Perfmatters Review: Love it or Leave it

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I have been playing a little with the code snippets plugins and the elements section from GeneratePress.

I was thinking if it was possible for me to use code snippets to take care of some of the stuff that PerfMatters does.

Don’t get me wrong, Perfmatters is a great plugin and I recommend using it if you don’t want to complicate yourself testing if code snippets for this and that still work or if the code snippets don’t conflict with existing plugins, theme, or the WordPress core.

Take into account, that my sites are simple so I am not using everything Perfmatters brings to the table in terms of speed optimizations.

Take into account that the Perfmatters team keeps adding features to make WordPress speed sites faster.

These are my notes trying to figure out if I really need PerfMatters.

My WordPress Stack

My WordPress stack is kind of simple, I have only 8 plugins

#1Ad Inserter Pro
#2Cloudflare
#3Code Snippets
#4GenerateBlocks
#5GP Premium
#6JSON-LD Breadcrumbs
#7Perfmatters
#8SmartCrawl
#9Table of Contents Plus

These are my thoughts about each one of the plugins that I use:

  • Ad Inserter Pro add some scripts and styles but they are all necessary if I want to monetize my WordPress site the right way.
  • Cloudflare is installed because I don’t want to go to the CF panel to clear the cache every time I modify a page. I also use it on some sites because I am paying for Cloudflare APO.
  • Code Snippets gives me the chance to add scripts, styles, and custom PHP so I don’t have to modify the theme files
  • GenerateBlocks has only 6 blocks but all the CSS is inlined so I don’t have to worry about it in terms of speed
  • GP Premium is something I have to keep using because of the “Elements”. I love GeneratePress
  • JSON-LD Breadcrumbs add breadcrumbs to my site only visible to Search Engines
  • Perfmatters might or might not add scripts to your site. it is up to what you want to do with it.
  • SmartCrawl is the SEO Plugin that I have been using.
  • Table of Contents Plus is the best TOC plugin at this point. I dequeued the scripts cause I don’t use the toggle functionality and I purified the CSS a bit.

PerfMatters Sections

Perfmatters is divided into 7 major sections

#1General
#2Assets
#3Preloading
#4Lazy Loading
#5Fonts
#6CDN
#7Analytics

Perfmatters: General (1)

This is the part that requires a bunch of code snippets to do what PerfMatters does

I found lots of code snippets to disable and remove some of the unnecessary stuff that WordPress adds to sites.

Options

OptimizationSnippet
Disable EmojisCode
Disable DashiconsCode
Disable EmbedsCode
Disable XML-RPCCode
Remove jQuery MigrateCode
Hide WP VersionCode
Remove wlwmanifest LinkCode
Remove RSD LinkCode
Remove ShortlinkCode
Disable RSS FeedsCode
Remove RSS Feed LinksCode
Disable Self PingbacksCode
Disable REST APICode
Remove REST API LinksCode
Disable Password Strength MeterCode
Disable CommentsCode
Remove Comment URLsCode
Remove Global StylesCode
Disable HeartbeatCode
Limit Post RevisionsCode

Login URL

This section also has the option to change the login page URL

I don’t use this option since CloudFlare Firewall Rules are probably the best way to reduce attacks made to the login page.

Note: If you have to manage several sites, the process of keeping these Code Snippets updated is a pain in the *ss

Perfmatters: Assets (2)

The script manager is really useful when you want to remove styles and scripts from your site.

if you don’t have PerfMatters, you can dequeue styles and scripts using code.

I dequeued GeneratePress styles and Scripts that I am not using at all so I am not using the Asset Script Manager

I am deferring and delaying some scripts

I removed the unused block library CSS manually so I don’t think I have CSS to purify

Note: Deferring and Delaying can be done with the help of Code Snippets but I haven’t tried that yet.

Perfmatters: Preloading (3)

Instapage will load links before visitors click on them.

I don’t use InstaPage since it is used only to improve perceived performance and that feature adds an additional request to your site.

I am not preloading, pre-connecting, and prefetching anything.

Note: I haven’t tried preloading, pre-connecting, or prefetching with the help of code snippets.

Perfmatters: Fonts (4)

There have been periods of time in which I haven’t lazy-loaded Images, Iframes, and Videos because I add them way below the fold.

For some reason, the native lazy loading feature doesn’t seem to work so I have activated most features in this section.

If you don’t have PerfMatters, you can use the LazyLoad Plugin – Lazy Load Images, Videos, and Iframes to handle the lazy loading.

Note: I did some searches and it seems that lazy loading images, videos, and Iframes requires some intermediate coding skills

Perfmatters: Fonts (5)

I don’t use Google Fonts, I use the systems fonts so I don’t have to deal with the speed problems Google fonts bring.

Some people might notice a difference but I don’t really see much difference between the system fonts and Google fonts

If you use Google Fonts, this section will come in handy.

Note: It is recommended to use Local Google Fonts

Perfmatters: CDN (6)

The CDN rewrite option allows you to easily use third-party CDN providers on your WordPress site. Rewrite means that it will automatically change all of your assets’ URLs on the fly to use the CDN URL

I am using Cloudflare for all things CDN and security so I don’t use anything from this section.

Some users might need it but I don’t.

Note: I have never used an additional CDN for resources such as images. I am not sure if that improves load times when you are using full-page caching

Perfmatters: Analytics (7)

There are several options that you can play within this section to reduce the impact of Google Analytics.

When I use this speed optimization, I usually go for the minimal inline script type.

If you don’t have PerfMatters, you can use this script to reduce the impact of Google Analytics on your site.

You can add the script to the footer using Elements from GeneratePress or any insert header and footer plugin.

Take into account that the Google Analytics script created by Perfmatters is minified in a better way than the alternative provided by Minimal Analytics.

Note: I use the minimal analytic script and it works as expected

Final Thoughts

I ended up uninstalling Perfmatters from all of my sites and then I ended up installing it again.

It takes a lot of work maintaining code snippets when you have several sites.

Perfmatters is a great WordPress plugin and there are far more complex sites than mine that might be benefited from using it.

More about WordPress Speed

I hope that you have found this guide useful

These are other posts that you might want to check out:

  1. How to Optimize GeneratePress for Core Web Vitals [100% Solved]
  2. How to Lazy Load Ads
  3. How to Preload Links in WordPress
  4. How to Optimize Table of Contents Plus for Speed
  5. How to Use Flying Scripts to Speed up Your WordPress Site
  6. How to Use Cloudflare Full Page Caching With WordPress
  7. Optimizing WordPress Sites with Autoptimize
JM

Sobre Jose Manuel

I am José Manuel. I am writing about things I know and things that I am learning about WordPress. I hope you find this blog useful.