Beautiful, fast, real estate websites
Update: The period for this contest has now ended and we are not accepting any more free WPO requests. If you are interested in getting Web Performance Optimization work done on your Renaissance website, please contact your account manager. You can likely still get it done for free by leveraging your early renewal credits.
Here at Real Estate Webmasters when it comes to the front end/website we focus on 4 main things
Now if you’ve read anything I’ve written on any of these topics, you’ll know that they are not mutually exclusive.
Accessibility helps with performance (and looks great if done well), Looking great increases time on site, which can help with SEO, making it fast improves bounce rate which helps to rank, and so on.
Today, I want to focus on Page Speed. And I have a fun idea!
If you’re not up on page speed and why it matters , you should read this article.
One thing about page speed is that the goal posts are always changing.
Technology evolves (quickly) and Google and others are constantly tweaking their measuring tools and scoring algorithms. As such, your score can decrease even if you had a great score before and have not made any changes.
It’s an ongoing process.
Now because of that (and because we have several awesome new team members on our teams here at REW) I proposed that we have our teams brush up on page speed.
How? Why not make it fun, and also benefit some of our clients?
So here’s what we’re going to do:
All designers and programmers must take on one WPO project. Max 5 hours.
We’re going to have our leaders and some of our other WPO experts like @hatzopoulos and @MattPinneo assist them in their projects to make sure it’s done right and they learn all the latest techniques to improve page speed (especially on mobile)
We’re also going to have them document any significant changes and share them here on the forums, so that you can learn what they did and how they did it.
Now here’s where it gets fun! We’re going to let clients volunteer their sites for a completely free WPO project.
Here’s how it works: (and how to qualify)
#1: You have to be on Renaissance (but it’s totally cool if you’re customized)
#2: You must have a page speed of less than 70 on mobile (if you’re higher than that, you’re already doing well, and probably don’t need a lot of help, but definitely follow along here if you want tips.
#3: You must post here on the forums to apply (no PM’s on Facebook, or emails please) we’re trying to encourage forum participation and learning.
That’s it! Fun right?
The team will be working on your “homepage only” and up to a maximum of 5 hours. We should be able to make a good dent in improving your score with that.
And for our team members? The pair that achieves the “best score” will win a $100 gift card each (why not make it fun and interesting, right?)
And even though they can’t win the prize (it’s for their team members) I’m going to challenge the design and programming leads @matthutchings and @moriahkemila to do the first project!
If you want your site considered, it will be on a first come first served basis (no other criteria other than that and the items above) - just post it here, we’ll check your scores and away we go!
Please note: While customers should be able to do the vast majority of what we do for WPO here, some things may require using your agency team (retainer) to get done. The more advanced, programmatic stuff that is.
For Matt and Moriah, I’m going to suggest one of our portfolio sites www.smithandassociates.com
Quite a custom site (so a challenge) but also I’m like 1,000,000% sure they would be down for it.
Team, are you ok if we give you some free WPO?
Dangit! Looks like Tyler is on Vaca
Matt and Moriah, why don’t you start with an audit and compile your list of recommendations/changes you’d like to make to improve the page speed? That would be helpful anyways, since they will want to know what we’re going to want to do to their site before we speed it up.
Off to blast this offer to the rest of the community now. Bazinga!
For customers not sure how to test your page speed, go here:
We’d like to get in on the fun!
Hello Russell, can you please post your live URL so we can verify it’s below 70 on mobile and on Renaissance? Thanks
we would like to get in on this. www.DRGMpls.com. Thx, Joe
Sure thing it’s: www.teamferasriyal.com
Oy! You are definitely below 70 (you’re on the list!)
One thing I want to call out right away for you though Russel (it well be on the teams recommendations as well) is use of “third party” scripts. You seem to have several on there and they are going to be a big part of your slow down. To get your speed back up, you may need to consider getting ride of those / finding an alternative.
Let’s see what they say: The first bit is easy (you have a lot of images that need help) we’ll definitely get you better than a 22
I took a look at your site (wow, quite custom! I didn’t even recognize it as Renaissance at first).
I have some good news and some bad news… And it’s the same news
The bad news is: You don’t qualify for this program. The reason is, your site is already wicked fast (your homepage is well above 70 on mobile and 90+ on desktop)
The good news is: You don’t qualify! Congratulations on having a super fast well planned out and executed site. You can and should be focused on other things besides page speed. (Assuming the rest of your pages test out the same)
There are still a few highly technical things (the last mile) you could do with your retainer team (again not necessary) but I can give you some tips to thing about.
Again. Those items above are quite technical (require a programmer) and you do NOT need to do them in order to be competitive (your site is already great) but if you were curious about your list mile those are some things you could look at.
Ok, Russel, we have 1 of 2 team members assigned Andy, one of our newer designers
They will start with the images as that is always the low hanging fruit
We have Andy’s developer counterpart ready to roll as well! Great site to kick off with.
vantagewestrealty is in!
That is not their mobile score is it? I checked and it was not very good at all (hence why I flagged them) I’m going to remove the desktop requirement, since Mobile is where most folks struggle.
Sweet! Let’s get some positive improvements on Russel’s site “today” if possible. Who is Andy paired with?
Nope, that was desktop. You’re right, mobile score is much lower.
Andy is paired with Carlo. And no problem to get on it today! cc. @Moriah
Hi @russel, Andy and I are excited to start your WPO review! I’ve run PageSpeed Insights and see these are the top opportunities on your site:
Opportunity: Image Optimization
Recommendation: Convert to WebP format, compress, Lazy loading hidden images, properly sizing image
Opportunity: Third-Party Scripts
Recommendation: Consider performance impact and determine if any aren’t necessary or can be only loaded on certain pages.
We’ll go ahead with our optimizations with these in mind, and will have an update on the results soon!
First team in! Looking forward to the results.
@russell you really should think about those 3rd party widgets.
1: Are they bringing enough value to justify slowing your site down considerably? (if not delete them completely)
2: If they are, do they need to be on critical entry pages (like the home page or community pages), or could they live on secondary pages such as about, etc
Looking forward to this update