Website performance audits and tools

An introduction to SiteImp reports

Learn all about your SiteImp report!

Thank you for your interest in SiteImp website performance audits. My name is Greg and I built SiteImp. This tool means a lot to me - I’ve been using it as part of my own development process for a long time and turning it into a product was truly a special experience. So I’m going to break with convention and write some technical documents in the first person.

This is really funny timing. I wanted to make sure we were all working off the same sample report so I ran a SiteImp report on My results were quite poor. You’ll see exactly how poor when we cover the average scores and all pages reports.

I know exactly what the problem is - my title section uses two classes from UI Kit to render the text significantly bigger than normal H1 and paragraph tags. That gives me entire site (all five pages as of writing this) an incredibly low score in cumulative layout shift. I’ll fix it by moving more CSS into the <head> of my html document. It’s an easy, five minute fix.

To be honest, I’ve never been so tempted to optimize my page and run a report again. But I believe in radical transparency. I broke my own rules, didn’t set up automated testing when I pushed DNS, then made really quick changes to my template. It backfired, I didn’t test and now I look dumb. Radical transparency is good when you’re transparent about good things. It’s a real pain in my feelings when I’m being transparent about bad things.

Anyways, thanks for reading my confessional and welcome to SiteImp. If you want to read the first report I ran on this site, you can download it here. (Note - it will open in a new tab.)

Let’s get started!

There are 11 pages in this section. They are:

Part 1 - Report summary

Part executive summary and part strategy, the guy who built SiteImp goes through the data and writes each of these by hand. Focused on your strengths, weaknesses and opportunities, the report summary provides solid, actionable advice for you to speed up your site and make more money.

Part 2 - Average scores report

This report takes the eight major scores we assign to every page on your website and calculates the mean (or average). This is a good starting place because one of SiteImp's major purposes is to help you find and fix site wide problems that slow down every page of your site.

Part 3 - All pages report

The all pages report lists every page that our crawler located on your site. Take a careful look at this report because it can show you three crucial things. Are important pages for acquiring customers significantly slower than you want? Are resources that should be private linked to from your website and available to the public? And do you have any old pages linked to and available?

Part 4 - Full site recommendations

SiteImp collects a lot of data from every page it can find on your website. It keeps track of ways to optimize pages and then calculates the most common recommendations across your entire website. The report will help you find the deep, sitewide problems that plague every page. If you're operating with a limited website performance budget, start with these recommendations - you'll get the best bang for your buck.

Part 5 - Average metrics reports

Our crawler finds all your pages then we start running a series of performance tests against each page. As we run tests, we observe or calculate some very useful metrics. Mobile and desktop metrics are put into these reports. Just a warning: if you start talking about how your observed dom content loaded metric dropped by 7.5% last week, your friends will stop inviting you places.

Part 6 - Page scores report

Our crawler finds all your pages then triggers a series of performance tests against each page in your site. As we run tests, we calculate scores for each page. Your SiteImp report will have a page scores report for each page on your site. In other words, don't be too shocked if your final report is thousands of pages.:)

Part 7 - Page recommendations report

As our crawler runs performance tests against every page on your website, those tests will find patterns and the patterns trigger recommendations. These are the biggest, most glaring problems with that particular page and we build one for every page on your website. (Greg's note - it sounds sadistic when I put it like that.)

Part 8 - Page composition report

If you want to speed up your website, make it smaller. There aren't many things that are always true in web performance but that is one of them. We generate a page composition report for each page so you can see where the bytes all go. What do your users have to download before they can pay you? What part comes from your server versus what part comes from third parties? Can you offload CSS frameworks to a third party and speed up loads significantly?

Part 9 - Page checklist

(Greg's note - I could write a lot of blah blah blah about how these are really important things to check on every page so I assembled them into an easy to grok checklist. The truth is that I collect a lot of data and ran out of places to put everything. The checklist is basically a big list of things that I think are important enough to include but I couldn't find a better place for it so it all got mashed together onto one page.)

Part 10 - Page tasks report

When browsers load a page, their rendering engine starts the renderer process. This renderer process contains several threads, but this report is concerned with the main thread. The main thread is responsible for user interface. This report answers: how many tasks have to run and how long do they run before your page is ready for the user?

Part 11 - Page metrics reports

As our crawler finds pages and triggers a series of performance test against them, it records some very useful metrics about how browsers render your web pages. You can find all of these metrics for mobile and desktop page loads in this report.