Grappling With Page Speed Insights

Amanda Coen

Website Speed and Page Speed Insights

I worry. I worry and fuss all the time in case I miss something obvious on my website. I don't want to miss out on sales for my suppliers or myself due to something that is within my power to fix. 

Therein lies the problem. I don't usually presume that there's much in my power with this kind of technology and dynamics that I can have much effect on yet still I flounder about 'doing all the things' that I think need to be done to improve matters or to even to stay still. 

Website issues can often be elusive and you can burn yourself out entirely running up blind alleys and such in hot pursuit of the next fix when, like today, the issue at hand had actually nothing to do with me or my efforts and I wasted lots of time trying to fix it to no avail really. Now all of a sudden it has resolved itself.
Nonetheless, I have had a bee in my bonnet generally lately about the Google page speed and the page speed insights. My website speed has been abominable for a while now. It went from bad to worse of late so to this end I have been clipping extra code out of my theme in the background, adding apps to speed up loading times, minimising images both in quantity and file size and any other thing I can do that I glean from the copious amount of bumpf on the subject found in the endless explanatory help sheets available in Shopify and elsewhere on the internet. I am even considering learning a bit of coding myself to help me in the long run. We will see! I got another app to reduce my already reduced picture files and that has helped too. The latest efforts have been to reduce collection sizes and get rid of excess coding in the background. 'Java scripts', to be precise.

My Google Page Speed

My Google page speed, determined by their 'Lighthouse' strategy or method, something like that, improved from a diabolical and sudden dive to 11 up to 26, 37, 37 and finally 40 after months of effort and not little frustration. I discovered the reason for the sudden hike was not due to my efforts but due to only one of the three readings, the best one, was noted. This was due to 'no data available' for the other two areas. I don't know why, all of a sudden, but there it was.

My reading has now reverted to 33 or 34 and I imagine it will go down even more when the third area is available to be perused through, may I add, no effort on my part either way. 

Page Speed Insights Reveal

It turns out that page speed insights based on a 'lighthouse reading' by Google is only a reference point and is not based on the real experience of your customers.

The best bit is, that it is only meant as a pointer to where on your website you need to or you could make improvements.

The real user experience could well be much better than it shows and website performance is based on so many other factors as well. 

Google Page Speed 

Google page speed as mentioned in page speed insights in Shopify does not effect your website placement in Google it seems. It does not determine where or when Google will show your website in searches. This is really good but also very vague.

My Gripe About Page Speed Insights and Such

There always seems to be a veil keeping website visibility, in terms of search-ability and website speed, just out of reach.

Everything seems to matter enormously to visibility and search rankings. Speed, SEO, Back Links, Publicity, Social Media, Photography, Copy, Blogs, UX Friendliness etc etc etc.

Everybody purports to know how to get you there but who actually knows how and why is it so elusive? You can throw money everywhere and spend all your time learning about the ins and outs of every app and platform known to man but never find what you are looking for and die trying. It feels sometimes like everybody is pretending. Holding back the real stuff so you will part with more of your hard earned cash so they can make a packet off your efforts. 

Google Page Speed - Final Analysis

In the end I just have to accept that website speed improvement and page speed insights are things that always need monitoring but I need not go down the rabbit hole every time there is a little problem.

Sometimes it pays to wait a bit for the issue to resolve itself naturally..


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