Website speed is the average time it takes for a search engine to load pages of a site. Website load time and page speed are crucial parts of standard website performance metrics. In 2022, the focus on site speed is going to be higher since it heavily impacts the overall user experience (UX).
Speed is not the only factor that establishes the overall performance of your website. However, a slow loading website (takes more than 3 seconds) is enough to obliterate all the good work you’ve put into building an online presence. The phrase ‘a rotten apple spoils the whole barrel’ holds true in this situation.
Importance of website speed
Site speed has a firm standing among the factors used by Google and other search engines to rank a web page or a site. Some prominent reasons that make website speed a big game-changer are:
- Page speed is inversely proportional to bounce rate
A high-speed page that loads in one to two seconds will have a lower bounce as compared to a page that takes longer to load.
- Better speed means better conversions
The probability of a user turning into a customer increases when your website loads faster. Speed impacts user experience (UX), which in turn impacts your revenue and sales.
- Website speed and SEO
The speed of a website or a web page is a part of its technical SEO. Its impact in determining your rank and traffic is HUGE. Internet users hate slow loading pages, as do search engines.
Not only does website speed impact your SEO and ranking, but it also considerably affects your online sales/revenue.
How to optimize website speed?
Understanding the reason behind the delay in loading your page/site is the first step towards speed optimization. Common factors that negatively impact page load time are:
- Large image files
- Unoptimized code
- Not using caching techniques
- Not using file compression
- Not updating the site’s security certificate to protect user’s privacy (results in “warning: safety at risk” message)
Here’s a list of things you can incorporate to improve website speed:
- Revamp use of images. Make sure they are not too large and uploaded in the right format (PNG for graphics and JPEG for photographs).
- Optimize your code by removing any unwanted characters, spaces, code comments, commas etc.
- Make use of caching techniques. Browsers can cache plenty of information like Database Queries, images, and JS files so pages load faster for recurring users.
- Minimize page redirects as they make your page load slower.
The speed of your website also depends on the website building software you use. WordPress is the most popular option as it provides many features. You may have a hard time with speed optimization. However, with the use of the right plugins, you can have a speedier WordPress website. Wix is another tool that beginners can use to build a fast website without coding.