17 Strategies for Optimizing Your Website Speed

17 Strategies for Optimizing Your Website Speed

Want to capture more impressions, create more engagement, and convert more visitors into customers? Start by improving website speed.

It’s a common-sense approach backed by solid data: a one-second delay in site load times reduces user satisfaction by 15% or more, and 79% of paying customers will consider shopping elsewhere if your website’s product and checkout pages can’t keep pace.

Assessing your website speed is easy enough — Google offers a free tool called PageSpeed Insights that provides a color-coded green/yellow/red score reflecting your site’s overall performance — but what happens if your results aren’t great?

If you’re not sure how to optimize website speed, we’ve got you covered — here are 17 strategies to supercharge site loading times and increase end-user satisfaction.

17 Strategies for Optimizing Your Website Speed

1. Audit Your Site

Before making any changes that impact how your site loads and handles content, it’s worth auditing current performance. This starts with tools like the PageSpeed Insights option mentioned above but should also include actual experience: access your website from multiple devices and see what the experience feels like. Is it seamless and speedy, or cumbersome and clunky? The more data you have about how your site performs, the better your ability to identify and implement key fixes.

2. Prioritize Potential Fixes

Once you’ve identified website speed issues, it’s tempting to fix everything at once. Don’t.

Instead, prioritize potential fixes based on what matters most to your visitors. For example, if your site takes a significant amount of time to start loading, focus your efforts on server-side concerns such as hosting provider problems or DNS issues. Here’s why: Even if the content on your site also struggles to deliver at speed, it won’t matter if loading the page itself takes so long that visitors give up and go somewhere else.

3. Evaluate Your Current Hosting Provider

As noted above, your hosting provider could be a potential source of speed problems. While several factors could contribute to speed issues, including the geographical location of your provider, their physical infrastructure and the overall bandwidth of their network connection, the type of web hosting — shared, VPS or dedicated server — your website is using can also impact performance.

Although shared hosting options are the most cost-effective, they see hosting resources split among multiple sites, lowering overall performance. Virtual private server (VPS) options logically segment services on a shared physical drive to improve performance but still face speed issues if resource loads are high. Dedicated servers are more expensive than shared or VPS options but will significantly boost your speed.

4. Consider a Content Delivery Network (CDN)

When all data required to fully load your site is stored in one place, initial and ongoing load times suffer. Content delivery networks (CDNs) use multiple servers to store your content across multiple locations — when users visit your site, the CDN chooses the server (or servers) closest to their physical location to optimize content delivery. Worth noting? Not all CDNs are created equal, so it’s worth evaluating several providers to find your best fit.

5. Optimize Your Images

Images boost the impact of your site but can drag down loading times, especially if they’re high resolution. Compressing these images before adding them to your site can save precious time — many photo-editing programs now include “save for web” options that optimize images for websites but there are also free, online options available for compressing common files types such as .JPG, .PNG and .TIFF.

6. Reduce Total Redirects

Redirects send users away from the page they’ve clicked on to another page — in many cases, they’re a great way to connect high-ranking, high-traffic pages to newer content you’ve created. The problem? More redirects mean more loading time, which can negatively impact the user experience.

While it’s worth using a redirect initially to keep content views steady, replace old redirects with new content ASAP to keep load times short.

7. Limit HTTP Requests

Every HTTP request — for images, stylesheets, scripts, and fonts — adds to your site’s overall load time. As your site grows, these HTTP requests start to stack up and eventually create a noticeable delay between user click-throughs and actual page loading.

In-browser services such as Google’s Developer Tools can identify all the HTTP requests made by your site and help you pinpoint old or overly-complex requests that can be eliminated or combined with other functions to save time.

Learn more about reducing your website’s HTTP requests.

8. Compress, Compress, Compress

The more you can reduce file sizes without compromising quality, the better your website performance. One of the most robust and reliable compression frameworks is gzip, but other methods can also deliver reduced file sizes without impacting the user experience. Best bet? Ask your web hosting service what type of compression they’re using. If they’re not using any, consider a new provider.

9. Capitalize on Caching

Caching allows browsers to pre-load some of your content to speed up webpage delivery. Many content management systems (CMS) will automatically cache the most current versions of your site, but it’s also possible to extend this caching timeframe through CMS settings — this is especially beneficial for content that doesn’t regularly change on your site.

