TLDR: As of 2020, speed matters! And it, now, matters a lot to Google! Previously user experience demanded faster sites for better conversions. Now Google too prioritizes page speed for SEO ranking. That changed the game back in favor of Gutenberg.
We started on our company site dearhive.com with Elementor. It went smoothly. Creating layouts, doing the design changes, and all. The site was ready and looking greats. It still runs on Elementor. That goes well when the site doesn’t need speed. We just display our information on our company site and it’s fine if it runs a second or two slower.
BUT, we couldn’t do the same with our product site, it had to be fast! We learned a good lesson! And we learned well.
Some backstory: We are a group of developers, develop web solutions. Mostly plugin for websites “WordPress plugins”.
Our company site, dearhive.com, was built with no business agenda, it’s just a virtual representation of our company. We sell our products on individual sites. Our main product DearFlip was listed on Codecanyon. Any customers would use that CodeCanyon page to learn about our product and purchase it there.
Our product site, dearflip.com was just a demo site, built with Elementor. The customer could also wait a few seconds extra to load the demo. The product site never bothered to rank on Google. Codecanyon page ranked on Google and we were happy!
We left CodeCanyon and started selling on our own site. Now Google ranking matters for our product site! And it doesn’t rank well, part of the issue comes from site SPEED!
The simplicity of WordPress and the complexity of PageBuilders!
WHAT makes a WordPress Site SLOW?
WordPress itself has its own overhead. Add to that other plugin, the fonts, the scripts, stylesheet, the images, it can go on… In short, more stuff takes more time to execute and be delivered. WordPress is like a Puzzle, if things fit properly it looks complete and robust, else it doesn’t feel good. It breaks and takes the site down with it! Knowing which part of the puzzle to use at what place is crucial.
There comes PageBuilder! This is an era of touch technology, people love drag and drop. WordPress couldn’t remain untouched. The simplicity of WordPress and the complexity of PageBuilders. Users want both! But either you get looks or you get speed. Elementor excels in building layouts with visual interaction and less code. But that takes the toll on the output. Too many divs, fonts, and supporting files. A good looking design with basic skills. Elementor — perfect for the layout design task!
But design alone doesn’t cut it! what if your customer left before the page load. The design holds no value. Add to that Google ranks slow sites poorly. Any page builder that gets added, will add to the toll. So what to do? Luckily WordPress itself is building a page builder kind of solution — Gutenberg! Initially, it was hated, even we removed it and were using Classic Editor. But things changed with WordPress 5.5. Gutenberg was looking good. Maybe it required a comparative edge and it got it. Gutenberg output is minimal! Least among the page builders.
Gutenberg uses only that paragraph no divs! Gutenberg provides basic styling options anything else can be customized with custom css class name.
Our page speed went from 83 with Elementor to 98 with Gutenberg. Have a look:
https://dearflip.com/responsive-html5-flipbook-jquery-plugin/ Ranks top for jquery flipbook
https://dearflip.com/realistic-3d-flipbook-wordpress-plugin/ speed went from 80ish with Elementor to 90ish with Gutenberg