When it comes to the performance of your site, page loading speed is of the utmost importance. However, don’t understand how this measurement works – and more specifically, the factors that influence it – it can be difficult for you to improve.
To reduce your bounce rate and increase your visitor engagement, it is essential that your web pages load quickly and smoothly. A site that is optimized for speed not only improves the user experience (UX) but can also help improve search engine rankings.
Why is page speed important?
When it comes to page load speed, every second counts. In fact, Google research shows that when load times increase from one to three seconds, the probability of a visitor leaving immediately) increases by 32 percent.
If the page takes five seconds to load, the probability of a rejection increases by 90 percent:
Page speed also plays a key role in search engine optimization (SEO). Google takes into account a wide variety of factors when deciding how to rank web pages.
However, speed is an important ranking signal for both desktop and mobile searches.
Another reason why page speed matters is that it can affect consumers’ perceptions of your brand. If your web pages take too long to load or something goes wrong during the process, it can make you look unprofessional, and your site not to be trusted.
Now that you understand the importance of page speed and how to test your site’s performance, it’s time to work on improving that key value.
Choose a performance-optimized hosting solution.
The hosting provider you use plays a major role in the management and performance of your site. This includes the speed of its page.
One of the worst mistakes you can make is settling for mediocre hosting to get a lower monthly rate.
Cheap hosting often results in poor performance. It can mean sharing resources across multiple websites on an overloaded server, which can lead to tighter page load times.
On the other hand, there are a handful of performance-focused hosting solutions you can use that offer a powerful platform designed for speed.
Compress and optimize your images.
Images help improve the appearance of your web pages and increase the quality of your content. However, large images can also delay upload times.
Therefore, one of the easiest ways to increase page load speed is to compress and optimize your images. This can include changing file formats, enabling lazy uploading, and compressing images with lossless or lossless compression.
By reducing the size of your image files, you can reduce their “weight” by helping your pages load faster.
Too many redirects to your website can really affect your upload time. Each time a page redirects elsewhere, it prolongs the HTTP request and response process.
Of course, in some cases, redirects may be needed, such as when you move to a new domain. However, removing unnecessary redirects to your site can lead to significantly shorter page load times.
Top-Level Domain (TLD) resolves with a maximum of one redirection.
Cach your web pages.
Caching is one of the most effective ways to speed up your web pages. Caching stores copies of your site’s files, minimizing the work required for the server to generate and deliver a webpage to a visitor’s browser.
Caching web pages can help reduce the time to the first byte (TTFB) by requiring the server to use fewer resources to load a page
Enable browser caching.
Synchronously means that the files load one at a time, in the order in which they appear on your web page.
With this method, when the browser encounters a script, it will stop loading other elements on the page until that file has been fully loaded first.
Decreasing your files’ sizes also makes it easier to combine them. The result is cleaner code and leaner web pages that load faster.
Of course, combing through every line of code for each of your site’s files isn’t exactly efficient.
Leverage a content delivery network (CDN)
A Content Delivery Network (CDN), also referred to as a ‘content distribution network’, is a network of servers that can help improve page loading speed. It does this by hosting and delivering copies of your site’s static content from servers located across the globe.
A CDN works with, rather than in place of, your host. In addition to the server that hosts your primary website, you can leverage a CDN to distribute copies of your site’s files among strategically-chosen data centers.
This can maximize performance, by reducing the distance data requests have to travel between browsers and your host’s servers. By loading the content for a web page from a server close to each visitor, a CDN helps reduce network latency and produce lower TTFBs
Remove unnecessary plugins.
Not all plugins are created equal. Having too many plugins on your site can cause unnecessary bloat that slows it down.
Additionally, plugins that are outdated or aren’t well maintained can pose a security threat, and even introduce compatibility issues that hamper performance.
Therefore, it’s a smart idea to minimize the number of plugins you use on your WordPress site. Of course, one of the easiest ways to do this is by disabling and deleting any plugins you don’t currently use.
Ultimately, reducing page loading speed improves not only the overall performance and UX of your website but its SEO as well. Luckily for you, there are a variety of methods you can use to decrease your loading times.