10. Track 404 Errors

404 or “page not found” errors occur when users try to access a page that you’ve deleted or moved — and once they’ve run into 404 errors it’s unlikely they’ll try accessing your site again, meaning you lose a potential customer. Solve for 404 errors by running free, external tools to track down 404 outcomes and remove dead links.

11. Make Mobile a Priority

As more users switch to mobile devices as their primary browsing and shopping mediums, speedy mobile sites are essential. While it’s possible to simply display your desktop site on mobile devices and hope for the best, this often results in load time and interactivity issues that quickly frustrate users. Here, it’s worth spending on development for a mobile-native website designed to maximize loading speed and improve response time.

12. Streamline Your CMS

The right content management system can significantly improve website performance by streamlining content retrieval and offering robust options to modify site operations. Both free and for-pay options exist; do some digital legwork to find out which CMS works best for your site.

13. Combine Key Files

If you have the website development know-how, it’s possible to combine sets of JavaScript or CSS files and reduce the number of steps required to completely load your site. WordPress plugins such as WP Rocket make this possible with just a few clicks, but whether you dive into code itself or use a CMS, it’s worth considering file combination to increase total speed.

14. Determine Your DNS Speed

The longer it takes your domain name server (DNS) to respond, the longer your time to first byte (TTFB) and the slower your site loads. Free online tools can determine where your DNS provider ranks compared to other offerings, which in turn helps pinpoint specific performance issues. Worth noting? In some cases, your hosting provider will also supply DNS services, while in others these two functions are separate.

15. Opt for Asynchronous Loading

Many files and functions on your website are loaded synchronously by default, which means they’re loaded in the order they appear on the page — elements will only load once the script or service immediately prior is fully loaded, increasing page load times.

Many new CMS tools and plugins, however, make it possible to enable asynchronous loading for CSS and JavaScript elements which allows them to load simultaneously.

16. Choose Fewer Fonts

While web fonts can help your site stand out from the crowd, they can also negatively impact performance, especially if they’re uncommon or require unique character sets. To maximize page loading speed, use the fewest number of fonts possible, and focus on fonts that are optimized for new browsers.

17. Pinpoint Problematic Plugins

Last but not least? Pinpoint performance-sapping plugins. While plugins offer a host of useful features to help manage your website they can also negatively impact performance, especially if they’re used to load a significant amount of assets or perform large database queries. Here, the speed rule is simple: Only keep the plugins you need and always deploy the latest, fastest versions.

The faster, the better.

The faster your website loads, displays content, and responds to user input, the lower your bounce rates and the higher your conversions. Here, incremental improvement is critical — while going from slow to supercharged doesn’t happen overnight, any of our 17 website optimization strategies can help jumpstart your need for speed.


How to Speed Up Your Site and Make More Money

How to Speed Up Your Site and Make More Money

Do you have a fast website? If you do, you are probably racing past your competition in the search rankings. If you don’t have a fast website or blog… you are probably missing out and leaving a ton of money on the table in the process! Even worse… you are likely losing a lot of site visitors and maybe even damaging your brand in the process.

The truth is, a fast loading website is one of the most important things you can focus on. However, it’s also something that many people simply don’t focus on enough. This is usually because the loading time of your site is often something that site owners don’t know how to fix or improve, but also it’s not something that is really shown in monthly revenue reports — but it definitely has an effect on your bottom line!

The good news is that there are plenty of free tools, resources and guides out there to help with increase the speed of your site, while also lowering hosting and server resources as well. My good friend Syed Balkhi has a great resource on speeding up WordPress, that is a must-read for anyone using WP to power their site.

With all of that being said, today we are going to take a look at an infographic from WebpageFX that shows why a faster website is so important, and how it can affect how much money your site makes in the process.


Why Faster Websites Make More Money

What happened the last time you visit a website and it took more than a second or two to load? Like most of us, you probably left the site. No only did you leave the site… it also left a bad taste in your most and you might have never even visit the site again. This in itself is a huge cost to any website (especially an e-commerce)!

Let’s now take a look at some key stats on why faster websites simply make more money and perform so much better.

  • 83% of users expect websites to load in 3 seconds or less
  • The median loading time of the top 500 e-commerce home pages is 10 seconds

When it comes to the behavior of online shoppers, here’s what they had to say.

  • 44% are more likely to develop a more negative perception of the company
  • 79% are less likely to buy from the site again
  • 46% would actively tell their friends and family about the experience

Based off these numbers and responses, a slow loading site can really cause some damage to how your site and brand looks to your general audience. However, a slow pagespeed can also negatively affect other areas of your site as well.

