This month in the PageSpeed lab: The best performing Shopify Themes

A guest article by Tonny Christiansen of PageSpeed Guru, an app specially designed to boost your online sales and SEO rankings.

All shops whether they sell women’s underwear or dog food need to do at least two things well: 

  1. Show the product in the best possible light.
  2. Allow the merchant – that is you - to get paid.

The Shopify platform takes excellent care of item 2. Shopify Themes take care of item 1.

With so many beautiful themes to choose from, it’s difficult to choose. If you choose right, you will most likely prosper. If you choose wrong, your sales will most likely suffer.

Comparing Shopify themes is easy. Strip away how they "Look and Feel" and focus on basics. If basics work, the theme is good for business! If it doesn't, the theme is bad.

The basics

“Showing your product in the best possible light" can be broken down into two steps:

  1. Your shop needs to be accessible, fast, and be able to show and function on any device.
  2. It must also deliver a convincing sales pitch, that makes the customer want to click the buy button.

As merchants, we tend to focus on step 2. Perhaps because it is the one thing we can change and tweak. But since step 1 is required to get to step 2, it is good business to make sure step 1 actually works. - Even the most effective sales pitch is pointless if it never gets read!

I use Google PageSpeed Insights to assess a Shopify Theme, and the shop using it. If the score is high, the shop is doing well! If the score is low, the shop is doing poorly. You can too!

It makes sense to do well, because:

  1. It boosts your shop’s search engine rankings in Google, Bing and Yahoo.
  2. It lowers your bounce rate.
  3. It boosts the effectiveness and lowers the cost of your ads in Google AdWords, and also in Bing and Yahoo ads.  
  4. It boosts sales. Not only, are more people going to visit your shop, cart abandonment will be lower as well.

PageSpeed Insights is all about performance, and the theme you choose is of paramount importance in getting a high score.

The 3 best-performing themes of January 2017

The best performing theme this month is Pipeline by CorkNine. The build quality is excellent and right now you can’t find a better way to show of your products.

Figure 1 Pipeline theme made by CorkNine

2nd place goes to the FREE Brooklyn theme made by Shopify. The Brooklyn theme is a personal favorite of mine and I come across a lot of shops using it. As with all the FREE themes made by Shopify, the build quality of Brooklyn is excellent.

Figure 2 Brooklyn Theme made by Shopify

3rd place goes to FREE Debut theme made by Shopify. The Debut theme is a newcomer to the PageSpeed lab, and January is the first month I have come across shops using it. As with all the FREE themes made by Shopify, the build quality of Debut is excellent.

Figure 3 Debut theme made by Shopify

In choosing a theme for your shop, just remember: How the theme looks is just one aspect of what makes a good shop.


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