It has never been so important to get your website as fast as possible

There are not only search engines such as Google to consider, think more about visitors that want to browse around and give them a great user experience.

Where do you start?
Let’s look at some key points you can move on straightaway.

Images
Everyone likes to look at images on websites, and images can add serious latency to the website, so you should think about two things:

Compress your photos
You can reduce your image file sizes by up to 90% by running them through an image compressor such as [compress jpg]

Resize your photos
Normally images and photos are huge, often they are the size of a house and obviously monitors, tablets and smartphones are not; therefore you can safely resize these down to reduce filesize

Hosting
This is where your website is physically hosted if you are a UK based company and the majority of your visitors are from the UK then it makes sense to use a hosting company based in the UK. This means your website will load a lot faster due to location alone.

Beware cheap hosting companies, you get what you pay for, but you should budget around £10-£15 per month for reliable, fast hosting.

Using Wordpress?
It is so tempting to go ahead and install lots of interesting plugins; however, you should be aware that this can add serious bloat to your website, the more plugins you need to load the slower your website will go. If you can go ahead and write your plugins with the bare necessities required to operate, if you are not skilled enough to write a plugin, you can reach out to a web design agency like Pebble who employ in-house developers that specialise in this.

Combine and Minify Your Scripts
Most websites use multiple javascript files (.js) and stylesheets (.css). Think about combining these into single files, so they don’t all have to be loaded individually. Doing this will enable you to get these cached to make your website even faster. Again, if you think this may be a little too advanced then reach out to us at Pebble.

Using video on your website?
Videos and rich media usage have grown massively over the last few years with more and more websites harnessing this. If you are self-hosting these videos, then it may be worth thinking about dropping these on YouTube or Vimeo who have the CDN infrastructure to deliver this content to your visitors’ browser without affecting your own website load time.

These items above are a great start to making your website faster, in future posts, we will talk about additional improvements that can be made using content distribution networks.

How to test how your fast your website is...
There are a couple of tools that you will find useful;

Pingdom - https://tools.pingdom.com
GT Metrix - https://gtmetrix.com

If this is all a bit too technical and you have an interest in making your website go that bit faster you can speak to Pebble, the best route to contact us is by telephone on 01733 902070 or by emailing us using our contact form.