Looking to optimize your website to get more visitors? Google does look at a good number of things when ranking your website over your competitors, and focusing on the parameters can help improve your search rankings.
Plus, it does help make the visitor experience better too, leading to higher engagement rate.
So, how do you monitor the success of your website? The one thing that you need to look for is the page speed, and here is a look at few of the parameters that can influence it. Here is a look at the 10 ways you can speed up your site.
When it comes to the page loading time, every second does count. Statistics suggest that even a 4 second average page loading time could lead to as much as 25% of page abandonment rates.
In fact, John Mueller, from Google, stated in a Google Webmaster Help Thread that Google avoids crawling web pages that take more than 2 seconds to load. He even admitted page loading time to be a factor when eventually ranking web pages.
What adds to the complexity here is that the time your web page takes to load also varies according to the location it is accessed from- it would be faster near your servers’ location and slower as you go away from it.
If you want your web page to load faster, we would advise you to go for a Content Delivery Network (CDN) – there are a good many options to choose from, with the most popular one being Amazon CloudFront.
Reduce the Page Size
The page size is also an important metric. It tells Google just how much media there is in one page. Since a bigger page size would translate to an increased loading time as well, it’s one of the important things you need to look at.
You would have images in every page and a good way to go about it is to look at reducing the image sizes. A good page size, according to CSS Tricks, is around 200 k. However, it all depends on the type of website you’re having.
Do note that even small images could take around 100k at the minimum, and so if you’ve a blog, the 200k limit wouldn’t be ideal for you. Instead, you need to ensure that there is only as much media as needed on the web page – and they’re compressed to reduce the page size. Enable page compression when you can so as to save space.
If you’re using WordPress, for instance, you could WordPress plug-ins like Minify to help you with this. It helps reduce the page loading time, and the page size. There are a number of other things that tell Google just how much love you’ve given to your website (and your websites’ visitors)
Why should your web visitors have to load up the same information each time? If it’s the same web page they’re accessing; you can just help them cache the web page into their machine’s memory, the first time they are accessing
Normally, a good way is to use caching is to enable it for a few hours after a visitor first accesses it. So, if the user loads up the same web page, they don’t have to load up the media and the content – it’s already there cached on their machine.
As a result, the user saves on data, and the web page loads up almost instantly with no loading time delay.
Above the Fold Caching
However, user caching isn’t the only way to go about it – you can implement data caching from the server side as well. Headers and footers, for instance, will never change in any of your web pages, and you can direct your web server to cache it using techniques like output caching to speed up the caching process.
Above the fold caching, for instance, can help pages load up faster as well. With the top of the page loading first, it can enhance the user experience.
Every web page is written in CSS. Often, you would find the CSS script sending a lot of information that you don’t really need – which can increase the page loading time. You need to look at removing any unwanted CSS files and reducing the CSS script wherever you can.
You’ve a link that points to another link. Or, if you’ve an ecommerce store, you could create a redirect for the extended site URL and the asset store URL
No matter what your redirects are for, it can significantly slow down the loading time. URL redirects aren’t a great idea, and one you should avoid whenever possible.
Sometimes, the redirects itself are on web pages that do not work. If you’ve unused URL’s, it’s always a good idea to remove them from the database to avoid any confusion.
The amount of time DNS lookups take to your overall page speed is known as the DNS lookup time. If DNS lookups are too slow, it can affect the overall performance of the site. If you’ve an increasing website, chances are you need more DNS lookups.
Every resource that needs to be downloaded needs a separate DNS lookup. Look at reducing the total number of unique domain requests in a web page.
If you’ve a good number of DNS lookups, a good way to go about it is to check which are the ones you need – and the ones you don’t. Do not make the DNS entries expire immediately – otherwise, with a slow server connection, the browser can give up the DNS lookup easily, stating an “Error – Page not found” for the user.
Too many Plugins
Too many plugins can slow down your site and cause plugin conflicts as well. It may even create unnecessary security issues and in some rare cases, cause the site to crash as well. No need to have as many plugins as you can – it’s a good idea to only get the ones you need and no more.
Investing on the Right Images
You need to work on a reduced image size – and the best choice is to go the JPEG way. PNG is a good option as well but many browsers may not support it. BMP’s or TIFF’s are a big no.
Also, you may want to crop the images so that it looks good 0 you don’t really need more of the image than is necessary.
If it sounds complex, you might want to look for a solution like SingleHop, who can do it all for you. Alternatively, if you are a pro, you can just use the Google Developer tools to work around all these, and get a site people would love to visit.
If you are still unsure on how to speed up your website download speed – you can always consult with a top SEO Singapore expert like MediaOne. Simply call us at 6789 9852 for a consultation day or night!