Why Is My Business Website Loading Slowly?
An often overlooked component of a successful website is your website speed. You could have the most beautifully designed website with fantastic content but if it loads slowly or won’t load at all that won’t matter.
Website speed affects a variety of metrics including your site’s visibility and conversion rates.
Optimizing website speed is just as important as design and content, but how do you do that?
As a web design team, we know all about successful websites, including optimizing website speed. The good news is there are a variety of easy ways you can assess how your website speed is measuring up, and be sure it is optimized for the best results.
In this post, we will share more about the importance of website speed, and address the top five reasons why your website may be running slow. Let’s take a look!
The Importance of Website Speed
It is a fact that website users expect websites to be fast. Most website visitors have very little patience for slow-loading websites. This negatively impacts the experience for anyone who visits your website.
A poor user experience has been found to decrease conversion rates and increase page abandonment and bounce rates. Studies show that an additional two seconds of loading time can increase your site’s bounce rate by 103%. Plus, just 100 milliseconds of extra loading time can cause a 7% drop in conversion rates.
Not only does website speed affect the user experience and whether they convert to customers but it will affect whether or not they can find your website in the first place. Website speed is now a Google ranking factor. This means the slower your site is the lower it will show up on search engine results.
You can run load time tests to see how long your users are waiting and then get to work on decreasing those numbers.
Why is My Website Slow?
If you find your website is running slowly this could be for various reasons, today we will look at the top 5 culprits of slow website speeds.
Reason 1: Poor Hosting Services
Before your website can even be online, you will select a website host. You will find you have many options when it comes to hosting services. Your options will vary from free service providers to upgraded, more expensive plans.
More often than not a free website hosting service or a cheap shared hosting service isn’t going to give you optimum website speeds.
If you suspect your slow website is due to poor hosting services you have a few solutions. You can research and find a high-quality managed service provider. Be sure to choose a hosting solution that will guarantee availability, security, and performance. Website hosts with 24/7 support will also be crucial for the best user experience.
Reason 2: Lack of a caching layer.
First, what is caching? Caching is the process of storing a copy of your website files in a place called a web cache.
Without caching, the client’s browser needs to request your website’s assets (HTML, CSS, JS) from your origin server every time instead of accessing them from a local or intermediary cache. This lack of caching layers might lead to slower response times as servers have a limit on the number of requests they can handle simultaneously. After that limit is reached, every request goes into a queue, resulting in longer load times.
To fix this, you can manage your website’s caching policy manually through your website’s server configuration. There are also caching plugins that can automate the caching process.
Reason 3: You are not using a content delivery network (CDN).
Network latency is a common issue for websites that don’t use a CDN. It occurs when the physical distance between the user and the origin server is too big. A CDN consists of a number of servers distributed in different locations worldwide. Their main job is to shorten the physical distance by serving the content from the nearest server to the user.
As a result, your website will load faster. Websites that attract visitors from all over the
The world massively benefits from using a CDN.
Reason 4: Un-optimized images.
The images on your website likely are taking up a huge percentage of all the bytes on your website. That means if these images are not optimized, most of your website isn’t optimized which will result in a slower website.
Different optimization techniques such as image compressions, and using the right image format can reduce image file size and allow browsers to download faster.
Reason 5: Your site’s code is too heavy.
The more code that has to be executed on the server or browser, the longer it takes for your website to load. This, in turn, negatively affects your site’s actual and perceived performance. Code minification and compression can be effective to increase website speeds.
Website Optimization Support
Slow websites can be detrimental to the success and effectiveness of your website. This is one of the many reasons why working with an experienced and trusted web development team is crucial. At Torch, we not only help our clients design beautiful websites with excellent content but we do the work of making sure they are running smoothly, and updated on a regular basis.
If you are looking to optimize your website, contact our team today.