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Magento Performance Optimization

Assuming you have a reputable business, with products and/or services people want or need, website performance is one of the top drivers for conversion for your online store. The good news is that it is fairly simple to figure out if your site is underperforming. There are several free services that will tell you how your website fares against others in the greater world wide web. A short list of these services include:

 

What to do with the report is another question. The output of these reports can be daunting, but we can assist with implementing the recommendations. Our Magento performance optimization services are split into 2 main categories:

Backend/Server-side Performance Optimization


Optimizing server response times and reducing the “Time to First Byte”

A high TTFB value is often related to server-side performance issues spanning database bottlenecks, slow SQL queries, slow PHP processing and generally speaking, a misconfigured web server. It can manifest itself as occasional blank pages (page time outs) and latency which usually means the web server cannot process requests due insufficient resources or memory leaks. In order to resolve these issues, we take the following measures:

  • Diagnose Apache web server/PHP manager for any configuration issues and optimize for Magento. Upgrading to the latest versions is always helpful.
  • Diagnose and debug MySQL using a MySQL tuning tool.
  • Evaluate caching needs and implement appropriate caching technologies (such as Memcached, Varnish, Redis, APC, Magento FPC, etc.).
  • Check and optimize PHP configuration to maximize system resources (often, it is not properly configured by the host).
  • Install and configure a PHP opcode cache solution (XCache or Zend Opcache).


Enable Apache Keep-Alive feature

Also known as a persistent connection. When keep alive is not enabled, this process can increase the time it takes to download the page and waste server resources.

Compress Cached Pages

Implement compression on cached pages in order to deliver the content faster through the network and reduce latency.

Front-end Performance Optimization


Minimize the number of HTTP requests made on each page load by:

  • Concatenating and minifying all the front-end CSS and JS files
  • Using CSS sprites or converting the theme CSS images into Base64 strings
  • Inlining CSS for important scripts needed to build the page layout before any other render-blocking resources. This optimizes the speed index.


Implement browser caching / add “expires headers”

Browser caching and expiring headers is useful in reducing the number of HTTP requests, which improves the performance for your returning visitors. In other words, the website doesn’t have to reload images, Javascript and other code needlessly.

Integrate with a CDN (Content Delivery Network)

A CDN allows you to store media such as photos and videos, on a separate hosted network. This reduces the load and bandwidth on your web server and speeds up other processes. We highly recommend Amazon Cloudfront as a CDN provider (they offer a 12 month free tier for their CDN service). CloudFlare is another popular option.

Reduce your page size

Any page request that is greater than 3MB is considered bad practice, especially for mobile users.

Configure ETags

Entity Tags (ETags) are a mechanism web servers and browsers use to determine whether a component in the browser’s cache matches the one on the origin server.

Implement lazy-loading technique for product images with Google Pagespeed module for Apache

Lazy Load delays loading of images in long web pages. Images outside of the viewport are not loaded until the user scrolls down to them. This is opposite of image preloading.

Optimize images by minimizing file size

Optimize images by reducing the file size while keeping their original quality intact, using lossless compression, progressive JPEGs or converting on-the-fly to Google’s .webp format – very important for fast page rendering (especially for mobile).

Help us, help you

We’ve done this for many other clients, and can help you as well. Contact us today for a complimentary phone consultation.