Web page speed is still overlooked by website owners, although it is one of the most important factors affecting user experience.
Fast speed makes potential customers happy and gives them a positive experience of your business, while slow speed frustrates them and sends them back before they even get to your business website.
For this reason, you should focus on improving your page speed to improve your user experience, conversion rate, and long-term business success.
Here are 8 tips you can implement today to speed up your site:
1. Invest in a content delivery network (CDN)
Every time visitors click on your website link, your server extracts data from your website and physically sends it to their laptops, desktops, and mobile devices.
Because of this, visitors closer to the server receive your site data faster and enjoy faster load times, while those who live further away have to wait longer for your website pages to load.
Signing up for a content delivery network ensures that all visitors to your website have super-fast loading speeds, no matter where they are in the world.
The network does this by distributing copies of your website files to several geographically different servers around the world. When someone visits your site, the nearest server pulls your data and sends it to their browsers.
This helps ensure that requested content is delivered to your website visitors much faster.
2. Reduce your file size
Images are some of the biggest, heaviest, and slowest elements on your website. You should consider reducing their size to improve your page loading speed.
First, remove any image files that your website can do without like colorful backgrounds, unnecessary custom fonts, etc.
Then take a look at the images you have left. If they are larger than 1MB, consider cropping them to reduce their size.
All of these methods will ensure that the files transferred from the server to your visitors’ browsers are much smaller. And the smaller your files are, the less time they’ll take to load.
3. Choose the right hosting plan for your business website
Another way to speed up your site is to switch from a shared hosting plan to dedicated hosting, VPS (Virtual Private Server) hosting, or cloud hosting.
In shared hosting, your business website is hosted on the same server alongside many other websites, which means your website has to compete for available resources with other hosted sites.
If any of the hosted sites are using more than their designated server resources due to increased traffic, your page speed slows down.
Dedicated hosting, VPS, and cloud, on the other hand, offers more bandwidth and more control over server resources, which ensures optimal website performance. Let’s take a quick look at each of them:
In dedicated hosting, only one website is hosted on a server. This gives you full control over server resources and eliminates the risk of suffering from slow speeds due to spikes in traffic from other sites.
In VPS hosting, multiple websites are hosted on the same server. However, each site has a dedicated virtual space.
Since the spot is virtual, you get more server resources which helps eliminate traffic speed issues.
Finally, cloud hosting offers more resources and flexibility by hosting multiple websites on a network of physical and virtual servers.
As traffic increases, virtual servers increase their capacity to handle it. This ensures that your page loading speed is not affected.
Whichever hosting plan you choose is up to you. Just be sure to factor in the size of your business website and your budget when making your decision.
4. Uninstall unnecessary plugins
Plugins also provide a lot of benefits to your WordPress site. For example, you can use them for:
- Increase the speed of your site
- Optimize your content for search engines
- Clean up your code
- Add live chat and contact forms to your site to easily interact with visitors
With all of these benefits, you can find yourself installing tons of plugins over the years without considering the downsides of doing so.
These drawbacks include slowing down your site, causing security issues and requiring too much time and energy to keep them up to date.
It’s a good idea to go through your installed plugins one by one and uninstall anything you are not currently using.
This will not only help you speed up your site, but will also make it easier for you to maintain the remaining plugins in the long run.
5. Limit redirects
When you have too many redirects to other pages, your server takes longer to find and fully load the correct page.
That’s why you should consider limiting the number of redirects you have to improve your page speed.
6. Cut your code
Too much coding also increases your file size, which slows down your page. So, get rid of all the unused code along with unnecessary characters, formatting, and spaces to reduce your file size and improve your upload speed.
7. Enable browser caching
You can also increase your page speed by enabling browser caching. This is a technique that examines every web page that your users have recently visited and identifies components that can be downloaded and temporarily saved on their local computers.
Once these static components are stored on the computers of your Internet users, it is no longer necessary to download them again the next time they visit your site.
This means that fewer requests will be made to the server on their subsequent visits, resulting in a faster load speed.
8. Host videos on external platforms
Finally, videos add a lot of value to your website. Besides being entertaining, they help build trust and a strong bond with your website visitors by giving personality to your brand, products and services. Moreover, they also improve your SEO ranking, set you apart from the competition and increase your reach.
However, videos can also make your site terribly slow because they take up a lot of storage space. If you host your videos on a shared server with limited bandwidth, they can exceed your allocated server resources very quickly, resulting in slow page speeds.
It is recommended that you host your videos on third party hosting platforms like YouTube and Vimeo and then embed them on your website. This simple gesture will save you a lot of space and greatly improve your charging speed.
To sum up, speed is crucial to the long term success of your business website. Even a slight improvement in your page speed can lower your bounce rate, improve your user experience, boost your conversions, and improve your SEO rankings.
So be sure to implement the tips above to improve your page speed today and enjoy these benefits and more.
Atlanta’s Small Business Network, from startup to success, we’re your go-to resource for small business news, expert advice, information and event coverage.
While you’re here, don’t forget to subscribe to our email newsletter for all the latest business information from the Atlanta Small Business Network.