Page speed optimization is an umbrella term that includes all the steps involved in making a website load faster, like creating a fast-loading site architecture, using content delivery networks (CDNs), caching static assets, reducing HTTP requests, and more.
In other words, page speed optimization optimizes the loading time of web pages and apps. In addition, it helps ensure that your website or app is fast and responsive for all users.
It is important because it affects the user experience. For example, if your website or app takes too long to load, users will quickly leave it and find another faster option.
Many factors can affect the loading time of a website or app, but two main aspects must be considered: Server response time and client response time.
1)- The server response time is how fast the server responds when a user’s browser or device makes a request.
2)- Client response time refers to how fast your device responds when you interact with an interface on your screen – such as scrolling down, clicking on links, etc.
Web page speed optimization is an important aspect of Search Engine Optimization. It affects the user experience and influences search engine rankings and conversion rates. This is because Google favors websites that load quickly and penalizes those that take a long time to load.
We will discuss various web page speed optimization techniques in detail in this article which will help you improve your website’s loading time.
What is Page Speed?
A web page speed is a time it takes for a website to load. This usually depends on the server, the connection, and what is on the website.
Web page speed is important because it can affect how long people stay on a site before they leave. Slow loading times will cause visitors to bounce from your site and find other places that load faster.
Web page speed measures how quickly a web page loads in a browser. It is usually measured in seconds or milliseconds. The faster the web page loads, the better the experience for users. There are two main ways to measure web page speed:
Time to the First Byte
It measures how long it takes to the browser to get the first byte of information from the web server.
It does not include any animation or audio/video playback.
If your website is too heavy or has a lot of blog images on the home page, it will take a lot of time to display them; however, initially, it shows few images and headings.
Page Load Time
The time it takes for individual web page parts to load on your device, from start to finish.
It includes any animation or audio/video playback up until that point and lets you measure how long each part of the webpage takes to load.
Usually, user experience is based on page load time compared to “time to the first byte,” so we need to focus on page load time.
Why does Page Speed Matters?
- Customer’s Frustration: If the loading time is too long, visitors will get frustrated and may abandon the site before it finishes loading.
- Customer Satisfaction: A slow-loading site also affects customer satisfaction as customers may feel that they are being ignored or that they are not important to the company.
- Loss of Potential Customers: If your website has a slow-loading speed, you could miss out on valuable traffic as some visitors may have just given up waiting for your site to load.
Page Speed and Ranking
Page speed is the most important factor in ranking on Google. Conversely, slow loading time can be fatal for your website as Google algorithm measures the website loading time like common visitors do by its artificial intelligence.
The average user expects a page to load within 2 seconds; if it takes more than 3 seconds, they will likely close the page or never visit your site again.
Google has already announced that they will start punishing websites with slow loading times by lowering their rankings in SERPs.
So, what does this mean for you? First, you must optimize your website and ensure it loads quickly, as page speed is an important ranking factor.
Page Speed and Bounce Rate
The bounce rate is the percentage of single-page visits.
In other words, it means visits in which the individual leaves your site after viewing a single page.
Page speed matters, and not just for SEO. A slow loading speed can lead to a high bounce rate.
This is because people are impatient and don’t want to wait for a page to load. As a result, they get frustrated and leave the site, impacting your search engine rankings.
The average bounce rate of websites has been steadily increasing over the last few years. This is not just because people find faster websites and quickly load blogs.
Page Speed and Conversion Rate
Page speed is a factor that has a direct impact on conversion rates. According to Google’s Page Speed Insights, it takes less than 1 second for users to lose interest in a page.
The more time it takes for the page to load, the more likely the user will abandon it. In addition, the longer the wait, the higher the bounce rate and the lower the conversion rate.
A study by Akamai found that about 40% of consumers will abandon a site if it takes longer than 3 seconds to load, and this figure rises to 60% when loading time exceeds 10 seconds.
Page Speed and User Experience
The speed of a website is a crucial factor in how users will perceive it. Slow page speeds can lead to frustration, abandonment, and, ultimately, lost revenue.
