About WP Intense Unleash The Beast
Hello! Welcome to WP Intense, the home of WordPress performance solutions. Our motto is simple yet impactful: “Never worry about WordPress performance ever again.”
The man behind this venture is Dave Hilditch, a seasoned software architect who’s been coding since he was just 6 years old on his C64. Over the years, Dave’s passion for coding and performance optimization has remained unwavering. This commitment laid the foundation for WP Intense in 2016.
WP Intense began with a specific goal in mind: to optimize performance for large affiliate WooCommerce websites. Spotting the recurrent performance bottlenecks on many websites, Dave decided to create a solution to this widespread problem. His aim was straightforward – to help website owners reach their full potential by improving their online performance.
Since then, Dave has been the driving force behind WP Intense, helping countless WordPress website owners boost their speed and efficiency and get more bang for their buck. He offers services like custom feature-development for our plugins, performance optimization, and personalized technical support. This ensures that every WordPress website Dave works on is primed for optimum performance.
Beyond his extensive knowledge and experience, Dave brings a personal touch to WP Intense. He values transparency, quality, and a customer-first approach. Every project, every interaction is about ensuring the success of your website and your satisfaction with the process.
WP Intense is more than just a suite of performance services and products; it’s a testament to Dave’s dedication to continuous learning and innovation. He is always adapting, refining his services, and introducing new solutions to stay ahead of the digital performance curve.
In essence, WP Intense is Dave’s life’s work, born out of a genuine love for coding and a desire to solve real-world problems. Here, your WordPress website’s performance is the top priority, and we’re excited to help you achieve it.
Welcome to WP Intense – your partner in WordPress performance optimization.
– Dave Hilditch –
Founder, WP Intense
As seen at WordCamp Watch Dave’s presentations in Brighton and Athens
Dave explaining how to make your WordPress website leaner, meaner and greener at the Megaron concert hall in Athens in 2022
Dave introducing his new performance-focused business, WP Intense, at WordCamp Brighton, way back in 2016!
Join the conversation All the ways to contact Dave
"Boosted My Website A Lot!"
"Amazing Plugins And Support!"
FAQS ABOUT DAVE
WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO BEGIN WORDPRESS AND START WP INTENSE?
I started using WordPress, WooCommerce and Datafeedr when me and a friend were experimenting with building a fitness affiliate website called fitness saver. We actually started getting good SEO traction but then Google Panda was released and our site got hammered – they focused on stopping ‘thin affiliate sites’. That’s when I came up with the idea of Price Comparison Pro to scrape live prices and compare them from different merchants so we could keep users engaged on the site and bypass the Panda rules. From here, I ended up building www.affiliatewebdesigners.com and then soon discovered the ‘size limits’ everyone talked about with WooCommerce. Back then, and even still now, people were saying that WooCommerce had a limit of 5,000 products before it would go slow and everyone I spoke to said it’s just not possible. Those are the kinds of words that get me inspired to break the rules and prove that it really is possible. With my background in database optimisation for Skyscanner, I knew that 5,000 items is teeny tiny for a well designed database and in fact, because of the way b-tree indexes work there really is no limit (other than storage) to how large your database can be while still being fast. So I built WP Intense to focus on delivering what I thought would be a single plugin to fix WordPress and WooCommerce performance.
HOW HAVE YOUR PERSONAL FEELINGS AND PASSIONS INFLUENCED THE DIRECTION AND DEVELOPMENT OF WP INTENSE?
I have ADHD, so I get distracted easily if something doesn’t perform quickly. Because of this I hate slow stuff. Back at the beginning of WP Intense my ADHD probably made the business suffer a bit due to missing support calls etc, but I have since redesigned the entire support system to be Dave-friendly. I guess the other thing is I’m more concerned with function over form which probably contributes quite a bit to the slow uptake of our plugins. I also have spent practically no time on marketing because I just love building and fixing stuff and solving problems
HOW DOES LOGIC PLAY A ROLE IN YOUR DAILY DECISION-MAKING PROCESS AT WP INTENSE?
I think I’m highly logical when it comes to solving problems, but probably not all that logical when it comes to choosing what to focus on next. Logically, I should have built ONE plugin and focused my efforts on that until it was perfect and then used that money to build the other plugins. Instead, I illogically ended up making 9 or 10 plugins which are all slowly inching towards awesomeness! Logically, I should have got funding from people I know but I really wanted to build this entire thing myself. Not logical, even though people think I’m highly logical.
WHAT CHANGES HAVE YOU MADE TO HOW YOU RUN YOUR BUSINESS SINCE YOU FIRST STARTED, AND WHY DID YOU MAKE THEM?
I added a ticketing system, then removed it when people started flooding my tickets with questions which were answered on the website. I added a live chat system, then removed it when people were constantly messaging me privately about stuff that was answered inside the plugins or on the website. Eventually I moved to Discord where public-chat rules and I feel far better answering questions that other people can search through and benefit from. We’re now running AI over our Discord chat history to help us build out our KB and FAQ articles.
