How to Speed Up a WordPress Website Running Ezoic Ads
Website performance has evolved as an important aspect not only for SEO but to provide a fast & smooth user experience which will eventually help your site to be in favor of search engines.
Benefits of a fast site:
- Better crawling rate for crawlers.
- Better page experience.
- Less bounce rate.
- More page views.
While we have the advantage of CDNs, Caching plugins, and VPS servers for WordPress sites, I encounter many people posting difficulties in passing speed tests and web vitals for sites with Ezoic ads.
With Ezoic connected to a site, it acts as a proxy between the website site and its users. They use a custom CDN that is augmented to improve performance for sites using the platform. Although Ezoic claims that typical caching plugins such as WP rocket, W3 Total Cache, and Siteground optimizer work on sites that are name server or Cloudflare integrated, you might not see an upgrade unless you decide to scale down the heavy assets from your website.
Scaling the impact of your website assets on performance is not straightforward. It might depend on various factors such as your host, theme, plugins, 3rd party codes, image formats & sizes, use of multiple CDNs, etc.
Here’s when the Ezoic’s LEAP’Technology scans come in handy. The technology scanner provides you with an overview of the various technologies being used on your site and their impact on your site’s performance.
* Keep in mind that you may not eliminate all of these warnings or replace them with alternatives. But it will give you an idea of which technologies on your site needs to be withdrawn and ensure your site passes the web vital metrics for good.
Here are a couple of tips we internally use in SpeedySite to make websites compatible with performance and web vitals.
Recognition: Speedy Site is a WordPress performance optimization service that is now helping people overhaul their existing asset-heavy websites to give you a lean, best-in-class solution. If you have sites lying around that need a significant overhaul, have an outdated theme or plugin bloat, failing all google user experience metrics, you can reach out to the site overhaul service on SpeedySite.
1. Use Name Server or Cloudflare Integration On Ezoic
Ezoic lets you integrate your website via different options.
- Cloudflare Integration (this means Cloudflare runs the DNS server)
- DNS Server integration (this means Ezoic runs the DNS server)
- WordPress Plugin (we did not find this option useful for performance)
Using the Cloudflare integration is recommended because a CDN like Cloudflare can speed up your site significantly and take the load off your origin server. In addition, you can customize your Cloudflare settings according to your need when required, unlike Ezoic DNS server integration.
Although, DNS server integration does a great job and manages all the records and server configurations without needing your action.
2. Use a lightweight & SEO-friendly theme
A website’s theme affects your site performance and search engine rankings. Having a well-coded and lightweight theme will help your site’s accessibility, SEO, and speed. We use Generatepress with custom premade templates + hooks, and blocks to reduce page size, so a good-looking, clean design is intact.
Ezoic Technology library can provide you with a list of fast themes compatible with their platform.
3. Unload plugins & replicate the functionality with custom elements
Plugins are very helpful in extending your website’s functionalities. But overusing plugins can harm your website performance. Try using fewer plugins as long as possible while ensuring your website has crucial active functionalities.
For example, we build author bio blocks, Social share buttons, review blocks, and comparison blocks using WordPress hooks and have them running only where it’s required to avoid installing individual plugins for each feature. This gives us full customization ability in terms of appearance as well.
Now, this might not be a feasible option for everyone – hence we try to share tutorials on such topics in this weekly email. A few tutorials are instantly available in our previous emails as well. Additionally, you can reach out to SpeedySite for such modules, but that comes with a complete overhaul package.
Like themes, you can identify plugins that can severely impact site performance and find alternatives via the Ezoic technology section.
4. Remove or host Google Fonts Locally
Google fonts can harm your site performance if not used properly. If you don’t want to miss out on the extra level of elegance, it adds you can host the Google fonts locally. In Generatepress, we host the fonts locally using its built typography manager, but you can also utilize the OMGF plugin for this purpose.
If you don’t want Google fonts on your site, check this guide with multiple options to remove Google fonts from your site.
5. Avoid large images above the fold & optimize fonts
Loading heavy assets on the website head or within the first print is a bad practice. Although, an element with a background image loaded instead of a CSS gradient that occupies the entire viewport is not considered a candidate for LCP issue.
You would want to load the lightest possible assets in the first viewport of a page. Here are a few tips:
- Have your logo compressed and preloaded (if it’s an image).
- Optimize page title font size for mobile.
- Add a gradient cover or background image to the page title if you want to.
- For the background image, compress the size without losing the image quality.
- Preload the fonts that are in use within the first viewport.
6. Host Google Analytics Locally
Hosting Google Analytics locally can help speed up your site by reducing extra DNS lookups. The analytics script warns about caching because they have their HTTP caching header expiration set short.
When you host it yourself, your CDN or server’s HTTP caching headers will automatically be applied. In other words, you have complete control over the caching of the script. You can use Flying Analytics plugin by Gijo Varghese to host analytics on the server.
You can use the Header & Footer plugin or use Element on Generatepress and set them to load on the footer. Even some CSS files that are not loading above the fold can be set to the footer. However, you will need to ensure the stylesheet loads before the ad scripts start loading.
8. Enable LEAP & Ezoic CDN
Next, you should take advantage of Ezoic’s CDN and have the cache settings values configured as below.
- Enable Caching For Cookies – ON
- Default Cache Age (s) – 2592000
- Override Cache-Control Headers – ON
You can keep the rest of the values as default. Once you are done with the cache settings, you must adjust the LEAP settings under the optimize section. This varies from site to site and needs proper testing to understand which configuration will work best for your site.
If you have configured it before but haven’t gotten a positive output, you can reach out to SpeedySite professionals.
9. Additional Tip To Improve Web Vital Score With Ezoic
This is not something related to performance tweaks, but when you enable Ezoic’s Interstitial ads, which basically are full-screen ads that cover the interface when you visit another page on the same website, it improves your overall web vital record, especially LCP and FCP.
This is because when a user tries to visit the next page and the interstitial ad loads, the target page is actually loading behind the ad cover. Users can see the page almost instantly when they cancel the ad.
This is a similar concept related to link preload or instant click mechanism used in most of the caching plugins but with the additional advantage of an ad being displayed for a revenue boost.
Summary: With such steps combined, we successfully passed web vitals with Ezoic ads running on our sites, even though these sites are not entirely lightweight. Here’s how our site recovered from vitals & page experience issues.