In the past few years, many sites have made an effort to optimize their page load times.
This has been done by implementing lazy loading images and deferring non-critical CSS.
Page speed is a factor in user experience and how people perceive your website. It is a metric that measures the time it takes for your website to load.
How to Measure Page Speed
The best and recommended tool to measure website speed is PageSpeed Insights.
PageSpeed Insights is a Google tool that helps web admins and web developers measure the performance of their web pages. It provides a score from 0 to 100, with a higher score meaning better performance.
It also gives recommendations on improving your page’s performance, including optimizing images, adding browser caching, and reducing the number of redirects.
The PageSpeed Insights tool is free for anyone to use, and it’s available in over 60 languages. It has six core metrics as below:
1)- First Contentful Paint
The First Contentful Paint (FCP) is a metric that measures how long it takes for the browser to display the first text or image on the page. It’s a good way to measure whether or not a site is loading as quickly as possible.
The FCP metric is calculated by adding up all the time it takes for each element on the page to load and then dividing it by the total number of elements on that page. For example, if there are ten images, each one takes 5 seconds to load, then FCP would be 5 seconds.
The metric is calculated when the browser starts painting pixels on the screen. The first point in time that any text or image appears on the screen is considered FCP, and this is where we start counting. The end of FCP occurs when all of the following conditions are met:
– All HTML has been parsed and rendered
– All CSS has been parsed and rendered
– All images have been downloaded
– All scripts have been executed
– The DOMContentLoaded event fires
2)- Time to Interactive
Time to interactive is the time when a user can start interacting with a page. It is the time from when all the above-the-fold content has loaded to when the user can start scrolling and clicking on links.
It’s important to note that this metric does not measure how long it takes for a page to load in total but how long it takes for a user to interact with that page.
It’s also important to note that this metric is measured in milliseconds, not seconds or minutes.
3)- Speed Index
Page speed is a metric that measures the time it takes for a web page to load.
Speed Index measures the time it takes for web pages to fully load as well as how long users have to wait until the page finishes loading. It is a measure of performance and user experience on mobile devices in particular.
Speed Index can be calculated by dividing the page load time by the number of elements on the page. The higher this number, the better.
Larger sites with many images and videos will have higher Speed Index numbers than smaller sites with fewer elements.
4)- Total Blocking Time
The Total Blocking Time is the time it takes for a browser to load all of the content on a given web page. It is measured in seconds and can be found by adding up the time it takes to load each individual resource on the page.
This metric is often used to measure page loading performance, and can be used as a metric for how fast a website loads.
A good way to reduce Total Blocking Time is by using compression techniques, such as Gzip or Deflate, which will reduce the size of all resources on a given webpage.
Compression algorithms are able to remove unnecessary characters from files, which reduces their file size without changing their meaning.
5)-Largest Contentful Paint
The largest contentful paint is a metric that measures how much of the page can be painted in one go. It’s a measure of how long it takes to download and render all the elements on a website.
This metric is a new performance metric that was introduced in Chrome 61. It measures how much of the page’s content has been painted to the screen. This metric is available for both mobile and desktop devices and can be accessed via the chrome.
6)- Cumulative Layout Shift
The cumulative layout shift is a measure of the total distance that all of the elements on the page have been moved from their original location.
The cumulative layout shift is an important metric to consider when optimizing your pages. It can be used to identify how much content has been pushed down or off-screen and it can help you identify which areas of your site are not being used efficiently.
In other words, it is the number of pixels that a user has to scroll in order to see all of the content on a page. The higher this number, the worse the page speed.
This metric can be calculated by dividing the total number of pixels by the total width and height of a webpage.
Top Ten Reasons and Solutions of Page Speed
Slow loading time is a common problem with web pages. It can be caused by many factors, some of which are related to the website code or design. However, there are also external factors that have an impact on the speed of your site. These include the internet provider, ISP (internet service provider), and your browser settings.
The following are some of the most common causes of slow loading times for websites:
1)- Sub-Standard Hosting Service
Hosting service is the backbone of a website. The server provides a web page to users from their browsers. Therefore, the web hosting service directly affects how fast or slow your website loads.
