The WP Mayor Podcast

Optimizing Your WordPress Site with WP Speed Fix

Do you need help with your website’s speed? Is it too slow? Configured wrong? Is your cheap hosting not good enough? Do you just want it to go from slow to fast or just fast enough? Speed is only one thing to solve. In this episode, Jean and Gaby Galea talk to Brendan Tully about optimizing WordPress site speed with WP Speed Fix.

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Do you need help with your website’s speed? Is it too slow? Configured wrong? Is your cheap hosting not good enough? Do you just want it to go from slow to fast or just fast enough? Speed is only one thing to solve.

In this episode, Jean and Gaby Galea talk to Brendan Tully about optimizing WordPress site speed with WP Speed Fix.  

WP Speed Fix provides speed optimization for WordPress websites to solve slow site problems, fix Core Web Vitals issues, score higher in Google PageSpeed Insights, troubleshoot slow backend issues, and optimize WooCommerce checkout speed.

Episode Highlights and Topics

  • How and why WP Speed Fix became a standalone service and separate business.
  • SiteSpeedBot: Speed test app built to test and optimize sites, plugins, and themes.
  • Core Web Vitals: Practical implications related to reliable tests measuring performance.
  • Uptime and Reliability: Monetized commercial websites should have uptime monitoring.
  • Big Pages: SEO and ranking issues – fix the page size to make the problems go away.
  • Lazy Loading: Images outside viewable area don’t load until user scrolls; slows site time.
  • Non-Critical/Essential Tools: Remove, pause, or turn off channels to improve speed.
  • Content Migration/Site Audit: Simple sites are straightforward; others are problematic.
  • Database Issues: Too much stuff can cause checkout/caching problems and slow speed.

About Brendan Tully

Brendan Tully

Brendan Tully is CEO of Robotmedia a company that builds products, services, and tools that help small business owners rank websites higher, get more traffic, and convert more of those visitors into customers. Robotmedia brands include WPSpeedFix.com, a WordPress site speed optimization service, and SiteSpeedBot.com, a free site speed test tool that provides detailed site speed recommendations for free in under 90 seconds.

Resources/Links

Transcript

Gaby:
Hi and welcome to The WP Mayor Podcast. I’m Gaby Galea, and today on the show we’ll be interviewing Brendan Tully. Brendan is from WP Speed Fix. What they do is speed optimization for WordPress websites, so they basically help solve slow site problems, fix Core Web Vitals issues, which I know many of you are facing, but that’s not all. They also help you score higher in Google PageSpeed Insights, troubleshoot slow backend issues, and also optimize WooCommerce checkout speed, and much much more. 

Today I’ll be joined by Jean Galea who actually ran into a few technical issues towards the beginning of the podcast, so he’ll only be around for the first few minutes. But without further ado, let’s continue to this week’s episode with Brendan from WP Speed Fix. Hi, Brendan. Welcome to The WP Mayor Podcast. It’s nice to have you on.

Brendan:
It’s good to be here. 

Gaby:
Today we are joined by Jean. He’s the founder of WP Mayor and also runs his own blog at the moment. 

Jean:
Hello, everyone.

Gaby:
We are very interested in learning about what you do and the company you founded, it’s WP Speed Fix, and you basically do WordPress Speed optimization, right?

Brendan:
Yeah.

Gaby:
We’re interested in learning more about you, how you started the company, and then we can jump right in and discuss site speed. 

Brendan:
WP Speed Fix is our speed optimization service. We have an SEO search agency, we’ve been running since 2008 I think. WP Speed Fix just started as a service that was just part of our regular SEO services. We started doing hosting as part of our SEO work in 2010, 2011 because we were building websites. 

The customers were making us responsible for the hosting, even though they weren’t paying us for it, so we started selling them hosting directly. Then speed became important as part of doing SEO and hosting in general, and more and more people just started asking about site speed just as a stand-alone service.

