Business Directory – Theme v8.3

  • Richard
    Richard
    Super Guru
     
    971 points

    Here is my humble offering using :

    1) WP 4.4.1
    2) BT v8.3 Theme.

    Soon to move toward the BT (beta) v8.9

    Outline :

    A simple, basic format, allowing site owners to add their listing in four various formats.

    Plugins :

    Using a a bunch of plugins that do not rely, in the main, on third party services which I discovered slowed the site down of which many were ‘hooks’ for upsell. However, of those that actually worked as ‘described’ and worked well and whom provided good support; made donations for ongoing development as I have always believed that ‘there is no such thing as a free lunch’

    Hosting :

    It’s residing on a shared hosting package, so as you may expect, may be a little slow on load. Using same plugin as PP for caching which in the main, works well.

    Robots & Htaccess :

    These have been built & tweaked in various ways to gain the best results for both SEO and hacks/security.

    CSS Mods & Tweaks :

    Oh yes, a ton of these were used with thanks in the main to Josh, Clive & MarkF and a whole bunch of other contributors both PP and Members alike.

    Thanks to you all – really appreciated both your time and patience!

    Core Files :

    These have not been modified in anyway.

    Work In Progress :

    There are a few elements still to be worked out such as a decent ticket support plugin, css issues etc but in the main, only minor bits and pieces.

    I would welcome any observations, so don’t be shy, I can take it! ๐Ÿ˜‰

    So here it is > PrimeSiteUK.Com

    Thank you for your time.

    P.S if I can help anyone out, give me a shout – glad to help ๐Ÿ˜‰


    Kiran
    Kiran
    Elite Member
     
    426 points

    Nice site @Richard good use of technology


    Josh
    Josh
    Super Guru
     
    13,888 points

    Hello Richard,
    Looks great.Good job :)
    In your menu are missing the icons for Blog and Web Designing


    Clive
    Clive
    Super Guru
     
    1,819 points

    Rich,

    Nice looking site. Now, the (genuinely) constructive feedback:

    Your site is taking 13.8 seconds to load in the UK. Your homepage requires 4.99MB of data just to load (WTF???) and you are making 222 server requests. Even using caching, this is ludicrous.

    If anyone is trying to load the site on a mobile phone using 3G or lower, it will take around 20 seconds or more (results: http://mobitest.akamai.com/m/results.cgi?testid=160115_2D_44 ) – so 99% of visitors will just give up.

    As a comparison, one of my top sites loads in 0.7 seconds (also using shared hosting), uses 31 server requests and needs 412Kb of data (i.e. it takes less than 10% of your site’s resources)

    To be fair, I did spend around 3 solid weeks learning every trick in the book about how to improve site load speeds – as it’s crucial to being ranked on the first page of Google.

    Obviously, no normal person with any degree of common sense or intelligence would bother doing what I did – because it’s just plain stupid :)

    So, here are some easy “quick fixes” which should help to improve things:

    1. You are trying to load a Google Tahoma font somewhere, but it isn’t loading and is responding with an error message (Error 403 Forbidden)

    The Tahoma font is a standard font built in to all browsers, so no need to load the Google version at all (saves on server requests and uses less data)

    2. Your site is trying to load an Elusive icons web font (woff) but the file is missing. It should be here: http://primesiteuk.com/wp-content/themes/BT/Elusive-Icons.woff

    By not having that file, it is adding a STAGGERING 5.5 seconds to your site load speed.

    Replace the missing Elusive-Icons.woff file, and it will probably cut your site load speeds in half – just by doing that one simple thing.

    3. Consider reducing the amount of images on your home page. Each image needs a separate server request to grab it which takes time, plus the size of the image adds to your data transfer (more images = more data needs to be downloaded)

    4. As it stands, your home page has very little text content (which search engines love) so probably won’t rank for anything except your site name.

    If you add 700 – 1,500 words of content below the homepage listings which is optimised for a term you’d like to rank for, you stand a far better chance of getting some decent search engine traffic.

    5. To see how your site is loading, take a look here:

    https://gtmetrix.com/reports/primesiteuk.com/elZHDLwT

    If you click the “waterfall” tab, you’ll see what your site is loading, what order it’s being done, and how long each step is taking.

