A Day in the Life of JonnyQ888

A Day in the Life of JonnyQ888

Monday, July 11, 2005

Of Lessons and Epiphanies

This morning, I was getting ready for work and thinking about the home theater site. On any given day, between 40 and 65% of the people who come to the site leave within 5 seconds. Before this weekend, I just thought that was the way things were. People come, they see that it's not what they were looking for and they leave. Now I realize that they are probably leaving before the home page even loads. I was trying to think of how I could optimize the site without making the graphics look completely terrible. On Sunday, I went through each and every one of the images that are part of the template and reduced their quality. They were as low as I could get them, what can I do now?

Enter the Epiphany. Get rid of them. While I'll keep the banner and the navigation button in the right sidebar, all of the buttons along the top can be eliminated. The navigation on the right is all people need to get around the site. As it stands, the basic graphics (banner, buttons, etc.) are 73.01 kb. If I were to get rid of the menu bar entirely, it would drop to 26.3 kb. That's just over 1/3 of what it is now. That would make a massive difference in load time. You're either an asset or you're a liability, and I can't abide liabilities. The menu bar has to go.

Enter the Lesson. Those of you who have read the blog for awhile will remember the Odyssey that was the SSI overhaul. You may also remember that I gave up on trying to get the header graphics into an SSI file after hours of trying. If I had stuck with it, removing the menu bar would take less than 5 minutes for the entire site. The site has grown considerably since then. Now, I have to go through each and every page to remove the graphics... You either pay now or you pay later, people. Just remember that later, you'll get charged interest.

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  • Wow!

    I was using WordTracker last night and thought of you. If you click on "Extract" after you've done the competitive analysis, then highlight and copy just the tab delimited data and paste it into a Notepad file. Save that file then open it in Excel. It would allow you to decide how to parse the data before opening the file in Excel and all the data falls where it needs to in individual cells. Hope that was helpful.

    Thanks for having this blog. You have inspired me to take the plunge on something that I've known about for about 18 months now. I could be packing up my JOB stuff by now, but thanks to you and the folks you link to I'll be doing so 18 months from now.

    Thanks again.

    By Blogger Nikki, at 8:54 AM  

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