Many factors can contribute to slow loading times, such as server overload, insufficient bandwidth, and sub-standard hosting services. That’s why you must be very careful when choosing a hosting service.
The most common reason for slow loading times is an overloaded server.
The more people visit your site in a short time, the more likely your site will experience this problem.
A second reason for slow loading time is insufficient bandwidth (in other words, insufficient data). This can happen when too many people try to access your site at once without enough bandwidth on the server.
The third cause of slow loading times can be attributed to sub-standard hosting services, which sometimes offer less desirable speeds and uptimes because they are cheaper than their competitors.
Solutions to Avoid Sub-standard Web Hostings
When looking for a hosting web service, there are many things to consider before you make your final decision. These top ten points will provide some tips to help you choose the best hosting service:
1)- Customer reviews are essential when choosing the best hosting service for your website.
2)- Choose the most suitable plan according to the nature and requirements of your business.
3)- Look for a hosting service with free website migrations when changing providers.
4)- A reputable company will offer you 24/7 customer support to help you in case of problems.
5)- Find a hosting service that offers specific tools to help your business grow, such as an eCommerce solution or Free SEO Tools.
6)- Understand the concepts of bandwidth and disk space and select wisely after comparing different hosting providers’ services.
7)- Ensure that your web hosting service provides you with secure and reliable uptime, reliability, and support.
8)- Compare web hosting providers in terms of their data center locations so you can select a company that is most likely to provide the best speeds for your website.
9)- Consider the features offered by different hosting services and their pricing.
10)- Check The Service Level Agreement (SLA) and The Terms Of Service And Acceptable Use Policy (AUP).
2)- Poorly Written Scripts and Unclean Codes
A slow-loading web page will result in a lower bounce rate and an increase in conversions.
There are many reasons for slow web page loading, but poorly written scripts and unclean codes are two of the most common causes.
Poorly written scripts can lead to performance issues because they consume more memory and CPU time than necessary. Unclean codes can also lead to performance issues because they have more code than necessary which leads to increased load times.
Poorly Written Scripts
The scripts of a webpage are the code that tells the browser how to display the webpage.
If these scripts are poorly written, it will take a lot of time for the browser to load them and show you the webpage.
Poorly written scripts can cause slow web page loading because they take a lot of time for the browser to load them and show you the webpage.
Unclean codes are one of the most common causes of slow web page loading. They are usually caused when someone adds unnecessary or repetitive codes to a website. This is bad for the user experience and makes it difficult for search engines to index your website.
In addition, unclean codes can lead to a sluggish website experience for users and search engine crawlers.
How to Fix Poorly Written Scripts
One way to fix poorly written scripts is to get a script doctor. Script doctors are people with knowledge in screenwriting who can spot and fix the problems in the script and turn it into something more marketable and readable.
Another way to fix poorly written scripts is to get a script editor. A script editor can offer feedback on what needs to change, what needs improvement, and what could be cut from the storyline completely because it doesn’t add anything significant or necessary for the story’s progression.
How to Fix Unclean Codes
It is important to have clean codes to ensure the web page loads faster.
Some of the best practices for clean codes are:
– Keep HTML and CSS files separate
– Have a single main stylesheet
– Use relative positioning
– Use HTML5 instead of outdated technologies
– Make sure that all images are optimized
3)- Unnecessary Plugins
WordPress Plugins are small programs that add features to your browser. They are usually used for streaming videos, playing games, and other multimedia content. Plugins are usually unnecessary for a website’s functionality, but they can be useful for certain websites.
Plugins can slow down your web page loading time by taking up space on the server and slowing down the connection speed. These plugins also use up the computer’s resources, making it slower to load other web pages and applications in the background.
How to Choose WordPress Plugins
There are many WordPress plugins out there that can help you create your website more efficiently. Here are some tips on choosing the right plugin for your needs:
1) Make sure it has the features you need.
2) Check if the plugin is compatible with your current version of WordPress.