We split it out as its own brand, WP Speed Fix in 2016-ish, maybe 2015, but sometime around the start of 2016. Since then it’s certainly grown, I guess, as SEO has become more mainstream and more important to a lot of regular businesses, not just online businesses. It just grew slowly bit by bit, and now Core Web Vitals is all the rage. Now I think we have eight people who just do solely WP Speed Fix WordPress speed stuff. It’s taken on a life of its own, something that was a blog post and a contact form originally is now its own business. 

We’ve talked to maybe 10–30 people a day about site speed at the moment. We also built a speed test app at sitespeedbot.com. We built that because we were doing all these different things – checking site speed in different ways and using a lot of different tools. We’re using five or six different tools. We would look up their DNS hosting, their web hosting, and all these other things. We decided to build SitesSpeedBot and just build it all under one roof. 

Slowly we’ve been adding as we’ve come across problems or different plugins that have weird speed quirks or weird ways of being optimized. We’ve added the recommendations there. It will detect I think 80 different themes, plugins, and different scenarios. And it will provide the actual recommendations or the way we optimize those plugins or themes. 

Gaby:
That’s the free service on your website, right?

Brendan:
It’s a totally separate website. It’s at sitespeedbot.com. It’s linked to WP Speed Fix, but I think it tests from eight different locations. It’s completely free. It takes about 60 seconds, maybe 90 seconds if it’s a bigger page. Most people that come to us, we use that. We tell them to go test their site there. If someone just needs some basic speed help or they want to DIY, that’s a good place to start. 

There are other tools. There’s GTmetrix obviously, PageSpeed Insights, but our tool provides some different recommendations to those. It’s mainly WordPress-focused, but there are some Shopify recommendations there as well.

Gaby:
All right. If people want to go ahead and then order your service, that will be the next step, I imagine.

Brendan:
People have specific things when it comes to speed they want to solve. People fall into a few different categories of this. Some people just have a slow website and they just want it fast. They’re on cheap hosting or $2 a month hosting that just isn’t good enough, or it’s just not configured well and they just want to go from slow to fast enough. 

Obviously, we have a lot of Core Web Vitals inquiries now that Google is pushing that hard, and then there are other people that might have specific problems. They might have a huge WooCommerce site or something like that where they’re doing a couple of checkouts a minute or something, the checkout is slow, and they need really specific help with speeding up the checkout or something like that. It’s super technical. 

I actually have a background. Before I ran an SEO agency, I had an IT company. We had 25 staff, and a couple of offices. I had a background in IT so I understand a lot of the underlying technical and hosting in a way that a lot of typical WordPress devs don’t. Some of those biggest sites need custom hosting config or something specific. I’ve had a lot of experience and I’m familiar with that.

Gaby:
You’re not tied down to smaller websites or larger ones, do you service all?

Brendan:
Yeah, we do both. We do little websites, little small local businesses, and right up to big enterprise kind of WooCommerce setups. Enterprise and WordPress seem like two things that don’t really belong in the same sentence, but it is what it is. 

Gaby:
You mentioned Core Web Vitals, both the websites we run are feeling the effects of that now, so we’re interested in learning more.

Brendan:
Sure. Do you want to talk about speed? Let’s talk about site speed and SEO. Do you want to start there?

Gaby:
Yeah, that would be a good place to start. 

Jean:
Can I just interject here? I am jumping on to what we were saying. I think it’s not only us, but a lot of the people I spoke to have these websites that are failing the Core Web Vitals. Perhaps there’s also doubt about whether it actually matters and if performance can be measured manually or visually. Whether the page actually loads fast or whether these tests are reliable. 

Sometimes there’s some test that fails, but actually, it’s because it’s the way it’s measured. The websites load fast anyway. I love to talk about the practical implications of website speed versus the test.

Brendan:
That’s a good question.

Jean:
Can you give us a bit of a mini MasterClass about that?

Brendan:
Speed and SEO are definitely linked, not really in a way … everyone’s talking about Core Web Vitals now and we get a lot of inquiries that are failing this core website test. They have all these errors or warnings on Google Search Console. 