    You’ll also see the errors I mentioned above highlighted in red (drat! my secret’s revealed, lol)

    The https://gtmetrix.com/ site is free to use for site audits and performance testing. You do NOT (and should not) pay them any money for enhanced services – because they are blo0dy expensive, and you can do everything yourself for free.

    Shout if you have any questions.

    HTH :)


    Clive
    Clive
    Super Guru
     
    1,819 points

    Rich,

    My sneaky spy software indicates you are using at least 11 plugins:

    1 totop-link
    2 wp-customer-reviews
    3 menu-icons
    4 cookie-notice
    5 report-content
    6 wp-live-chat-support
    7 forget-about-shortcode-buttons
    8 wp-live-chat-support-pro
    9 q2w3-fixed-widget
    10 adrotate
    11 Google Analytics

    A lot of those are totally unnecessary, and loading in all kinds of sh!t which slows your site down.

    Lots of people (i.e. developers) like to make sites which have all kinds of jazzy stuff:

    – lots of Google fonts
    – JQuery animations
    – CSS effects
    – Background videos
    – Clever modal boxes & fades
    – Self-hosted video/audio players
    – Huge CSS files

    (Which pretty much sums up most themes sold on that Envat0Fools site)

    But here’s a question no one bothers asking:

    How many of these whizzy sites rank on the first page of the search results? Not many. In fact, I’m guessing less than 1%.

    Now ask: How many sites are ranking at position 1, page 1 of Google using the default (and free) 2012/2013/2014/2015 WordPress themes?

    Answer: zillions of them (especially adsense and amazon affiliate type sites) – purely because these default themes are lightweight and DON’T have any whizzy features.

    Less is more. This is probably the single best bit of advice I’ve given to clients – if I’d charged you ยฃ1,000 for that advice and you ACTUALLY FOLLOWED IT, you would easily see at least a 25x return on your investment.

    HTH :)

    This reply was awarded the best answer by the topic poster.

    Richard
    Richard
    Super Guru
     
    971 points

    @Clive,

    First thank you for taking the time to post this; much appreciated ๐Ÿ˜‰

    I take on board the points that you have made and have so far, implemented many as suggested.

    With regard to (1) Google Tahoma font – this somehow found its way into the custom css section – removed.

    Added (2) not sure why that was missing? Looked in original folder and sure enough, its not there? Good Catch!

    With regards images (3) which I agree; I think that although many of such services can be cost prohibitive that I should consider a CDN service, as being on a shared server does not help.

    Still working on (4) which has not been added as yet, but yes, I take your point.

    Tweaked WP Fastest Cache although this can be problematical through trial and error.

    Attached is a preliminary result of the changes so far.

    Again, I’m obliged for your feedback ๐Ÿ˜‰

    Regards

    Attachments:
    You must be logged in to view attached files.


    Janak
    Super Guru
     
    1,179 points

    Richard, I’ve only had a quick look (I’ll look more thoroughly at a later time) but have one initial comment. I think you should change the big banner where is says Welcome and you have your search boxes – it’s the default PP one and looks boring. You should either have something more interesting or make it much smaller so some of your content below is visible. It just seems like a waste of your space. Just my opinion. :)

    I won’t mention speed as Clive has covered it thoroughly and I’ll be back to have a better read of his tips.

    @Clive – great post. One question – The Elusive icons web font (woff) you mention, do you know if it’s part of a plugin that Richard uses or is it something that we all have to worry about?


    Richard
    Richard
    Super Guru
     
    971 points

    @Clive,

    I hear you ๐Ÿ˜‰

    1 totop-link

    As some pages are long, this helps to nav back up quickly.

    2 wp-customer-reviews

    The theme does not include this which I think is valuable

    3 menu-icons

    Again, not available in current theme

    4 cookie-notice

    Mandatory in UK to disclose

    5 report-content

    This is why I have asked that all listings, new/edited are firs approved by Admin – currently, can’t do this.

    6 wp-live-chat-support

    Same as 8 but add -on

    7 forget-about-shortcode-buttons

    OK, this is just to make it more noticeable for users to FB or Tweet ๐Ÿ˜‰

    8 wp-live-chat-support-pro

    This is same as 6 which is required

    9 q2w3-fixed-widget

    Floating Ad banner to keep in window

    10 Adrotate

    Ad system which is not in current version but have looked at v8.9 but its beta and a tad cluncky.

    11 Google Analytics

    Use this for sitemaps.