CAN YOU DESCRIBE A COMPLEX PROBLEM YOU SOLVED FOR WP INTENSE USING LOGICAL REASONING AND CREATIVE PROBLEM-SOLVING?
HOW DO YOU HANDLE THE EMOTIONAL PRESSURE AND CHALLENGES THAT COME WITH RUNNING A BUSINESS LIKE WP INTENSE?
I stress about refunds the most. At one point in about 2020 I was getting a lot of refund requests and it stressed me out. That’s been fixed now through a combo of fixing all the bugs in the plugins and having a great Discord support-chat system. Other than that, I stress about breaking promises I’ve made because I’m not getting things completed fast enough so I try my best not to make promises so much and try to be as realistic as possible about timelines. Regarding challenges, for me – the tougher a challenge, the easier it is for me to get excited about it. Once I’ve conquered the hard part, the tough part for me is fleshing out all the easy parts like creating options interfaces for plugin admins.
HOW DOES YOUR PERSONAL CODE OF ETHICS INFLUENCE YOUR APPROACH TO BUSINESS AND LEADERSHIP AT WP INTENSE?
I hate profiteering and I hate price gouging. From the start of WP Intense I offered very generous lifetime deals, and then once I’d established base 1-site license prices I have not increased these. I hate adverts too, so you’ll never see any adverts on any of my websites although I do plan to start advertising performance tips at people who have visited WP Intense.
Probably most of all I value honesty – I recommend a lot of various plugins and services on WP Intense, and where possible I will take up their affiliate deal, but if the plugin or service I like the best does not have an affiliate deal I will never recommend the alternative just because they do have an affiliate deal. I will always recommend what I truly think is the best product or service for whatever situation a client or customer finds themselves in, regardless of whether that makes me more or less money.
WHAT IS YOUR APPROACH TO CREATING A BALANCE BETWEEN PROFIT-MAKING AND FAIR BUSINESS PRACTICES AT WP INTENSE?
I don’t see this as a balancing act. Providing solutions and solving problems comes first, every time – this is what makes me happy. If I can profit from that too, that’s a bonus.
HOW DO YOU MAKE SURE YOU’RE HANDLING DATA THE RIGHT WAY AND KEEPING THINGS ETHICAL IN HOW YOU RUN YOUR BUSINESS AND DESIGN YOUR PRODUCTS?
I don’t focus on ‘keeping things ethical’, what a weird way to word a question! I have my beliefs, I know what I like to do, I know how I can help people, I know that helping people makes me happy. It’s not something I focus on, it’s just something that happens naturally.
Regarding data-safety, we don’t really store any private data for our customers – I guess the main thing is credentials to ask their website, but to my customers I give them the advice that I myself practice – give me temporary access and delete the access afterwards and do this for anyone you give access to.
Quite often customers will give me wp-admin access to their website where theoretically a bad actor could go steal customer contact info or something like that. But my reputation is on the line. If that ever happened once, my reputation would be ruined.
WHAT HAS BEEN YOUR MOST CHALLENGING MOMENT AT WP INTENSE, AND HOW DID YOU OVERCOME IT?
I was getting bored working on my own so I hired Glyn to work with me as a stuff-doer.
HOW IMPORTANT IS TRANSPARENCY WHILST COMMUNICATING WITH YOUR CLIENTS?
Yeah, look, my answer to this is going to be a little selfish. I really dislike answering boring questions or repeat questions and I really dislike answering questions in private as opposed to in public where others can see the Q&A. Because of this we have a public Discord server and a public Trello board which we work from daily. When people ask questions in public, they tend to research their question a little more to see if it has been answered before, and even if not – because it is in public and more than one person will see the answer I actually enjoy answering them. I wouldn’t consider WP Intense to be *that* transparent though – I mean we’re honest that there are only two of us, but it’s not like I’m broadcasting to people how little money we’re actually making due to lack of marketing!
WHAT FACTORS COME INTO PLAY WHEN YOU’RE DECIDING ON THE DIRECTION OF PRODUCT DEVELOPMENT AT WP INTENSE?
This can be tricky thanks to my ADHD – I am in danger of helping the person who shouts the most on Discord, but pretty much product direction is driven by the customers. That has been the case since the start and will probably always be the case. We have a growing number of people looking for custom post type functionality inside SSF, so that is getting bumped up the queue the more voices join in.
CAN YOU SHARE A MOMENT OF TRIUMPH OR JOY FOR YOU AT WP INTENSE AND HOW IT INFLUENCED YOU AND YOUR WORK?
Any time I solve a performance problem. Over the past 6 months I have been studying and researching various options for improving the speed of Super Speedy Search ajax and then a couple of weeks ago I finally implemented this. When I had it loading INSTANTLY as I typed I was jumping around in my chair all excited saying “Look at this Glyn, look how fast this is, you *cannot* get faster than this, no one can!”.
But any big problems excite me, not just performance problems, it’s just that I tend to be the person people come to for their big performance problems so those are mostly what I fix and get joy from.