How To Design Your Site To Be Super Fast
July 20, 2016
Pick up your mobile and go to your website right now. Check if your website loads under three seconds. No? Then, you’ve got a problem.
Did you know 57% of visitors using smartphones to access websites, and will abandon yours if it fails to load under three seconds! 57%! That’s more than half your visitors.
How to check Pagespeed for your site
Although a lot of tools are available online to do this, one of the best ways to check the page speed for your site is to use Google Pagespeed Tools. It shows how well your site performs on both mobile and desktop. It also gives you suggestions for improvements. Keep in mind that if you use Pingdom or YSlow, they may give you a different result, and that’s understandable since these applications use different algorithms, locations etc. compared to Google.
Reasons your Website needs to be Super Fast
A slow website is frustrating. Even if the website looks great, it won’t matter if it takes too long to load. With a slow website, not only do you lose potential customers, but you lose on search engine rankings as well. Search engines want to take users to only the best websites. Bing and Google consider page speed for mobile and desktop.
According to this Google research, when a site works fast, it translates into happy visitors who spend more time cruising your website compared to visitors who abandon your site within three seconds. A slow website could be a big disadvantage for your online business and also, customer satisfaction. Delay in just one second of page load can affect close to 7% customer conversions!
Tips to Design Your Site To Be Super Fast
Compress your webpage using Deflate or any other suitable application/plugin. Compressed pages take lesser time to load.
Don’t use several different fonts on a single page. Using just one font can help boost your page loading time.
Using high resolution images all over your website can hamper your page loading time. Consider using images that are web-optimized instead. Such images have lower resolution; use them for your background, graphics, or icons. You can request your designer to optimize all your images. Then, again, if you are doing this by yourself or do not have a budget to hire a designer to do this for you, then you can always turn to websites and application such as Canva to optimize your images for free!
Lazy load Images
You can also consider lazy loading your images. This means that the images load only when the reader or visitor scrolls down the content. So, the images don’t need to load unless it is needed to. When fewer images load at a time, lesser resources are utilized, and your page loads faster. You can install plugins such as Lazy Load Plugin for jQuery, Lazy Load WordPress Plugin or BJ Lazy Load to help you lazy load all your images.
Using images and videos makes your content rich and helps rank your website better in search engines. Then again, if you use too many videos on one page then this can negatively affect your loading time. Restrict yourself to only one video per page.
Lighten your website: If you have unnecessary images or videos, get rid of them now. A small website loads faster.
Change your Hosting Plan
Sure, the free websites are economically viable and easy to set up, but when you have to share your RAM, bandwidth etc. with the managed hosting plans, it can have a negative effect on your page loading time.
Delete your themes, plugins, and comments
This is especially true if you have a wordpress website. If you no longer use any of your plugins, or if you have spammy comments building up, all this can slow your website. Even themes that you saved and have not used them, delete them immediately. When you’ve deleted all the unnecessary plugins as mentioned in the tip above, make sure to check the speed on your existing plugins as well. If certain plugins take a long time to load, then consider investing in alternatives.
Speaking of plugins, one of the most essential plugins you must have on your website is one that helps you cache your pages. Whenever you want to visit your older versions, they will all be saved in snapshots, making it easier to store and access.
The attention span of online users is becoming shorter and shorter. Whether they are visitors, potential customers or buyers, all want the best user experience from your website.
Having an optimized website is crucial to stay one step ahead of your competitors. Remember to periodically test your website and do what is needed to increase your page loading speed.