Testing mobile speed

WordPress Mobile Speed

Updated: July 2020

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Pingdom to frankfurt 3040.0 milliseconds 1.1M page weight 63 requests
WPT.org default settings 4087.0 milliseconds 1M page weight 57/62 requests 1.605 TTFB
We use unconventional practices with the P3 Plugin Performance Profiler by GoDaddy. This helps us get approximate load times for each plugin and rank them from slowest to fastest.
REFERENCE: P3 Plugin Performance Profiler and mobile WordPress speed.
After sorting the extracted data, we see what “nails” stick out. We then focus on hammering back in the worst cases. This is a management by exception technique and application of the Pareto law (the 80/20 rule). 80% of site drag come from 20% of the causes. The biggest chunk of plugin site drag comes from only a few slow inefficient plugins.
Site drag is globally loading a plugin on every page and post of your site even if the plugin isn’t used. This doesn’t appear in a speed test waterfall. It’s masked inside the HTML load time.
The goal is using value-analysis decision-making techniques. We borrow value analysis from industrial manufacturing process. It’s a way to build quality and efficiency into products. In our case, it’s helps us optimize web performance.
We highlight the worst problems in RED in the following table. We can then calculate the estimated speed overhead. In this case, it’s 4.5 seconds overhead.
Other speed data is from online tests. Scores do NOT matter. Only time in milliseconds count. Scores are not used by search engines to rank your pages.
Our performance budget is a 2,000 millisecond load (2 seconds).
The first problem is plain. The server has a Time to First Byte of 2,124 milliseconds. This information is from the online test at http://bytecheck.com/
Server overhead consumed our entire budget!
We take the average of six consecutive samples. HTTPS/SSL handshaking delay is a separate problem. That extra delay is an unchangeable 500 milliseconds.
It would seem impossible. But we host our store on BlueHost, too. And can get under 2-seconds (barely). (We also hosts our blog on GoDaddy. Yes. A split site trick).
What’s the difference? BlueHost’s TTFB fluctuates – but generally it’s around 1 to 1.5 seconds. That means the page must load in under the remaining 500 milliseconds budgeted. We can do that.
Additionally, we’re lucky. We aren’t sharing our server with other domains. That’s right, we pay less and get special treatment. Why? We have no clue.
You’re sharing with 16 other domains. None of them are high-traffic porn sites. We test this using:
We have no logical explanation of why your server TTFB is slower. The solutions include:
1) Ask your host to move you onto a different server (but not ours!) – and see if it improves. Tell them you’ll have to move if they can’t get you on a faster server with better TTFB. They may say, “Pay us more and will fix it. But some hosts are eager to please. You should try this first.
2) Change hosts and migrate the site. That means you’d have two accounts. That increases annual monetary outlay by $70 most likely. Not good. But needed.
Changing your theme will make no significant difference in speed. The X-Child Theme loads in 125 milliseconds. If you were to change to a faster theme, it might load in 30 to 50 milliseconds.
25 percent of speed consumption is from two plugins: The two worst offenders are:
1) Cornerstone paid pagebuilder (811 milliseconds).
Elementor (free version) page builder is faster: about 41 milliseconds. But only when used in the hands of professionals. Novices add unneeded features and slow things down.
2) Yoast SEO (198 milliseconds).
I’m attaching a $10 eBook about Yoast SEO. No charge. Please review it.
We do NOT think Yoast SEO plugin makes any difference in page ranking. Nor do any other SEO plugin. The plugin indicates if your site is Google compliant. That has no guarantees or promises. Irrelevant activity. There’s no documentation establishing these plugins improve page ranking more than alternatives. You’d get better improvement for SEO by improving site content or user experience.
We also recommend reading this plugin article:
Faster and free alternatives to popular OptinMonster or SumoMe WordPress plugins.
You’re loading a Vimeo video on your homepage. We recommend lazy loading it with a plugin:
REFERENCE: Lazy load images and video for mobile speed.
We recommend changing to Elementor. And using a theme like GeneratePress with fast-loading mobile system fonts.
REFERENCE: WordPress dream theme for mobile speed: GeneratePress 2.0.
You can also cut: jQuery overhead, Font Awesome site drag, and Emojis.
There are faster ways to load Google Analytics. We don’t recommend heavy W3 Total Cache. We use other methods using lightweight plugin substitutes. Those load in about 3 milliseconds equal results.
I’m not testing your most traffic pages until you decide what you want about the server slowness. My recommendation is migrating the site to a new host if the present host can’t provide you a faster server.
I will do one site migration and speed tweaking as part of the $500 “Plugin Surgery” fee. I’d like to see your site loading in under 2 seconds.
Let me know what you’d like based on these recommendations.
Number one is the server. Any other work would be futile until that’s resolved.
Steve Teare
performance engineer



Steve Teare
performance engineer


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