    I agree that ideally, would be best to not use plugins at all? But faced with limited options, little I can see.

    Thanks again Clive ๐Ÿ˜‰

    Regards


    Richard
    Richard
    Super Guru
     
    971 points

    @Janak,

    I agree ๐Ÿ˜‰

    One of those jobs I need to get done – have looked for an alternative i.e. just a simple google type search but without the box.

    I would have liked to have implemented a search bar at the footer as well (like PP site) but had no success with that so far.

    Thanks again ๐Ÿ˜‰


    Richard
    Richard
    Super Guru
     
    971 points

    @Kiran @Josh

    Thank you for that ๐Ÿ˜‰

    Still much to complete and fix

    And that’s just v8.3!

    Regards,



    Janak
    Super Guru
     
    1,179 points

    Yes, there’s always jobs to be done! Forgot to say that apart from the banner it’s a nice looking site. Good luck! :)


    Richard
    Richard
    Super Guru
     
    971 points

    @Clive,

    With regard your suggestion about adding 700 โ€“ 1,500 words on HomePage.

    That’s an awful lot of text content?

    Why not say, 400 words with link to ‘about us’ perhaps?

    Regards,


    Clive
    Clive
    Super Guru
     
    1,819 points

    Rich,

    Here are some starters:

    1. Back to Top is ALREADY built into Bootstrap. You only need to add the tiny SCRIPT bit from this example page: http://www.2my4edge.com/2015/03/responsive-back-to-top-using-bootstrap.html

    and then call it by adding this into your page or post template:

    <a id="back-to-top" href="#" class="btn btn-primary btn-lg back-to-top" role="button" title="Back to Top" data-toggle="tooltip" data-placement="top">
      <span class="glyphicon glyphicon-chevron-up"></span>
    </a>

    2. Bootstrap ALREADY comes with Glyphicons icons included as standard! See here: http://getbootstrap.com/components/

    I always use these as they already contain most of the common icons you need (and if not I just pick one that looks nice as no one really cares anyway, lol)

    3. I recommend that you set aside an hour or so and visit the Bootstrap site. You’ll see loads of examples of clever things you can add to your site simply by including a couple of lines of code (since they give you examples, you can copy/paste them across to experiment) Incidentally, I’m not a trained coder – I’ve just picked up stuff along the way, much the same way you are doing.

    PremiumPress responsive themes use Bootstrap as the “engine” – so you should be able to use any/all of the features on the Bootstrap site on your site without adding any extra scripts, plugins or site delays. Which is basically the whole reason why we are using Bootstrap as the base framework in the first place.

    For example, want to add snazzy Javascript alert boxes which can be closed by clicking on them? Here’s how: http://getbootstrap.com/javascript/#alerts

    By using plugins which already replicate existing Bootstrap functionality, you are just adding more bloat to slow your site down (and also increasing the chances of plugin conflicts)

    4. Finally, I’ve just re-tested your page. By simply doing the couple of easy fixes you’ve done, your site now loads in 10.5 seconds (around 25% faster) and takes 3.57MB of data (1.5MB or 25% less than before)

    Updated test results here: https://gtmetrix.com/reports/primesiteuk.com/FPzbqT7r

    Good job :)


    Clive
    Clive
    Super Guru
     
    1,819 points

    As an update, if you want to add Glyphicons (i.e.the built-in icons) to your menus, buttons or anywhere else for that matter just pop over here:

    http://glyphicons.bootstrapcheatsheets.com/

    Not only can you just click the copy button under any icon to copy/paste the correct code, but there’s some great examples of how you can use them on menus, buttons etc at the bottom of the page.

    Remember, all this functionality is ALREADY in Bootstrap – so using these icons won’t increase your site load times one jot.

    HTH :)


    Clive
    Clive
    Super Guru
     
    1,819 points

    One final one for you. I just had a quick look at your home page source code:

    1. There are a lot of commented out lines which have (apparently) been replaced by cached versions. I’m assuming this is for testing, but remember to delete all the commented stuff when you go live.

    2. In the source code, there are links to Apple icons – like:

    <link rel="apple-touch-icon" sizes="57x57" href="/apple-icon-57x57.png">

    However, the icons are (apparently) missing and there are 10 of them – so this is also slowing your site down.

    The link goes to: http://primesiteuk.com/apple-icon-114×114.png

    so either throw them in there, or change the link to point to where they live.


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