How do I use SpeedBoost Ninja?
How does SBN work?
Shopify does some minification natively, but it still leaves opportunities to improve the page-load speed.
This is because Shopify does not minify the liquid files which contain the theme settings. And that’s where SpeedBoost Ninja comes in. Our app minifies the liquid files to improve your store’s page-load speed.
However, your store may have some files which cannot be minified due to the code structure, in this case, SpeedBoost Ninja skips those files. But ideally your store’s code should be clean, other third-party apps or customizations are usually the cause of bad code.
However – there are 2 cons:
2) Your Google PageSpeed Insights score may go down – this does not mean that your website has become slower.
Google scores your site for each of the optimization options, for not obeying the recommendations Google takes off the points.
One of the optimization recommendations is not to have CSS/JS files at the beginning of the HTML
So, on one hand, you get fewer requests to the server, but on another, you get more time render blocking. However, the overall page-load time may be lower because of the image compression and because there are fewer server requests.
In cases when you have the initial score +/- 50, and after you run the app you did not see significant improvement, you have to check following:
Were your images too big? We are optimizing your images very carefully so as not to lose too much quality, so if you had super big images, they might not have been optimized as much as possible. If your images are ok, try to restore your theme from the backup and run the app again without concatenation.
If nothing improves, your theme might not be coded to best practice standards, or maybe another third-party app is causing the issue.
Why the score goes up and down sometimes
SpeedBoost Ninja shows the overall score from the Google PageSpeed Insights tool.
Unfortunately, Google doesn’t give us a breakdown of how the score is calculated. There are many things which can influence the score:
- The connection status of the Google servers, even Google servers may have some issues from time to time.
- Any connection issues or traffic spikes with Shopify’s servers.
- Technical issues with the Shopify servers (i.e. GZip being turned off for a short time by Shopify’s tech team.)
- Technical issues with external services; modern themes use a lot of external services. which take time to load, and all of them are influencing your score. For example, we’ve seen a lot of issues with GetResponse, sometimes it takes up to 15-secs to load, which will push your store’s score into the red zone.
How to determine if your store has these issues:
First, re-run the optimization in 1-2 hours, usually Shopify/Google will fix any server issues pretty fast,
Why do I need to re-optmize my site via the app after each change I make to my theme config?
Because SpeedBoost Ninja reconfigures the structure of your liquid files to meet Google’s PageSpeed Insights requirements, any changes you make need to be updated via the app, otherwise they won’t appear on your live site.
How does the image optimization tool work if I'm already using another image optimization app?
Because we use the same technology as the most sophisticated image optimization apps and services, our algorithm detects whether your images need any further optimization. If they don’t, and they are already at the optimum size, it will not reduce their size any further to avoid low quality images.
What if I add new products or images to my store?
Can I use the SpeedBoost Ninja purely as an image optimization tool?
Sure, we use the same technology as the most sophisticated image optimization apps and services, our algorithm will reduce the file size of your images without any noticeable loss in quality.
This means you can cancel your subscription to any image optimisation services you already have.
Simply, uncheck the “CSS” and “JS” options before running the optimisation process.
How does Google measure PageSpeed score?
Your score is on a scale of 0 to 100 and is the combined total of:
- Time to “above-the-fold” load:Elapsed time from the moment a user requests a new page to the moment the content is visible in the browser.
- Time to full page load:Elapsed time from the moment a user requests a new page to the moment the full page is visible in the browser.
So, in a nutshell, Google sees your page as more “user friendly” if your score is 85 or more.
Because Google measures each page separately and not your site as a whole, SpeedBoost Ninja allows you to measure and benchmark 3 key pages from your store, your homepage, plus a collection page and a product page of your choice. This way you can understand each page type in isolation as they will typically have very different amounts of content.
Still have questions?
Our support team are here to help, simply click here to contact us.
My PageSpeed Score hasn’t improved as much as I’d like, what else can be done?
The biggest remaining cause of a low score and slow loading pages after running SpeedBoost Ninja will be the other 3rd party apps that you have installed on your store. Try disabling the ones you have one by one and re-running SpeedBoost Ninja after removing each. (Caution: configurations and data for 3rd party may be lost.) Remember to refresh your Google PageSpeed Insights score too.
Once you have identified the culprit, either remove it entirely or switch to a different app that does the same thing.
What if the app breaks my store?
It’s unlikely that your site will break but as soon as you install the app, we create an automatic backup of your site that you can revert to at anytime. You can contact our support anytime and we’ll investigate what’s causing the issue and suggest a fix before you reinstate SpeedBoost Ninja.
My page-load time has increased, what’s the deal?
Page-load times can fluctuate wildly depending on the load on Shopify’s servers and also the randomly selected location of the server that our API pings to run the speed test.
Wait a few minutes and then try again.
How do I uninstall SpeedBoost Ninja?
By removing the app, you’ll immediately revert your site to the slower speed it was at previously and you will no longer get the benefit of faster page-load speeds, better rankings and cheaper clicks.
You can remove the app by deleting it from your apps within your store. Once you’ve done this, you’ll also need to manually move your liquid files back to their original location so that you can continue to edit your theme’s config and see the changes on your live site.