This is a cautionary post for all the Wix bloggers to note that the Wix blog links are opening in a new tab by default. This can hamper the SEO performance of your Wix blog, so please take note of the update and make changes to your blog posts accordingly.
What are Wix Blog Links?
Here, by Wix Blog links, I'm referring to the internal and external links that you insert in the blog posts to help your users navigate from one blog post to another or from your blog to an external website. For example, this link will take you to the home page. This is an internal link.
What has changed?
Earlier, when these links were added to the blog post, by default they opened in the same tab, like this:
Now, the default settings have been changed by Wix to open in a new tab. This was an unannounced change and hence a lot of Wix bloggers might not be aware of it.
Why does it matter?
According to the best SEO practices, your internal links i.e. the links to your blog posts should always open in the same tab. This ensures that your bounce rate is low and the session time is high. It also keeps the reader at ease, imagine what would happen if each of your links opened in a new tab, the user experience would deteriorate significantly.
From an SEO perspective this means that you will be ranked poorly if your internal links are opening in the new tabs. Session time and bounce rate are known to affect the SEO rankings.
So, what should you do?
New Blog Posts
If you notice that the internal links of your Wix Blog are set to open in a new tab by default, make sure to deselect the 'Link opens in a new tab' option from 'Edit Link' (left click on the link to see a pencil).
Old Blog Posts
I did a random sample check of 10 of my Wix blog posts from last month and found that none of them has been affected by this change. However, when I edit the previous posts, especially if I add new links to them, all the links of the post change to open in a new tab including the no-follow links.
This is a big reason to worry if you're not aware of this Wix update. Because you will end up losing SEO points because of the no-follow tags being changed to do-follow and the open in the same tab being changed to open in a new tab by default for all your links.
So, if you are a Wix blogger, make sure to re-check all your links whenever you edit an old blog post.
The reason behind this change has not been disclosed, I'm not even sure why Wix set all links to open in new tab by default given that majority of the links added by bloggers to any blog post are internal links. But, hopefully, after reading this post, you'll be in a better position to recheck them.
Let me know if the issue gets resolved for you, would be grateful to get rid of the nuisance of re-editing the links again and again. You can message me here.