  • User Experience: No one likes a slow loading web site.
  • Pageviews: The longer a site takes to load, the less your audience will stick around.
  • SEO: Google wants to rank fast loading web sites higher.
  • Conversion: Faster loading content and lead-gen forms result in higher lead generation.

Be sure to consider the speed of your site when trying to rank in the search results. To help with this process, be sure to check out these SEO analyzer tools. Each of them are free to use, and will also allow you to check out the speed and SEO rankings of your competition as well. Not only is this a great resource, but it’s also a good way to keep an eye on your competition and seeing how fast their sites load.


The Importance of a Single Second in Load Time

It’s easy to say a fast loading web site is important, but once you have some numbers to back it up… then you can really get an idea of how important it is. Reports show that a 1-second improvement in loading time can result in over a 7% increase in conversions. This adds up to a lot of money over time.

On the internet, everything needs to be looked at in seconds, minutes, days, months and years. Since most online sites and businesses are getting traffic and sales 24/7, having a slow loading website or downtime of just 0.003% is still being down for a whole day of the year! Imagine how much that would cost your business vs. the extremely small cost of fixing something so simple.

The longer your site takes to load, the more money you are missing out on.

The infographic chart below breaks this down extremely well.

  • If you have a site that makes $100 per day, a 1-second difference can cost $2,555 per year.
  • If that same site makes $1,000 a day and still has a 1-second delay, it would be $25,550 lost per year!

If you can also play these numbers on the reverse and see how much more money your site could be making if it was simply loading 1, 2 or 3 seconds faster.

  • A site generating $100,000 per day would make $7,000 more per day with a 1-second improvement
  • The same site would see a $426,000 improvement over the course of a month with a 2-second improvement
  • It starts to get crazy when you scale it out to a year and do a 3-second improvement, which is over $7 million

Again… it’s all a numbers game and no matter how big or small your site or revenue numbers might be, the importance of a fast loading site is extremely important.


Real-Life Examples of How Important Site Speed Is

It’s kind of crazy to think about a website that could be doing $100,000 a day in sales or revenue… but there are plenty of them. Amazon and Walmart do those types of numbers every minute of the day — and sometimes in second on Black Friday and Cyber Monday.

  • Amazon and Walmart both reported a 1% LOSS in revenue per 100ms of site load delay
  • Walmart INCREASED conversions by 2% for every 1 second of load time improvement
  • Intuit was able to increase conversions by more than 3% after shaving 7 seconds off their load time
  • Obama Fundraising Campaign increased donation conversions by 14% by decreasing page speed from 5 seconds to 2 seconds — which resulted in $34 million in contributions
  • Mozilla improved conversions by 15.4% by shaving 2.2 seconds off their loading time — which resulted in 60+ million additional downloads per year

How much of an impact could a single second in loading time be costing your business?


How to Improve the Speed of Your Website

As mentioned at the beginning of the article, there are plenty of ways to increase to loading time and pagespeed of your site. Some of the most simple ways to accomplish this is to use a content delivery network, reduce the file size of images and content on your site, and also use WordPress as your CMS — as many plugins, tools, and outside solutions can help with this as well.

There are also different web hosting plans and platforms you should use and stay away from as well.

For example, if you have a website that is making you some serious money… why are you still using shared hosting and using a server that thousands of other sites are hosted on? Other options include investing in a dedicated server or a web host that specializes in fast-powered web hosting.

One low-cost (yet effective) solution is A2 Hosting, which provides “Turbo” speed hosting, which claims to increase site speed by up to 20 times. This is done by adding more resources to each server while having fewer users. Sites are also pre-configured with site caching and more virtual memory.

To further back up and compliment these statements from A2 Hosting on their “Turbo” solution, we can look at the uptime percentage and response time from the chart below. This report is from HostingFacts.com and their reviews on cheap hosting providers. When stacked up against the competition, A2 Hosting was ranked #1 for speed, over top web hosting solutions like SiteGround, BlueHost, and DreamHost.


To learn more about A2 Hosting and their premium “Turbo” hosting, simply click the image below.


With Google now putting more weight on sites that are fast loading, and audiences now having a shorter attention span than ever before, it’s important to step up your site loading game. There is no reason for your site to be loading any more than 2-3 seconds. Any more than that and you are just killing your site potential and how much it could be earning.

Follow these tips and recommendations to improve your site’s loading time, while also making some extra money in the process.

