A Slow Website is bad for your business, both in terms of sales and branding. The top reason why we should boost website performance is to avoid ranking really low in search engine results, which of course creates a domino effect. You get fewer page views, losing most of your customers before they even see your website; and for the others who do endure the long wait, you still get a decrease in customer satisfaction. This then ultimately gets you to a loss of potential conversions, i.e. loss of sales.
It is easy to blame the Internet Connection when a website performs poorly, but that is not always the case. There’s a few seconds between entering a URL and displaying the specified site. Behind it is tons of requests to the server for information and data, to load-up a site. This is where things may start to go wrong.
With this in mind, let’s examine those few seconds and figure out what’s taking up the time.
Here’s an overview of the possible causes behind a poor-performing website and how you can boost your website's performance:
As mentioned, the moment you enter your Domain Name in a browser, it automatically requests files from the server to display your website. If your server is slow, its response will take longer and this delay will cause a slow start.
The server’s performance relies on your service provider. A reliable Web Hosting provider can guarantee 99.9% uptime, and an additional benefit for unexpected downtime without notice.
Like a traditional shop, a website can only accommodate a number of customers at a time. If the number increases, the longer other users wait. Generally, the server will attempt to manage the extra users by exhausting its resources. However, it will not guarantee better performance. Using up resources will still eventually slow down your website.
Having your website hosted with a regular Web Hosting service lets you "rent" a space for your website files, along with many others. This means that the resources is divided among all the others who are also renting some of the space available in that server. Imagine renting just one condo unit out of the many units available, and sharing the building's facilities among all the other unit owners, e.g. parking space, swimming pool, lobby, etc. If one condo unit gets too crowded, people in that unit will experience great inconvenience, and it affects the rest of the shared facilities as well.
A heavy traffic is not bad news as is a shop with bursting customers. It simply indicates the perfect time to consider upgrading to a Dedicated Virtual Server. Instead of owning one condo unit, having a Dedicated Virtual Server means you get to own the whole condominium and enjoy all its resources for yourself.
Graphics & Oversized Images
Compared to ordinary text files, images and graphics take up more space so it can drag things down. If spread all over your website, the slower your website gets. However, you don’t have to discard graphics and images all at once. If you want to improve your website’s performance, consider using text alternatives to graphics if possible. In addition, reduce file sizes without ruining the image quality.
Here are some tips to reduce file size:
- Convert heavy file formats (TIFF and BMP) to JPG, PNG or GIF.
- Resize graphics and images to maximum dimension necessary on the website.
- Compress images to a single file.
- Replace oversized images.
If you are using WordPress, here's an article to help you deactivate unnecessary plugins:
A browser determines a redirect only after instructed by the server to move on to a next web address. It basically loads a page over and over again, consuming additional time. Unless needed, avoid redirects on your website all together.
If your website is hosted with Aust Domains, you can use this step-by-step guide to remove irrelevant redirects:
- Click Sign Up / Log In at the top of this page.
- Select Hosting Manager from the drop-down menu.
- Enter your username and password, then click Log In.
- On the Home page, click Domains or the [ v ] Arrow on the right side, then click Redirects.
- Scroll down to Current Redirects and click the Trash Icon next to the redirect you wish to remove.
- Click Remove Redirect.
Old CMS Version
CMS developers release updates to fix issues including speed problems. Make sure to install software, theme, and plugin updates to improve your site’s performance.
If you are using WordPress, here are some helpful articles to update themes and versions:
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