So, Page Speeds. What’s the deal, Shopify?
Having a speedy site is super important.
(And when we’re talking about speedy, ideally, we are looking for a site to load in under 3 seconds.)
Now, if you’ve seen your Shopify page speed looks a little below average (and that seems scary!), here’s how that metric is measured:
The PageSpeed Score is based on Google Lighthouse performance metrics. (And just FYI, if you want to dive deeper into this, it gets SUPER technical with jargon and web talk like HTML, Java and CSS...!)
There are some factors you CAN control, like apps, themes, code and coding customizations, images, videos, and fonts.
But there are also some factors you CANNOT control, like:
🚩Your customer’s location, device & network they’re on
🚩Any limitations related to your platform
Shopify’s infrastructure is designed to be fast, but some things are still built into the infrastructure that Google PageSpeed Insights thinks impacts your site speed.
So what am I saying? Focus on what you can when it comes to this score, and don’t get obsessed with it, especially if you aren’t even driving enough traffic yet.
Yes, your site needs to be as speedy as possible, and that is why we recommend a high-quality, fast, robust, and well-coded theme (we love Stiletto) and keeping your images and apps up to date (more on that in a second).
Also, make sure your theme is up to date!
Things change all the time, and the theme doesn’t even have to be that old to cause an issue. We’ve seen this happen many times where Shopify updates mean that your theme isn’t the latest version, which can cause your site to break.
Working on site speed means digging into apps and graphics/image file sizes. When I say images, I’m talking about product photos, graphics, and any image on your site. And images make up 50 to 75% of a web pages’ total weight. The higher quality the images, the more the weight.
Slow pages are 90% caused by images being incorrectly sized or images that are not in the right file format, which causes files to be much bigger than they need to be, which slows down your site when someone tries to open them.
The second thing you can do is remove unused or clunky apps. Because when you add an app, it installs code around your site. And what can happen is the app or the code can interfere or break major aspects of your site, or just really slow down your site, because the site needs to load every single app and every single image when someone opens the page.
Honestly, ever since Shopify launched the Google Page Speed Insight tool, I’ve not been head over heels with it.
It’s mainly because a perfect score is just unattainable. I’ve never seen anyone with an amazing score - and you can ask other web agencies the same thing!
Across the board, we’ve just not seen high scores. And there are some big-time multi-million dollar e-commerce websites pulling scores lower than 10 and still bringing in the big bucks (we promise).
By the way, I haven’t seen many sites above 30. So, bottom line... There are some really really really successful boutiques and other e-commerce companies out there that have terrible scores.
Hope this makes sense and helps you understand that metric a little better!
And remember, if you need branding or Shopify help for your boutique - we’re your team!
We’re the only branding and website design agency specializing in Shopify and CommentSold websites for boutique owners and e-commerce businesses. Let’s chat about optimizing your store for sales!
Angela & The Hot Mess Gals