Interested in learning how to speed up the performance of your website? You’ve come to the right place. By all accounts, having a website perform at its best is one of the deciding factors that will make or break your business.
This isn’t something you should toss to the backburner, thinking that no one will notice. Did you know that having a one second delay in page load times will yield 11% fewer page views, 16% decrease in customer satisfaction, and 7% loss in conversions?
It may not sound like much, but those few extra seconds can be enough to deplete your sales and conversions.
As a business owner, this is something that can be avoided altogether. We’re going to be taking a look at some key elements that you can implement in your plans to ensure that your website doesn’t run into any of these issues
1. Reduce your HTTP Requests
Based on research from Yahoo, 80% of a website’s load time is spent downloading the different parts of the page, such as images, stylesheets, and the scripts.
An HTTP request is made for every one of these key elements, so the more on-page resources that you have, the longer it will take for the page to load up.
To begin, the first step to minimize your requests is to figure out how many your site currently makes, to use as a frame of reference. If you use Google Chrome, you can use the browser’s Developer Tools to see how many HTTP requests your website is making.
Right-click on the page you want to inspect, and click “Inspect,” then click the “Network” tab. (If you don’t see the “Network” tab, you may need to expand the Developer Tools sidebar by dragging the left “Name” column which will show all of the files on the page, the “Size” column shows the size of each file, and the “Time” column shows how long it takes to load each file.
In the bottom left corner, you’ll also see the number of total requests that your website is making.
Reducing this number of requests will help in speeding up your website, look through your files and see if there are any unnecessary components embedded within. You may not notice anything right away, but some of them are viable candidates for making these combinations.
2. Combining Your Files
Additionally, this adds onto the number of requests your site makes every time a viewer comes to see it. You can reduce this number by “minifying” and integrating all of your files. This will reduce the size of each file, and the total number of files, as well.
All of this is especially important if you require the assistance of a templated website builder. These make it quite simple to build a website, but they can sometimes create messy code that can slow down your website immensely.
Minifying a file involves removing unnecessary formatting, whitespace, and coding. Since every unnecessary piece of code adds to the dimensions of your page, it’s important that you eliminate extra spaces, line breaks, and indentation. This ensures that your pages are lean at all times.
There are many ways to minify and combine files, and if your site depends on services like WordPress, plugins like WP Rocket make the process that much easier. If you have this plugin installed, go to the “Static Files” tab and check the files you want to minify and combine.
3. Reduce Your Server Response Time
One of the biggest factors in how quickly your page loads is the amount of time your DNS lookup will take. A DNS, or domain name system, is a server with a database of IP addresses and the hostnames that accompany them.
When a user types a URL into their browser, a DNS server is what translates that URL into the IP address which in turn, helps identify its location online.
A DNS lookup, then, is the process of finding a certain DNS record. You can think of it as your computer looking up a number in a phone book.
For instance, let’s say you wanted to visit the URL ubnt.com. You’d type this into your browser, but that has very little meaning for your computer. Your ISP will perform a DNS lookup to find the IP address associated with that URL.
It will get an IP address such as “188.8.131.52.443”, which indicates where to find the site you’re looking for. This step will not put pressure on users who normally need to memorize long strands of numbers in order to access all of the online information.
The amount of time this takes is dependent on how fast your DNS provider is. If not, it may be time to switch to a faster DNS provider.
You can check out this DNS speed comparison report, which is usually updated on a monthly basis, to get an idea of where your provider stacks up, and see which providers offer higher speeds.
If you’re utilizing a slow DNS, this increases the time it takes for browsers to locate your site. Switching to a faster DNS provider can speed up the process.
When it’s all said and done, the only one that can and is responsible for implementing these changes is you, as the business owner. Your site needs to be properly optimized and configured at all times in order for it to function properly.
As previously stated, it’s your responsibility to ensure that this is attended to. Once the appropriate steps have been taken, you are well on your way to getting what you truly desire.