People develop their first impression of your website the moment they enter a page. The speed and responsiveness of a page make that first impression since users prefer a fast-loading website to a slow one. It’s not just a matter of preference though, statistics show that 40 percent of visitors will exit the page if it loads more than three seconds.
Some users are also not easy to reach, unlike those who are always looking to shop. Like users looking for “accounting firms in Texas for booking services,” or users looking for the “best mortgage rates in Manteca or Pasadena.” Imagine finally funneling them to your website only to have them exit because it failed to load quickly.
Website speed is the first indicator of a high-quality website. Owning a high-performing site result in a higher return rate, higher conversions, engagement, organic search ranking and better user experience. Meanwhile, a slow website will make you lose clients and damage your image.
How you can improve your website speed and performance.
How to Optimize Page Speed?
Now that you have an idea about how your website is currently performing, it’s time to do the necessary changes in order to improve its performance.
Although there are so many ways you can optimize your site speed, here are the ones that you can immediately implement.
Choose a good hosting site
It’s important to choose a fast web hosting platform to make sure that all the elements on your website are fast loading. Choosing the right web host is important. Without a host, there won’t be a place for your site to store all the files it needs to display on your pages.
There are three types of hosting which are: Shared hosting, Virtual Private Servers (VPS) hosting, and Dedicated server.
Shared hosting is the cheapest because you’re sharing CPU, RAM and disk space with other websites. It’s a good option if you’re just starting out. But as your website begins to grow and your needs begin to increase, you’ll require a little more control over your host and will require root access to quickly transfer more files.
VPS hosting is a more advanced form of shared hosting. Unlike shared hosting, VPS hosting enables you to get your own RAM, Disk space, and bandwidth within a server, plus full root access.
Dedicated Server allows you to have your own server. Here you have dedicated resources, unlimited hosting, and it enables custom configuration. So you can configure the hosting environment however you want. This is usually recommended if your site is receiving more than 500,000 visitors monthly. Since you’ll have your very own server, it will also cost more than the other two.
If your site handles less than 100,000 users a month, then shared hosting is a good choice for you. If it handles more than 100,000 but doesn’t go over 500,000, then you might need to upgrade to VPS hosting. However, if you garner more than 500,000 monthly visitors, then you’ll need a dedicated server for your website.
Optimize Your Images
For a lot of sites, images affect loading speed the most as they are the largest element in view, so it’s best to optimize them. One way to do this is to compress all your images. You can try tools like smush or tinypng .
Converting them to more efficient modern formats like .png will make sure that they’re easy to render. Also, make sure that they’re responsive images that look perfect in both mobile and desktop devices.
Lazy Load Images and Third Party Scripts
One way to make your images more responsive is through lazy loading. What happens in this process is that images load as the user scrolls long the area. As he or she scrolls lower, images in those areas of the page will load. This allows the server to allocate the bandwidth properly, which is useful for websites that have a lot of images in them.
This can be a lot of work if you have lots of images on your page. However, it’ll be worth it as you’ll be saving on bandwidth while increasing page speed.
Remove unnecessary plugins
Plugins increase our website’s usability but too much can cost you site speed. Go and see how many plugins you have installed and ask yourself if you need all those at the moment.
The best way to rid your site of unnecessary plugins is to run a speed test first. You can use Pagespeed Insights like usual to get the initial load speed of your site with all plugins installed.
Next step is to deactivate one plugin then run the speed test again. Do this for all your plugins, and observe which ones are causing your website to slow down.
This will take some time, but it’s necessary to eliminate those plugins you have no use for or are harming your website. Take note of those plugins that are affecting your site speed and look for an alternative that are lighter.
Caching is a way for your website to load faster everything a user returns. Here, some elements are saved in a cache that allows them to load faster in the user’s next visit.
Also, make sure that your website is mobile-friendly. This means that your website should perform well no matter what device a user decides to use to access it. If you think that you need assistance with optimizing your website, consider outsourcing the task the task to professionals. Outsourcing will save you more time and will ensure that the optimization is done using the best practices.
Optimum Speed, Optimum Business Results
Users today expect optimum speed performance. If you don’t meet this expectation, then expect to lose website traffic, as well as a potential client. The tips above will ensure that your website creates a great first impression through speed and responsiveness.
Check and monitor your website every month since maintenance is an ongoing process. This way, you’re certain that you’re always delivering the best user experience to your visitors, which will then positively impact your reputation, marketing and sales process, and revenue.