3) Consider how often you will be using the plugin or how much money you are willing to spend on it.
4) Read reviews and feedback from other users.
5) Be mindful of any security issues with the plugin, especially if it has access to sensitive information such as payment data or passwords.
6) Think about what type of experience you want your website visitors to have when they visit your site because this will determine which plugins you should choose for certain parts of your website.
7) Use Elementor Pro for WordPress design as it has many features that may replace plugins, like adding a Table of content, font sizes, page layout, designing, etc.
8) Delete unwanted and heavy plugins and install only highly rated, most used, and only necessary ones.
A browser loads web pages, which interprets and executes the web page’s code. The browser does this by interpreting and executing the code of a web page in sequence.
Sometimes these unused scripts can be removed by developers, but sometimes they cannot be removed without breaking other parts of the site.
This is the most common cause of slow web page loading. The browser does not load unused CSS files. Instead, they are ignored and not parsed for execution.
Unused CSS can result from a change in design or the features that need to be supported by the website. It can be caused due to an update in the stylesheet.
This also happens when unused stylesheets on a web page are not required by other stylesheets.
Unused CSS can cause a significant delay in loading time because it takes up space and increases the size of files that need to be downloaded.
- You can use Google Chrome’s developer tools to see how long each resource takes to load and how much time is spent on each one.
- You can remove them from the source code or use a browser extension like Google Chrome’s “Remove Unused CSS” and “Remove Unused Scripts.”
- Developers are always looking for ways to keep their websites fast. One quick way of speeding up your website is to combine multiple files into one file. This reduces the number of HTTP requests and speeds up load time.
5)- Too Many Ads
The number of ads on a website is one of the main causes of slow web page loading. Ads are usually embedded in the HTML code. Therefore, they are usually placed at the top and bottom of a web page and in sidebars and footers.
In other words, web pages with too many advertisements make it difficult for readers to find the content and for browsers to load the page.
This is because ads are often loaded in a separate call from the web page’s main content. In addition, ads sometimes use more data and resources than the rest of the web page.
Choose Web Page Ads Wisely
Choosing advertisements for a web page is important to ensure it is fast. If the advertisements are not optimized, they can slow down the web page’s loading time.
There are a variety of factors that can affect how ads affect web page speed.
1)- Size and Layout of Ads
The first factor is the size and layout of ads. Ads that are too large or too many will make the web page load slower than necessary.
On the other hand, ads should be placed so that they don’t take up too much space on the webpage, and there should be enough white space to avoid slowing down loading time.
2)- Ad Refresh Frequency
The second factor is how frequently ads refresh on a webpage.
Frequent refreshing will also slow down loading times because it takes more time to load new content onto the website, while periodic refreshing will not affect loading times because there isn’t as much content to load onto the site at once.
3)- Content of the Ad
The third factor is how the content of the ads affects web page loading speed. Ads that are irrelevant to the website’s content and fill up valuable space will slow down load time, while others that have a small amount of text or are made to be more eye-catching will not.
4)- Ads Placements
The fourth factor is how many ads are on the webpage simultaneously. There should be no more than four ads per given area of a webpage, and they should be spaced out enough so that there is no more than one ad per given area of the webpage.
6)- Complex and Heavy Theme
Themes are a design element of a WordPress website. They are used to change the appearance of the site. For example, a theme can change a page’s layout, colors, fonts, or images. Themes can also control other aspects of a page, such as menus and widgets.
Many factors can affect the loading speed of a website. One of the most important factors is the theme that you choose for your website. The theme is what will determine how fast or slow your site loads.
Developers usually make heavy themes to show off their skills and creativity. Unfortunately, these themes are often complex and heavy, which leads to slow web page loading.
Websites with heavy or complex WordPress themes may experience slower loading times because these themes require more processing power from a web server than websites with simpler designs.
This means they take longer to load when accessed by a user browsing your website via their browser on a desktop computer or mobile devices like an iPhone or Android phone.
Many people think that the complexity of the theme is not an issue, but it is. Complexity in a theme can cause huge performance issues for both the user and the server. There are many ways to fix these problems, but they all involve removing or changing some aspects of your theme.
