Your website’s load times have been a lot longer than normal and you’ve noticed that people are leaving your site in the dust or just not visiting at all. Why is this happening?
First off, sites that have a higher than average load time are not typically Google’s cup of tea. If your site doesn’t load quickly, the algorithm will not pick up your site, and your SEO will suffer.
Not only that, sites that load faster are more likely to result in a higher conversion rate. This means that the number of people who come to visit your site will end up buying your product or signing up for your program.
However, these visitors won’t stick around if your site takes too long to load. How long is too long?
According to 47% of users, any time longer than 2 seconds is just too long. Anything longer than that your conversion rates begin to drop.
So how do you improve your site’s load times? We have compiled a few quick tips that may help you if you are at a complete loss.
Use a Simple Website Design
I know, it’s easy to get carried away with design elements on your website. The pictures are so pretty, and the menus are so cool. Brands are constantly trying to gain more attention by peacocking their sites. A complex design can ultimately harm your site’s response times whether it’s with unnecessarily large background images or wild menus. Therefore, it is honestly best to go with a simple design that will allow your site to load quickly.
Although you didn’t get the crazy design, your site’s visitors are more likely to stay on your site and even return.
Don’t get me wrong, you can still have an eye-popping design with minimal baggage. It is simply better for your site’s load times if you don’t have insane menus out the yin yang. Believe us, you’ll find it’s better in the long run and also affects other aspects of your site.
Update or Delete Unnecessary plugins
Plugins are something of a double-edged sword. They can be incredibly helpful for those of us who have issues with coding or tech in general. Unfortunately, Plugins can also be detrimental to your website’s overall load times.
If you have plugin upon plugin installed on your website, it may be time to give them a quick run-through. Keep in mind, not all plugins are created equal. There are some plugins that may slow your site down more than others. Out of date plugins will cause slowdowns and are just overall not good for your site’s health.
So, what plugins are you utilizing? What plugins are sitting there collecting dust? And what plugins are screaming at you for updates? Perhaps it’s time to do some plugin spring cleaning.
Optimize your Photos
We will say this time and time again: optimize your images! Larger images drastically affect your website’s load times. Anything too large will cause a serious slowdown. That being said, it is also important for you to use images that have been specifically formatted for use on the web.
Your photos and graphics should be saved as a JPG or PNG respectively. These formats are the best for using on your website. JPG can handle the massive amounts of color in photographs, while graphics with flat spans of color should be saved as PNGs.
Sources may suggest you save your photos using Save As, Export, or Save for Web. For a website, we suggest sticking solely to Save for Web. This allows you to save your images at a lower, web-friendly resolution. That means about 72dpi to 92dpi as opposed to 300dpi that you may want for a printed picture.
My Site Still Takes Too Long to Load! So What Next?
If you have done these things and you are still having issues with site speed, it may be a deeper issue than these simple fixes can help. If that should happen, hiring a professional should be your next step. Contact us today if you are having issues with maintaining your website’s load times. We offer free consultations to help you run your site to it’s best ability.