Slow-loading websites often have low conversion rates, thus the need to increase website load speed. Internet users prefer fast loading sites, which are also easier to navigate. A recent market survey established that 47% of Internet users expect sites that they visit to load in less than 2 seconds. This indicates that users have little patience for sites that have poor load speeds.
If you run a business website in Singapore, you could be losing out on many opportunities just because your web pages load slowly. 64% of online shoppers are likely to consider other e-stores if they get dissatisfied with your site’s loading time.
You risk losing both your current clients and prospective customers who are referred to your site if it has slow loading speeds. As insignificant as those extra seconds may appear, they play a crucial role when it comes to optimizing your files and images. No one will stick around on your site if your pages load slowly. Here are little-known tips that can help you improve your site’s load speeds.
Use Simple Website Designs
Often, website owners think that intricate designs and features are the main attraction points on their sites. To some extent, this is true. Nonetheless, that complex web design could be slowing down your website, thus limiting its potential.
When you decrease the number of elements, the number of HTTP requests made will go down. Consequently, load times will reduce. Similarly, simple designs have an added advantage in the sense that they improve the user experience, especially on e-commerce sites. Websites that feature simple designs are often rated higher than those that have visually complex designs.
When shoppers land on e-commerce sites that are visually complex, they often find it hard to locate information that they are looking for. As a result, they are likely to get frustrated and find websites that offer similar products or services. A simple design lowers load times, thus enabling visitors to navigate your site more effectively.
Use an External Hosting Platform to Increase Website Load Speed
If you have large files, your website’s CDN is likely to get overwhelmed. This can negatively affect the site’s performance. For this reason, you should use external hosting platforms other than your CDN to host some of your website’s large files.
Videos, in particular, should be hosted on external platforms since they take up too much space. If you want to add video tutorials to your website, you will need to create, edit, and export video files. You may want to upload the video files directly to your website via a FTP.
However, this isn’t advisable bearing in mind that if videos are hosted on your servers, they take up a lot of space. Your website’s video files can take up to more than 100MB of server space. In case you use shared servers, your space will be limited since the videos will take up most of your quota.
Uploading large video files onto your hosting providers will lead to poor user experience. When multiple visitors try watching a particular video on your website at the same time, the server will have to provide the huge video file to them at once. If the server has a limited bandwidth amount, the users will experience pauses in playback as well as lags.
Watching videos that take too long to load even when Internet connectivity is excellent can be a frustrating experience. To avoid this situation on your website, consider using third-party services such as YouTube and Vimeo to host your videos. After that, embed the videos to your site. This will significantly save space, thus leading to an increase in website load speed.
Proper Structuring of Website Content
Content is among the most significant components of your website. The site could be experiencing slow loading simply because your content is not well-structured. Therefore, you should find a way of structuring, labelling, and organizing your website’s content.
Generally, images and other forms of multimedia take longer to load compared to ordinary text. Reducing the number of media files helps to increase website load speed. Even as you think about reducing the number of images on your site to minimize loading time, there several considerations that you must keep in mind.
You should ask yourself whether it makes sense to have images in the place of ordinary text. Do they add any value to your site? Bearing in mind the goal of individual pages on your website, you will be able to reduce the number of images and multimedia files as needed.
When you focus on your website’s information architecture, you will end up with a better-structured site design. This will go a long way in speeding up your website, thus optimizing the browsing experience of visitors. Besides this, your site is likely to have a better ranking on the SERPs.
Upgrade Your Host
When you initially created your website, you may have had budgetary constraints that forced you to choose the cheapest hosting package. Back then, the hosting package that you picked may have been your most viable option. As your business and the number of site visitors grow, you should update your hosting package.
When you use a cheap hosting package, it means that your website is sharing a server with other sites. Therefore, the server loads not only your web pages but also the web pages of other websites. If websites that are hosted on a server attract significant traffic, it means that the loading speeds of all the sites will get compromised.
Worse still, your site can be grounded to a halt altogether. To ensure that your website remains speedy, consider choosing host packages that not only offer dedicated servers but also prioritize speed. This will help ensure that your web pages load fast besides increasing the site’s navigability.
Cache Your Site
When someone visits your website for the first time, he/she will need to download every aspect of your web pages. This includes menus, text, and logos. During their subsequent visits, there’s no need to force visitors to reload everything again.
To achieve this, you can use caching plugins to ensure that your content gets saved on visitors’ browsers. This way, the content will load without lags when they make subsequent visits to your website. By caching your site, you decrease the amount of content that requires loading from your server, thus speeding up your website.
Cache plugins work by storing content on visitors’ browsers. Consequently, your website will load faster during subsequent visits. When someone who previously visited your site makes a subsequent visit, the cached version of your content will be displayed unless there has been a change since the content was last cached.
The browser will save a lot of requests that would otherwise be made to your server. Therefore, load speeds on your site will significantly improve. This translates to a marked improvement in the browsing experience of your visitors.
Replace Images with CSS
Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) enable you to differentiate the way content on your site look from what it really means. Often, website owners prefer large and high-quality images on their sites to enhance their aesthetic appeal. Nonetheless, this comes at a cost since those high-quality images take too long to load on users’ devices.
If you run a photography or e-commerce site, you will want it to have colourful and high-quality images depicting what you offer. On their part, customers wish to land on a website that not only displays impressive photos but is also responsive and loads fast.
When caught up in such a situation, it won’t be sensible to sacrifice image quality to improve the loading times of your web pages. Likewise, it won’t make sense if you choose to stick with high-quality images at the expense of your website’s loading time and user experience.
With a cascading style sheet, your images will look good, while your web pages will also load faster. A CSS helps you create high-quality visuals, which replace images that would have otherwise taken up too much storage space. This will guarantee faster loading times as well as better performance by your website.
When using a CSS, it is advisable that you minimize your style sheets’ size as much as possible. With fewer style sheets, it will be easy to load your pages. If you still prefer having some images on your site alongside visuals created using CSS, ensure that you only work with images that have the right format.
Optimize Your Site for Mobile
When building a website for your Singapore-based business, you must bear in mind the fact that a significant percentage of site visitors use mobile devices. Rather than only focusing on optimizing the website for PC, you also need to optimize it for mobile. A website that is designed for PC will take long to load on mobile devices.
On the flipside, a website that is designed for mobile will take a shorter time to load on PC. Averagely, it takes 22 seconds to load mobile landing pages. However, the reality is that more than 50% of mobile website visitors leave pages that take more than 3 seconds to load.
Rather than trying to optimize your website for PC, you should focus on mobile users. There are dozens of plugins that can help you make your site more mobile-friendly. Similarly, tools such as Duda Mobile can help you convert your desktop site into a mobile site. Better still, you can design a separate website to ensure that your mobile users have the best browsing experience without lags.
To increase website load speed, web designers in Singapore are increasingly offering simplified versions of the sites that they create. They leverage resources such as the Accelerated Mobile Pages project to achieve this. Using AMP pages can help improve the loading speeds of your web pages on mobile browsers.
Avoid Loading Scripts Unnecessarily
Yes, it does.
If possible, keep the scripts on your site’s server. Similarly, get rid of unused plugins since they are likely to limit the functionality of your website. The presence of many plugins bloats your website, thus making it load slowly. When users browse your pages, many plugins including those that are not needed will load. This significantly reduces loading speed.
Slow-loading pages could be the reason why your impressively-designed website isn’t attracting the traffic that it deserves. Page load speed is vital to the success of every website. Therefore you should increase website load speed by ensuring that all pages load within the shortest time possible. These little-known tips will go a long way in getting your website loading speeds up to scratch.