We launched our new website in January 2022. It was in Wordpress. I used Elementor to quickly build a Wordpress theme. It was easy and we launched the beta website in a week.

As the next step, I was working on some optimizations to improve our search engine ranking. Speed is a very important factor (whether Google ranks based on speed or not). Users need the website to load instantly when they click on a link. Making them wait for a few seconds is guaranteed way to lose them.

So I decided to check our website’s score using Google Page Speed Insights. And the score was terrible. Our website scored 16/100 in mobile devices 😲.

I knew the best way to make it fast was to avoid any server side program from consuming the initial Time To First Byte (TTFB). In case of Wordpress, it was huge due to all the bloated plugins and unnecessary boilerplate PHP code. I decided to just use HTML and just few lines of Javascript (not even JQuery) on our website.

Converting Wordpress to HTML

I hired a freelance HTML developer to convert our Wordpress website into separate HTML pages. That was the first task and it was completed in 3 days!

Looking for Static Site Frameworks, Libraries

I had two options in front of me. Gatsby & Next. But aren’t those an overkill for a simple landing page (with a blog). And that’s how I decided to try Jekyll.

First Experience with Jekyll.

Setting up Ruby and Gem in Mac took some time. But once I installed Jekyll, the next steps were straightforward. I simply separate the re-usable components like Header, Footer, Navigation etc and combined them using Jekyll templating engine.

Exporting Wordpress Blog to Markdown

I had few posts in our Wordpress website which I had to export to Markdown format inorder to use with Jekyll. I used this library wordpress-export-to-markdown and I was able to export all posts in Markdown format.

Benefits of Moving from Wordpress to Jekyll

The first thing I checked was our Pagespeed score. Surprisingly it jumped from 16/100 to a blazing fast 90/100! No surprise, right? Now the website just have HTML, some CSS and Javascript!

Security

Wordpress always make me anxious. Several Wordpress websites were hacked in the past and that is a nightmare. With Jekyll generated static site, hosted in Netlify, I can sleep peacefully!

Speed

Obviously! Our website is now blazingly fast ⚡. I was running the wordpress in a $10/month AWS Lightsail instance. Now, our website is hosted free by Netlify.

Easy to Edit

Trust me, The elementor editor I used to edit the Wordpress website was killing my productivity. It used to slowdown my Mac (I don’t know why) and I hated editing new blog articles.

Now, It’s a piece of cake. Just write the blog in Markdown (❤️) and let Jekyll do the magic! I think now I can finish editing a blog atleast 70% faster than before.

Conclusion

If you’re building a simple landing page with a blog, you must checkout Jekyll and you’ll love it for sure! I’d never go back to Wordpress to build simple landing pages!