Does it seem like your website takes hours to open? Are you looking for efficient ways to speed it up? If the answer is yes, you will be eager to find out how to optimise the page loading time. The same question has been bothering me for a while. I realised that I am losing traffic and users are leaving because it takes an eternity to open pages on my website. That is why I searched and found the best and simplest ways for optimisation that even an inexperienced administrator can implement. Let’s not waste any more time and get to the business of speeding up webpage load time!
What You Will Need to Follow This Tutorial
If you are wondering about the list of things you will need to complete this tutorial successfully, here is a quick overview:
- PC or laptop with a valid internet connection
- Basic understanding of how websites and site coding works
- Image editing software
- Content delivery network
We start with the most obvious – if you want to make any changes to a website, you need to have a PC or laptop with an active internet connection. Besides that, you will need credentials to enter the site’s dashboard and your hosting administration panel (depending on the type of the website, you might not need the latter). Next, you should have a basic understanding of how websites work. There is no need to write any code, but it is helpful to be familiar with how site coding typically looks. During the process, you will need to check out the code and make certain adjustments. You will also need image editing software of your preference. The recommended choice is Adobe Photoshop, but any tool that performs image cropping and reducing can do the trick. Finally, one of the steps will require identifying a content delivery network to work with, and the choice there is also completely up to you.
Step by Step Instructions
We will get to the steps in a moment, but first, let’s check out why you should optimise page loading time:
- Every second matters – the page abandonment statistics show that each second can play a vital role in keeping users on the website.
- Improved user experience – you want visitors to feel great while browsing your site so that they would regularly come back.
- It affects your SEO – although it is only one way of ranking your website on a search engine, it still matters.
Step 1: Optimise Image Sizes
While pictures do play a crucial role in attracting the attention of visitors, each of them adds to the time the page needs to load. It is needless to say the users can see this as so annoying that they leave and never come back. That is why you want to optimise the images for a website, which is something you can do via any image editing software out there. People most frequently use Adobe Photoshop as it is easy to crop images and reduce its size, as well as find other ways to make it light enough for the web. Here is a detailed video guide on how to optimise the image for a website in Photoshop:
Step 2: Uninstall Unnecessary App
If you are using a content management system, such as Shopify, the chances are you have at least several apps installed. While some of them are necessary for the website to work properly, you probably installed a couple because they are free. The problem is they also need to be loaded with the page, which extends the overall loading time. If you are using Shopify, start by heading to your administration panel and then find the Apps section.
From there, you will have an overview of installed plugins. Take a good look at them and delete any that you consider unnecessary.
Step 3: Delete the Website’s Unnecessary Scrip
For the visitors to check out your site, they need to load scrip first. These lines of codes are very specific and even blank spaces matter. Therefore if you have no idea about code, you should ask some IT friends for help. But before that, you can know which scrip is unnecessary by using the Waterfall of GTMetrix.
With the Waterfall tool, you will know how much data a file take, how long to load, and do you REALLY need it? If you delete, will it influence your site? If not, delete it now.
Step 4: Utilising a Content Delivery Network
A content delivery network (CDN) represents a system of interconnected servers for content distribution. They deliver web content by recognising the visitor’s location and choosing a server geographically closest to them. That way you will save loading time, but you will also benefit from reduced usage of bandwidth and boosting the availability of the website to global users. Amazon CloudFront is an excellent choice for a CDN, but you can also go with Cloudflare, Akamai, or any other you see fit.
Step 5: Take Advantage of GZIP Compression
Have you ever had to send a large file to a friend or co-worker and you zipped it to decrease its size? The principle is the same here except you will be utilising the GZIP compression for websites. This utility will compress all files before delivering them to the visitor. That will automatically reduce the page loading time as the user has less to load regarding the size.
If you are using a content management system, download a suitable GZIP compression plugin. These will probably be free and do an amazing job in compressing.
That rounds up our guide on how to optimise page loading time on your website. Did you like the article? I believe that this information is vital for every site owner and administrator as page loading speed may affect the user experience and overall impression your website makes on the visitor. If you liked the article, please spread the word and share it on social media. Furthermore, feel free to enter the discussion by typing your opinion about the issue in the comment section!