Design tips for building a mobile site

Design tips for building a mobile site

If you’re building your first mobile site, you may be unsure of where to start in your design. What’s more, you might be worried about messing things up or making the site difficult to use on mobile. Luckily, we are here to help you with some hints and tips for designing your mobile site!

To begin with, it’s never too late to start planning for the future. Mobile design advances very quickly, and you want to be a step ahead of your competitors. Therefore, study trends within the mobile design market and come up with designs which work both for current models and in anticipations for the future. This way, if you do need to redesign your site in the future, these redesigns will be minimal, cheaper and more efficient. (more…)

Save 50% on DreamHost Hosting!

Save 50% on DreamHost Hosting!

logo-01

Dreamshot is a realiable hosting that wont break your wallet. Recommended to all the people which looks a well rounded service with support 24/7 and more than 10 years of experience in the field, plus you will get a free domain with your order. Did I mention that dreamhost servers are wordpress optimised?

 

Please use this promo code:

DREAM64

Can’t find where to enter the DreamHost promo code? Click here for a screenshot

WixStores : Build a striking ecommerce site with ease  (while keeping 100% of the sales)

WixStores : Build a striking ecommerce site with ease (while keeping 100% of the sales)

Front-Page

Wix.com has already established itself as the number one free website builder on the planet.  But what about WixStores? (WixStores is the Wix.com online store builder). With more than 63m users this behemoth is nowadays almost ubiquitous due to its world class product. I must admit that at the beginning I wasn’t a big fan thanks to their already gone flash templates, which have now been graciously replaced by gorgeous and friendlier SEO HTML5 ones.  In addition to that, now you can sport a great looking online store for your small business with a myriad of apps to install. (more…)

Why you should care about speeding up your WordPress site?

Why you should care about speeding up your WordPress site?

483825828_e3ab500c9a_o

If you ever have sat and wait for a website to load, you were surely after some very important piece of information, because the majority wouldn’t have just go elsewhere to find that info.

According to this Kissmetrics post, 40% of people abandon a website that takes more than 3 seconds to load.By having a slow blog, you are missing out on increasing your traffic and therefore your revenue.

  • Reduce user frustration by Improving the overall UX (User Experience)
  • Google takes in to account its ranking algorithm
  • Faster website means more visitors and more conversions

These are actions are in no particular order, some are very easy to implement and others require more expertise to use them be careful with them. Most of them are very straight forward like installing and configuring plugins.

 

Google PageSpeed Insights as valuable yet frustrating tool to analyze your site performance

This tool have a rating score that goes from 0 to 100 points. With 85 or above you will get the “green light” of approval that indicated that your page performance is inside the standards.

You might me wondering how does PageSpeed insights evaluate your site? It looks at factors like: Server configuration, the html structure and the use of external resources like images, javascript and CSS.

Evaluating your site using this tool can be an eye opener if you haven’t performed any optimization task in the past. The great thing is that it provides a great starting point to improve site performance.

 

Benchmark Your Site.

PageSpeed is just one of the options in the market to speed test your site. In order to get a more complete panorama on how your site is performing you should refer to Pingdom Website andGtmetrix every time you take a new measure in place.

 

Hosting Matters

When you are beginning as a blogger you tend be money wise and you start in non-expensive shared hosting options.Share hosting are an inexpensive way to host your sites. Among the most popular hosting options are

1 & 1 , Dreamhost and Host Gator. All of them offer a non-expensive entry level service of share hosting and also more robust ones like VPS ( Virtual Private Service) and Dedicate Service.

Shared hosting is meant for low traffic blogs, if your site is getting bigger you must consider move to dedicated host where your blog be able to handle heavier loads of traffic.

 

Stay up to Date: Update your WordPress Core and Plugins

The core is faster today than previous versions and also being up to date reduce security risks.

 

Make sure you are using a solid framework/theme.

A light framework is a key ingredient for a speedy site. They are optimized to keep the “guts” simple and tidy. Well organized CSS and JS and the use Image Sprites are common practice in premium themes.

A great example of light and professional theme is Thesis site as big as Copyblogger.com use and praise about it. Another great option is the Canvas theme developed by WooThemes.

 

Clean up: Keep your plugins at their minimum expression.

Plugins have a huge impact on your blogs performance. They are responsible for many conflicts among other plugins and could be server resources hogs. Thats why you must keep them up date and whats more important get rid of the one you are not currently using. Monitor that load with P3 (Plugin Performance Profiler). It will creates a detailed performance report for your site so you can see which plugins are slowing your site.