Core Web Vitals stuff aside, there are two other more important elements of site speed that affect SEO more than Core Web Vitals. The first one is uptime reliability. If the site is down, downtime is basically zero speed. A lot of people just completely miss the fact that if the site is unreliable, it doesn’t matter how fast it goes because half of the people are going to get error messages or outages.

We will start with reliability, and those $2 a month hosts are unreliable. The reason being is they stack 10,000 other websites on the same server and they’re getting a small little downtime window all the time. We always recommend that anyone who’s interested in site speed or basically anyone who’s running a commercial website that’s monetized and making money, that they have uptime monitoring. 

I’d say if you’re interested in speed, start there. Start with the quality of the hosting. Uptime monitoring is a good way to measure the hosting quality because you’ll see if there are small downtime windows, and that’s a good indication that something’s wrong, it doesn’t have enough capacity, or the quality isn’t just good enough.

I’d start there and that won’t show off on a speed test at all. It may show up in some Core Web Vitals now, but if it’s having the small outage windows all the time, you’re probably not necessarily going to see it. Most people don’t visit their website that often, so I’d start there. 

We recommend UptimeRobot. They have a free plan that checks on five-minute intervals. They have a paid plan that checks on one-minute intervals. You’d probably want to be on the paid plan because five minutes is quite a big window. There’s a lot of tools out there, but something like checking the uptime every minute or two is probably a good place to start.

That will pick up other things like if you’re an agency, for example. If a client doesn’t renew a domain, the uptime monitoring will probably pick that up before the client calls and says the website is offline or whatever.

All our clients, we have a couple of hundred clients in the uptime monitoring tool in our UptimeRobot just because of the SEO clients we manage. And most often, the downtime is either they’ve broken themselves or their domain’s expired. That would be the starting point. 

The second one would be big pages. What we’ve seen again and again is if you have a website that has a lot of large pages, large we’d say pages that are 3–5 megabytes or bigger, that’s definitely going to be an SEO issue. We’ve seen several times clients with ranking issues where we’ve run a sitewide speed test. We use Screaming Frog SEO Spider that can run a sitewide page speed insights test. 

Anywhere where say 10% or 20% of the site has large pages. If the site has 100 pages in total where 20 of those pages, 30 of those are very big, we’ll usually have some sort of ranking problem. By all the standard SEO metrics and looking at competitors, it should be ranking on the first page but it can’t just get past position 15 or position 20.

We’ve seen several times where that is just a page size issue, and fixing that makes the problem go away. We fix it and then 1–2 weeks later, the site starts ranking. There’s definitely a relationship there between the size of the pages on the site and SEO. Part of that is just raw speed as well. 

If you have the fastest hosting in the world, if you’ve got a superfast theme or whatever else, if the page is just too big, there’s too much stuff to download, it’s always going to be slow. Even on a fast internet connection, it’s just a lot of stuff to move around. 

Maybe the next place to start is don’t look at the Core Web Vitals, look at the size of all the pages on the site. Just as a broad guide, if you want to score high on Google mobile page speed test or Google Lighthouse Mobile, the pages need to be about half a megabyte. To score 80–100 on a mobile test, you need to see those pages at half a megabyte, which is really small. For some context, a single YouTube video embed is about 0.71 megabyte, so half a megabyte is really, really small. 

In marketing land, in SEO land, there’s a lot of factors. Speed is only one thing. So if you can get most of the pages at 1 megabyte or 1 ½ megabyte, you’re doing pretty well on a reasonable size website. That will be the second one to look at page sizes sitewide. Use Screaming Frog SEO Spider. If you Google it, you’ll find in their website the instructions on how to get page speed insights or Lighthouse API key and how to run that test. 

Often, there will be a handful of pages that might be really big like 10 megabytes, 20 megabytes. There’s an animated gif at the top of the page or something stupid like that. Often, you’ll have to manually go and fiddle with those pages, fix them, or whatever needs to be done. That is generally an easy one. 

Gaby:
I was just going to ask, I imagine the process is not just you working on it on your own without the client’s inputs. I imagine there will be a bit of a to and fro between you and the client.

