When it comes to creating a great website for business, there are a lot of things to consider. You have to consider the overall design, content, Search Engine Optimization (SEO), and a ton of other factors.
But what’s most important is your website performance and performance testing tools that determine whether your website is a winner.
In today’s technological world, customers expect fast and reliable online user experiences from every website. Most consumers expect a web page to load in 2 seconds or less.
A 1-second delay in page response can result in a 7% reduction in conversions. If an e-commerce site is making $100,000 per day, a 1-second page delay could potentially cost $2.5 million.
So, yes, website loading speed does matter. Faster loading of pages can mean more visits on your site resulting in better SEO.
Website performance is incredibly important because customers generally think load times are slower than they actually are. This means you need to be doing all you can to make your website load as fast as possible. The fact is 46% of shoppers say they’ll never return to a slow website, so you need to keep them happy by improving website performance.
There will be times when your website has more traffic than normal, and you want to make sure your server can handle the speed and volume of customers. You should know how many customers your website can handle until it breaks. That way you can implement the software and website updates necessary to deal with these issues.
Google Analytics can help you monitor your page load times across devices, locations, and operating systems. Their Speed Testing tool also makes it easy to see how your site is performing, and it’ll provide suggestions for ways to improve your load time.
Google Developers is an online page speed test site which provides some great insights on what you need to do to improve your site’s performance. You will get a score from 0-100. If you rank above 90, then you’re in good shape. Google can also tell you why your page is loading slowly and can suggest ways of how to improve.
So, let's explore - how to improve website performance?
So once we are done with website speed analysis, the next step is to make necessary changes to improve the website’s loading time. This whole process starts with setting up a caching mechanism and implementing other working techniques to improve a website’s loading time speed.
Here are some techniques you can implement right now to speed up your site’s load time.
Optimize performance and speed
W3 Total Cache is one of the best plugins out there to improve a site’s performance through caching. Installing a cache plugin will improve your page’s load speed and overall performance. You can also consider enabling CloudFlare. The plugin allows you to clean up your database and optimize it without a shred of technical knowledge needed.
Content Delivery Network
A CDN is one of the most effective ways to supercharge your website’s speed. A CDN is a high-performance network of servers that replicates the static assets of your website and serves them to visitors from the closest POP. A CDN has proxy servers located throughout the world. Wherever the visitor is coming from geographically is where the content will load from. This results in a much quicker serving of a website.
Utilize browser caching
The idea behind browser caching is to set expiry date, or a maximum age limit, in the HTTP headers for static resources. If caching is enabled, browsers will automatically load previously downloaded static resources from local disks rather than over the network.
CSS Sprites reduces the number of HTTP requests that the browser has to make. If you combine 4 images into one big image, the number of image requests will be reduced. This will automatically result in an increase in page load speed.
Use powerful hosting
Web-hosting is another likely culprit for your slow loading website.
One of the major reasons for slow loading of a site is using too many 3rd party scripts. Remove all ads and see if there’s a difference in your site’s loading time. If your 3rd party ad network is taking ages to load, it’s time to make a shift to a new ad network, or you can ask your ad manager to upgrade the server.
Remove any unnecessary spaces, line breaks, and indentations in your code. There are many plugins and add-ons that can help you reduce all the code on your website.
Over the years, big companies such as Google, Yahoo or Amazon have conducted countless studies regarding the impact of page speed on profitability. Big businesses are treating the numbers very seriously. The average net-preneur or SEOer is highly sensitive to any information relating to SEO but is turned off by boring bounce rate statistics. This is probably the reason why most people who end up searching for a speed optimization service are doing it because of SEO reasons.
After the Google update, there has been a noticeable increase in speed optimization demand. Even though they should have started long ago and for different reasons, at least people are doing it now. Leaving aside monetary concerns, the internet is getting faster, and this is a good thing. A lot of progress has been made over the years in the field of internet services. Internet speed is getting better by the day. Still, most of this responsibility lies on the shoulders of webmasters and SEO experts. An incalculable amount of efficiency is lost due to slow, unoptimized websites.
So, faster page speed is better. Many people found faster page speed results in higher ranking and good conversion also. page speed is very important as higher page speed will result in higher bounce rate and lower avg. time on the site.
Stock photo from Sammby