The internet is a space where you can access almost anything at the click of a button, and as advancements are made in the computing world, people know what a website is capable of. If your site doesn’t match up that standard, you’re at risk of being the underdog forever.
Think about it; slow websites don’t make it to the top search results page on Google, and even though users are capable of clicking another tab while waiting for yours to finish loading, nobody likes to have a bunch of tabs clogging up their screen.
If you’re ready to give your customers the service they deserve and you want your site to operate at a speed faster than a snail’s pace, then keep scrolling.
How To Improve The Speed Of Your Website
To improve your website, you need to know exactly how it is performing, and that’s where a Google Lighthouse auditcomes in.
“Google Lighthouse enables you to gain useful insights into what isn’t going right with your website, while recommending ways to improve it,” says Joe, a Digital Marketing Specialist at Keen. He is obsessed with building UX friendly websites optimized for Search Engines.
If you’re wondering how to go about the whole thing, take a look at the following five fast and furious tips that’ll have your website working quickly and efficiently.
Cutting It Down
Spaces, line breaks and comments need to be removed to lose a little weight off your code. Remember, the larger your code, the more information needs to be processed and the longer it takes to open a web page.
If there are any plugins that you don’t plan on using, it’s best to get rid them. Useless plugins can slacken loading times with all the database bloating they can cause.
When it comes to render-blocking URLs, your Lighthouse report will show all URLs that are causing blockages to the first paint of your page.
From there, you can render these URLs ineffective in their blockade by inclining all the critical resources and getting rid of all unnecessary ones.
The importance of this cannot be stressed enough. The eye is the window to the customer’s heart so it’s necessary for you to make sure that your graphics are on point. Once again, the issue of size is of great import.
The bigger an image is, the slower it will take to process, it’s as simple as that. Lighthouse can help you to identify those images which require optimization, and it will consider screen resolution before making suggestions on how you can size the pictures.
See if you can reduce the size of the images with your usual image-editing tool, cropping out any idle components while you’re at it. Go for JPEG images as much as possible and if you stay away from TIFF and BMP formats, you should be golden.
Go For The Host With The Most
Sure, making a few tweaks to your code can make a world of a difference to your website, but if your infrastructure is lacking, you can’t really expect to get much done
That’s why it’s advisable to do thorough research on hosting companies before you come to a decision. Your hosting company should’ve been in the business long enough, with a proven track record and stellar reviews. Anything less is just a waste of time and money.
There are many hosting options for you to choose from, depending on your needs and means and you can even start with shared hosting plan just to get a feel of the whole thing.
Minify & Combine
This is another one of your secret weapons. Minifying a file will make it smaller to download and parse which helps improve download performance.
It is through this practice that external requests are reduced and results are loaded faster in a seamless User Experience, free from whitespace and idle characters.
There is also great reward to gain from combining your files. It can help you save space like no other technique can, and the potential boost in speed makes it well worth looking into. Lighthouse will show you all the unminified resources as well as how much you can save in kilobytes after minifying.
As ironic as it may sound, a little something called “lazy loading” can go a long way in helping you to pick up speed. The great thing about lazy loading is that it enables you to increase website speed without compromising content.
Through this technique, you can effectively defer the loading of non-essential resources whenever your page loads. How do you figure out what’s essential and what isn’t it? The Opportunities page on your Lighthouse report will give you a good idea of where to start.
Thanks to lazy loading, everything is utilized at the right time and for the right reasons. Every non-essential resource comes into play only when it is needed at a particular time.
Initial payload is cut down and so is load time, but content still runs smoothly. Lighthouse will help you pick out those off-screen images that you need to lazy load in the same way that a plane might get rid of dead weight.
On Your Marks, Get Set
Believe or not, there’s a lot that goes into website optimization and we haven’t exactly covered everything here. Nonetheless, the tips we’ve touched on are your best chance at boosting your site’s performance.
If you take your website seriously, you will have committed to trying out all five of them. In spite of all the jargon and seemingly complicated technicalities, boosting your website’s speed is easier than you think.
It’s as easy as letting Google Lighthouse guide you, getting rid of anything extra or unnecessary and picking the right hosting company. Now off you go like greased lightning!