How to increase the speed of your website

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How to increase the speed of your website

By Editorial Team | 17th July 2019
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Fast loading websites are the key to low bounce rates, higher SEO rankings, and more potential conversions.

Speed is the norm for business, retail and many other websites in the world today.

In fact, if there is even a second’s delay in the loading time of your web page, it could result in the following consequences:

  • 7% loss in conversions
  • 11% fewer page views
  • 16% decrease in customer satisfaction

As you can see, a mere extra second of speed delay could crush your chances of engaging with your visitors and making sales.

So if you want to boost your website’s speed to the next level, whether you’re a blogger or an online retailer, here’s what you should do…

Reduce HTTP requests

Yahoo states that 80% of a web page’s load time is spent on downloading different components of the page such as stylesheets, images, scripts, and flash among others. Even a website made from the best free website builder like Weebly or Wix would have come across such issues.

For each of these components, a HTTP request is made. Hence, the more elements occur on one page, the more time it will take for the page to render or load.

So in order to reduce the number of requests, you have to analyze how many of these your website makes to use as a benchmark. For instance, if your preferred browser is Chrome, you can use its Developer Tools to find out how many HTTP requests your website makes.

Reducing HTTP requests will speed up your website (Picture: iStock by Getty)

All you have to do is right-click on the page you want to analyze, select “Inspect” and then click on the “Network” tab.

You will see the names of all the files on your web page in the “Name” column. The “Size” column displays the file size and the “Time” shows the loading time for each page. You’ll know how many requests your page makes in the bottom left corner. So if you reduce the number of requests from there, you can speed up your site’s speed. Look through your files and see which of them are unnecessary.

Minify and combine files

When you know how many requests your site makes, you can work out how to reduce that number and the best way to do that is with your CSS, HTML and Javascript files. These are very important since they determine your site’s appearance. They also increase in the number of requests every time a user visits your site.

Therefore, to lessen the number, you must resort to minifying and combining your files. Not only does this reduce the size of each file, but it also lowers the total number of files as well.

Fortunately, there are lots of ways to minify and combine your files. For instance, if your site runs on WordPress, then using the plugin WPRocket makes the process so much easier.

So if you have the plugin, go to the “Static Files” tab and select the files that you want to minify and combine.

Among the files to select will be CSS, HTML, JS files as well as Google Fonts. Then choose “Save Changes” to finish the process.

You can reload the page and open up Developer Tools to see the results of your changes.

Optimize images

Images have a significant impact on your web page’s loading speed as they are often very large files. But you’re in a bit of a corner here because you need high-quality images to capture the attention of visitors immediately. 

Good thing there is a way in which you can kill two birds with one stone and that is by optimizing your images. This will enable your image at, let’s say 1000 x 1000 pixels to be displayed at 100 x 100 pixels, which would increase the speed of your page by 10 times.

One of the best ways to reduce the size of your images is by cropping them to the right size. Like if you want to look 570px wide in appearance, you have to resize it to that width. Let’s say you have an image the size of 2000px wide, don’t just upload it right away before resizing it to the length you really want.

Another thing you can try is to compress your image files. It will be more advantageous for you if your site runs on WordPress, as you can use the plugin WP Smush. Simply check the box next to “Automatically smush my images on upload” and your image files will be compressed automatically.

Resizing images is easy once you know how (Picture: iStock by Getty)

There are many tweaks you can make to your website in order to improve its speed, no matter whether you’re using Simbla, Strikingly or Duda. Whether you take a look at your image optimization, HTTP requests or file minifying, we are confident these methods will provide you with increased conversions.

Written by
Editorial Team
Our Editorial Team is constantly watching for new and exciting services to report on. They aim to bring balanced, honest reviews to the site to give you the best comparisons and ensure you have the knowledge to choose the product right for you. Read more.
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