I was hired to investigate a websites’ incredibly slow load times. If you can believe it, this website scored a 2 out of 100 on a google speed test, that is the lowest I have ever seen!!! And what is even better… His ‘developer’ told him there was nothing he could do about that crappy score… it is just how WordPress is…. I wasn’t sure if I should laugh or cry.
WordPress is NOT slow. Your WordPress website CAN be very slow, depending on what you do to it. There are at least a dozen, maybe two dozen, things you can do to significantly slow down your website. I won’t get into all of those here (feel free to order a speed audit on your website here) but what I will tell you is that this was no developer, this was clearly a designer that has zero developing expertise. I can say that with confidence because once I looked ‘under the hood’, so to speak, I saw many things a developer would NEVER do. This ‘developer’ had installed a ridiculous number of plugins. Three of the plugins were for adding custom scripts or custom css; THREE separate plugins that all do the same thing! Of course a developer would not even install ONE of those plugins. We would create a child theme and put all the custom css and scripts in the child theme (like you are supposed to do). This reduces the number of files/assets that are needed to load the website. It gets worse, they clearly had no idea what a child theme was because they added a custom header plugin and a custom footer plugin, so they could build a custom designed header and footer using a plugin. All of that should have been custom coded into the theme. Matters got even worse, remember this was a 2 out of 100, get this, there are no eCommerce functions. That’s right, this is basically a static website with a contact form, as simple as it gets; this ‘developer’ says a 2 out of 100 is as good as it gets!
This reminds me of a previous blog post “Never Let Your Designer Build Your Website“
The website owner probably paid me almost as much as he paid the ‘developer’ to make the website because I had to create a child theme and then custom code everything that this person used a ton of plugins for…. but at the end of the day, I got him up to a 69 out of 100. Much better!