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F1 Chronicle

F1 Chronicle is a Formula 1 news website that specialises in news, results, opinion pieces, and technical analysis of everything Formula 1.

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F1 Chronicle

Overview

Ironically, Formula 1 is the fastest motorsport in the world, but the F1 Chronicle website was painfully slow.

They were definitely at the back of the grid in terms of speed, while their competitors were miles ahead.

In a world where attention spans are less than three seconds, and people close a browser if it takes more than two seconds to load, we needed to beef up the performance of their website – fast.

Services performed:

  • Strategy & Discovery
  • Web Design
  • Web Development
  • WordPress Support
  • Performance Optimisation
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Our Approach

While the team at F1 Chronicle had made the smart decision to have their website built on WordPress, unfortunately, they had used a freelancer they found on UpWork charging $200 for a build. 

Corners were cut, and while this may be advantageous on a race track, it leads to poor performance for a website. 

While ChillyBin is cheaper than big agencies we do cost a bit more than developers on UpWork. As the post-clean-up analysis showed though, although they saved money on the initial build, the cost of lost ad revenue and a rebuild meant they ended up paying more than if we had done the initial build. Ouch. 

We knew we had to get the site speed flying, so our first step was to monitor the site and audit the existing results.

The development teams main aim was to provide a platform that supported the volume of content F1 Chronicle push through their site on a daily basis, so they could position the company to attract new advertisers and increase website traffic.

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The Problem

The biggest challenge facing the design and development teams was untangling the bowl of cooked noodles.

The site was full of bugs, slow or unused plugins, and massive image files.

Our initial analysis via GT Metrix showed the site was receiving an F- grade, and took between 8-10 seconds for a page to load.

We needed to get the load speed down to two seconds, while maintaining the visual appeal that people expect of a news website.

The website had to have the ability to stand out with bold ‘hero’ photos and be mobile responsive so it can adapt and provide an excellent user experience on all screen sizes.

f1 chronicle portfolio problem

The Solution

Just as a Formula 1 car needs to find the perfect harmony between the chassis, the body, and the engine, a website needs to find that same harmony between the theme, the content, and usability.

For the perfect ‘chassis’ we stripped out the old, slow theme and built a custom theme that was lean and mean, and took the blink of an eye to load.

By getting rid of a lot of unnecessary plugins, and swapping underperforming ones for alternatives we know and trust to be better, we got rid of a lot of the dead weight the site was carrying.

For example, adding the ‘Imagify’ plugin drastically reduces the file size of images, without compromising on quality, which gave a massive improvement to load speed as the website is quite image-heavy.

Other factors such as a poor choice of host and no CDN enabled were holding the site back.

By moving it to our trusted hosting provider, who provided a free CDN, the website moved further up the grid.

Over the period of a fortnight, we continued to make upgrades to the site, testing each one as we went to ensure we were moving closer and closer to the goal of having a site that looked amazing and loaded at the speed of light.

As the custom theme was rolled out of the showroom, final tests showed an A+ site score, and the client reported that not only were they getting more search traffic, but their bounce score dropped from 90-95% to 30-35% overnight!

ChillyBin’s expert development team delivered a custom, responsive, retina-ready, HTML5 WordPress child theme powered by the Beaver Builder Framework that meets current best practice web standards.

F1 Chronicle needed a website as fast as the cars at the pinnacle of motorsport.

The team at ChillyBin delivered a website that shot them from the back of the grid to the chequered flag in record time.

jarrod partridge

Jarrod Partridge, Founder

F1 Chronicle

ChillyBin have built me two incredible sites (so far, more on the way) and everything they do is first-class. You can start with a concept, and the team will help you take it to the next level, so you start off on the right foot, and can use your website to drive traffic and sales from Day

...

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