In this day and age, a website can make or break the success of any business. Building a successful online presence can be incredibly difficult, time-consuming and costly however the importance of getting it right cannot be stressed enough. Performance of a site is a key element to success. There are a whole host of different techniques and areas to explore to improve performance; it is not down to one specific factor.
Here we cover five tips that will certainly help improve your website's performance.
Cheap or free web hosting packages can be a tempting option when you are a start-up on a limited budget but as you start to scale up your business, you should ensure you have good quality web hosting in place. Using shared web hosting means you are sharing disc space with other sites. If you are looking at improving your SEO, reducing bounce rates (due to slow loading times) then dedicating hosting is certainly the way to go. It will cost more money but the benefits will eventually out way the costs.
This may be something you speak to your web developer about. How your page is laid out can certainly affect the performance of your site. Having high-res, full-screen banner load at the very top of every page is going to kill performance. Moving images below, the fold and ‘lazy loading’ them will help improve page-loading speed and reduce bounce rate. You should also pay attention to consistency, making sure that each page is clear and easily accessible, including people who rely on screen readers to study a website.
If you have ever used Google fonts before you may have seen the indicator as to how much the impact the particular font you wish to use has on the performance of your website. Installing four different fonts along with six variations of that font (bold, italic, bold italic etc.) is going to affect the performance of your site, even though Google fonts are already optimised. We always say simplicity is key to design. Stick to a maximum of two fonts, one for headings and one for the body text. If you are technically minded, enabling text compression on your server will improve performance again.
This goes without saying these days, you need to ensure your website is optimised for mobile and tablet devices. You will find that most of your traffic comes from mobile devices so ensuring your visitor's overall experience is a pleasurable one is essential. Ensuring that images are compressed, CSS and js files are minified along with enabling browser caching can all help your site's performance. Applying these adjustments to your site can seem out of reach due to the technical nature if that’s the case we are more than happy to provide you with a free, no-obligation quote.
Optimising your site's performance directly relates to the experience that a user may or may not have on your website. One of the most effective ways to improve any elements that concern you is to set up some user testing. Focusing on the average user of your site you will probably find areas that can be improved. All of them might say ‘this site is really slow, I wouldn’t shop here’. From just five user test sessions from a typical customer, you can establish areas you may not be aware of that need improving or updating.
There are some simple steps you can make to improve your website's performance and the benefits can be quite surprising. If you feel that applying any of these improvements to your site are too technical, again we are experts at improving user experience and website performance, so just drop us an email for some help.
Article Written by Matt Partridge
Web Developer & Digital Marketing Specialist