Website performance and ranking if using templates

It’s often said that search engines love sites that were tailored and individually designed to perform to it’s best, ranking them higher and giving them preference above templated websites. Website performance and ranking depend on many factors and one them is the use of the template without much consideration.

Website development could be done in two ways:

  • Using a theme or a template
  • The individual, bespoke website solution

Let’s try to give it a thorough analysis and establish if it’s true or false that website performance could be affected by the use of templates. Obviously, this is going to be my personal opinion and not a definitive answer and not a comparison between these two development routes. Building a website using an existing template or theme believed to be a cheaper alternative. This is a true statement if planned correctly, as well as allowing to get on the global web relatively quick. It also has quite a few negatives that we will uncover below.

Negatives of templated website

  • The generic solution, not designed specifically for your consumers and not tailored for your business.
  • Functionally limited to theme options as well as available templated solutions may not fit perfectly business needs.
  • Hard to extend, making it difficult to make any sufficient changes.

Therefore, quite often templated websites are not performing well as they are not solving any issues or providing satisfactory customer experience. This then is reflected in all sorts of issues, affecting the overall ranking of the website. Therefore making it hard to promote your business on search engines. In addition, templates come with all sorts of stuff that you may never need but it simply will be part of the framework affecting load speed. Template extension development quite often could end up being a very tedious and expensive task.

Positives of templated website

  • It could be a cheaper alternative to the bespoke website.
  • Could be done relatively quickly as many WordPress themes come with visual composer.

Without a doubt, if you completely duplicate an existing template without making any manipulations and adapting it for your needs, the result most likely will be disappointing both for you and your customers. Luckily, templates come with visual composer or options that lets you perform some website customisation.

Outcome on website performance

As I said before, there is no definitive answer on website performance as the bespoke website could be built with generic content and templated website, on the other hand, could do better if it features valuable, unique information. In addition, it also depends on the competition level. But surely you will have higher chances of better website performance if you go with the bespoke website build. Proper bespoke website build involves quite a few important steps, see this article “What will be the right process for a website build?“. Bespoke website build focuses on solving issues and providing the best possible user experience.

If you have any questions with your current project or need help delivering it, get in touch with me.

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