Now that Google uses the speed and performance of your blog or website in determining how well your pages will rank in searches, and knowing that everyone hates a slow blog or website, have you actually ever tested how fast (or slow) yours is? Or do you already know that it is not as fast as you would like but have no idea where to start looking to fix it?
A lot of webmasters use Firebug or YSlow to test their website and pinpoint performance issues. But it can be a pain to figure out how to use these tools, especially if you’re just a blogger and not a “computer expert”. This weekend I happened across gtmetrix.com. Gtmetrix.com allows you to test the performance of your website, get an explanation of the results all at the click of one button – and they do it all for free.
I’ve invested some time into making sure that my website and my blog perform as fast as possible, and these are the scores that I get. My scores aren’t bad, but as you can see they could use some improving:
My website (top score) and my blog (lower score) aren’t bad so I’m not going to complain. I’ve pretty much hit the limits of WordPress and Drupal (and my skills) and I’m not sure how much more I can squeeze from them.
This website (who shall remain nameless to avoid the shame) does not fair as well:
Gtmetrix.com gives you an easy to understand overall performance-grade (shown above), and also gives a complete breakdown of what is slowing your website down with recommendations of what what needs to be changed to speed it up. If you’re new to blogging you may not yet know what all of these things are, or how to fix them, but this is a great way to start learning. Pick an item on the list, do some Google searching on it, ask some questions in your favorite online forum or Google Community, do some experimenting, make some changes, and break a few things until you figure it out. This is exactly how I learned virtually all of my webmaster and blogging skills.
Give gtmetrix.com a try (no signup required) and see if you can beat my scores – Leave a comment with your score!