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GTmetrix success for Submarine

Kings Health Club website
Kings Health Club - a highly efficient, mobile optimised web deployment


Advanced website file management and optimisation have gained an unprecedented 94% rank from independent website assessor GTmetrix, for the latest Kings Health Club website and its sister site, Marina Health and Leisure.


With mobile phone website browsing escalating beyond 60% of users in many sectors, it is becoming increasingly critical that consideration and budget are allocated to advanced techniques applied during build to reduce the impact on network bandwidth, whilst still providing an immersive user experience. This is not as simple as heavy compression on images and video, since many phones and tablets are emerging with advanced graphics and HD screens which demand a high level of quality. 

Submarine have over 20 years experience with digital media applied to web technologies, extending back to the days of 56K modems, the first iteration of streaming video through Apple's Quicktime technology and the introduction of vector based graphics which rely on mathematical calculation rather than the pixels in a bitmap image. By applying this experience to a state of the art content management system and a responsive design approach, we have been able to develop new efficiencies across the website build and techniques which provide a significant reduction in file size.

Without giving away our USP, we can provide three technical insights here:

  • Images wherever possible, are vectored and served to the website as a font held on the server.
  • The CMS holds bitmap image states, detects the device being used and serves smaller versions whenever possible (rather than a large generic image file scaled in page code).
  • The responsive design is built to flow, scaling artwork to fit the end device screen format and resolution. 

 

Kings and Marina performance success
For the Kings and Marina websites we went one stage further, with the home page deploying a full screen video as a wow factor and narrative introduction to the premium quality facilities. The video is not served by a generic provider such as Vimeo as many agencies adopt (the rough and ready method). In this case it is compressed with an advanced mpeg and streamed from the host server, the first frames landing on the mobile phone in less than one second.

In other areas of the website, further considerations are applied, for example, in page navigation has been optimised for mobile touch screen and items which slow down delivery with limited benefit (such as hero banner carousels) have been avoided.

The Kings' requirement for a fully mobile compatible website was driven by analytics which indicated this channel as a key route to communicate with their customers. This business requirement has been fulfilled effectively through Submarine's bespoke solution, and a further ongoing benefit will be the reduction of cost provided through the CMS which provides their staff with the facility to maintain the website.

About the author

Paul Brown

Paul is a creative professional who gained his BA Hons degree in graphic design & multi-media at Bradford University in England after studying fine art under Hockney alumni, Grant Devine. An early career in television and an interest in technology led him to combine graphic design with digital media including video and animation which he applied to touch-screen kiosk applications, later interactive CD and DVD.

In 1998, he developed the North of England's first desktop digital video edit suite working directly with Apple (hardware/OS) and AVID (edit software). In 2000, his web based application for social housing (which utilised kiosks for outreach communities) won 5 national technical awards including 'Best Use of Technology'. Between 1999 and 2010 he developed the successful Northern creative agency Bluemoon providing solutions for a wide range of national and international clients including Tesco, M&S, Puma, Foxes Biscuits, Sulzer and Hesco Bastion. 

In addition to his work as a professional designer, Paul has led marketing and comms teams including 5 years in off shore finance and an appointment as Global Brand & Marketing Director for Insight Vacations (The Travel Corporation). 

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Submarine are a technical and creative solutions provider based on the island of Guernsey near France. Our field of operation is generally the Channel Islands although we do service clients with wider operations in Europe and Ireland.