CF site walk-through and is now mobile-friendly. 
  3. Pete Freitag's site has been active since 2002 and has a perfect performance lighthouse score. Pete, the founder of Foundeo, is an industry-leading security expert. 

The rest of the ColdFusion blog sites have excellent lighthouse scores; the lowest is 81%, and the average lighthouse score for all ColdFusion-driven active blogs is 93.4%

Name Blog Engine Banner Hero Score
Ben Nadel Custom ColdFusion Blog true false 100
Charlie Arehart - Server Troubleshooting BlogCFC false false 100
Pete Freitag Custom ColdFusion Blog false false 100
Akbarsait's Blog Custom ColdFusion Blog false false 98
Gregory's Blog (using Abstract Blue and Delicate Arch Themes) Galaxie Blog true true 93
Aaron West's Technology Blog BlogCFC true false 92
ColdFusion Muse BlogCFC true false 90
Jeffry Houser's Blog BlogCfc false false 90
South of Shasta Mura true true 90
Ortus Solutions ColdBox true true 81

The average lighthouse score for all ColdFusion-driven active blogs is 93.4%

Wix Blogs Lighthouse Methodology and Scores

Unfortunately, I could not perform an apples-to-apples test using Wix-driven tech sites that cover the ColdFusion community; there are none. Instead, I tested ten popular Wix Blog sites. 

I also did not want to replicate DebugBear's tests—they seemed to have tested different website builder platforms and did not divulge the URLs used in their test.

I want to compare blog sites, not website builders, and I searched for popular Wix sites and randomly tested ten to compare blog sites or sites laid out in a blog format with various independent articles.

I found these sites using https://www.wix.com/blog/blog-examples and https://www.google.com/search?q=popular+wix+blog+sites. I did not test sites that did not appear to be blog or news-related, such as https://www.allthefood.ie/.

Name Blog Engine Banner Hero Score
Zion Adventure Photog Wix true true 89
All of the Food Wix true  true 87
Mom Boss Life WIX true  true 86
Mikaela Reuben WIX true  true 84
P.S. & Co. WIX true  true 80
Brain of Brian Comics WIX true  true 79
Bonsie WIX true  true 76
Bella Bloom WIX true  true 72
Hair Comes the Bride WIX true  true 71
Tobias Becs WIX true  true 63

Wix has a 78.7 Average Lighthouse score

WordPress Blogs Lighthouse Methodology

Until the last several years, there were no modern ColdFusion blogging platforms, and many ColdFusion-oriented bloggers migrated to WordPress or other blogging platforms. This allows me to compare ColdFusion-oriented tech blogs using native ColdFusion and WordPress.

This should provide a more accurate comparison. It is not fair to compare a ColdFusion tech blog directly against other immensely popular tech blogs like news.microsfoft.com, as the ColdFusion-oriented blogs typically use far less media to render. 

However, I want to test popular WordPress sites to compare Wix and WordPress directly. The first table shows the results of the ColdFusion-oriented blogs, and the second table shows the results of the most popular WordPress sites. 

ColdFusion WordPress Site Scores:

I tested all active ColdFusion-oriented blog sites using WordPress as a blogging platform:

Name Blog Engine Banner Hero Score
TeraTech WordPress true  true 99
Ben Forta WordPress true  true 98
Evagoras Charalambous WordPress false false 91
CHK Consulting WordPress true true 84
Chris Tierney WordPress false false 82
Fusion Reactor WordPress true true 79
Adobe ColdFusion Blog WordPress true true 72
Russ Michaels Consulting WordPress true true 72
Tech Code WordPress true false 49
80.6% Average Score        


Most Popular WordPress Site Scores:

I used https://www.google.com/search?q=popular+Wordpress+sites and https://www.quora.com/What-are-the-most-popular-WordPress-blogs to find these sites.

These WordPress lighthouse scores are all over the map. This may be because these sites are enormously popular and have a lot of traffic.

Name Blog Engine Banner Hero Score
Microsoft News WordPress true true 92
TED Blog WordPress true true 91
Sony Music WordPress true true 82
NGINX WordPress true true 82
Tech Crunch WordPress true true 76
NY Times WordPress true true 66
BBC America WordPress true true 66
The New Yorker WordPress true true 61
Time Magazine WordPress true true 49
Rolling Stone WordPress true true 39

Average 70.4% 


These test results lend some credence to Brad Woods's article suggesting that ColdFusion is one of the fastest programming languages. When comparing ColdFusion Blog sites, sites using ColdFusion-driven blogs are about 13% faster than those using WordPress (93.4 vs. 80.3%). However, the ColdFusion tech blogs running on WordPress have more images to render, which may lower the lighthouse scores.

It is possible to obtain a near-perfect Lighthouse score with WordPress if you're willing to pay for premium plugins such as WP Rocket, as TeraTech has done. TeraTech considers themselves experts at ColdFusion; they seem to know a thing or two about WordPress as well!

Ben Forta's site is another outstanding example of a WordPress site done well. 

That said, Galaxie Blog (which I authored) and the Ortus site running on ColdBox handle images and rich media just as well as any WordPress site. Unfortunately, until recently, no modern alternative ColdFusion blogging platforms have been available to the ColdFusion community. However, Ortus ColdBox and Galaxie Blog have changed this.

The results also verify DebugBears results that suggest that Wix has better lighthouse scores than WordPress; however, the results appear much closer in my testing. Unfortunately, it is hard to compare Adobe ColdFusion directly against Wix.

I will let the results speak for themselves here. 

Further Reading