Friday, 7 October 2011

Importance of fast loading website

We live in a time, where time is of an essence, we want everything at the end of our figure tips, whether we are doing research online, or shopping online, or even just browsing and networking we get easily frustrated when the browser or computer starts to go slow.

As a website owner can you imagine how frustrated your visitors would get when the page that they are trying to access is taking forever to load, for sure I know I would probably leave the site and try another site. From a business point of view, they have just lost a visitor, and potently a customer. Which if this keeps happening to most of their visitors, it will affect the bottom line.

Overall to meet visitors demands and to ensure that our visitors can view our site we need to ensure that our website loads smoothly and quickly without any delay, this will keep our visitors happy.

It doesn't stop there!


By having a fantastic singing and dancing website for your visitors is not enough, also ensuring that your customers do not get frustrated will not solve the full problem, it's also important to keep in the good books of search engines, as establishing a website, you ideally want to be found in search results easily. When you're website does not load fast, it will also have an impact on your rankings in search results.

By ensuring that your website loads up in a good speed, it will add benefit to your SEO campaign. Now having a fast loading website is not the only factor that search engines look at, this is one of the many 200+ factors which search engines look at when ranking website.

As speed of the website will please not just your visitors, but also benefit you in your search engines rankings why not fix it in the early stage of when launching your website.

How to ensure that your website will load quickly as a website owner.


As a business owner / website owner, do not really truly on your designer and developers to ensure that your website will load quickly. Most of good designers and developers will take this into consideration anyway when carrying out your project, but sometimes they may also need to be reminded at times. Hey they are all humans - right. So just mention it to them when you speak about your brief.

When designing your website, we all want our website to look good visually and also to function properly. I would advise not to put too much emphasis on the design and graphical elements of the website, as all these contribute towards the load of your site. Yes make it look good, with good colour shames and the overall structure and positing, which the designer will assist you in carrying out. At times you have to put your trust into the designer or design firm, as they want the best for your project as it contributes towards their portfolio, so naturally it would be in the interest of the designer and design firm to ensure that your project is a success.

When working with images for your website whether its through the design of the theme or through the CMS section of your website, always ensure that size of your images are not too large, again these contribute towards the load and speed of your website, look for images that are low resolution, and not large in size, if you do have large images, get your designer to work with them so that they do not take up to much time to load.

Technical aspects to make your site load fast


As part of making your website load faster, you and your development team can work together to come up with a perfect solution. Some of the points below maybe more reclines towards the developer and some will you will need to take responsibility as a website owner.

Optimise images: As we have already mentioned above the importance of having your website images optimised so that it loads quicker. A good format to use as images GIF images, as they generally load quicker.

Good Hosting provider: Depending on where your target audience is, it's best to have a web hosting service near them, If your targeting visitors in UK, and you host your website on servers in America, this will have an impact on your speed that your UK visitors notice when loading up your site. If your website is offering products worldwide, and you get allot of traffic, again large amount of traffics also solves down your server which again will impact your page speed.

The best way to overcome this scenario is first of all have a hosting provider that is local to you and your customers, secondly look at Cloud hosting and Content Delivery network, which will boost up the speed of your website.

Developers

CSS files: Keep your CSS files small, and not too large, this can be easily achieved for a small website, but if you're running a large website with lots of graphical options I would recommend to keep an eye on it and remove unnecessary coding that you are not using.

Optimised database: Your database can get overloaded with various entries, and may just need a good clean, many open source CMS platforms come with extensions and plug-in that helps keep your database clean and optimised ensuring it loads quickly. As a developer keep the database that you are working on optimised.

Scripts: Keep the use of scripts such as java and others to a minimum, as again when your page is loading up, the browser has to also load up these scripts so that your website can function properly.

All in all from designer, developer and Website owners point of view, in all circumstances having a website that load quickly will benefit all.

 Image by SXC


 

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