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Optimizing Website Performance: A Guide for Niche Websites, E-commerce, and SaaS Businesses

James Oliver December 15, 2023

Can You Make a 7-Figure Shopify Store WITHOUT Ads

Hosting

Quality Matters: Avoid shared hosting.
Why? Your website could be lumped with undesirable sites, affecting performance and reputation.
Opt for dedicated hosting instead.

Choosing the Right Hosting Provider

Personal Favorites: Cloudways and Namecheap.
Use Namecheap for budget-friendly options and Cloudways for more robust needs, like hosting in specific regions – important for targeting markets like Australia, the US, and the UK.

SSL Certificates: A Non-Negotiable

Secure Your Site: HTTPS is a must.
Most providers offer it for free.
If not, plugins can ensure proper redirection from HTTP to HTTPS.
It can cause a lot of indexing and duplicate content issues.
Search in Google site:domain.com -inurl:https
This will show all the HTTP indexed in Google.

Speed Optimization: Image Management

A Simple Fix with Big Impact: Resize and compress images.
Tools like ShortPixel can drastically speed up your site.
Remember, oversized images are a common culprit in slowing down websites.

CSS and JavaScript Minimization

Streamlining Code: Tools like WP Rocket (though I’m less inclined to use it now) can minimize CSS and JavaScript, enhancing site speed.

Effective Caching with CloudFlare

Simplify Caching: I recommend CloudFlare for caching and spam protection.
It’s straightforward and efficient.

URL Structures and Redirects

Keep It Organized, But Don’t Sweat It: Categories matter, but don’t overthink.
For instance, a toaster review site could have URLs like ‘/toasters/best-for-thick-bread’.
You can do instead ‘/category/toasters’ and then pages closer to the homepage /best-toasters-for-thick-bread’.
Breadcrumbs will sort this out instead of a URL silo, simplicity wins.

301 Redirects: Content Management

Redirect Wisely: Essential for link building and content audits.
Redirect outdated content to more relevant posts, enhancing relevance and SEO.

Canonical Tags: Avoid Duplicate Content

Ensure Single Page Versions: Use tools like Rank Math to set canonical tags.
This prevents confusion over page versions (with or without a trailing slash).
This happens a lot with internal linking so it needs to be set up.

AI and Canonical Tags: A Clever Hack

Exploit AI for Zero Search Volume Keywords: Test AI-generated content on an expired domain.
If a piece ranks well, transfer it to your main site and use a canonical tag to signal Google about the primary source.

Thanks for reading. See you in the next one!

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