The world of business is transforming these days. Apart from technological disruption and globalization, customer awareness and customer demands are also the prime reasons for such change. Now, companies are focusing more on customer service and their better experience, as customers can switch or move to other competitors. Every step and process is crucial to impress or push away the consumer. From the very first step of knowing about your service or product to the transaction ending, it is vital to ace every complexity and provides an excellent experience.
In the whole process, company websites are increasingly becoming important in any customer relationship. Gone are the days when having a website was the extra mile or “good to have.” Sites are now the digital identity of the product or company in this plethora of digital spaces. It is where you make your first and lasting impression. Therefore, any glitch or weak interaction at the website can put off the customer.
Similarly, the website speed is one of the underrated but essential customer touchpoints. Low speeding can make you lose the customer based on customer experience as the customer might get frustrated and never come back on your website. Whereas, if your site loads up at good speed, this can turn into low bounce rates, high engagement, and better ranking in organic searches. You will get better traffic, and better conversions from the marketing lead-based on good website load up and interaction.
So, let’s talk about the ways that can help you out to optimize your site speed. One of the biggest platforms to build and host websites in the world is WordPress. Therefore, whenever you look upon the internet for tips, you will find the best WordPress guides and tips available at your ease. But, we’ll be sharing exploring tips to improve speed irrespective of the platform.
- Have a Content Delivery Network (CDN) in place:
If your web content gets broadcasted to the users from a single server, it puts a load on only hardware available. Because of it, the load time will increase, and it will be worse if the user is far away from that physical server. Instead of equipping a single server, such trouble can be minimized or eliminated through Content Delivery Network (CDN). CDN is a set of multiple web servers distributed across many geographical locations that deliver web content to users through the nearest available one. In this way, the website loads up faster and provides the needs of users better.
- Optimize the Images Quality on Website:
Visuals are a critical component of your website. Typically, users stick with the content that has less text and which provide value through visuals. In some fields, images are the make or break behind the objective of the website. Especially on E-Commerce websites, visitors will make their buying decision on the available display of the product there. Therefore, it is evident that high-quality images lure online visitors. However, high-quality images consist of large files which take more time to load up, and it slowed down the website.
The resolve of this issue is to compress the files without affecting the quality by using tools like JPEGmini or ImageOptim. You can also optimize the image size by using HTML responsive image attributes, which will regulate the image size as per user’s display settings.
- Limit the Use of Web Fonts:
In website designs, Web Fonts are quite popular these days. They provide finesse and aesthetic feel to the website content. However, such usage of web fonts put a strain on the speed of rendering of web pages. Web fonts include additional HTTP requests to external resources. Therefore, it is necessary to use web-fonts with due diligence and their effect on the website speed performance.
This issue can also get resolved through the usage of modern formats like WOFF2 for advanced browsing. Or simply, web designers should adopt such a style that requires lesser or no web fonts.
- Shave off the extra plugins:
Plugins are the add-ons included for specific functionality suggested by third parties. Such plugins increased and improved the offering and functionality of a website. Similar to web fonts, more installed plugins require more power and resources while loading, which results in slower website performance.
Over time, while the website is in use, more and more plugins are installed based on the utility. It is advisable to analyze all the plugins on the site and delete all the unutilized or unrequired plugins to make the website lean. Similarly, it is also necessary to run performance tests to analyze which of the plugins are slowing down the loading speed and replace them with better options if such functionalities are required. Lastly, refrain from plugins that contain many styles, scripts, database queries to keep the website lighter.
Prefetching means executing the expected instructions before the user opts for it. It is a common technique to minimize the website loading speed by anticipating the standard actions of users and making such outcomes or load content in advance. Typically, UX professionals and engineers understand user behavior patterns and predict the most effects for browsers.
Typically, three types of prefetching techniques are:
- DNS prefetching loads domains in IP addresses in advance.
- Link prefetching loads up specific links and particular pages in advance. It is usually done on websites with a predictable line of action, like online shopping websites have a stable user journey of picking and choosing the product, then adding it to cart and then proceeding to the payments page.
- Prerendering is loading up the entire page or some specific elements in advance.
Prefetching is useful to minimize the burden on the loading speed, but it requires comprehensive user behavior analysis and predicting visitor journey mapping on the website.
On the internet, there are millions and billions of websites; the customer has a wide range of choices and options. Typically, an online visitor doesn’t like lag and can only wait for 3-4 seconds. And no matter how amazing your website and products are, you will lose traffic, customer interest, and sales revenue, if it works slow. Therefore, it is essential to consider speed optimization as the central core of website development and maintenance and work on its effectiveness regularly.