Everyone else measures theme performance using GT Metrix. If you go do a Google search now for ‘fastest WordPress themes’ or similar, you’ll find EVERY ‘review’ is just measuring GT Metrix or Pingdom scores. These scores only tell you client-side performance.
If you know anything about scalability and performance, you’ll know that those metrics are useless when it comes to being able to tell if your site will withstand huge traffic volumes.
Instead you need to be measuring the server time – Time To First Byte or TTFB. This is the time it takes your server to generate the page and it is the primary measurement that dictates how much traffic your server can support and survive.
Many people say caching is the solution to scalability, but with a large enough site, you cannot cache everything. Are you really happy that the first customer to load a particular page has to wait 30 seconds or more? And what about when GoogleBot indexes your site? It will think you’re slow and downgrade your SEO rank!
The time it takes to generate your page is made up of two factors – SQL time and PHP time. In this review of the Rehub Theme performance we will use the Query Monitor plugin to measure the SQL time and PHP time for various pages on our reference FoundThru server (almost 1 million products).
Over the years of solving client’s performance and scalability issues, I’ve found many themes prevent my plugins from optimising your websites to their maximum capability. That’s why I’ve started these theme performance reviews.
FoundThru is our demo site for our plugins. It has all of our plugins installed. We added 820,000 products using Datafeedr – more are coming soon so we can hit the magical 1 million product mark, but there’s really no limit on product count. The server is a tiny little $40pcm server running PHP 7, PerconaDB, Nginx. Redis is installed but unused.
The FoundThru site has the following WP Intense plugins installed:
- Scalability Pro
- Faster Woo Widgets
- Super Speedy Search
- Auto Infinite Scroll
- External Images
- Price Comparison Pro
The first 4 plugins listed above are in our Performance Plugin Pack and are what make it possible to build a WooCommerce site to over 1 million products easily. The other 2 are part of our affiliate plugin pack. It could be argued that External Images helps with performance because it eliminates the need to store and serve images from your server, BUT the CDNs for affiliates tend to be slower than the image-serving speed you’d get from your own server, so it’s not considered part of the performance suite.
The Rehub theme was installed and the default options left activated. Measurements of key pages were taken and these are listed below. Note: These results are based upon having the WPI Performance Pack plugins installed.
Rehub Performance and Scalability Results
|Area of Site||RAM||SQL||PHP||TTFB||Grade|
|Low RAM usage allows more simulatenous users||Low SQL time frees up the DISK and CPU||Low PHP frees up CPU||Low TTFB gives scalability and great user experience||Our overall grade per area|
Query Monitor Snapshots
Here are the Query Monitor snapshots for each page which reflect the table above – these are uncached with 820,000 products loaded into the database.
Video Review of Rehub
If you’d like to see the Rehub theme in action, I cover all the main points in the video below.
The Rehub theme has been awarded a GRADE A for performance and scalability. It has an incredibly low footprint for SQL queries and memory usage making it an ideal candidate for your next large-scale WordPress website. I’ve blogged the work I had to do to get Rehub up and running with the WP Intense plugins, but I’m happy to report that none of the issues were from Rehub, and were instead chances for me to upgrade and optimise my own code to improve compatibility.
You can go look for yourself if the theme has the features and look you desire, but when it comes to performance and scalability, the Rehub theme is a great choice.View Rehub Theme on ThemeForest