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14 fastest themes for your Shopify store in 2022 [Pagespeed Benchmarks]

Last Updated on by LAUNCHTIP

Speed has become a factor for Google in how they rank websites and the content they offer. Whilst speed may only have a minor impact in terms of search engine ranking, it can heavily affect ecommerce stores in terms of usability and conversion rate.

In this Pagespeed benchmark guide, we will go through a comprehensive list of the fastest Shopify themes and how they perform.

What makes a theme fast?

A fast theme is one that loads the store’s content as quick as possible to a visitor, irregardless of their connection speed. This is to say that if a page has to load 5mb, whilst it may be fast for someone on a physical broadband connection, it may be slow loading on a 3G connection. So, the goal is to have a well optimized theme which is as lightweight as possible whilst still maintaining the ability to sell your products and brand as best as possible.

What themes have we tested?

We are testing themes from the official Shopify Theme marketplace only. Whilst there are other vendors of Shopify themes on marketplaces such as Themeforest, Template Monster etc, they are not subject to the rigorous approval process and update requirements that official themes have to go through. There are a handful of free themes supplied by Shopify themselves and the rest are premium themes developed by approved Shopify Partners.

How we have tested

Usually, you would test a theme from a default installation and work backwards. This seems pointless and counterproductive in reality. No one is really selling products from a Shopify store that has no images, products, collections and so on. Instead, a far better and more fair test is to conduct the page speed test directly on the developer demos. These often use great stock imagery, have variable products, blogs and so on. They also simulate a real world store compared to an empty theme.

The main components we are testing are:

  • Product Page
  • Collection Page
  • Home Page
  • Blog Page

Lighthouse scores vary so we ran the tests multiple times for each theme, picking the average. If a theme had an anomaly, we disregarded this and ran it again.

14 Shopify themes and their speed scores

We are conducting our tests initially on 14 themes. We have separated the free themes made by Shopify and tested these first. This is then followed by the Premium themes from approved and vetted Shopify Partners.

Free Themes

Dawn

by Shopify

  • Product Page score: 69 Performance – 100 Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 99¬†SEO
  • Collection Page score:¬†93¬†Performance – 100¬†Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 92¬†SEO
  • Home Page score: 89 Performance – 100 Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 92 SEO
  • Blog Page score:¬†84¬†Performance – 94 Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 92¬†SEO

Crave

by Shopify

  • Product Page score: 51 Performance – 100 Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 99¬†SEO
  • Collection Page score:¬†93¬†Performance – 100¬†Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 92¬†SEO
  • Home Page score: 71 Performance – 100 Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 92 SEO
  • Blog Page score:¬†77¬†Performance – 99 Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 100¬†SEO

Taste

by Shopify

  • Product Page score: 51 Performance – 100 Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 99¬†SEO
  • Collection Page score:¬†73¬†Performance – 100¬†Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 99¬†SEO
  • Home Page score: 49 Performance – 100 Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 85 SEO
  • Blog Page score:¬†39¬†Performance – 100 Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 99¬†SEO

Colorblock

by Shopify

 

  • Product Page score: 79 Performance – 100 Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 100¬†SEO
  • Collection Page score:¬†94¬†Performance – 94¬†Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 93 SEO
  • Home Page score: 92 Performance – 99 Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 93 SEO
  • Blog Page score:¬†76¬†Performance – 100 Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 100¬†SEO

 

Sense

by Shopify

  • Product Page score: 71 Performance – 99 Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 99¬†SEO
  • Collection Page score:¬†87¬†Performance – 100¬†Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 99 SEO
  • Home Page score: 75 Performance – 100 Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 92 SEO
  • Blog Page score:¬†83¬†Performance – 100 Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 99¬†SEO

 

Premium Themes

Impulse

by Archetype Themes

  • Product Page score: 50 Performance – 96 Accessibility – 92 Best Practices – 99¬†SEO
  • Collection Page score:¬†63¬†Performance – 98¬†Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 92 SEO
  • Home Page score: 39 Performance – 98 Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 92 SEO
  • Blog Page score:¬†72¬†Performance – 99 Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 99¬†SEO

