slow-website

We’ve reached a point in technology where anything longer than four seconds is basically unacceptable. Users have a shorter patience threshold because getting information on the internet is so easy these days. If you are experiencing a slower loading speed, here are some things you may want to consider.

Optimize your images

High-quality images and videos will always be better when it comes to making a visual impact. But, you have to pay attention to the file size. If you use free stock websites, most of the “full size” images will run as large as 10MB. If you were to upload the full-size images to your website without making edits, you run the risk of having a VERY slow loading speed. Instead, use Photoshop to change the image size and resolution. You can also “save for web” to compress the image to a web-friendly resolution. Aim for an updated file size of no more than 200kb.   

Cut down on the plugins

If your website is being run on WordPress, it’s likely that you have more than a few plugins installed. Regardless of its purpose, each one of the plugins has a CSS file and JavaScript to load. The more plugins installed on your website, the longer it will take for them to all load, which means the user will need to wait longer to see any content. Depending on how many you have, it may only be a few extra seconds, but over the last couple of years, research has shown that users wait no more than four seconds for any given website to load completely. Consider taking another look at which ones you have installed and remove any that aren’t necessary.

 Avoid redirects  

Redirects trigger additional requests and delay the overall page rendering. If your website is not responsive, fixing that will significantly improve the speed. This is because some non-responsive sites will load the normal site, and then redirect to a mobile-friendly version (typically seen as m.sitename.com). If your website is completely responsive, the same home page or any other page will adjust to fit the screen size, whether it be a smartphone, a tablet, or a large desktop computer.

Change or upgrade your hosting plan

Where you decide to host your website can impact the page load speed. If your website contains a great deal of information or is one that generates a lot of traffic on a daily basis, a high performing VPS platform will be more optimal. Platforms such as Pantheon have fast technology stacks and various other features that are great for anyone hosting a website.

There are programs that test the speed of your website, such as Pingdom. It’s a good idea to check the speed of your website every month to make sure things are still running smoothly. If it takes longer than desired and you need some help, give us a shout.