 

Images: Optimize them automatically.

For this task there are a couple of plugins that makes a wonderful task reducing the file size of the images in WordPress. One is called Smush.it from yahoo, but in my experience it is a bit slow, and the my personal favorite EWWW Image Optimizer, it is faster and I have got some better images compressions ratios with it. Both, once installed will optimize all your images on the fly and you can also bulk edit the ones that are already stored in your blog.

 

Add an expires header to static resources.

With the addition of expires header you can specify the duration that the browsers doesn’t have to re-fetch static content from your site like css file, js, images etc.

That could reduce significantly the load time for your regular visitors. All you need to do is copy and paste this code in your root .htaccess file. More info in this article.

<IfModule mod_expires.c>

# Enable expirations

ExpiresActive On

# Default directive

ExpiresDefault “access plus 1 month”

# My favicon

ExpiresByType image/x-icon “access plus 1 year”

# Images

ExpiresByType image/gif “access plus 1 month”

ExpiresByType image/png “access plus 1 month”

ExpiresByType image/jpg “access plus 1 month”

ExpiresByType image/jpeg “access plus 1 month”

# CSS

ExpiresByType text/css “access 1 month”

# Javascript

ExpiresByType application/javascript “access plus 1 year”

</IfModule>

 

Install a Caching Plugin

This only recommendation give probably the most dramatic results in cut your load time. It makes static html versions from your blog pages and post. Improving drastically the speed of your blog. They are tree fantastic plugins for that. The most acclaimed is W3 total CacheWP Super Cache and my personal favorite Quick Cache I like the last one better over the other two, because is really quick to configure, basically is just download install and forget.

 

Combine, minify and compress the JS/CSS resources loaded

The minimization, (cutting unnecessary characters) compressions and putting together all your JS/CSS you optimize so the browser takes makes more and smaller queries loading those files.

You must find the plugin that suits better for your theme, because it could make your JS/CSS to load improperly altering the look and functionality. You must tweak the settings to find what is best for you.

My recommendations are: JS & CSS Script Optimizer and Async JS and CSS

 

Enable GZIP Compression

Compression is a safe bet to save bandwidth and speed up your site. It will compress the data from your server it will be decompressed by the client (browser). So you must configure your server to returns zipped content to the browser.

If your server is ISS follow these instructions in the Microsoft TechNet document to enable compression.

For Apache you will need to add these lines of code in your .htaccess file.

# compress text, HTML, JavaScript, CSS, and XML

AddOutputFilterByType DEFLATE text/plain

AddOutputFilterByType DEFLATE text/html

AddOutputFilterByType DEFLATE text/xml

AddOutputFilterByType DEFLATE text/css

AddOutputFilterByType DEFLATE application/xml

AddOutputFilterByType DEFLATE application/xhtml+xml

AddOutputFilterByType DEFLATE application/rss+xml

AddOutputFilterByType DEFLATE application/javascript

AddOutputFilterByType DEFLATE application/x-javascript

# remove browser bugs

BrowserMatch ^Mozilla/4 gzip-only-text/html

BrowserMatch ^Mozilla/4\.0[678] no-gzip

BrowserMatch \bMSIE !no-gzip !gzip-only-text/html

Header append Vary User-Agent

Add an expires header to static resources.

With the addition of expires header you can specify the duration that the browsers doesn’t have to re-fetch static content from your site like css file, js, images etc.

That could reduce significantly the load time for your regular visitors. All you need to do is copy and paste this code in your root .htaccess file. More info in this article.

<IfModule mod_expires.c>

# Enable expirations

ExpiresActive On

# Default directive

ExpiresDefault “access plus 1 month”

# My favicon

ExpiresByType image/x-icon “access plus 1 year”

# Images

ExpiresByType image/gif “access plus 1 month”

ExpiresByType image/png “access plus 1 month”

ExpiresByType image/jpg “access plus 1 month”

ExpiresByType image/jpeg “access plus 1 month”

# CSS

ExpiresByType text/css “access 1 month”

# Javascript

ExpiresByType application/javascript “access plus 1 year”

</IfModule>

How to Create an Online Shirt Shop

How to Create an Online Shirt Shop

Rainbow colors, clothes on wooden hangersThe advent of mobile technology has led to a rapid expansion of the Ecommerce industry. The industry that was once restricted to only larger companies looking to expand their presence is now open to anyone who wishes to start a business. While the technology is available to all, it takes some knowledge along with the right tools in order to turn a dream into a successful Ecommerce venture. (more…)