5 Easy Proven Ways to Increase your Website Speed
Website Speed is an important SEO consideration. It improves the user experience by making it easier for a bot to crawl pages.
Unbounce found that most users believe their internet provider is responsible for slow page loads. But, more often than not, if you don’t optimize your website speed then you are contributing to the problem.
What is page speed?
Google‘s page speed refers to the amount of time a visitor must wait before the page loads completely. Many factors affect the loading speed of a webpage, including its server, page file size, image compression, and web page design.
How Fast Should A Website Load?
When it comes to page loading speed, the goal should always be to make your site as fast as possible. Google pages at the top of the search results in list load in just 3 seconds.
A fast site can give you a competitive edge as it allows you to take customers away from slower sites. Your site will attract visitors who bounce off other sites. You need a fast page speed to ensure your site drives traffic, orders and in-store visits.
Mobile devices vs desktop website speed
Website speed is an important consideration on all devices. Google states that it takes an average of 15.3 seconds to load a page in a mobile browser.
Desktop computers are more powerful and have a higher speed connection to the internet than smartphones. This means that loading sites from mobile devices can sometimes be slightly slower than on desktops, even if the site has been optimized for mobile. While desktop performance still matters, mobile is the future.
How does website speed optimization influence conversions?
Website optimization is a critical factor in your company’s success. It means getting visitors to do the things you want. You can expect them to buy your product or sign up for your newsletters. They may also register for webinars and download guides.
Higher conversion rates are achieved when pages load faster. According to the Hubspot study, a 1-second delay equals 7 percent less conversions. Amazon could lose $1.6 million annually due to page slowdowns of one second.
According to research, 47% of consumers expect websites to load in two seconds or less. And 40% will abandon a page that takes three or more seconds. If an e-commerce site is making $100,000 per day, a 1-second page delay could potentially cost them $2.5 million in lost sales every year.
How does Website Speed affect SEO?
Website speed, and in particular page speed, does affect SEO. Google page speeds are a major ranking factor in most search engines. The lengthy answer to this question can be complicated because you need to know how page speed works and what you could do to improve it for a better user experience.
Page load speed is crucial for user experience. Google has demonstrated that faster load times can be rewarded with higher rankings on search engine results page (SERPs).
SEO and site speed can sometimes go hand-in hand depending upon how fast the page loads. Individuals need to be able to answer their questions quickly. People will most likely go to a search engine to answer their questions. Studies found that people are concerned about how fast they get their results. Search engines have another factor to rank search results from, based on the popularity of faster pages than those with lower page counts. However, the intent is still a powerful signal. It is possible for slower pages to rank highly if they have great, relevant content.
Website Speed test tools
You should first determine the current loading time of your site and what is slowing it down before you start website speed optimisation. There are different ways to test your website speed:
1. Site Speed data
Site Speed data is the tool to start with if you have already created an account in Google Analytics. After you sign in, you can access the site speed via view then navigate to your view and select Behaviour > Site Speed.
Site speed reports measure how fast users can view and interact with content. It is possible to identify areas that require improvement and track the progress of those improvements.
2. Google PageSpeed Insights:
Google PageSpeed Insights is a free tool that runs a performance analysis on your site and gives recommendations on ways to improve it. You can check your website’s speed instantly for either desktop and mobile.
There are other ways to test your website speed such as GMetrix, Chrome User Experience Report, Cognitive SEO, Pingdom.
How to increase your Website Speed?
It is difficult to speed up a website. The problem could be anything: code that’s poorly written, images, large page elements, or code that’s not well thought out.
Here are 5 easy ways to speed up your website:
1. Optimise the size of images on your website
Images add life and interest to your content. Colored visuals are shown to increase people’s reading of your content by 80% according to research.
Your images could actually be hindering your site’s performance more than they help. We see non-optimized photos as one of the biggest speed problems on beginner websites.
To optimize your photos for the internet, we recommend you use photo editing software. The most used formats for images are PNG and JPEG for different purposes.
2. Use a Content Delivery Network (CDN)
A content delivery network is a collection of web servers spread across different geographic locations. These web servers provide web content to the end users regardless their geographical location. Each user’s request is sent to the one server when the website is hosted.
Because each request takes more time to process, this causes the load time to increase. The load time for users who live far from the server increases. CDN redirects user requests directly to the nearest server.
This allows websites to work faster and the content is delivered quicker to users. This is a cost-effective, but not necessarily cheap, way to improve load time.
3. Host Videos on External Platforms
Videos can really add value to your site. However, if videos aren’t properly optimized they can slow down website loading times.
You shouldn’t upload the video directly from your computer to your website via file transfer protocol (FTP), or through your WordPress editor. If you do this, the video will be stored on your server. This will take up much space.
Shared hosting plans will limit the amount of space that you can use. You’ll be limiting your options when you add videos to your website. Instead, upload videos to a third-party site like YouTube, vimeo or others.
You can upload your video to this platform, and then embed it on your site. This will make your website faster and save space.
4. Use a Theme Optimised For Website Speed
The more plugins you install on your website, it will get heavier and run slower. The biggest plugin a website has is its theme. Most themes are loaded with lots of plugins and third party builders. This makes the site slow.
Try to avoid animations, sliders, or functions when looking for a template. If you look at major websites, you’ll find that they are generally quite simple.
The combination of it with an optimization plug-in like WP Rocket, paid, or a combination o f plugins such As Autoptimize + FastestCache will make it super fast! A plugin that does almost all of the things listed above, W3 total cache can be used.
Consider the importance of new plugins for your website. Once you’ve installed them, make sure to test your loading speed.
5. Choose the right hosting option for your needs
There are four types of web hosting:
- Shared hosting
- VPS hosting
- Dedicated server
- Cloud hosting
Sharing hosting is the most widely used type of hosting. This is the most cost-effective way to get your website online quickly and for a small fee. To optimize your site, it is important to select the fastest web host. You share CPU, disk space and RAM with other sites using shared hosting. This is why shared hosting doesn’t perform as well as dedicated servers or VPS.
Bear in mind that there are other ways to increase your website speed such as:
- Browser Caching: It is used to store previously loaded resources, so that the browser doesn’t have reload them each time it visits.
- Cut Down on Redirects: Redirects can be extremely useful for SEO and user experiences. However, they have limited uses.
- Minify Your HTML: Minification refers to the removal or fix of duplicate or unnecessary data, without affecting how a browser processes the HTML.
Your site’s success can be affected by the speed at which pages load. Improved site speed is key to better search engine rankings. The score by itself should not concern you, but it is worth trying to get it to at least 50. But, you should pay attention to load time. A website should load within 3 seconds.
What is your PageSpeed Score in Insights? Do you see better rankings when your website loads faster? We would love to hear about your experience in the comments below.
About the Author:
Oumaima Kisra MBA – Digital Marketing and Marketing Specialist
Oumaima Kisra is an Engineer who has been passionately working as a Digital Marketing and Marketing Specialist for almost 6 years now. She is currently working for www.AbacusDigital.org.