Author Topic: Google Updates PageSpeed Insights Scores  (Read 627 times)

ergophobe

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Google Updates PageSpeed Insights Scores
« on: March 09, 2021, 04:11:58 AM »
Google Updates PageSpeed Insights Scores by Roger Monti
https://www.searchenginejournal.com/why-pagespeed-insights-scores-improved/397763/

Quote
The change is a switch to using the http/2 protocol for connecting to a web page.

This is a good change. The old version incentivized people to aggregate CSS and JS into single large files, but that might actually be slower on HTTP/2 because
 - can't download a single file through multiple connections
 - often end up downloading things you don't need since that one CSS file is the kitchen sink.

This system, on the other hand, incentivizes people to make sure their server is on HTTP/2.

Rupert

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Re: Google Updates PageSpeed Insights Scores
« Reply #1 on: March 09, 2021, 07:01:16 AM »
I have been involved in a couple of instances recently (3) where google are saying the site needs to speed up, but the developers cannot do anything.

Squarespace/WordPress and Shopify.

I might throw this there way. do you think it might help them?
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ergophobe

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Re: Google Updates PageSpeed Insights Scores
« Reply #2 on: March 09, 2021, 03:27:30 PM »
Not really. They will not be able to affect whether or not those sites go HTTP/2, but I suspect at this point they should all be defaulting the https (prerequisite for HTTP/2) and http/2

That said, it depends on the nature of the sites and what's slowing you down. You should be able to get a reasonable fast site on Shopify or Wordpress. I'm not sure about Squarespace.

The Shopify storefront is pretty much entirely under your control. You have limited ability to optimize the checkout, but the rest is fully customizeable. So in that sense, it should be much like any other site, but with a few fewer tool options.

For example, you can't run a script server side like Shortpixel to smush your images. But even there, Shortpixel has a Shopify app.
https://shortpixel.com/install-shopify-app

As for the rest, it's all the same as any other site. You get killed by:
 - unoptimized images
 - third-party scripts
 - render-blocking scripts, especially fonts and JQuery
 -excess CSS, but you can still run a critical path app on your site and at least inline your CSS for above the fold on the home page

I'm curious what your developers are telling you they can't do on Shopify that they could do on a bespoke site to speed things up.

As for Wordpress, do you mean self-hosted or Wordpress.com? I don't know the limitations on Wordpress.com, but if you mean self-hosted Wordpress, there again there is nothing stopping you from getting a great score. It's all a matter of your theme.

On Wordpress.com, I gather you have limited options for custom theming and a limited selection of themes, so I'm not sure what you can and can't do there.

And Squarespace... never used it. Can't speak to that at all.

Rupert

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Re: Google Updates PageSpeed Insights Scores
« Reply #3 on: March 09, 2021, 07:52:16 PM »
mmm, OK shame, worth asking.

Quote
a matter of your theme.
Yes and Plugins.  imho, it is killed by them. Trouble is the people making the decisions.

Shopify one is on a discontinued theme at present, and so hoping a new Dev is going to do better.
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ergophobe

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Re: Google Updates PageSpeed Insights Scores
« Reply #4 on: March 09, 2021, 08:38:15 PM »
It depends on the plugins. Plugins can be neutral, beneficial or terrible for performance.

The thing is, you have to profile them at least a little. Turn them on and off and see what happens to your Pagespeed score. Look at them with Query Monitor. See how many files they load and whether they are render blocking.

I recently told a client, "Okay, that author box has 79 queries and loads X kb of CSS and Y kb of Javascript. It is taking about Z off your Pagespeed score. Is it that important?" Answer: yes, the guest authors write for them in part for what they get to put in the author box and though we could make a lighter solution, they would have to re-enter all their info or the client would have to port it over. Verdict: keep the box.

Similar discussion for a home page carousel. Answer: okay, we can live without that. Verdict: kill the carousel.

If the client understands the tradeoffs, they will never end up with the fastest site possible because almost anything other than a straight essayist has a valid reason for doing things that slow it down. But they won't end up with a dog.

But if the client just doesn't get it and wants the kitchen sink, they end up with terrible performance and there's nothing you can do. Last week I had initial discussions with a client whose current site pulls a 4 on PS. No typo. It gets a FOUR. It's a fairly simple WP site, but somehow they have managed to slow it to a crawl. Estimated load time is something like 26 seconds.

TLDR - I never blame the dev for a slow site until I hear the full story.
« Last Edit: March 09, 2021, 08:41:12 PM by ergophobe »

ergophobe

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Re: Google Updates PageSpeed Insights Scores
« Reply #5 on: March 09, 2021, 08:48:07 PM »
>>Shopify one is on a discontinued theme

I just looked at an old Shopify site I did 6-7 years ago and yeah, it's pretty slow. 40 mobile and 85 desktop.

But like a lot of e-comm home pages, lots of images and then a lot of things you can't control like third-party email capture forms (specifically render-blocking JS it loads), the "avoid document.write" warning, which is caused by a third-party script (for years, Google was the worst offender with GA), poor caching policy which is not under your control on Shopify and for which some of the offenders are Google products (again GA).

For future reference:

https://airthemeone.com/
« Last Edit: March 09, 2021, 08:49:39 PM by ergophobe »