I analyze numerous sites daily of businesses wanting SEO help that can’t understand why Google hates their website. Many of these sites are appealing, well designed modern websites, some of these sites even belong to web development and SEO companies. On the surface everything often looks great but what’s going on underneath? Was something totally overlooked?
The moment of truth occurs when you analyze the site with a free service like GTmetrix which will show you how well a site is technically optimized. Many sites don’t get above a C rating at GTmetrix, many are in the D-E-F range which is unacceptable.
I’ve seen firsthand search rankings improve just by fixing technical and performance issues on websites. Google probably isn’t going to show as much love to your slow loading, technically inferior website and that’s just a fact of life.
I always strive for an A-B scoring, preferably an A. Not all of the issues on the list of GTmetrix suggestions are always fixable on all server/site setups but most of them are.
WordPress Websites Require Performance Optimization
WordPress is a great platform and very SEO friendly right out of the box, my platform of choice for so many reasons. But it has no built in caching and once you add a heavy theme and several plugins it requires some performance optimization. With a little extra effort though you can have your WordPress site performing as well or better than some HTML/CSS sites.
I just revamped this version of the site last night and once I had successfully migrated the new site I went to work on some basic SEO and Performance Optimization after getting two C ratings for page speed and Y-slow at GTmetrix, even after installing WP Super Cache.
If you check out the GTmetrix report you can see that it needed some work. The page load time and page size weren’t awful but the number of requests was way too high.
I determined that WP Super Cache wasn’t performing optimally for this site so I tried a new plugin that seems to work well and was quick and easy to setup, WP Fastest Cache. Then I made a few adjustments at Cloudflare and voila…
So if you click the link you can see that the only thing really left to do is to scale the images down on the front page, which I may or may not do. I’m happy with the performance of the site but if I get bored I might try to improve a little more. Hopefully Google will take my efforts into account and show me some love soon.
WP Performance Optimization Plugins I Use
- WP Super Cache – Usually my caching plugin of choice.
- WP Fastest Cache – Just started using it, seems great, maybe my new caching plugin of choice.
- W3 Total Cache – Great plugin, used it for a long time but can be hard to configure. Probably best for more complex WP sites.
- Remove Query Strings From Static Resources – Great install and forget plugin that does what it says, I use it on every site I build.
Free Cloudflare CDN
Cloudflare‘s free CDN service is a Godsend for optimizing your site and I highly encourage you to take advantage of it, I use it on all of my sites.
If you need someone to performance optimize your WordPress site send us a message through our contact form and I’ll do for your site(s) what I do for my own.