March 4, 2020
Top 12 Website Speed Optimization Technique that everyone should have followed
How long did you wait for this page to load? Statistics say that half of you could have been on another website by now if this website didn’t load in 2 seconds! Visitors are valuable assets for a website, and losing them could mean a loss in business. Therefore, it is important for every individual and business to optimize their website loading speed for achieving positive results. However, many website owners are not sure about the type of methods and strategies for improving their website loading speed. The following discussion would attempt at pointing out 12 different techniques that can help in website speed optimization.
If you have a WordPress website then you can refer my article on how to increase load speed on WordPress site and implement them.
Understanding the significance of website speed optimization:
Before proceeding ahead with the techniques for website speed optimization, let us find out the reasons for which it is important!
- First of all, you know that ‘first impressions’ matter the most. Visitors to a website can make instant judgments regarding the business by looking at the website. If the website loads fast, you can hit the bull’s eye of customer experience. Almost 79% of online shoppers state that they would not visit a website again if they encounter issues with loading speed.
- User experience is the most critical factor for distinguishing a website from its competition. Giving users what they are looking for faster would help in improving user experience by a considerable margin.
- Conversions could be at risk with a slower website. Around 40% of people will probably abandon your site if the load time exceeds 3 seconds! Even Amazon has found out that it can lose $1.6 billion if its load speed reduces by just one second.
- The most crucial factor that validates the significance of website speed is its impact on the visibility of websites. Google takes website speed into account for ranking websites, alongside other factors. As of December 2017, Google search engine also considers the mobile versions of websites for ranking, even in the case of desktop searches.
Techniques for website speed optimization:
Now that we are clear about the reasons to focus on website speed optimization let’s move towards the techniques!
Use a fast Content Delivery Network (CDN):
The foremost technique for improving website speed is the use of a content delivery network (CDN). CDN helps in transferring static files to servers that are in the proximity of users. As a result, CDN can ensure faster delivery of content and web pages to servers at the locations of users.
Images are generally large files that can impact website speed negatively. The best approach to reduce the size of images without any impact on quality is the compression of images. Tools such as Kraken or JPEGmini could be ideal sources for such actions.
HTTP Keep-Alive Headers:
HTTP Keep-Alive Headers helps in allowing the same TCP connection for HTTP requests rather than a new one for every request. The communication between the web server and the web browser could help in obtaining more than one file at a time.
Page caching is also a proven technique for website speed optimization. Cached pages serve as the static HTML versions of a website’s page. The outcome is evident in the reduction of queries and improvement in page load speed. Search engines have a backup version of the page, thereby making sure that the page is served up immediately.
Keep the necessary plugins only:
Excessive plugins which do not serve any function on your website could slow down website speed. So, take out all the plugins and themes which you don’t use anymore. In addition, you should also remove the spam comments from your website dashboard for faster loading.
Take away the popups:
Pop-up ads are very irritating for customers, and in addition, they also affect the website speed negatively. Therefore, you should remove all the popups and ad banners on your website’s pages for improving website speed.
Optimizing the server response time:
The website receiving a high amount of traffic would automatically encounter a reduction in server response time. So, it is important to review the database queries, routing, and memory to ensure that everything is in place. Optimization of server response time subsequently leads to the improvement of website speed.
Reasonable use of web fonts:
Web fonts are a formidable aspect of website design, albeit with a negative impact on the website loading speed. The primary reason for this is the addition of HTTP requests to external resources by web fonts. The reduction of web font traffic is a proven approach for website speed optimization. The techniques for reducing web font traffic include the selection of only the required styles and using modern format WOFF2 for modern browsers. In addition, you should include only the character sets used on the site.
Optimize the database:
Database optimization is a trusted method for improving website speed. Content Management Systems with complex plugins can increase database size. Subsequently, the website starts becoming slower. For example, comments, blog posts, and other information in the CMS could consume a large volume of data storage. Every CMS has its own optimization techniques and specific plugins for the same. In the case of WordPress, you can find WP-Optimize as an example.
Decrease Website Redirects:
Website redirects are also responsible for the creation of additional HTTP requests that affect website loading speed negatively. Therefore, you need to identify all redirects on a page through the site scan. Now, you can find out the redirects that are necessary for the website and those that are not. As a result, you would not compromise with the integrity and performance of your website by removing redirects.
Conclusion: Based on the information in the above-mentioned discussion, you can expand the opportunities to reach a larger audience with your website. You can also find many other beneficial website speed optimization techniques with further research in this field. For example, pre-fetching techniques, detecting 404 errors, or Gzip compression. Most important of all, recognize the importance of website speed and don’t take half-measures for achieving success.