Improving your website speed

Improving your website speed

14 May 2014

Despite enormous improvements in Web technologies and bandwidth, most sites are still slow to load.  Why is that and why should we worry?

The simple answer to why sites are slow: some developers are lazy. Sure, today's website designs feature bigger graphics and more video. But they're also delivered over network speeds we couldn't have imagined 10 or 20yrs ago. There is no excuse for a website being slow: with the right knowledge and sufficient attention-to-detail, any site can be optimized & made to fly.

So why is site speed such a big deal? So what if my shopping basket takes a few extra seconds to load? Well, some research shows that for every second we shave off your average pageload, your e-commerce site gets an 8% improvement in page value! 8%/second: that's a mighty hefty return for a relatively easy win. And that's why we're so fanatical about site speed.

The first pages to focus on are your Home page, your checkout & product pages. There are many factors to a site's speed across the delivery networks, but website developers can easily control a few, including javascript - defer execution until after page load (and optionally execute asynchronously); add expire headers to cache files & reduce number of server requests; and compress all content - both static & dynamic.

A few simple changes like these can dramatically improve your website user experience and have a real effect on your bottom line. So get optimizing!

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