Brendan:
Yeah, absolutely. In terms of the speed optimization process, we have 70, 80% of it is all the same. You need a content delivery network, you need a caching plugin on this sort of stuff. Then probably the last 20% is a discussion back and forth. You have the script, you’re just slow, what do you want to do about it? We can turn these things off or optimize them this way. Do you want to do that? 

Like affiliate sites, for example, typically if they have an ad network or any sort of AdSense advertisement on there that’s going to be a speed issue. There are ways we can optimize that, but then that needs a discussion because there’s some risk around it. If we fiddle with ad code, then it might break the ads. It might reduce the performance of the ad or whatever. There’s definitely some discussion.

There’s probably 20% or 30% that’s custom based on however the site’s built or whatever code it’s using. Also, the audience. Some sites would benefit from paid Cloudflare plans, for example. Then we need a discussion about paying for things, getting bigger hosting, moving hosting, or whatever.

Gaby:
I’ve got a website. I’ve got my blog, it’s not loading too well. I contacted you, you’ve checked my hosting. You’ve probably moved to a new hosting if I’m on the lower-paid plans, and then you’re going to start looking at my website, basically focusing on the larger pages and then moving down into the nitty-gritty. What about if I’m using a page builder for instance, do you find that these websites affect the site speed a bit more?

Brendan:
They do a bit. In terms of page builders, Elementor is probably the most popular one. The page builder itself isn’t that much of a problem. It’s when there’s a page builder and then there are two or three other add on plugins. There’s add ons for Elementor or add ons for this. That’s where you start to run into speed issues. 

If you’re in a fast lane like GeneratePress or WP Astra, the base theme is pretty fast. Certainly, the page builder is going to slow it down a little bit. So if you add Elementor on top of that, but you can still get that quite fast if you have all these extra add ons. Also, depending on how complex the layer of the page is, if you’re using JavaScript to drive a lot of the page elements or you’ve done a lot of fancy things in that page builder, that’s usually more of a problem than the builder itself. 

We tried a lot of different page builders just going native, Gutenberg is very fast. Oxygen is probably a good alternative to Elementor if you need something a bit more capable. I would say if you’re building from scratch, if you can build it without a page builder, if you can just use native Gutenberg, great. If you don’t have that option or you need something better, then probably Oxygen Builder would be – from a speed perspective – the way to go. 

We’ve got six different websites. This year, we are in the process of rebuilding them all. We’re rebuilding them all on GeneratePress and Gutenberg. That’s a pretty fast combo.

Gaby:
I find that images are one of the biggest things that sucks up the site’s speed. How do you tackle those?

Brendan:
That’s usually why pages are too big. No matter what, you pretty much need to use lazy loading. Lazy loading means that the images outside the viewable area don’t load until the user scrolls down that far. Lazy loading can also introduce Core Web Vitals issues. Most speed plugins like WP Rocket is generally the speed optimization plugin we use and it has lazy load built-in, but by default, most lazy load plugins lazy load all the images. 

That means that even the images in the initial viewable area have to wait for the Javascript to load in order to show the image, which actually slows things down and blows up the LCP Core Web Vital. LCP is Largest Contentful Paint, so that’s pretty much the largest piece of content on the page and how that loads. 

Right now, we’re using Autoptimize for lazy load, and the reason we use that plugin is you can exclude so many images. Usually, we set it to four so you can exclude the first four images on the page from lazy loading. That usually excludes the logo. By doing that, usually, we can get the FCP time down to one second or below. FCP stands for First Contentful Paint. That’s when the first piece of content on the site is rendered. Usually, that’s the logo because that’s the first image or first piece of content. 

Google wants that under 1.8 seconds. If we can get that to one second or below, then we get the green for that metric. And then by not lazy loading the stuff above the fold, usually the FCP time we can get under 2.5 seconds which is Google’s goal or that’s their good metric. Autoptimize for lazy load. 

For image compression, we use one or three different plugins. We were using ShortPixel. ShortPixel is probably the most capable and reliable plugin, but it is quite expensive now for credit. The credits – since we’ve been using it – the cost of compression credits has gone up by four times. So it’s pretty pricey now for us because we’re suppressing millions of images.

