Digital Trends is a popular and fast growing technology and lifestyle website, recognised as one of the Top Ten technology websites in the world with more than 25 million page views per month. Tom and Joe were initially called in to help in 2009 when the Digital Trends conversion to WordPress encountered problems. Human Made Ltd have been working closely with them ever since.
The full spectrum of development and consultancy services
We work on all aspects of development for Digital Trends as well as in a consulting role including advising on the setup of their development environment and processes and carrying out technical interviews for recruitment.
Developing performance and scalability for a high traffic site
The Digital Trends site is growing rapidly and performance has always been an issue. When we first started working with the site, page loading times were slow and the server often crashed. We optimised the site code and integrated products including Varnish, Nginx, Memcached and Akamai to improve performance.
Searching the site was slow going so we forked the existing Sphinx for WordPress plugin and added functionality to improve search speeds.
The site is now running on a multi-server set up over 4 servers and is successfully handling over 5 million unique visitors per month, quadrupling its original workload. Performance is an ongoing consideration and all our development has to be done with this in mind.
“I am so happy that Digital Trends has been able to work with Tom and Joe and the rest of Human Made. They have been an integral part of our development efforts, and have done outstanding work. They are professional, but even more important to me is that they are smart and know how to tackle problems efficiently and with compelling solutions. I would recommend them to anyone looking for the best of the best in WordPress outsourcing.”
Dan Gaul, CTO
2011 full site redesign
Nclud design agency produced a new look for the Digital Trends site in 2011 and we rebuilt the entire site in-line with their overall design.
The size of the site meant that some areas were not covered by the design brief and we had to fill in the gaps.
We ran the new site in parallel with the old site for a month allowing users to swap over or back again between versions and provide feedback.
Managing hundreds of thousands of product reviews
Product reviews are a key part of the site, but with thousands of reviews available at any time keeping them all up to date presents many challenges.
We built tools to help streamline the process of adding new products and updating current products.
Mobile Site (May 2012)
An effective mobile site is essential. The mobile solution that Digital Trends had been using was not meeting the demands of such a large and complex site. We were asked to provide something new that retained the Digital Trends look and branding.
Rather than modify the existing desktop theme, we decided that mobile should provide the basis for the whole site design. The new theme we have created for the mobile version can be expanded in the future for tablet and desktop.