Improve your site performance and SEO for free with Jetpack Boost

Now that many businesses have an online presence, people expect the same great experience online that they get in person from their favourite cafes, restaurants, and local shops. In 2021, site performance is extremely important and is a key component in setting your business apart from your competitors. 

Studies have shown that poor performance directly impacts sales, with a one‑second delay in loading times reducing conversion rates by 20%. Just like slow service in a restaurant, your site speed can have a major impact on if people engage and come back.

But for most people, it’s hard to stay on top of ever-evolving web standards. Not to mention expensive to hire a developer to upgrade your site. 

That’s why we’re proud to announce Jetpack Boost. Developed in partnership with XWP – who have built some of the fastest WordPress sites in the world (and the AMP plugin and Tide quality framework) – Jetpack Boost gives your site the same performance advantages as the world’s leading websites, with no developer required. And best of all, it’s free!

An image displaying a website's overall score from Jetpack Boost for mobile and desktop

Performance is now essential to improving SEO

Website performance is such an important factor in today’s web that Google has announced it is going to become a ranking factor in SEO starting in May 2021. That’s why, about a year ago, we began developing Boost with help from the performance experts at XWP.

Every site is different, and as such has different performance needs. Our goal is to allow you to experiment with different optimizations quickly and easily. Jetpack Boost has three performance modules you can can enable one by one to identify what will have the biggest impact on your site. The Jetpack Boost modules include:

Optimize CSS Structure

This technique is also known as “Critical CSS”. We generate CSS that’s necessary to render the page above-the-fold, and instruct the browser to display the page without waiting for all of the CSS to load. This decreases the visitor’s perceived load time and the Largest Contentful Paint (LCP) metric.

Defer Non-Essential JavaScript

Some of the JavaScript on your site isn’t necessary while the page is still loading, so we defer non-essential JavaScript to be loaded right after everything else is done loading.

Lazy Image Loading

This is a tried and tested performance optimization that’s also available in the main Jetpack plugin. Instead of waiting for all the images on the page to load, they’re only loaded when necessary.

Together these 3 modules have a common theme – enable your web pages to load as soon as possible so that visitors can interact with your site sooner, and your page can rank higher.

No developer needed

The beauty of Jetpack Boost is that anyone can use it. The interface is simple and our measurement tool quickly shows you how your site is faster than it used to be. And did we mention it’s free?

An image showing a screenshot of Jetpack Boost plugin's home page. It shows a website's overall score on mobile and desktop, and includes toggles to turn on Critical CSS, Compress your CSS, and Defer non-Essential Javascript

This is just the start

In the future, we plan to enhance Boost’s performance modules, and add more features to help your site thrive. We’re excited to hear feedback from you and the wider WordPress community, so give it a try and let us know what you think in the comments.

This entry was posted in Performance, Search Engine Optimization. Bookmark the permalink.

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  1. Simon Jackson says:

    I would love to use these features but when I try to configure Jetpack on my site I get the message:

    Unable to insert blog. Please try again or contact support.

    Yet no-one in support will respond. What’s a man got to do to get some support around here? Then I can benefit from these great improvements!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Ivan Radonjić says:

    Hi guys, my website performance has improved after installing Jetpack boost, but I have the following error for critical CSS. Please check the screenshot:


    Failed to generate Critical CSS:
    An error occurred while sending Critical CSS generation results to the server: HTTP 418 error received while communicating with the server.

    Try again, or contact Jetpack Boost support for assistance.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Nauris Pūķis says:

      Hi Ivan,

      HTTP 418 is a “I’m a teapot” error, not a typical error code. This probably means that you need to get in touch with your hosting provider or site maintainer to get a better understanding what’s triggering that error.

      When you find out what’s causing the 418 error, please open a new support topic here:


      Liked by 2 people

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