We use either ShortPixel, EWWW, or Imagify which is by the WP Rocket guys. Compress the images and then all those plugins do WebP images or as Google calls them, next-gen file formats. Usually, those two things are enough to compress images. 

When it’s a huge site, if it’s a site with thousands of pages or an enterprise site, we will use Cloudflare. Cloudflare has a bunch of different paid plans, but on the $20 a month plan, it has image optimization as an option as well. If there’s a reason why we can’t compress them inside WordPress or it’s just too much like millions of images, that’s usually a good solution as well. Or if it’s not even a WordPress site, that can also be a good solution. Compressing images, lazy load usually are the way to go. Just using a content delivery network is important as well.

Gaby:
I guess the next thing would be looking at plugins seeing which one we can get rid of is one of them?

Brendan:
Yeah. Content delivery network, good hosting, page caching plugin. As I said, WP Rocket. And then, a lot of sites have stuff that just needs to be turned off. They’ve used Crazy Egg, Hotjar, or some sort of AB testing tool that was used a long time ago that’s very heavy. Turning off everything we can and optimizing JavaScript or third-party stuff as much as possible. 

Some of the ways we can do that […] like live chat is typically a problem because like live chat tools are pretty much entire web apps loading inside the website. Usually, we can pause the live chat so we can delay the live chat until the user interacts with the site. That’s a good way to handle some of the more optional scripts like LinkedIn, Marketing Code, Pinterest Marketing – those kinds of second-tier advertising channels the people use and code that is kind of optional like things like live chat. 

That basically removes that code from the load until the user moves them out, scrolls, clicks, or does something on the website. That’s a good way to optimize those. Other ways, simply if it has an embed code, just move the embed code from the header to the footer so it loads later. If there’s code in Google Tag Manager, change the trigger in Google Tag Manager from page view to window loaded. That just means it loads later in the loading process again.

Gaby:
The same principle as the images? 

Brendan:
Same thing, yeah. Anything that’s not critical to rendering the viewable area of the page, we want to push back as far as possible or as late as possible to loading. It’s the same idea. In Google PageSpeed Insights, it has different ways of explaining that. Anything that is not essential we just want to load as late as possible. 

Gaby:
You mentioned Hotjar, does it take up a lot of the site’s speed?

Brendan:
Some tools do like Hotjar, Lucky Orange, Crazy Egg – those heat map tools, they collect a lot of data so they’re very heavy. Live chat tools are always heavy. Some email marketing tools can be quite heavy. HubSpot and ActiveCampaign are also quite heavy because they collect a lot of data. 

Anything that is loading a lot of files is going to be heavy, so those tools usually do a lot of stuff under the bonnet. Again, if we can load them as late as possible, that will help with the speed. It also helps with some of those, in Google PageSpeed Insights, the two JavaScript-related metrics. Total blocking time is one of them, and that’s usually impacted by JavaScript and all that third-party stuff loading. 

Gaby:
Does this whole thing happen while the website is still online? Is it done on a staging website?

Brendan:
It depends. We have different levels of service. We have a consult service. If there’s risk or changes that need to be done on a staging site, usually that’s the best way to go because without consult service, we do the audit and analysis. We look at the entire website, we come with a list of recommendations, and then we do a call. We discuss how we are going to do this because some of them are going to be risky depending on the site. 

Particularly something like big WooCommerce and then work out the action plan. A lot of clients have their own dev team so they just need support. They need to be told what they need to do and might need some input. It depends on the service they buy. 

Some of the lower services we just go ahead and just implement these things. If it needs to be in staging or there’s some risk there definitely, we definitely need to have a conversation. 

Gaby:
If you’ve got your own dev team, you can just give a list of things to update?

Brendan:
Yeah. Some clients have tried certain things or they have dev guys but they just don’t have experience in WordPress or whatever they might have in IT team and they just need guidance. 

Gaby:
On the other hand, if you don’t, can you handle that as well for your clients?

