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This Is Why You Should Delete All Unused Themes & Plugins

Discussion in 'Black Hat SEO' started by BreaknBrix, Oct 28, 2014.

  1. BreaknBrix

    BreaknBrix Power Member

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    Apparently I'm an idiot and didn't realize that if you're no longer using a plugin, you can't just disable it. Same thing with themes. Back in the day I installed tested so many themes and never realized you need to delete them if you're not using them. Same with plugins.

    I had NEVER read about any of this in site speed tutorials. They all focus on optimizing images, cloudfare and other random shit.

    So the size of this site was reduced from 185mb to 17.5mb. 2 days later my most competitive keywords jumps to #5. Then 4 other competitive local keywords went from pages 4,5 & 6 to pages 2, and a couple on the top of page 3.

    [​IMG]

    Since this was a noob mistake let it be a lesson to all you noobs. This was a site that use to rank top 3 for all it's keywords. So if you're not using a plugin don't just disable it and leave it there. Delete the shit. If you install themes to test and you don't wind up using them, DELETE THEM. If your disable comments button is broken don't wait months to have someone fix it. I've never heard of this in any site speed tutorials. I thought if you weren't using a theme or plugin then it wasn't being used thus it wouldn't effect anything.

    But all 4 of my sites when from a 4-6 second load time, down to .83-1.8.

    I'm still waiting for the "this site may be hacked" notice to disappear on a couple sites. But it will be interesting to see if they bounce back as well and what positions. :)

    -BB

    ps. This specific site was not hacked, just bogged down with tons of unused themes and plugins.
     
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  2. sbndnb

    sbndnb Regular Member

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    Interesting, will definately check this out!
    Keeping your sites clean is always a good thing imo
     
  3. wisdomkid

    wisdomkid Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

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  4. Niiub

    Niiub Junior Member

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    Well that is not new to me but amazing to see how big the affects of a slow sites are. Thank you
     
  5. singingsleep

    singingsleep Regular Member

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    I generally like to delete stuff I'm not using, but I'm slow to get rid of the old themes, this is totally new info for me, and very much appreciated! Too bad I just used up all my thanks lol...
     
  6. tony_d

    tony_d Elite Member

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    I wonder if you could repeat this experiment three times, and get the same result?

    Loading time certainly does have an effect - I agree with that. And indeed, 4-6 seconds loading time is really bad, so that might well be what was holding you back.
     
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  7. needhelpwithdos

    needhelpwithdos Registered Member

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    Awesome. I learned this last year testing the same theme on the same shared hosting. I realized it when the site with much more content (embedded youtub, images) loaded at least twice as fast. I figured I was just a dumba$$ noob and it was pretty much known to anyone with experience. Thank you, this just made me fell better LOL
     
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  8. bruceandrew1950

    bruceandrew1950 Newbie

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    Hmmm...this is interesting.

    I've got a main money site that is using Wordpress X theme that loads extremely slow. I don't have a bunch of plugins and/or themes installed. I've always just suspected it was something to do with the theme itself.

    Anyway, I've been building quality links to it for awhile and it hasn't ranked very well even with good content, on page seo, and a fairly non-competitive market as far as keywords.

    Maybe it's the speed? Or maybe I just suck :)?
     
  9. needhelpwithdos

    needhelpwithdos Registered Member

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    I had similar issue with a standalone site on hostgator with dedicated ip. It had quite a bit of media on pages. I solved it by compressing alot of images, css sprites & cache plugin. I'm pretty sure I got most of the info here, or in the wordpress forum.
     
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  10. Scritty

    Scritty Elite Member Premium Member

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    Excellent advice.
    Remember if you have clients that use WP to tell them as well.
    I had one who was proud of having about 30 themes she could choose from with a click.....
    Timely reminder :)
     
  11. JustUs

    JustUs Power Member

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    Even when I was hosting in the Netherlands and serving the US, my site load time never exceeded 2 seconds. While it is a good idea to remove unused themes and plugins, the reason is not site load time; the reason is security vulnerabilities that may be in the unused themes and plugins.

    Other things that optimize a site are compressed images. If you use the Wordpress uploader, the images are optimized and compressed. This is not much of a problem. The largest site I run has about 60, thousand pages indexed in Google. The front page contains synapses of about 20 articles, each synapse has a picture and a link. Each picture is also a link, in addition links to translations in 40 languages for each article are also loaded. The load time is generally under .8 seconds. Since my host for this site moved to another data center in Chicago the load times have dropped to about .5 seconds.

    Sure, smaller file size helps, but there are many other things that help as well. Compressed images, gzip, and moving script loads to the end of the page give a large boost to page speed. Being on a fast host that uses SSD's is a tremendous help, as is choosing a host that is on a nexus of the internet instead of one that is closer to the edge.

    I keep four unused themes on the site, and about a dozen plugins that I only activate for the short time that I use them. These are locked with an htaccess file. There are many considerations that one must consider. There are many ways to optimize a site.
     
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  12. boombaby7

    boombaby7 Junior Member

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    Anyone have recommendations for hosting? I have shared hosting on hostgator for my site. I wonder if this is affecting my website to reach page one rankings? Currently on page 2 for a keyword with 13,000 search volume.

    My load time is about 4-5 seconds in the USA.

    I should probably upgrade huh?
     
  13. jamesjk1

    jamesjk1 Senior Member

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    Thanks for the info BnB, getting rid of my excess plugins and themes now.
    Surprising to see such a jump once you got your site cleaned up.
    Good stuff!
     
  14. DamageX

    DamageX Elite Member

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    My money's on fluke.
     
  15. keadams26

    keadams26 Regular Member

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    Such a simple tip but so easy to overlook. Thanks given for reminding me to delete those 10 themes I had sitting on my site doing jackshit but hogging resources.
     
  16. qrazy

    qrazy Senior Member

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    Only the active current theme gets loaded in the memory not the themes which are inactive. So, I doubt removing unused themes will ever improve the performance of the site. It's the same with inactive plugins. Although the inactive themes & plugins unnecessarily occupies the disk space.
     
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  17. DamageX

    DamageX Elite Member

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    But, but... HE GOT RESULTS!
     
  18. waitier

    waitier Power Member

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    Got to agree with this. The only thing would speed up is the backend, not the frontend. I guess OP must've deactivated unwanted plugins along the way.
     
    Last edited: Oct 29, 2014
  19. Aty

    Aty Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

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  20. arsonmouse

    arsonmouse Newbie

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    I do not disagree that it worked for you're site but my site has probably 7 themes installed and i lost count of how many plugins and it still has keywords ranking first page and not slow at all. Maybe the different ones you had installed were conflicting each other? Obviously something happened because you saw results but i don't understand why