Here at Adigi we talk to our clients new and old about performance and how to get the best out of a WordPress website. When we are looking at a brief and putting a proposal together we spend a good chunk of time understanding the objectives and then understanding how we can optimise and get the best result 

After we have agreed on a sitemap and designed the website we move to the front end development of the website.There are a number of factors that influence performance at the front end of a website. This is the user experience (UX) and user interaction (UI) on a website. These two things can significantly impact performance, and vice versa. Here’s how they are interconnected:

  1. Perceived Performance:
    • Perception of Speed: Even if a website isn’t the fastest in terms of actual metrics, a well-designed user experience can make it feel faster. For instance, displaying a loading indicator or skeleton screens can give users the sense that the site is responsive and loading, thus improving perceived performance.
  2. Smooth Interactions:
    • Responsive Design: Ensuring that the website responds quickly to user inputs (clicks, scrolls, taps) without lag improves the overall user experience. Slow interactions can frustrate users and lead to higher bounce rates.
    • Animation and Transitions: Smooth and well-timed animations can enhance user experience, but they need to be optimised to not affect performance negatively. Heavy, unoptimised animations can cause lag and jitter.
  3. Layout Stability:
    • Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): A key metric that measures visual stability. If elements on the page move around while it’s loading, it can lead to a poor user experience and make the site feel sluggish. Ensuring that content loads predictably and stays stable can enhance both UX and perceived performance.
  4. Interactive Elements:
    • Efficient Event Handling: Ensuring that interactive elements (buttons, forms, menus) are responsive and execute their actions swiftly is crucial. Delays in these interactions can make the site feel slow.
    • Debouncing and Throttling: Techniques used to improve performance by limiting the rate at which functions are executed during rapid interactions (e.g., scrolling or resizing).
  5. Content Prioritisation:
    • Above-the-Fold Content: Prioritising the loading of content that is immediately visible to the user (above the fold) can make the site feel faster. Lazy loading images and other content below the fold until the user scrolls can improve initial load times.
    • Progressive Rendering: Techniques like progressive image rendering or progressive web apps (PWAs) ensure that a usable portion of the site loads quickly, enhancing the initial user experience.
  6. Feedback Mechanisms:
    • Instant Feedback: Providing instant visual feedback for user actions (like button clicks or form submissions) reassures users that the site is responsive and their input has been acknowledged.
    • Error Handling: Clear and helpful error messages improve user experience, especially if issues arise from slow or failed interactions.
  7. Mobile Optimisation:
    • Touch and Gesture Optimisation: Ensuring that touch interactions are smooth and responsive on mobile devices. Poor performance on mobile can severely affect user experience due to the expectation of instant interaction.
    • Viewport Meta Tag: Ensuring proper scaling and layout on different devices to avoid unnecessary zooming and scrolling, which can impact performance perception.
  8. Content and Media Management:
    • Optimised Images and Videos: Using appropriately sized and compressed images and videos ensures that media loads quickly, improving both UX and performance.
    • Content Delivery Network (CDN): Utilising a CDN to serve static resources quickly based on user location can significantly improve load times and thus enhance user experience.
  9. Accessibility:
    • Keyboard Navigation and Screen Readers: Ensuring the site is accessible to users with disabilities can also improve performance metrics, as these optimisations often involve streamlining the code and interactions.

By focusing on these aspects as design and a development team we can ensure and create a website that not only performs well in technical terms but also provides a design focused, smooth, intuitive, and satisfying experience for users with performance at its heart. 

Contact us today to discuss your website project..