Reduce site loading time
To reduce bounce rates and increase visitor engagement, your web page must be optimized and developed in a fully integrated manner. A site optimized for loading speed improves the user experience (UX) and can also help increase search engine rankings. This article will discuss the importance of site loading speed and ways to reduce site loading time.
What is the site loading speed?
In short, site load speed refers to how quickly your content loads when someone visits a page on your site. In other words, Page Speed indicates the loading time of a particular page. Various factors can affect page loading speed, some of the most important of which are:
The number of images, videos, and other media files on the page
Themes and plugins that are active on your site
Coding your site and server-side
All these elements affect your page load speed and, in turn, the UX of your website. However, users do not accept pages with the poor loading speed and are more likely to leave that page, which causes a high bounce rate on the site.
How to measure the loading speed of your site?
Before making any changes to your site, you should measure the performance of your web pages. You can use various tools to test and measure page load speed. Two popular tools are Pingdom Website Speed Test and GTmetrix, which are excellent options.
You can also measure the site speed using Google Console or PageSpeed Insights. One of the convenient tools that helps you measure and test the speed of your web pages on computers and mobile phones.
Why is site loading speed important?
Google research shows that if the site load time improves from 3 to 1 second, the probability of getting more visitors increases by 32%. In other words, if your pages don’t load within seconds, the likelihood of visitors leaving your site increases significantly. In addition, if your web pages are slow, it will hinder your interaction with your users.
Also, page loading speed is important in search engine optimization (SEO). Google considers various factors when deciding how to rank web pages.
Another reason for page loading speed is that your brand can impact consumers’ minds. If your web pages take too long to load or something goes wrong during the loading process, it can make you look unprofessional and your website untrustworthy.
Next, we introduce some solutions to reduce site loading time:
1- Check your website hosting
The host you choose for your site plays an important role in the management and performance of your website, and it can be said that one of the most important factors in site loading speed is its host.
Usually, a shared hosting account shares the server space between several companies, and the number of people using the server affects the website’s speed. If your website is in this situation, it is better to consider a dedicated plan. Some hosts do not offer shared hosting, meaning your website does not suffer from additional traffic from other sites.
2- Optimize site photos
Images help increase the beauty of web pages and the quality of your content. However, large images can also slow down the site’s loading time. Therefore, one of the easiest ways to increase site loading speed is to compress and optimize images.
Help users load your images faster by reducing their size. You can use many types of image optimization WordPress plugins, such as WP Smush for WordPress, to reduce the size of images.
You can optimize and reduce the size of your images by using sites and software to change the format or reduce the size. For example, tinypng.com can reduce the size and volume of your photo.
3- Reduce the number of redirects on your site
Too many redirects on your website can affect the site’s loading time. Each time a page is redirected, the request and response process becomes longer. Of course, in some cases, it may be necessary to change the URL path (redirect), such as when you move to a new domain.
You can use a tool like Screaming Frog to identify all the redirects on your site and where they lead. With this tool, you can find unnecessary and unusable redirects and then delete the ones you need through the .htaccess file of your site.
4- Use cache
Site caching is one of the most effective ways to increase the speed of web pages. Cache minimizes the copying of files on your site and is a mechanism for temporarily storing web pages to reduce bandwidth and improve website performance.
Caching web pages can help by reducing the time to first byte (TTFB), as the server must use fewer resources to load the page. There are different ways to store web pages. You can do this in the server panel, which means your host will manage it for you. Among the caching tools on the server are keepalive and varnish cache, which are usually recommended for WordPress.
Another option is to use a caching plugin like W3 Total Cache, a free WordPress plugin that makes caching your web pages quick and easy. After installing and activating it, go to General settings, Cache Page, and Enable.
5- Optimize your codes
6- Use a CDN
When your site is hosted on a server, every user who visits it sends requests to the same server. So when your site has high traffic, the processing time of each request increases, and the loading time for users slows down. Additionally, for users who are physically further away from your server, loading times are longer because they are further away from your site’s central server.
CDN (Content Delivery Network) can help you solve these problems. With a CDN, you store your site on a global network of servers. When a user’s browser requests files from your site, the request is directed to the server closest to the user’s location.
7- Optimize your database
If you have a WordPress site, your database probably has many additional files due to saved drafts, edits, disabling plugins, etc. WP-Optimize is a great plugin that typically removes all the files you don’t need.
Optimizing your site’s loading speed may be challenging at first, but it will have positive effects on your site’s overall performance.