How to Choose WordPress Themes
When it comes to choosing a WordPress theme, many factors need to be taken into consideration. The most important one is the page speed.
A theme with too many features will slow down the site and affect your ranking in the Google search engine.
- A light and simple WordPress theme will help you get more people to your site. It’s also easier for mobile users who can’t access heavy sites on their devices to access your site because of its simplicity.
- Developers should not sacrifice performance for design. Instead, they must create lightweight, fast-loaded, and simple themes.
- A good theme should be light, with simple features and design. It should load quickly and use less memory.
7)- Uncompressed Media Files
A variety of factors can cause web pages that are slow to load. One of them is the uncompressed media files. Uncompressed media files are usually high-quality videos, images, and audio files in original formats.
This means that the images or videos on the webpage are not compressed, which means they take up more space on the server and therefore require more time for the data to transfer from server to browser.
How to Compress Audio Files
Compressing audio files can help accelerate your web page’s loading speed.
1. Use the right format and the right bitrate:
It is important to use a format optimized for web usage, such as MP3 or OGG and set the bitrate to 128kbps.
2. Convert all audio files to mono:
If you have stereo sound in your video file, it will take up double the space of a mono file with the same duration. So converting all stereo sound files to mono can help reduce their size by half and, as a result, will also make them load faster.
3. Reduce audio levels:
It would be best if you lowered the volume of your audio tracks so that they don’t occupy too much space on your hard drive or in memory when playing on-screen.
You can do this using an editing program like Adobe Audition or Audacity or a compressor plugin for Adobe Photoshop, such as Nik’s Red Giant Audio Compressor.
How to Compress Image Files
You can compress images to speed up your web page. There are many ways to do this, but we will focus on the most popular and simplest ones.
Use JPEG instead of the PNG format for the image.
Reduce the image size by using a tool like Photoshop or Gimp.
Use CSS background-image instead of img tags for images in CSS files.
Use SVG instead of PNG or JPEG when you need vector graphics in an image format.
Use a CDN service like Cloudflare to deliver your images from a server closest to your audience’s location. This will reduce latency and loading time on your website.
How to Compress Video Files
Video is one of the most important assets on the web. It attracts visitors and helps them decide whether they want to stay on your site. But videos can be heavy and slow down your website loading time.
Compression is a way of reducing file size by removing information that is not necessary for playback.
1. Turn off the video player’s autoplay feature
2. Use a plugin like WP Smush Pro to optimize images and videos before uploading them to the site
3. Minimize the size of the player by using a plugin like Video Player Lite
4. Optimize your videos by using a tool like Handbrake or Adobe Media Encoder
5. Upload the video on Youtube and only embedded links to the website.
7)- Absence of Caching Techniques
Caching is a technique that web developers use to increase the speed of website access. Caching saves the web pages in a computer’s memory so that when someone visits that page, they can load it from memory instead of downloading it again.
This technique speeds up the process because the computer doesn’t have to download all the information from the website again. This is especially useful for websites with many pages because they can take a long time to load without caching.
The absence of caching will slow down the page speed. For example, if a user visits a website without caching, the website needs to retrieve all the data from its database and render it on the web browser before showing anything on the screen.
This process will take much longer than when there is caching and will make users wait for an extended period before seeing anything on the screen.
Offer to Save Cache and Cookies
To combat this problem, you can use offer cache and cookie saving which will increase web page speed by reducing the amount of time it takes for a website’s content to load.
Caching is storing data in a computer’s memory to retrieve it more quickly later. This process is essential for websites because it speeds up the page loading time.
You must make it your mission to provide a faster experience to your users and add two features, Offer Cache and Cookie Saving, which help load pages faster.
Offer Cache: Every time a visitor visits a website, his browser saves some of your content in the cache, allowing him to access it again later quickly.
Cookie Saving: We also make web pages load faster by saving cookies from websites visitors frequently visit to avoid asking the server if you have permission to send cookies to that website each time. This ensures that each website loads faster and can be accessed with just one or two clicks.
