It’s clear that more and more business is being done online in our fast-paced world, and keeping up with your customer expectations is integral to your bottom line.
Perhaps you have an e-commerce site, where your customers can shop online, or maybe your website is an essential tool for generating leads. Either way, your online presence is a huge part of how your customers do business with you.
Why does speed matter?
Consider this; 47% of consumers expect a page to load in less than 2 seconds, and 40% will abandon a page that takes longer than 3 seconds! In a matter of seconds, you could be losing over a third of potential customers.
So how fast is fast enough?
Just a 1-second delay can result in a 7% reduction in conversions. So the bottom line is that the faster, the better. Even what seems like a very small difference in load time can result in a huge difference in your conversion rate.
Take Google for example. They implemented a change on some of their pages to list 30 results instead of 10. Astoundingly, they found that these changed pages had 20% less traffic than those with 10 results. The difference in load time? Half a second. If half a second can make such a staggering difference, think what shaving 1 or 2 seconds off your website load time could do for you!
When Mozilla increased page speed by just 2.2 seconds, downloads of their web browser Firefox figures rose by 15.4% or 10 million per year. Walmart, meanwhile, saw a 2% increase in conversion rates for every second
improvement in page load times.
How can I make my site faster?
There are a number of things that could be slowing your site down. Talk to your web developer to see if the below options could help you.
Page speed tests
There’s no shortage of software and apps you can use to test your load speed and get recommendations for improving it. One of the most accessible is Google PageSpeed, which will give you a load score out of 100 and suggest high, medium and low priority changes you can make to improve speed.
Don’t redirect your redirects
Sounds confusing, doesn’t it? It confuses the browser too. Consider the number of 301 redirects you pile together, as it will slow things down as it tries to find you through the old destinations.
Each time a page redirects to another page, your visitor faces additional time waiting for the HTTP request-response cycle to complete. For example, if your mobile redirect pattern looks like this: “example.com -> www.example.com -> m.example.com -> m.example.com/home,” each of those two additional redirects makes your page load slower.
Optimize your images
Reducing the file size of your images can make it much faster for the browser to retrieve them. The good news is that you can do this without compromising on quality. In Photoshop, selecting “Save for Web” will do the trick. Or, if you use WordPress, there are plugins that will optimize files as you upload them, such as EWWW Image Optimizer.
Enable compression and minify
Use a content distribution network
Content distribution networks (CDNs), also called content delivery networks, are networks of servers that are used to distribute the load of delivering content. Essentially, copies of your site are stored at multiple, geographically diverse data centres so that users have faster and more reliable access to your site.
Select an appropriate hosting platform When you’re launching a new website, with or without eCommerce, choosing a hosting provider is an important part of the process. Security, stability, and speed are what your site needs to thrive on the web.