If you’re familiar with our work, you know we love WordPress. It’s used on nearly every one of our projects. We don’t like to stay occupied doing the same thing over and over and over again. Instead, we like to focus our time researching and learning ways to improve our development process as well as improve the user experience.
We may not be the designers of the project, but as developers, we have a serious stake in the final product. Ultimately it falls to the two halves of development: front-end and back-end.
Here we care about transitions, hovers and active states. Other items like interaction, visuals and animation are taken into consideration. Not to forget, retina and browser compatibility.
This is the area where most tend to get overwhelmed from the jargon, yet it is equally important. Everyone understands load time. A site that loads in 2 seconds is better than 5. Sites that automatically optimize your images for you and scale them to the appropriate size needed, are also better than those that do not. Having a built in REST API that allows you to AJAX page content without using page loads are faster and more efficient than those that do not.
We’ve been brought in to optimize sites for better load time. In some cases, this saves clients money because they don’t need to upgrade their server. Other times it makes the clients money because visitors aren’t frustrated and leaving due to images bogging down the site. When we AJAX page content, we’re dealing with the best of both worlds. Only using a fraction of the entire page’s content while loading it up faster.
This is what custom WordPress means to us. We’re not just dropping in a plugin for every need. We hand build rotators and swipers. That way we have control over how it loads, when it loads, if the images are retina, etc. Having all of this control provides the best experience for you and your client.
Recently we’ve rebuilt our core theme leveraging techniques from above and using many more. On top of that, we are prepping for the future that has in some ways already arrived with HTTP2 and where server push and other technologies will continue to greatly change our industry. Many hosting companies are providing HTTP2 and SSL as a standard now and that’s going to continue to improve how quickly we get your content to your visitors.
Hopefully by using some of these techniques and keeping these ideas in mind, you will also be able to improve your development process and user experience.