Website Performance: 10 Tips to Boost Your Site Speed

If you think speeding up your website is not important, think again. A slow-to-load website is a problem for users and owners both. It costs time to the user. On the other hand, a delay of a second or two may lead to a decrease in page views, loss in conversions and dissatisfied customers that further builds impact on user engagement and owner’s sales. The faster and better your site performs, the more engaging it will be for your customers. In addition to this, the search engine like Google considers webpage loading time to rank the sites. If your web page loads slowly it may influence your SEO ranking and visibility to the potential users. Therefore, if your web page takes more than 4 to 5 seconds in loading its high time for a round of revisions to improve sites speed to improve your overall performance. After research and implementation, we are able to compile a list of useful tips to boost your site speed.

1.    Server

As you know a server facilitates functionality of other program or device, therefore, choosing a suitable and reliable server for your venture is an important step. Working with a reliable web hosting service such as HostiServer ensures day and night availability of your website to your users because a good web hosting company provides better uptime.

2.    Look into your web’s HTTP Requests

An HTTP request for each item is sent before downloading. The more images, videos, scripts, stylesheets, and all other different parts a web page contains, the more time it takes to load. Therefore, to minimize the HTTP request the first step is to analyze how many requests are your webpage currently sends. You can take help of your browser’s developer tools to do that. You may also look through the files and data that seems to be unnecessary and remove them.

3.     Combine files

Now once that you know that how many requests your site sends, you can actually work on reducing that number. One should start from HTML, CSS, and JavaScript files as these files determine a site's appearance and are responsible for adding the number of requests your site sends when it is visited by a user. A technique named as minifying the files is used to minimize the number of requests sent. Minifying means removing the unnecessary formatting and white space as it increases the size of the page. In addition to this, you can combine multiple CSS and JavaScript files to make the web easier to load. Other than this, do you know you can also optimize the way CSS and JavaScript files load on your web. These pages’ load either ways Synchronously or Asynchronously. If you page loads synchronously, it means the files load one at a time. To boost the speed of your site you can shift from synchronous loading to asynchronous loading. In asynchronous loading, some of the files load simultaneously that will speed up your webs loading experience.

4.    Minimize Time to the first byte

The amount taken by a site to start loading is also an important factor while you are trying to boost your sites speed. TTBF stands for Time to the first byte is the amount of time taken to get the first byte of the data from the server. As soon as the user visits your site, the browser sends HTTP request to the server and from initial request to receiving the first byte of data, Lookup for DNS, server process happens and the response is generated. If this cycle is under 200 ms, it is in your favor. But if the cycle takes more time, you should look into the issue.

5.    Reduce Image Sizes

Image affects the loading speed of your site. The image size and resolution may affect the time required for a page to load. Removing them is not a beneficial option because they not only add colors to your site but they also attract the attention of your user. If you are an e-commerce website, adding pictures of the products will increase the conversion rate of the consumers towards your site, therefore, images are absolutely necessary. You can go for image compression, the reduction in the size of the image will affect the time required to load the page. You can compress the image by cropping it to the correct size, adjust the width perimeters, use a plug-in to automatically compress your images or if you are using word press you can select an option that states “automatically smush my images on upload”.

6.    CDN

If you are already working with a reliable web hosting service provider and further want to speed up your web loading time, you can use other networks of servers. Working with a single server will be beneficial in the starting times but as the traffic of your site increases, each user sends the request to the same server. To optimize the speed of your site for larger population consider going for Content Delivery Network that cache your site on a group of global network servers. When your site is available on multiple servers, the request of the user is routed to the closest server, that increases the downloading speed of your website and eliminates any loading lags.

7.    External Hosting Plat Forms

CDN is a great way to decrease the loading time of your website. However, for the larger file, you can also opt for external hosting platforms. This technique works great for videos. Usually, people add videos via FTP or WordPress editor while on the other hand if they will host their videos on a third party service and embed it on your web page, it will decrease the loading time of your site. In addition to this, hosting videos on third party server saves a ton of space on your own server and protect your users from poor web experience. The most critical part of hosting videos on a third party server is a selection of platform itself. Different platforms have different conditions and restrictions such as to upload a video exceeding 15 minutes you have to write an application to Youtube for permission. Similarly, other platforms have some other conditions. Therefore, select a third party platform after knowing their terms and conditions.

8.    The number of plug-ins

You have probably got an idea by now that plug-ins help to improve your site by providing options to custom functionality and cleaning up codes that improve the user experience. Plug-ins are easy to install, therefore, a web owner keeps on installing plug-ins to the website. But installing too many plug-ins can also decrease your sites loading time, forces it to crash and sometimes causes security issues. In addition to this, the more plug-ins you have installed the more maintenance and updates they require. Even if you have limited plug-ins on your website, keep evaluating them to updated the outdated ones, to correct the ones that are incorrectly configured and delete the unnecessary ones.  

9.    Keep Monitoring the Speed over time

Even if you have reached an acceptable page loading speed, it is still necessary to monitor your page’s loading time on a regular basis to identify how it changes over time. By now you have an idea that many factors are involved in determining your sites loading time so, it can change anytime. Keeping an eye on your site’s loading time will help you catch and resolve issues early.

10.    Monitor Mobile Page Speed

Smartphones have brought a revolution in the online world. It is important to monitor your load times on mobile devices as well. Mobile users experience is just another element that impacts your site's ranking.

If your site’s speed is not close to where it should be, follow the steps mentioned above and soon your sites speed load time will improve.

About The Author: noeticbarbara

Barbara Morgan is a veteran tech writer and editor who has worked in several hosting companies so far. When she's not fixing typos and tightening sentences, she's writing her articles for managed webhosting NL provider - Hostiserver.com

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