Presenting my latest website overhaul for Early Music Seattle, a nonprofit presenting classic concerts at venues around the city – including Benaroya Hall, Bastyr University Chapel, Federal Way Community Performing Arts Center, Langston Hughes Performing Arts Institute, and Town Hall.
This project involved converting a custom-built WordPress Theme and migrating content into a new performance-optimized Theme (_Underscores). The Block Editor was integrated for more robust layout and styling. Accessibility improvements included higher contrast colors, navigation skip links, keyboard accessible menus, and mobile-clickable phone numbers. A new branded event calendar was also integrated, with the ability for community organizations to submit third-party events. By reducing server requests 45% and reducing page size 85%, page load speed now ranks in the upper 10th percentile of sites.
Scope of Work
- Accessibility consulting
- Content migration
- Performance optimization
- Security hardening
- WordPress training & consulting
|Performance Metric||Old Website||New Website (September 2022)|
|Google Lighthouse: Accessibility||79/100||100/100|
|Google Lighthouse: Best Practices||67/100||92/100|
|Google Lighthouse: Mobile Speed||62/100||90/100|
|Google Lighthouse: Desktop Speed||89/100||95/100|
|Google Lighthouse: Search Engine Optimization||83/100||100/100|
|WebPageTest Speed Index||4.426||2.804|
|Total Homepage File Size||2.1 Mb ( 1.36 Mb Images + 574 Kb Scripts + 156 Kb CSS + Kb HTML)||323 Kb (169 Kb Images + 57 Kb Scripts + 45 Kb CSS + 43 Kb Fonts + 18 Kb HTML)|
|Total Web Server Requests||64 (22 Images + 29 Scripts + 11 CSS + 5 Other + 2 HTML)||35 (7 Images + 11 Scripts + 13 CSS + 3 Font + 1 HTML)|
|Total Homepage Load Time||~4.4 seconds||~2.8 seconds|
WebPage Test Speed Index: median = ~3.591; top 10% = <1.388
In 2021, the average page size = ~2.4 Mb and median page size = ~2.1 Mb.
Database-driven websites, like WordPress, are more performance optimized when server requests are < 40 – 60.