The Truth About Google PageSpeed Insights and Why you Shouldn’t Care

You know your website needs to be fast, that’s why you are here reading this article. You may have already headed down the path to a ninja like speed on your website, following’s advice.  But now you are wondering about how to measure your website’s speed. There is a wide assortment of speed checking tools, of which, one of the big ones is Google PageSpeed Insights.  Perhaps you have used this tool to check your website’s speed already. You may not have like the results.  Perhaps your “grade” was low or you see red and orange warnings in the report, and that was after all your optimizations!
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7 coding practices that will speed up your WordPress theme & plugins.

When using a framework like WordPress and PHP, you will often find that there are more ways than one to achieve your goal in code.  Often shortcuts are made due to time constraints or even lack of knowledge.

I manage a website that gets quite a bit of traffic, over 1.4 million visitors a month to be exact. When traffic is this high, your WordPress theme and plugins can slow you down if not coded with optimizing best practices. I review each plugin installed code for best practices, and sometimes I adjust the code to improve the performance. I often start noticing these improvements on sites that get as little as 20,000 visitors a month.  And if you are not on a fast and optimized host like WpEngine, you will see these improvements help in a much lower traffic site.

So, if you code themes, plugins, or even do small PHP modifications to your WordPress site, then you will want to employ these best practices to speed up your code.

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Get a fast speed increase for WordPress with PHP 7

In the search for all the things that will make your WordPress powered website go faster, there is no other option with the greatest return than updating your website’s PHP version to PHP 7.

Over 82% of the web runs on PHP, the programming language that runs WordPress. And recently, PHP released version 7, packed full with new features and very much needed optimizations to the language. PHP 7 was released in early December, so when my favorite hosting company WPEngine announced they were doing site upgrades to PHP 7, I jumped on the opportunity for the easy win.

The WPEngine crew handled the upgrade from my PHP 5.6.30 to PHP 7 within a day and it was seamless. The site we upgraded is a Woocommerce based site that receives about 50k in traffic a month. Myself and office staff immediately saw a big difference in the responsiveness of WordPress, especially in the admin where many of our performance upgrades don’t affect.  I would say we had about a 30% decrease in load time. For a site like ours, this was huge!

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