Speed glorious speed, it’s now a crucial SEO ranking factor! (Yes, that was a horrendous attempt to write those words in the tune of “food glorious food”). Ok, serious voice now. Google announced this year that increasing website speed will become paramount for all that want to achieve a high ranking on the search engine.
On mobile especially, the device choice which is slowly but surely taking over the planet, users must be able to navigate the various page of your website quickly. People, and now Google, haven’t got the time to wait more than three seconds for a page to load. Any longer than that and it’s likely a potential customer will go looking elsewhere.
Steps to increase website speed
- OPTIMISE YOUR IMAGES!!!
The larger the file size of your images, the longer a page will take to load. So, always optimise your images! Optimising images means compressing images into a web friendly format. We would recommend saving your images as JPEGs as opposed to larger formats like PNGs.
If your images require further compression even after converting them to JPEGs, luckily there are numerous free tools available through a simple Google search that aid this process so do make the most of them!
- Always enable browser caching
When browser caching is enabled, the elements of a web page is temporarily stores on a user’s hard drive meaning the next time the visit the same page, it will load at a much faster rate. This can shave seconds of loading times and every millisecond counts in this game.
Cache lifetimes can last around a week depending on the resources. For any subsequent visits in that time period, a user will have a much smoother speedy experience.
- Try not to use too many plugins
Be sure to engage in some plugin spring cleaning from time to time. The feng shui of your website is a very important thing and if you have unnecessary plugins cluttering up your digital space, your website speed will slow.
Think of your site as a runner trying to sprint whilst wearing a backpack full of weights.
That’s it for part 1. Tune in for part 2 on how to increase website speed tomorrow!