Prestige

by Maestrooo

  • Product Page score: 47 Performance – 85 Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 98¬†SEO
  • Collection Page score:¬†73¬†Performance – 93¬†Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 92 SEO
  • Home Page score: 44 Performance – 93 Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 85 SEO
  • Blog Page score:¬†52¬†Performance – 89 Accessibility – 92 Best Practices – 99¬†SEO

Warehouse

by Maestrooo

  • Product Page score: 57 Performance – 84 Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 92¬†SEO
  • Collection Page score:¬†52¬†Performance – 91¬†Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 84 SEO
  • Home Page score: 44 Performance – 93 Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 85 SEO
  • Blog Page score:¬†73¬†Performance – 91 Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 93¬†SEO

Symmetry

by Clean Canvas

  • Product Page score: 62¬†Performance – 85 Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 92¬†SEO
  • Collection Page score:¬†53¬†Performance – 92¬†Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 92 SEO
  • Home Page score: 43 Performance – 92 Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 84 SEO
  • Blog Page score:¬†64¬†Performance – 92 Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 93¬†SEO

Expanse

by Archetype Themes

  • Product Page score: 56 Performance – 88 Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 98¬†SEO
  • Collection Page score:¬†47¬†Performance – 91¬†Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 90 SEO
  • Home Page score: 63 Performance – 89 Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 91 SEO
  • Blog Page score:¬†69¬†Performance – 90 Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 98¬†SEO

Motion

by Archetype Themes

  • Product Page score: 55 Performance – 98 Accessibility – 92 Best Practices – 93¬†SEO
  • Collection Page score:¬†59¬†Performance – 100¬†Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 91 SEO
  • Home Page score: 49 Performance – 86 Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 92 SEO
  • Blog Page score:¬†56¬†Performance – 100¬†Accessibility – 92 Best Practices – 100¬†SEO

Pipeline

by Groupthought

  • Product Page score: 34 Performance – 98 Accessibility – 92 Best Practices – 93¬†SEO
  • Collection Page score:¬†44¬†Performance – 98¬†Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 79 SEO
  • Home Page score: 37 Performance – 96 Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 79 SEO
  • Blog Page score:¬†71¬†Performance – 98¬†Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 93¬†SEO

Empire

by Pixel Union

  • Product Page score: 32 Performance – 83 Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 100¬†SEO
  • Collection Page score: 56 Performance – 87¬†Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 93 SEO
  • Home Page score: 36 Performance – 82 Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 85 SEO
  • Blog Page score:¬†60¬†Performance – 90¬†Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 100¬†SEO

Canopy

by Clean Canvas

  • Product Page score: 38 Performance – 89 Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 83¬†SEO
  • Collection Page score: 41 Performance – 91¬†Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 83 SEO
  • Home Page score: 65 Performance – 89 Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 76 SEO
  • Blog Page score:¬†75¬†Performance – 96¬†Accessibility – 100 Best Practices – 82¬†SEO

 

Results

What became evident very quickly when testing was the impact imagery and heavy JS assets had on the themes. The free themes from Shopify performed extremely well and were fairly consistent with a few exceptions. Another aspect was the difference in pages.

Typically product and collection based pages were the lowest performing for both the free and premium themes.

In judging, we have average scores and taken into account strengths in each category.

So, without further ado, lets announce the winners.

ūüŹÜ Best all-round theme

ūü•á Colorblock by Shopify

ūüŹÜ Best free theme

ūü•á Sense by Shopify

ūüŹÜ Best premium theme

ūü•á Expanse by Archetype Themes

ūüŹÜ Best product based theme

ūü•á Prestige by Maestrooo

ūüŹÜ Best SEO theme

ūü•á Sense by Shopify

 

Conclusion

“Does this mean I need to pick the theme based on your results?” Absolutely not. The above guide serves as insight into pagespeed as scored by Lighthouse. Lighthouse is a scoring metric which Google uses to help determine their page speed scores. Speed is one aspect of an online store but there are many other critical elements and each needs to be balanced for its advantages and disadvantages.

Some of the best and immersive Shopify stores don’t actually score that well in these tests but what they do have are aspects such as:

  • A brand that people understand
  • Beautiful imagery
  • Products that make sense at certain price points
  • Products that solve pain points
  • Exclusivity and uniqueness
  • Inviting and well ranking content
  • History

When starting out, the truth is any of the above themes will help you on your way to a successful business but its the tip of the iceberg to what is actually needed.

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