Page Speed Matters for Content: Boost Yours with these 4 Steps

Featuring compelling content on your web pages is probably your main goal, but don’t forget that it’s also important to get it to load in users’ browsers with as little waiting time as possible. The energy you spend crafting a top-notch website will go to waste if unacceptable page load speeds send your audience clicking elsewhere in a hurry. Page speed is thus a key component of delivering an enjoyable user experience. Google approves of quickly loading websites, and website speed has been one of the search firm’s ranking factors since 2010.

Quantifying the Impact of Page Speed

It’s just common sense that people prefer to get what they’re looking for as soon as possible, but really, how much of a difference could a second or two make? Well, on the internet, even minor delays turn out to matter a great deal. Mozilla, the maker of the popular Firefox web browser, found that after cutting the average load time of its pages by 2.2 seconds, downloads increased by 15.4 percent. Customer analytics company Kissmetrics says that 40 percent of prospective shoppers will leave a website that takes longer than three seconds to load. Much as in top-level sprinting, several seconds too long is all it takes to drop hopelessly behind your competitors.

Boost Your Page Speed

If all this talk about the value of fast website speed has you pondering a complete overhaul of your site or beefing up your hosting solution, don’t get ahead of yourself. There are a number of ways to speed up your website that are cheap, quick and nearly hassle-free:

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1. Optimize Your Images

Images that are too large can really degrade your website performance. For most JPGs, you can reduce size and quality without too great an impact on clarity and detail. PNG images are massive by comparison and should only be used sparingly for logos, professionally designed graphics and other high-value resources. Try out the Kraken.io website, or download FileOptimizer for Windows if you seek help in reducing your image sizes.

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2. Enable Compression

Compress your HTML, JavaScript and CSS files so that they’ll take up less bandwidth while traveling through the ether. Using the Deflate or Gzip algorithms, you can cut the size of your files by half or even more, getting them to your users’ machines that much faster. In most cases, turning compression on is a simple, server-side option. Talk to your web administrator or hosting provider for all the details.

3. Leverage Browser Caching

Making your web pages cacheable won’t affect speeds for newcomers to your site, but it will make their subsequent visits speedier. Once your cached content loads, it will remain on your readers’ computers so that the next time they wish to view your site, they won’t have to grab it all again through the internet. Now you’ll be able to instill in your visitors the habit of frequently browsing to your site because they won’t have to wait around, re-downloading content they’ve already seen. There are various methods for handling caching, and you or your web hosting firm can alter them in your server configuration files.

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4. Minify Your Code

Your code was hopefully written for ease of understanding and editing. The problem is that all the whitespaces and comments that are vital to code maintenance serve no functional purpose for web browsers. By all means, keep your bulky, original files around for internal use, but when serving them to website guests, use minified versions that have all the extra baggage taken out. The Online JavaScript/CSS/HTML Compressor is a handy, multifunctional minifier that will reduce your files to but a fraction of their previous sizes.

Without engaging in a complete reconstruction of your pages, you can nevertheless take small measures to make them show up on viewers’ screens more rapidly. Free online tools, like GTmetrix and Google’s PageSpeed Insights, will identify further areas for improving your page speed. Lower your bounce rate, increase conversions and enhance the satisfaction of your users by serving them engrossing content with less lag.

Grant Maddox

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Grant Maddox enjoys writing product descriptions, reviews, articles, and blog posts. He is especially conversant in poker and other gambling games and can contribute successfully to strategy articles and news items regarding such games. Grant can write compelling content while observing the rules of English grammar.

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0 thoughts on “Page Speed Matters for Content: Boost Yours with these 4 Ste …”

  • Avatar

    Good pointers! Slow pages are less of a problem now than they used to be, but if something doesn’t come up in a second or so and I’m not invested, you can bet I’m not going to bother to read it.

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      I’m willing to give it a few seconds, but after 10 seconds or so, I get frustrated. A lot of millennials don’t remember dial-up, and that was the era of one to two-minute page loads. A few seconds just doesn’t seem to be much to me.

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        Ah, dial up. I remember it well. Such fun times, choosing between the phone and the internet.

        Maybe my dial up internet beginnings are why I now pay for 100 mbps. So worth the price.

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      I think I’m overly nice. When I read that 40% leave for another site if it takes longer than 3 seconds to load, I was in shock. Maybe I should be like the 40% who just move on.

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    This seems so obvious yet it is something that I think many wouldn’t consider. Thank you for practical tips and solutions. 2.2 second on Firefox stats was really interesting! Shows how much of a difference it truely can make.

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    These are the tips that I have completely forgotten about since focusing on content creation and not website design. It seems once dial-up was replaced with wi-fi, things got better, but it’s great to be reminded of this once again.

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      I agree ! I think it is something to consider especially in regards to consumer demand. Although wi-fi has almost made these necessities now obsolete, it is still important when investing in cleaning up around your web pages. Just a small tool to refine things that much more.

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    Today’s web users are used to having pages load very quickly. They will bounce away if a page takes too long to load. It’s surprising that there are still a few e-commerce sites and a few news sites that are rather slow.

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      When a site runs slow, I assume its credibility right then and there–I duck and run ! Quick loading pages should remain as one of the utmost important variables when creating an online platform for consumers.

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      Yeah, there’s a lot that can be done to make images less of a burden on site speed. From increasing compression settings to reducing resolution and serving smaller images to devices with smaller screens, there’s plenty to play around with in this area.

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      It’s true that larger images sometimes offer better image quality, but beyond a certain point, the gains level off. As a trivial example, any image wider than the width of the user’s display will have to be scaled down to fit the screen, so those extra pixels don’t add anything.

      People often won’t notice the differences in compressed JPGs versus bulky original images because the JPEG standard is designed to discard tiny details that most people won’t miss. Anyway, you can usually select the compression ratio for JPG to achieve the right balance between file size and image quality.

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    This was good stuff to know. I’m not a very technical person. I can’t understand everything that you’re talking about, but I didn’t know all of that about JPG and PNG images. I always use JPG no matter what. There’s no reason for that in particular, that’s just always what I select. I’ll look at PNG if I ever need to use a large image to dominate a website.

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    Nice post, Grant. I just wanted to add that content delivery networks can also greatly help load times, although they have downsides.

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    I had never heard of enabling compression or minifying code before reading this, so I wanted to say a quick thanks for the information. I’ll have to take a look at applying them to my websites, I’m sure my site visitors would appreciate it.

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    Agreed, it’s a good strategy to make your site’s pages cacheable. I actually have friends in outlying rural areas who still have dial-up internet, and caching makes a big difference.

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    carolstephens61 says:

    I found this article to be quite helpful and it gave me more knowledge about the differences between jpeg and png images.

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    I too am not very technical, so this information will certainly prove helpful to me in the future when considering creating my own webpage. Thanks for the insight !

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