As I am sure you are aware, Google recently changed there search algorythm and is now heavily weighting pages for page load time as well as relavence. Consequently, they have released a new set of tools to gaugue how they will see and rank your page. All the primary suggestions for optimization are not supported by Dynamix and this is severely effecting page rank and organic search traffic.
Can you please assess the following primary, "Highest Priotiy" suggestions by Google and advise as to (a) is there another way to accomplish this; and (b) is there a timeframe for supporting these.
1. Defer Parsing of Java Script
3. Combine Images into CSS Sprites
4. Google's mod_pagespeed which is recommended for Apache users seems to break the theme
I understand that these changes have come as a shock to many of us. I apologize for being so forward as to ask, but we are planning what our custom development needs will be in the next few weeks and just want to better understand your roadmap.
That's a question I'm interested in too. I've made an important work to optimize my website based on DynamiX and the result is not good enough to my opinion though I've got an A Spage Speed Grade and a C on Yslow. My website: creation sites internet 74
The page load times of DynamiX are already very acceptable. Measures have already been taken to optimise the theme. Yes, there are areas like the CSS sprites which could be improved, but they really wouldn't make much of a difference.
1. Less important scripts are loaded on page load as opposed to on ready – this allows the page content to load before any of the "nice" features load.
2. The scripts are already compressed and combined.
3. This area could do with some improvement, but as said the theme already performs very well.
Use http://tools.pingdom.com – I've just done a test on the demo site home page for DynamiX. It scored 3.7 seconds, this is very acceptable considering it has a 3d gallery and 5 other image galleries, 20+ images and various jquery based features like tabs and accordion loading.
Another page http://dynamix.creativeworkz.co.uk/styles/blue-skin/ – scored 2.7 seconds. Even this has various galleries loading on the page.
If you want to improve the load times, you need to strip away the DynamiX functionality – either remove parts from dynamix.min.js file that you won't need or if you want rediculous fast loading times, you need to use basic HTML and basic images.
One thing is far far far more important than the above is hosting. If you have poor hosting this will wildly affect your load times.
Now if I use that tool on http://www.votre-site-internet.com/ – the results are massively different ( 21 seconds ), this is probably down to plugins and hosting.
Microsoft.com – home page loaded in 5.7 seconds
http://www.searchengineoptimising.com/ – 3.8 seconds
Please do not attack the theme, it has been optimised and is more than acceptable considering the features it packs.
Pingdom Tools are not good for me, there is always a problem. I've subscribed to their uptime and performance monitoring but it was not detecting some website failures while Internet Vista did !
If you measure with GTmetrix, a much more reliable tool to my opinion, the score is A (90%). The loading times depend on the fact I use the Live Chat bar at the bottom or not.
With the Live Chat Bar:
Page load time: 9.10s
Total page size: 1.11MB
Total number of requests: 84
Page load time: 3.64s
Total page size: 953KB
Total number of requests: 69
I too 'had' some concerns about speed but like you said, when you consider just how flexible the theme is and you have limitless possibilities of customising the page – so really it is by choice that we pack it with bells and whistles – I too think it performs well and did see a big difference in speed when I moved from shared hosting to VPS setup.
I wonder if it is possible to perhaps highlight to the community which elements of the theme do indeed impact on page load more than others and if we did want to try and run dynamix faster then a brief "how to" or "things to strip out" could be suggested to those that care? Just a thought
When is your next theme ready by the way?
I've just had a look at that aswell.
I could improve the load times straight away by disabling the timbthumb.php and optimising the images manually.
I'll look into a couple of those things but they look more server orientated rather than the theme itself, apart from the CSS.
Minifying the CSS is not really an option for the theme – people want to be able to change the CSS and If I minify, I would get complaints from users and I wouldn't pass the themeforest review process. However, there is nothing stopping people from combining the CSS of the skins they want with the style.css file and then minifying it.
Thanks for the resonse Andy. However, I am sure you're aware that Google's new PageSpeed mandate is not one that gives much weight to how fast your page actually downloads. Rather, it gives weight to how fast Google expects your page to download based on its PageSpeed algorythm. This is part of its new "Make the Internet Faster" initiative and it has everything to do with how your PageSpeed ranks and not how good your hosting is.
Unfortunately, there are several "High Priority" suggestions that PageSpeed knocks the Dynamix Theme for. Matt Cutts from Google has said that not tending to these things is worse for your rankings than black hat SEO and that is how seriously Google is taking PageSpeed.
I've sent your pages listed above through the PageSpeed site and they came back with the same few issues I have seen for my site giving me miserable PageSpeed rankings. I wonder how much actual downward trends you have been seeing in your organic traffic since this change. Mine has been considerable.
I am looking for ways to fix this quickly ourselves and will share anything useful.
I've spent a few hours this morning on this to see what can be done. Most of the impact for improving the performance has to come from the hosting/server.
GZIP compression is a very high factor, but this can be done if the server/hosting supports it and by adding it to your .htaccess file. I tried adding a few things and the results were not affected – I contacted my hosting and they currently do not support it but because of an increase of requests they are going to enable it.
wp minify plugin for wordpress had a fairly good affect aswell. Unfortunately you can't combine the JS though – that causes issues and not to mention the problems that will cause for other plugins (bad enough as it is).
wp minify worked great on the .css and the html.
The leveraging – again this is a server issue, I'm talking with my host at the moment to see if they support the caching expires module because it doesn't appear to have an affect.
CSS sprites – this would mean a massive amount of work. If you can gather enough users together to help pay for the development I'm happy to do this but I can't justify re-writing what is already been done.
I've made a big work on images to make the page size lighter (from 950 KB down to 580 KB) and the requests (69 to 60), here are the resultst:
Page load time: 3.25s
Total page size: 583KB
Total number of requests: 60
With GTmetrix I have these results for DynamiX homepage, Andy:
Page load time: 6.37s
Total page size: 1.17MB
Total number of requests: 66
W3TC and WP-Minify.
But I've gained 8 – 9 points with a huge work on:
– Server / .htaccess configuration (I'm on a VPS)
– CSS / JS minification – combination
– Downloading parallelisation
– CSS sprites.
– Images optimisation
It took about 20 hours to get this result.
I could probably get better scores if I was not using this Live Chat Bar, GD Ratings and Related Posts Slider plugins but Live Chat drastically increased visitors to clients conversion and Ratings + RPS are undirectly good for SEO.
I prefer a slower nice website leading clients than a fast static one leading to only one satisfaction: having a faster website.
I switched on wp-minify yesterday and achieved good results.
Exactly, I think there always has to be a balance – SEO is not everything. As mentioned in a previous post – if you want to achieve full marks you would be down to simple HTML and Images. That doesn't make for a good theme and it definitely wouldn't get accepted to sell on ThemeForest.
RadCon – This is very exciting news! I use WP Super Cache. Do you think W3TC is better? If so, why? Maybe I should reconsider my caching plugin.
Most importantly, how did you get around the issue with WP Minify breaking the style sheet? Whenever I use WP Minify to do CSS / JS minification, it breaks the stylesheet.
Please Advise – I'd love to learn more….
Hello Scott, I don't think so, I'm sure it is ! I've benchmarked different cache plugins and the 2 best for me are W3TC and Quick Cache. W3TC tends to create many requests to the server but if you use a CDN it's worth. Quick Cache doesn't manage CDN and offers less options (like FairCloud or Varnish) but is as efficient as W3TC if you don't use these options. On my benchmarks, Super Cache was clearly the worst.
As I've listed above, many hand modifications and people around me to help or do certain things.
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