Brendan:

Yeah, absolutely. Sometimes we do half the work and then their dev guys do the other half. It just depends on the client. There are all sorts of weird and wonderful different sites we’ve seen.

Gaby:
Yeah, I can imagine. From the client’s perspective, what do they need to prepare for the site audit?

Brendan:
Usually we need a list of logins. Admin level access to WordPress, hosting access. If we’re doing a Cloudflare change over, we need to see DNS records. Cloudflare will try and clone DNS records, but we really need to check them manually. Usually, that’s enough. That’s all we need to do the migration I think. We always do a backup beforehand because things do go wrong, so we use BlogVault for backup, which is fantastic.

Gaby:
We use that too.

Brendan:
If it’s a simple site, it’s usually pretty straightforward. Whether it’s weird custom code or some elaborate stuff that a developer set up, or some sort of GitHub or GetSetUp, that can be problematic as well.

Graby:
Taking a site like WP Mayor for instance. It’s been around for over 10 years now so you can imagine the amount of content we’ve got on there. Do you suggest doing a content audit before we tackle site speed?

Brendan:
It depends on what your goal is. That would be my question. What’s the goal? To rank higher, more traffic? That would be my first question to you.

Gaby:
I think the first priority would be ranking, then like I said, we’re experiencing the effects of Google Core Web Vitals. We’ve seen a bit of dip in traffic lately. That would be the second thing that I would be interested in. 

Brendan:
As a starting point, I’d run the entire site through Screaming Frog SEO Spider and see what it comes up with, both from a page speed perspective. You can also connect it to Search Console and Analytics as well. Like on some of our sites, as I said, we’re in the process of rebuilding them. Just running the sites through that and there are pages with no impressions in there that are like, it’s not indexed or it’s doing something weird or some sort of stuff like that. 

I think that’s a great place to start just to get a good overview. And you go through and look at the title tags, meta descriptions, and some of the content that we have in particular is a decade old. We’re the outsiders. We’ve been around since 2008, so one of our agency websites has so much crap in there from events and workshops we ran a decade ago that need to be cleaned up. 

When you look at the crawl and detail, it’s surprising how much stuff is just kicking around in there. But it’s good because you can see what’s performing as well with that data overlaid over the top as well. It’s pretty technical though, but that’s SEO. You can do it before or after, but pruning the site beforehand is probably a good idea, especially if you’re having SEO issues. 

Gaby:
Do you provide SEO services yourself apart from the WP Speed Fix?

Brendan:
We do, but only for Australian Customers. Our agency staff is only for Australian businesses. That’s mainly because SEO is just so different depending on where the site is and what it’s targeting. The SEO we do is usually local business or the type of clients that would advertise in AdWords. We usually do SEO and AdWords work.

We are going to include an SEO audit service as part of the WP Speed Fix offerings, but we’re still working on that. So many of the sites we see, they have speed problems and they want to fix the speed for SEO. They have way more SEO problems than speed problems. I think it’s a good offering to have, but we’re not quite ready to provide that yet.

Gaby:
Got it. When it comes to WooCommerce sites, what are some of the main issues that you face?

Brendan:
Probably database-related stuff. On bigger WooCommerce sites or older WooCommerce sites, they just have so much stuff in the database. They’ve had plugins change over time that’s just fattening up the database. A lot of the speed issues we see are slow checkout, slow my account, slow cart. A lot of that has to be fixed at the hosting layer. They don’t have great caching.

A big eCommerce site really needs Redis database caching, object caching, which is a type of cache that sits in between WordPress and the database. Anything that is doing a lot of database queries will speed that up. Probably one big one is just general maintenance stuff around databases in WooCommerce. One quick win, a super simple one is – WordPress uses SQL database server, and MySQL server uses two different types of storage engines. It’s basically the database format. 

One of them is an older one, MyISAM. One of them is a newer one, InnoDB. If the site’s been around since 2015 or earlier, then it’s going to be using the older database format probably. Just converting from that older format to the new format can drop the page generation time. Often we’ll see three seconds in WooCommerce, and it will drop it down to one second, which is huge. That’s a two or three times improvement in speed. 

