How to speed up your website by 50%
Google hates websites that takes over 200 ms to load. The end result? A huge drop in your page rank and visitors abandoning your websites.
How to speed up your website?
If you notice website slowness, act quickly before Google acts. Here’s our tried-and-tested 10 point checklist to speed up your website in no time.
How website speed can impact you
You don’t need to do too much of a data analysis to figure out why your website speed is important.
- Slow websites lead to customer complaints
- Website slowness affect your business credibility
- New visitors are more likely to abandon slow sites
- Google reduces your page ranking if your site is slow
- You end up losing business due to your slow website
Even then, many website owners overlook this aspect and stay complacent with their website performance.
If you are waiting for your customers to complain about website slowness to take an action, it can be too late.
What you should look for
Websites such as Pingdom provides you statistics regarding your website page speed from different locations around the world.
While the best page load speed is around 3 seconds, it can vary slightly based on the content and code in your site. Anything more than 20 seconds should be a matter of concern.
If you have mobile users accessing your website, even a load time of around 10 seconds may not be affordable for your business.
How to speed up your website
A complete speed up solution for website is determined based on the applications running in it, the web server that runs it and the traffic that comes to it.
With our comprehensive 10 point checklist, we are able to speed up websites for our customers and bring down the load time to less than 10 ms.
1. Enable caching
Caching helps to speed up your website loading speed by over 40 ms, by storing frequently accessed pages in the cache instead of fetching it from the hard disk.
By enabling appropriate caching methods, we have been able to speed up websites by over 60%. The method for caching is determined after analyzing the application and the web server used.
This include using cache plugins for applications such as WordPress, or enabling server-wide caching techniques such as Redis, Memcached or FastCGI caching.
2. Reduce the DNS lookup time
A DNS lookup is the basic step in website loading. A slow DNS server can increase the turn around time in resolving a website, causing it to load very slow.
The first stage in speeding up a website is reducing this DNS lookup speed. We configure fast DNS servers for our customers and have been able to speed up DNS lookups by over 30 ms.
3. Minimize HTTP requests
To trim down your site’s critical render path, we perform actions such as combining the CSS and JS files, deferring image loads, using inline and small CSS files to reduce additional calls, etc.
Another way to minimize render path is combining the background images in website into sprites, so that a visitor’s browser has to request only one image when trying to load the website.
4. Use HTTP/2 protocol
HTTP/2 protocol has come up with capabilities such as header compression, multiplexing and request prioritisation, which makes it very efficient in delivering website content very fast.
The Server Push feature of HTTP/2 allows servers to respond with a website’s full contents, in addition to the information that is already available in the browser cache.
By enabling HTTP/2 in our customers’ web servers, we have been able to reduce overhead and improve website speed with each browser request and server response.
5. Configure asynchronous loading
By configuring the scripts to load files asynchronously, we are able to further speed up the web pages because the browser can continue loading all elements on the page at the same time.
6. Database table and query optimization
Most website applications and CMS rely much on databases. From table size to complex queries and joins, database performance can be affected by too many factors.
When we audit a website, we also analyze the database server performance, the scope for query optimization and defragmenting the database tables.
By tweaking the database server by enabling cache where relevant, adjusting the various parameters, limiting the connections, etc., we further speed up websites.
7. Optimize your application server
In addition to the underlying webservers, many websites make use of Application servers such as Tomcat or programming interfaces such as PHP and its related processors.
A very crucial decision making factor to speed up your website, is the choice of these underlying server software. By switching to a fast application service or processor, we are able to achieve tremendous speed for websites.
For instance, switching from PHP 5.x to PHP 7 often gives a performance boost by handling over 80 percent additional requests per second.
8. Use a fast web server or proxy server
The web server is the core backbone of any website. A poor performing and unreliable web server can adversely impact your website speed.
Every web server – Apache, NginX, IIS, etc. – have the scope to be tweaked and optimised to deliver their best performance. We design the best the web server architecture for websites based on their features and performance.
For instance, NginX gives better performance over Apache to serve static pages. We also configure proxy servers with Apache and NginX to get the best solution with both their benefits.
9. Enable file compression
The speed of your website is inversely proportional to the size of the files in it. For faster loading, the website files should be smaller, but without affecting the website functionality.
Compressing the website files is a way to reduce their size and improve the load times. Gzip is a commonly configured compression methodology that we implement to reduce page load speed by about 60%.
10. Audit the plugins and addons
Plugins and themes and Addon modules are very helpful for website owners to add more functionalities to their site. But adding plugins unnecessarily can lead to site slowness.
We audit the different plugins and addons in each website and disable or replace the ones that are detrimental to website speed. This helps to make the sites load faster.
Achieving a high speed website for your business can be challenging at times. But it’s never a herculean task, if you have an efficient website support team who can audit your site and give you the right insights. To resolve your queries regarding how to speed up your website, we’d be happy to talk to you.