8)- Insufficient Content Management System
Content management systems are the backbone of digital marketing. This is because they help to store, organize and manage content systematically.
They also have features that allow you to create, edit and publish content. They may or may not have features for managing web pages as well.
If you are using a CMS that does not offer these features, your web pages will be loaded slower than a CMS with all the necessary features.
This is because the CMS will take up more time to manage your website content instead of just delivering it to your users faster.
Use Content Delivery Network
Content Delivery Network or CDN is a service that delivers content to the end-user from a server that is geographically close to them. They are used for streaming video, live broadcasts, and other time-sensitive content.
- CDNs work by storing copies of content on servers placed at various points worldwide. Users will be served by an appropriate server close to them when they request a file.
- It can also be used for static files like images, audio, and video files and HTML pages with embedded media elements like images or videos.
- CDN providers usually offer features like live streaming and DDoS protection, making them attractive for webcasting or video-sharing sites that need high uptime and fast delivery of videos.
- They are used for accelerating page speed and improving site performance. In addition, they help in reducing latency, which in turn improves user experience.
- CDNs can also be helpful for websites with high traffic as they can handle more traffic than their servers and distribute it across their network of servers.
- A CDN can be helpful in many ways, but it’s not a replacement for website optimization.
9)- Using Flash Content
The web is getting increasingly interactive, meaning that there are more and more things to slow down a webpage. One of the major culprits of a slow webpage is Flash content.
Flash content can help create high-quality animations, graphics, or games. But it can also lead to a slow webpage.
The main reason is that Flash requires users to download software before they can view it, which takes time and slows down the page load time.
In addition, some browsers are not compatible with Flash at all, which means that users will not be able to view your website if they don’t have the right browser installed on their computer.
Goodbye to Flash Content
That’s why Google has already said goodbye to Flash and strongly suggested avoiding Flash content. Unfortunately, it is probably one of your most crucial mistakes in the mobile optimization of your website.
10)- More than Expected Traffic
The reason for website slowness can be many, but one of the most common is that the website has been receiving more traffic than expected. This is usually when a site becomes popular and starts ranking in search engine results.
There are many reasons for this issue. One of them is that the server cannot handle all user requests at once, so it needs to wait for one request to finish before it can start working on another.
The solution to Visitor’s Spike
1. Content Delivery Network (CDN)
There are many ways to prevent this, but one is using a content delivery network (CDN). A CDN is a server system that delivers content on behalf of websites and applications.
It works by caching copies of content at various locations worldwide and then sending it back to end-users from whichever location will give them the fastest access.
2. Increase Hosting Bandwidth
The more bandwidth you have, the faster your page speed will be. This is because the content on your site will be downloaded more quickly for visitors to view.
A slow-loading web page can be a nightmare for any site owner. It frustrates the user and makes the site less visible on Google search results. All of this could lead to lower conversion rates and loss of revenue.
Therefore, it is important to understand the main causes of slow web page loading and how one can fix them. Let me summarize some of the most common causes for slow-loading web pages and how to fix them.
1. Choose a Hosting service carefully by comparing their price, quality, speed, bandwidth, reliability, and security.
3. Minimize the number of HTTP requests by combining related files into one file and then minifying it for further reduced size and improved load time.
4. Compress images with a tool such as Photoshop or TinyPNG to reduce their file sizes and improve loading time on your web pages.
5. Use responsive design techniques, so your site loads correctly on all devices, improving loading times on mobile devices.
6. Consider using AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages). AMP is an open-source project that optimizes web pages for faster load times by stripping out non-essential elements and using the AMP format.
7. If you are hosting your site on a shared hosting service, consider upgrading to an additional IP address or virtual private server.
8. Consider using cloud hosting instead of traditional hosting to improve page loading times and lower costs associated with website maintenance.
9. Consider compressing your images after uploading them if they are not already compressed with a tool such as Photoshop or TinyPNG.
10. To improve your site’s performance, consider using a CDN (content delivery network) to reduce latency, page loading time, and bandwidth usage.
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