April 2024

Garrett Ray Jewellery

This month we promoted this stunning one of a kind emerald pendant. Elegance in simplicity. Letting unique gems take centre stage with a single band of gold holding it in place, with nothing to distract from the natural beauty of this gorgeous emerald.

A photo of necklace featuring an emerald pendant, set in 18k gold

This one of a kind pendant features a natural Zambian Emerald in a handmade 18k gold setting.

Marketing Database Research

In the world wide web of 2024, there's so much content and an unprecedented number of users online however it's tough for anyone to stand out. Big tech companies like Google, Meta, Reddit and Twitter/X closed off their APIs and public access to their pages in recent years, after fostering a churn to their services from formerly popular websites, in effect conquering much of the web.

In order to find new potential customers, we wanted to build a database of current software in use on the websites of various Australian businesses. Attempting to approach this issue from a technical point of view, we looked at a couple of sources that could help however it ended up being a lot harder than expected.

The first source of data we tried was the public DNS database (the list of .com's and other domains registered). It turns out DNS is actually an enormous list and secured by the organisation that maintains it, ICANN. There are also many copies that different organisations providing DNS services mirror. Even honing in on the Australian domains list didn't help much.

The next set we looked at was sources like the ASIC - Business Names Dataset and ABN Bulk Extract, however as useful as it was to have every business name in the land at our disposal there was no domain name attached to the data which meant we'd need to figure out a way to match them. Manual look up was out of the question and Google would likely throttle any widescale attempts to scrape the information, so we looked elsewhere.

The state government of Victoria had some really good macroeconomic data, but nothing too useful for our desire to poll some websites and see what software they use in order to determine if they're a good fit for our Full Stack Web Development services.

There's definitely analytical insight that could be gleamed from the data we were able to collect from public sources, but nothing actionable due to lacking key information like business website domain name. Perhaps more could be done by governments to ensure businesses can connect and clients can vendors can find one another. Certain local council websites featured detailed business directories which seems like a good way to get traffic digital and in the real world to businesses in their area.

Website Performance Optimisation

The 3D engine code of the studio website has had an overhaul of its effects system using postprocessing. It took a little bit of doing as the effects are a little bit different and we also updated THREE.JS to the latest version which had an overhaul of lighting and colours values. In the end it was worth it as the FPS (Frames Per Second) on our development laptop went from 20 to a smooth 60.

One of our clients has a Wordpress based eCommerce site that was responding slowly on the frontend and was particularly slow in the backend - sometimes unusable. We investigated what the cause was and found a complex set of issues - lack of fine tuning of the hosting, too many plugins, no caching and a theme that used a page builder system which meant constant dynamic code execution for every page. After a few days of work, we were able to get their Google Lighthouse scores into the green. The website frontend went from taking a couple of seconds to less than one second and the backend went from 30-90 seconds to 4-5 seconds.

We completed two very different website performance optimisations, one relating to 3D graphics and the other of a complicated online store with multiple external considerations. In the end they had the same goal - to improve the user experience of website visitors by reducing the time it was taking for pages to load. Both ventures were a resounding success, the Wordpress optimisation in particular is something we think a lot of Australian businesses using Wordpress could benefit from.

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