Take Your Website to the Next Level!

Sick of slow loading websites? You should be! Learn how to run a website speed test, interpret your results, and optimize your site today!

The Importance of Having a Properly Performing Website

If you don’t have a website for your business yet, than you are losing potential business. When looking for a service or business the first place people will typically look is the internet. Technology today allows anyone to search for just about anything and from anywhere. From smart phones to iPad to laptops, these portable devices help you find exactly what you’re looking for from anywhere in the world. The last thing you want is to lose a lead because your website took too long to load. In this fast, hectic world we live in most of us demand satisfactory results in a short time. Waiting for a web page to load will steer away even the most patient of us.

If you are experiencing slowness when your page loads, or in the process of creating a new site, checking your website speed and performance is crucial for optimum success. A speed and performance test will analyze your load speed and identify possible issues in your web pages that may be causing it to load slowly. These issues typically stem from over-sized images, bad coding and too many embed media types. The test will help you pin point exactly what components in your website are causing it to run poorly, and recommend better practices.

A good speed and performance company will ensure nothing is overlooked, testing all aspects of your website. Some of the inspections they will perform are:

An examination of all the elements within your web pages, this includes HTML, CSS, JavaScript, images, etc. This allows you to see what components of your page take the longest and shortest time to load.

Run multiple connection speed tests to see how your website loads with different browsers and in different locations around the globe.

In addition, advanced testing may include an analysis of multi-step transactions that can sometimes have bulky or flawed coding, plus check your video captures for optimum performance.

Many companies will provide you with a printout of all your results which will allow you to compare your sites performance history over time. Keeping a record of these diagnostic graphs, optimization charts and recommendations are essential to site improvement; it lets you see if the changes you’ve made are actually working. If you don’t see the results you were looking for, you will have a record of all previous suggestions to better move forward with.

Should You be Running a Website Speed Test on Your Site?

In the online world, the speed with which a website loads is absolutely essential. This determines where your page ranks on the search engines and whether a viewer will stay on your site or not. Statistics show that websites only have 3 seconds to grab a viewer’s attention, and if it takes longer than that long to load then you’ve lost your customer.

Here lies the problem
People understand what it is to touch a product. They’ve been touching things their entire lives, and this interaction only takes a second or two. For some reason, we expect the same thing from the Internet. We expect instant access and some website, those that have everything just right can deliver this instant interaction.

The only reason consumers sometimes put up with slow loading websites is because they remember the first Internet experiences where they had slow and sluggish sites. And because there is a motivation to stay on the site. However, times are changing, and now consumers are demanding faster speed. Size has nothing to do with this slow load, take the casino gaming sites, these received thousands of visitors an hour and yet they still load super quickly. But this means that people are now holding their standards higher, requiring this type of instant experience from every site they visit. There are multiple websites online where you can perform a web speed test in order to find out how quickly a site loads. You can also use this date to make actionable changes to parts of your sites that are slowing the rest of the site down.

Google also Expects Speed
Google also highly recommends faster websites. They’ve said it and they may not have penalized slow moving sites yet, but it is only a matter of time. They are giving site owners the heads up with this recommendation will likely be emphasized over time, resulting in higher or lower search results.

At the beginning of the statistics say you have 20 seconds to grab your audience’s attention, but even those numbers are changing, a recent study by Gomez.com suggests that visitors leave websites that take more than 10 seconds to load. This decrease in time is a result of the optimized and faster loading pages that are now on the net.
It Sells
There’s no question that speed affects a site, and the evidence demonstrates that faster page loads increases the number of pages viewed and consequently the number of sales you make. In fact, many marketing studies say that even a one second delay can result in a decline of about 7% sales. The Aberdeen group suggests that this one second delay the page load times can result in 11% fewer units and even a significant decrease in customer satisfaction.

Check it Out
Is this true for your own website? There are many metric tools out there. These study the speed with which your page loads, and even tell you where problems exists that affect the speed of your page. A few of these tools include Google Insights, Neustar Performance Test, and Which Loads Faster. These performance tests have different measures they compares, so many website owners use more than one to measure the speed of their website.

Ensuring a Website is Fast at All Times & Improving Page Load Speed

Rather it’s a business website or a personal website, it’s important to ensure that your website is having a fast loading speed at all times. With a business website, of course, you want to maintain the best user experience possible. You will want your visitors to be well pleased; therefore, hoping they will become your customers, and having a fast loading speed for your business website is part of providing great customer service. If it’s a personal website, you still want your visitors to be impressed with the fast loading speed along with other details of your website, because your personal website can serve as great networking for a plethora of opportunities.

And let’s face it- visitors will most likely become frustrated with a slow speed alone, which can hurt you in many ways. With slow speeds, visitors will most likely not return to the website, thus not becoming customers. If it’s a personal website, slow loading speeds will tend to diminish many opportunities that you are seeking on your personal website. Also, slow loading speeds will not be favorable for search engine optimization. Google has started to include the website speed as a factor in ranking algorithms for web searches.

Luckily, there are ways to ensure your website is always in top shape with fast speed, and that will include the following:

1. Test the speed of your website often. There are plenty of free websites that will test the speed of your website, as well as give tips for better performance. You can perform a page speed test online on a number of different sites, and that can help to isolate the specific problems that might be slowing your site down.

2. Taking Care of Potential Server Issues Making sure you have the best DNS will enable faster loading speed. Also, taking care of potential registry issues will help the RAM.

3. Optimizing Images Use the right file format for images. Also, scaling images down can cause slower load times.

4. Optimizing and Compressing Content Compressing into HTTP will use one file, instead of several files. CSS and JavaScript files will be compressed and optimized when combining them.

5. Place stylesheet references in the top area. This will allow the pages to present styles progressively.

6. Place script references in the bottom area. Adding scripts at the top will block everything else under it during the first time of loading.

7. Put CSS and JavaScript in the external files. This will make the website easy to update and maintain. Also, if this was in the HTML document, this will download upon every HTML request, which will increase the HTML document size.

8. Minimizing the HTTP Requests Using CSS sprites for combining multiple images, and combining multiple JavaScript libraries and stylesheets will reduce this.

9. Caching web pages. Static version, instead of a recreation upon every request will be the result of this. W3 Total Cache and WP Super Cache are used for WordPress.

10. Reduce the 301 Redirects. This will prevent new URLs from being created in the browser.