Website performance is a critical factor in determining whether your business will be a success or not. An unimpressive website performance kills the business because the torture of waiting for the page to load may lead the consumer to seek an alternative.
A study shows that 47% of the users expect the website to load within two seconds, and 57% of the users will leave the page if your website does not respond within three seconds. Therefore, this game of seconds can directly impact your sales and your engagement with the viewers.
The first thing that you need to do is test the performance of your website.
A quick speed test may help you identify the areas that have slowed down the website performance. GTMetrix, PageSpeed Insights by Google, Pingdom are a few free tools that can help you evaluate the performance of your website.
Now, let us start with the things that have a significant impact on your website performance.
1. Use a Content Delivery Network (CDN)
CDN can boost up your website speed by hosting your files across multiple locations around the world. For example, suppose someone is viewing your website from Dubai. In that case, he is downloading the files from the server closest to him rather than the host server in the USA.
Since your content is spread across various servers, the load on your server gets reduced, preventing the server down during a traffic surge. Therefore, using a CDN can majorly decrease the loading time of the page.
2. Web Hosting
Most people opt for the cheapest possible option when it comes to hosting. But they need to change their host eventually once the traffic starts to build up.
You may try all the options to increase the speed, but the web host will always be an underlying problem. You need to ditch the budget hosting and choose your web host carefully that is optimized for speed. For example, you may use WordPress websites, and some of them may turn out to be within your budget.
Another question that arises is whether you should go for shared or dedicated hosting.
If your website is loading slow, you’re causing friction for your users. Therefore, it will be better for you to pay a bit more and get whatever floats your boat.
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9 Site Speed Optimization Tips
3. Minify Codes
If your website has trouble loading, you might want to look at your clunky Java Scripts. And remove all the code comments, white spaces, and redundant semicolons. You may need to remove all the things which the computer doesn’t need to compile.
There are many ways to combine your files and minify them. Moreover, if you are using WordPress, different caching plugins can make the process simpler for you.
4. Enable Compressions
A website loads faster if it is small in size.
GZip compression is an effective way to compress all your website assets. As the name suggests, Gzip compresses your files to zip files, which makes loading of the page faster. And the browser on the user end unzips the files to show content, thereby saving a lot of time. According to a report by Yahoo, this process can increase the download speed by 70%.
It is a convenient option as 90% of today’s internet traffic travels through browsers that support GZip. You can simply check if you have enabled GZip by using several online tools.
5. Enable Browser Caching
Browsers generally store a lot of information, including images, stylesheets, etc. It does not need to reload the entire page when the visitor returns.
A host server can send the information to the browser to store several assets. Developers can instruct to cache the elements that don’t require frequent changes. This way, the browser can save a lot of HTTP requests, which will eventually improve the site speed.
6. Optimize Images
Images comprise a major percentage of internet traffic. They are larger than HTML and CSS files and take the longest time to load. Make sure that the photos on your website are not larger than they need to be.
To reduce the load time of the images, you need to use an image optimization tool. They compress the file, reduce their dimension and resolution, making them load faster. There are various free online image compressors. Use one of them to get the desired result.
7. Minimize The Usage of External Scripts
Many scripts on your website are loaded from somewhere else, for instance, pop-ups, CTA Buttons, etc. They need to be loaded every time a webpage loads and can thereby slow down the page loading, and sometimes the page may not load at all.
This may be problematic, especially for mobile users, and therefore should be avoided.
8. Reduce Redirects
When a website visitor gets directed to a different page, it is called redirect. This means that the visitor needs to face additional time for an HTTP response cycle to complete. Since every second counts, you should keep as few redirects as possible.
9. Fix All Broken Links
Broken links not only annoy the visitors but also consume additional bandwidth. Though this is not a major issue for page speed, you should definitely fix all your broken links. You can use Google Search Console or Ahrefs to identify the links which are broken and then fix them.
9 Speed Optimization Tips: My Final Thoughts
This is the right time to fix the speed of your website since Mobile Internet usage has taken over the world. Internet users have grown intolerant of slow websites, which increases the bounce rate. In this era of 5G internet services, if you have a website that does not load within seconds, you have lost most of your consumers to the other competitors in the market. It is better to grab the viewer’s attention with a fast and easy website before they change their mind and switch to other websites.