Websites with fast load times are more likely to keep visitors on the site and get them to take action. If a user has to wait for even a second before viewing the content they expect, they’ll probably leave.
With the rise of mobile browsing, speed is even more important now than ever before.
A report from Google revealed that almost half of all users will leave a website that takes longer than 3 seconds to load. This means that if your website takes more than three seconds to load, you can almost bet that half of your visitors won’t wait around long enough to see what you have to offer.
And that is why it is so important for websites to have fast load speeds at all times. Read on to learn how you can improve your site speed in less than five minutes!
1). Install a Fast-Loading WordPress Theme
The foundation of your website is what will determine how fast (or slow) it loads. That’s why it’s so important to choose a WordPress theme that’s fast-loading out of the box.
Some WordPress themes are coded far better than others. This means that they are designed in a way that makes your website load faster.
If your theme is poorly coded, it could significantly slow down your site. If you want to make sure that your theme doesn’t affect your speed, choose one that’s optimized for speed.
WordPress.org has a list of themes that are optimized for speed: https://blog.hubspot.com/website/fastest-loading-wordpress-themes.
That way, you can ensure that your theme won’t slow down your site.
2). Turn Off Unnecessary WordPress Plugins
Certain WordPress plugins are nice to have, but not necessary. You can turn off any unnecessary WordPress features to make your site run faster.
To do so, go to the WordPress dashboard and select “Installed Plugins” from the “Plugins” menu. There, you’ll see a list of plugins that you can turn off to improve speed.
Experts regularly recommend turning unnecessary plugins off. That is because they’re nice to have, but they’re not necessary to have a functional website.
3). Reduce the Size of Images
Images are important for adding visual appeal to your website. However, if your images are too large, they can significantly slow down your site.
For every image on your website, make sure that it is the proper size. You don’t want any images to be too big or too small. If you want to make sure that all of your images are the right size, use a free online tool like https://resizeimage.net/.
This will allow you to input your image’s URL, and the tool will tell you what the image’s dimensions should be. If your images are too large, try using a free image editing software like Canva.
Canva makes it easy to resize images without losing quality. You can even resize images that you’ve already uploaded to your website.
4). Add a Content Delivery Network
A content delivery network (CDN) is a network of servers that deliver your website’s content to users. That way, content can be delivered from the nearest possible location.
This makes everything load faster because the content is coming from a server that’s much closer to the user than your own server. You can get a free CDN to improve your website speed on Cloudflare.
5). Enable Gzip Compression
Gzip compression is a way to compress your website’s code. It makes your site’s code smaller, which means that it’s downloaded faster. You can enable Gzip compression for free on your website. To do so, go to your website’s hosting settings and look for a tab marked “Compression.” There, you can enable Gzip compression. This will make your site load much faster.
6). HTML and CSS Optimization
HTML and CSS are the building blocks of your website, and if you’re not using them correctly, you could be causing serious speed issues for your users. There are two common issues that may slow down your website:
- Using too many CSS files: If you have more than three or four CSS files on your site, it’s time to consolidate. You can do this by combining all of the styles into one single file, or by using a tool like CSSComb. This will cut down on HTTP requests and make your website load faster.
- Using too many images: This is a common issue! It’s far too easy to add an image to a website and not really think about it. The problem is, that images can slow down your site significantly. If you have a lot of images on your site, it’s time to take a hard look at which ones are necessary. If you don’t need an image, consider removing it or replacing it with an icon instead.
7). Reduce the number of HTTP requests if possible
In short, the fewer HTTP requests your website has, the faster it will load. This is because each HTTP request requires a certain amount of time to complete, and every additional request adds to that time.
The easiest way to reduce the number of HTTP requests on your site is by combining multiple assets into one file.
Another way is to turn off any features you don’t need: Every plugin or theme has a few features that come with it whether you use them or not, and these features add more HTTP requests to your website.
For example, if you have WooCommerce installed but don’t sell anything on your site, turn off its “add to cart” button so that it doesn’t add to the number of HTTP requests on your website.
8). Use browser HTTP caching
Browser caching is a feature that makes your website load faster by storing files on the user’s computer. This means that if you visit a site that you usually visit every day, the files will be stored on your computer, and you will be able to load them much faster.
The only problem with browser caching is that it doesn’t work for dynamic websites. That’s why it’s important to set up your WordPress website properly so that it can take advantage of browser caching.
9). Don’t use redirects, if possible
Redirects are used to send users from one page or domain to another.
For example, if someone types in yourdomain.com/blog instead of yourdomain.com/blog/ then the redirect will automatically send them to yourdomain.com/blog/.
This is a great way to make sure that people can find their way around your website but it also adds an extra HTTP request and slows down the load time of your website.
A good website speed is crucial for retaining visitors and getting more conversions. In fact, a one-second delay in page load time can result in a 7% drop in conversions. Fortunately, it’s easy to improve your site speed. To do so, you simply need to follow these six easy steps.