We’ve just released a new version of our bestselling DNN Theme – Porto 2.
It has many new features, but in this post I’ll focus on just one: Speed & Performance. That’s right! Performance is a feature. Page speed is a significant factor in SERPs (Search Engine Result Page) rankings and bounce rate. It’s even more important now with responsive designs and mobile rankings. There are many articles on web on why fast page speed is better. So for rest of this post, let’s look at what is considered fast within DNN ecosystem.
Our goal was simple. Make Porto as fast as possible within technical limitations of DNN framework. We settled on Google PageSpeed Insights as our measuring tool. For comparison, we looked at http://www.dnnsoftware.com itself along with top selling DNN Themes. We used the following best DNN Themes as our benchmark to set a new standard of performance.
5 DNN Theme vendors were selected from Top Vendors on 9/18/2015
2 themes were selected for each vendor based on Best Selling Revenue – Last 2 Weeks (as of 9/18/2015)
Results are ranked based on Desktop Speed. Click on the Vendor name to view its profile and Theme name to view the analyzed page. Scores can change based on server load and content changes. Individual scores and results are linked with snapshots at time of analysis (9/18/2015) Use the Test Now links to see the current analysis.
It was no surprise that the DNN Theme in use on DNNSoftware.com was the best performing theme; hence it became our benchmark.
We’re happy to announce that Porto 2 sets a new benchmark for performance within DNN ecosystem.
View Minimal Page
Porto 3 introduces a new Shortcodes Packager that allows complete control over number of external libraries. A minimal version is under 300 KBytes1
1 Must enable Client Resource Management & GZIP Compression
DNN has always had myriad of extensions to meet almost any business requirements. So many that it’s always a challenge to decide on one module from many competing products.
Consider the following checklist before clicking on “Checkout” for your next DNN Module(s):
DUPLICATE CONTENT: Make sure that the module does not duplicate content. For example, if the module uses query parameters such as www.yoursite.com?ItemId=12or www.yoursite.com?article=dnn-module-features then every unique URL should have a distinct Page Title, Meta Description & Keywords.
FRIENDLY URLs: The single most effective SEO consideration is to ensure that the module integrates with your Friendly URL provider and creates friendly URLs. This is no longer a concern with introduction of improved URLs beginning with DNN 7.1.
AJAX: Make sure AJAX is limited to back end interaction and not used as a primarily driver of content. Automatic content fetch on page scroll is great but if not implemented correctly would result in content that’s not indexed by search engines. If the module uses AJAX extensively then ensure that the URL Hash (such as www.yoursite.com#section-1) is changed with every change in content presentation and Hash URLs exist in static/root document to be indexed by search engines.
The average web users’ attention span is under 7 seconds so it’s crucial that the DNN Module is performance optimized and renders as quickly as possible.
CACHING: Every DNN Module should implement caching to replace frequent round trips back to the database and / or file system.
JQUERY FRAMEWORK: Confirm that the module integrates with DNN API to request jQuery or jQuery UI framework rather than injecting their own scripts which results in increased page size and conflicts across other modules and components.
INTUITIVE USER INTERFACE: Make sure the User Interface is intuitive and easy to follow. If you as the admin/integrator can’t accomplish basic tasks without looking over documentation again and again then it’s likely your clients / end users will be calling you over and over again as well.
WELL DOCUMENTED: Make sure the module includes documentation with easy to follow screenshots and/or videos.
EXCELLENT SUPPORT: Any software is as good as its support. Make sure the support is prompt and competent to address your business requirements. It’s always a good idea to start with a pre-sales question.