Website speed is incredibly important to users: data shows that most customers will wait only three seconds for a page to load before abandoning it, and 70% admit that page speed affects their likeliness to buy products from a site. Furthermore, slow loading time can negatively impact your company’s search ranking on Google. The bottom line is this: making your web pages load faster can directly lead to more customer engagement. Here are seven ways to optimize your website, so it loads more quickly for visitors.
- Enable Compression
- Reduce Redirects
- Optimize Images
- Improve Server Response Time
- Leverage Browser Caching
1. ENABLE COMPRESSION
Files stored on your server take up a lot of space. By enabling compression, you allow your server to store the same information in less space, and when a customer loads your site, it takes less time for the website to read in files from the server. There are many ways to use compression for your web page, depending on the kinds of files you have.
Shorter code and scripts will load faster in a client browser. Minifying code files means decreasing the size of your code: taking out comments, removing unnecessary spacing, and reducing variable name lengths. This will significantly reduce render times for customers.
3. REDUCE REDIRECTS
Redirecting users to different pages on your site makes it slower; imagine taking a flight with three layovers instead of a direct redeye. Clean up redirects whenever you can to make your website more user-friendly.
Before your website can load, it has to run every script that you call in the HTML file. Many times, this includes scripts that are rarely used until a client clicks a button or scrolls down. If that’s the case, remove that script call and use it later when it gets utilized. Removing the script will allow your page to load faster without wasting time running non-critical scripts.
5. OPTIMIZE IMAGES
39% of people will leave a website if images don’t load or load too slowly. Therefore, making images load faster on your website is worth the work. Resize images before storing them, so your file size isn’t larger than it needs to be, and compress them to make them load faster.
6. IMPROVE SERVER RESPONSE TIME
When a client browser reaches out to your server for data to load your web page, the time it takes for the server to respond is crucial. Ensure you’re using a reliable hosting service, and minify your server scripts when possible. Making your server code lightweight, as well as optimizing any databases you rely on can help improve server response time.
7. LEVERAGE BROWSER CACHING
Caching is an extremely cost-effective method to decrease load time. The idea is simple enough: when a user visits your page for the first time, their browser has to download all the code and images from the server. The browser then caches that data so the next time you visit, instead of re-downloading all of that information, the browser already has it stored, and can render your page in a fraction of the time.
It only takes three to four seconds to lose customers, so make sure to use these tips. If you’re looking for more guidance on optimizing your website, contact us. We can help you create a web experience that users love.