Most people overlook the importance of how fast their website loads. Probably the single biggest reason is because it’s such a technical thing. Don’t worry about that, I’m going to give you a few tips to get you started on the right path.
Your website’s loading speed affects many things. It affects your search engine rankings, how long your visitors will look at your site and how well you site converts.
We all know how frustrating it can be waiting for a web page to load. But, what many people may not know is just how big of a difference a few seconds can make not just to their frustration level but to their bottom line.
Unfortunately, website visitors tend to care more about speed than all the bells and whistles we want to add to our websites. Additionally, page loading time is becoming a more important factor when it comes to search engine rankings.
Because of today’s desire for instant gratification visitor’s patience for websites to load his decreasingly every year.
In 1999 most people would wait 8 seconds for a web page to load, I think we all remember how painful that was.
But today they will only wait 2 seconds, if it’s not loaded by then they’ll click on the “X” and go on to the next website.
Did you know 25% of all visitors will leave a website if it takes more than 4 seconds to load? So, if your website is slow to load, you can lose most of your visitors.
In addition to that, every second that it takes your webpage to load you start losing customers, you have lower conversion rates, you get less page views and your customers are not as satisfied.
Let that sink in. Just a single second load time drastically affects your business!
So the question is how do we speed up your website? The answer can be quite complicated, but, I’m going to give you some tips when you start out that will help.
What Hosting Company Should I Choose?
First is hosting, you have got to choose a good hosting platform. There are many hosting companies out there they are not all created equal.
Your first decision will be, do I need shared hosting or dedicated hosting? If you have the money I would strongly suggest dedicated hosting. What this means is, you are the only one using that hosting space.
The other option is shared hosting. With a shared hosting account you’re sharing hosting with others on the same server. Because of this your site will run slower and you can be penalized for what somebody else does.
Over the years I’ve changed hosting companies many times. My current favorite is A2 hosting, you can click here to learn more about A2 hosting.
I did not want to make this a review on hosting companies but because it plays such a huge roll in website speed I want to let you know one of the other hosting company I use.
The second company I use is WPEngine. Great hosting company with outstanding customer service. If you want more information on WPEngine go to How Site Speed Affects Your Business
Is WordPress The Best Option?
In a word, YES, for the vast majority of marketers. I build all of our sites using WordPress.
WordPress has improved so much over the years. Now many of the things that need to be considered for a fast website are built into WordPress.
If not, there’s a plug-in out there that will solve all your problems.
A Quick Note On Plugins and Themes
There are a gazillion and one plugins and themes out there, some are free while others cost money. It’s not the intent of this article to cover all those, will be done in another article, but to give you a starting point.
If you have a few dollars to spend I suggest getting the Divi theme. This theme has been tweaked and tested, it runs like a scalded ape. Most of the things you need to improve in order to speed up a website have been built in to reduce the need for additional plugins
To find out more about the Divi theme you can click here.