The same with the cart, the checkout, and stuff. That’s probably something simple if you have a WooCommerce site or any old WordPress site. That will speed up backend stuff as well. Just doing that conversion can make a huge difference and it doesn’t take long. You need a backup before you do it because if you screw it up or something goes wrong, that’s a problem. 

Do a backup, we’ll backup with BlogVault. And then there’s a plugin called Servebolt Performance Optimizer, and it’s by a hosting company called Servebolt. But you can use it on any WordPress host, and it has an option in there that will add some indexes to the database table and run that conversion. If you have an old website, five years or older, that’s more than likely you’ve got those older database tables in the backend. It will be slower because of that. That’s an easy one. 

If you have a small database, that conversion might take a minute, two minutes. If you got a bigger database, it might take 5 or 10, but still, that’s nothing in terms of time and you’re going to get two or three times boosted performance. It’s easy, it’s fast, it’s free basically. Just do a backup before you do it. That’s an easy one for WooCommerce that will help almost all WooCommerce sites.  

Gaby:
You mentioned Servebolt. We’re actually being hosted on Servebolt at the moment. Are they one of the top hosting providers that you suggest?

Brendan:
Cloudways is probably the hosting provider we suggest the most just because of the types of sites we deal with. Typically our hosting stack we recommend is Cloudways plus Cloudflare’s APO service, which that’s a similar stack to what Servebolt offers. We actually don’t have Servebolt on our recommended list right now, but Servebolt is a good host. 

Gaby:
We found it pretty good with them. We’ve been on a number of different ones. We’ve had WP Engine too.

Brendan:
We used to recommend WP Engine, but they’ve changed. They used to be fast. They’re not super fast in comparison to other offerings anymore. They also have an issue that they messed up the way they do WooCommerce caching which would actually make them quite slow for a lot of WooCommerce sites. So we stopped really recommending them for bigger sites. That used to be one of our go-tos, but not anymore.

Gaby:
Moving on to the pricing side of things. Do you have different options that your clients can choose from?

Brendan:
We’re actually going to put the prices up, I think. 

Gaby:
By the time this would be up it would have changed.

Brendan:
We have three main pricing tiers. One is called Business Service, which is not a great name for it. That’s more of a basic service where we set up the caching, setup image optimization, and Cloudflare. It’s designed for smaller websites or new websites. We just get the basics in place. 

The prices are at different price points right now: $249, $495, $995. That’s our basic service. Our mid-tier one is the most popular, Advance Speed Fix, which is like a site-wide optimization. And then our consult service, which is for those sites … it’s essentially a speed consultation where we do that analysis in order. That’s for anyone who wants to be aggressive about SEO, that’s probably the best one because we can really get in, have a  conversation, and discuss some of the things that are really hurting the speed.

Gaby:
So there’s a lot to choose from, that’s quite a range. 

Brendan:
Yeah, absolutely. 

Gaby:
Where can our listeners reach you? Do you have Twitter accounts?

Brendan:
I do have a Twitter account. I would say if they want to start with site speed stuff, probably start at sitespeedbot.com because in 90 seconds, they will get detailed recommendations and insights that they probably won’t get anywhere else in terms of site speed. Even stuff like 404 errors, it will pick up that some of the tools won’t. Start there, I would say. 

If you’re listening and want site speed optimization help, then WP Speed Fix on the homepage. There’s a site audit request box. They can fill that in and one of the team will have a look at the page or the site, then come back with some recommendations. 

Gaby:
Perfect. Okay. Thank you, Brendan. Thank you for answering our questions and for being on the show.

Brendan:
My pleasure.

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About the Show

Join us as we introduce you to some of our friends in the WordPress community.

Learn all about their products and services and discover business techniques to help you enhance your WordPress business.

Meet your host

Meet your host

Gaby Galea

Gaby is the Content Manager at WP Mayor and your new host on the WP Mayor podcast! She is passionate about learning how to start, maintain and grow a WordPress business. Follow her on Twitter @GabriellaGalea.

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