Quick and Effective Tips to Maximize Speed of your Website or Blog

Quick and Effective Tips to Maximize Speed of your Website or Blog

Few things are worse than when you click over to a new website or blog, and then it’s loading slow as anything. With everyone having an extremely short attention span, and so many options for other websites and entertainment online, a fast loading website is a must for every blogger, brand, or business on the internet.

There are also many benefits associated with a fast loading site, beyond just user experience. Google is now penalizing sites that take too long to load, and boosting up other sites that a mobile-optimized and running super fast.

Depending on how technical your design or WordPress skills might be, the process of speeding up your site and maximizing it’s optimization might vary. To help with this process, I’ve listed a few of the best working methods below.

Optimize your Homepage to Load Quickly

With the homepage being one of the most vital parts of your website or blog, you should be doing everything possible to make sure it loads quickly. Different things can be done to speed up your homepage such as lowering the number of posts on the main page, minimizing applications and widgets from third-party sites, and also optimizing your images so they are either loading as a smaller sized file or through a CDN service. It’s also a good idea to use an SEO friendly theme or template, as these are more often cleaner with their coding and already optimized right out of the box.

Use an Effective Caching Plugin

If you are using a CMS like WordPress or blogger, then using an effective cashing plugin can contribute nicely in the process of making sure your site is loading as fast as possible. Since caching is an apparatus for a temporary storage of web pages to diminish bandwidth and to improve page loading performance as well, it saves the server’s time to make web pages load faster. Caching plugins are easy to install and use. All you need to do is perform some research online to see which plugin is best for your site, then click a few buttons to have it installed right within WordPress. Once this is done, it’s usually just a matter of copying the account number of your CDN and letting the hosting provider and WordPress plugin do its work.

Use CDN (content delivery network)

We’ve already referenced content delivery networks or CDNs, a few times now. The way these solutions work is that they host a version of your site on their server, and then loads the content from another server that is closest to that individual’s location. More and more site owners and bloggers are using CDNs not only to improve page load speed but to provide users with a great experience to make them stay longer on the website. Also mentioned earlier, this can help with how well a site ranks in Google, while also moving your site above the competition. Moreover, if one of your server locations is overloaded due to huge traffic and visitors, then users can automatically be switched to a new server location to enjoy fast loading website experience.

Improve Your Hosting Plan

If you have a slow loading website or blog, it’s likely due to your hosting plan. If you are pushing a lot of traffic through your site and making money in the process, you should definitely upgrade from a shared server. Shared hosting is often fine for new site owners and bloggers, but as your site gains more attention, backlinks, and traffic, it will also likely be using more server resource. On a shared server, your site is also sharing the server resources with many other sites — sometimes hundreds, or even thousands! Upgrading your hosting plan to a VPS or dedicated hosting package can greatly improve the performance of your site as well. So, if you are still using a cheap web hosting plan with an average price below $5/mo and receiving massive traffic from search engines, then it would be the right time for you to upgrade your hosting plan with a better one to speed up your website loading speed.

Use Optimized Images

Big images take up a lot of space and resources when it comes to loading data from your site. This is especially true with very high-quality images. While these images are going to play a big role in the beauty and engagement on your site, there are still ways to optimize such large images so they load faster and put less stress on your server. There are many plugins are available that can drastically reduce the file size of an image without reducing the quality. Image optimization will not only help you boost website load time but will also save disk space for more files and media. If you really don’t want to overload your website with plugins, then you can also use online image reducer apps and software to optimize image before uploading to the media library of the site.

Minimize HTTP Redirects Requests

How and where content is being loaded on your site can also affect its overall performance. You may need to use redirect requests to redirect the web browser from one URL to another. There are a variety of reasons as to why you might want to do this, such as to specify a new URL location, to track visits and clicks on the site or to connect different elements of the website with each other. Since redirects might be necessary to enhance overall UX of the website, you should only be using the redirect requests that are most important because excessive redirect requests can have an ultimate impact on the loading speed of your website/blog.

Don’t Leave Your Audience Hanging

When browsing the internet, few things are more annoying than accessing a slow loading website. It’s hard enough to get someone to visit your site, let alone stay for a few seconds. Don’t give them a reason to leave right away because your site isn’t loading as fast as it should be.

Follow each of the simple and effective site speed optimization tips above to make sure your site loads as fast as possible, ranks higher than the competition and also doesn’t disappoint your audience when they hit your site.