Website Performance

How to measure the quality of a website.

There are many ways to build a website, but more often than not developers will take shortcuts in an attempt to minimize their cost and squeeze profit out of every job, even it cuts down on website performance in the end. While for the most part many clients cannot tell the if their site has been developed with a cutting-corners method, the test of time will provide more than enough proof.

Websites that have been coded poorly will often break when any new updates to the platform they use are released. Additionally these sites will not perform well based on the standard that Google and other major search engines look for. If your website is coded poorly or incorrectly, while it may look ok to the average user, search engine robots can see the source code and determine if there are errors. If these robots detect these errors (and they will) then they will discount your website’s authority, hurting your ability to rank in search results.

Frequently Asked Questions

How does website coding affect usability?
Good coding is clean coding, is proper coding, is effective coding. Everything boils down to the site being structured in such a way that makes it easy for users to access and use the tools and information you’re presenting to them on a webpage. Well written or produced content on a site is meaningless if you don’t have solid coding driving it. Moreover, the code we have driving your site aligns with the standards Google puts forth when it ranks websites via its crawlers – this helps ensure that your website ranks higher on search results pages. We make sites usable for the average user across a variety of browsing platforms and tech platforms by making sure that the code allows this to happen.
Do search engines care about my code?
Yes, absolutely. If your site doesn’t use proper code, a search engine will pick up on it. Improper code is bad code to a search engine crawler and no search engine rates sites with bad code favorably. If you want your site to climb to the coveted #1 search result spot, it needs to be coded properly. Your content can be great, and your service exceptional, but poor code can be holding you back. We make sure your site has properly used tags (like heading tags and alt tags) and avoids raising red flags that hurts your rating on search engines.
Is page load speed important?
It’s all coding isn’t it? Bad code is often slow code (or outright dead code) and this reflects very negatively on how quickly your site loads up when a crawler checks up on it. We work to keep code streamlined and free from bloat and errors which also keeps your site from breaking every time an update comes out (because the only thing worse than a slow site is one that never even heard the starting gun.) Not only with the search engine crawler appreciate it, so will your clients.
Does it matter what hosting package I use?
Speed is more than just your coding. Surprising, isn’t it? Cheap hosting isn’t fast hosting – if you aren’t willing to spend a little more to get a little more, the nicest coding on the planet won’t be able to save you from the simple reality of being bottlenecked by your hosting provider. Free hosting plans share your bandwidth with everyone else that’s also on that hosting plan with that hosting provider. It’s like driving through traffic during rush hour- you’ll get there but not any time soon.
I made my site – do I need to update it?
Yes. If your site is built on WordPress for instance, updates are offered constantly for security and functionality reasons. Outdated versions of WordPress leave your site vulnerable and can make it easier to be hacked. Additionally, plugins and code can become outdated if you don’t regularly update, and if that happens your site can experience reduced functionality – or just outright break. We do our best to “futureproof” the sites we build, but you’ll still need updates because the internet – and its tools of the trade (like browsers) – are constantly updating.
Do bells and whistles slow my site down?
The short answer is no. The long answer is no, through the use of clever coding we can create a site that looks visually stunning or has quirky little functions and interfaces but still get your site to load quickly so your clientele don’t give up after staring at a blank (or half-loaded, intermittently functioning) page for several minutes.
I want to make some simple edits – can I?
Of course! It’s your webpage so you can make the edits you want if you feel you need them. Platforms like WordPress let you make edits very easily, so changing your address, phone number, email, etc. is a breeze. With platforms like Shopify we produce interfaces to allow you do the same thing just as easily. The interface for both platforms is robust enough to not be affected by simple changes – and we make sure to grant you access to the right portions of your site’s content so the changes you make don’t inadvertently muck up the code you paid for – to help facilitate this, all of our work is delivered via a CMS (content management system.)
Am I protected against outages and hackers?
Yes! We offer a service through CloudFlare that ensures that if your site is compromised or just experiences an outage (which can happen to any site on the internet because of the nature of the internet) that ensures that potential clients can still view your site by loading a cached version. We also monitor our servers 24/7 to ensure that there are no major issues. If there ever is an issue that you spot before we may, then our amazing team is standing by to help.

CODING TO PERFECTION

Why it’s important to not cut corners when coding.

At NewLeaf we make sure we don’t cut any corners because we understand that the vitality of your website stems from a quality foundation of source code. Having a properly coded website is critical to success in search engine ranking and usability.

Our motto is that if you succeed, so do we, and we don’t consider taking short cuts a sound plan for anyone to succeed. Except maybe your competitor. Below is a list of just a few of the very important items your website should pass in terms of quality coding. You wouldn’t want to drive your car off the lot if the mechanic handed you the safety inspection list and the transmission or brakes were not cleared for use, right?

  • Minify CSS/HTML
  • Optimize Images
  • Enable gZip Compression
  • Specify Image Dimensions
  • Serve Scaled Images
  • Defer Parsing of Javascript
  • Leverage Browser Caching
  • Asynchronous Resources
  • Use a CDN
  • Avoid HTTP 404 Errors
  • Reduce DNS Lookups
  • Add Expiry Headers