Speed optimization

Speed optimisation of your website is important for both your visibility on Google and your conversion rate. In this article, you'll find some simple tips and tricks on how to speed-optimize your website.

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What is speed optimisation?

The work to optimize the loading time is called speed optimization.

The time it takes to load your website matters a lot, not just to Google's positioning of the website, but also for the behaviour of users on the website. According to a study last year, 53 % of all mobile users leave a website if the loading time is more than 3 seconds. If you don't give them what they want immediately, they will find another website.

Speed optimisation can work wonders if you already have a website that has a slow load time. As internet speeds have become faster over the years, internet users have come to expect all websites to load quickly. If the loading speed is too slow they will drop out and at the same time the ranking of the website on the search results will drop.

An example of a company that only got positive results after optimising the speed of their website is the large US retail chain and webshop Walmart. A few years ago, Walmart experimented with improving the loading time of their website. The result was that for every second they reduced load time, conversion rates improved by up to 2 %, and for every 100 milliseconds of improvement, they saw up to 1 % increase in revenue!

What does speed optimisation do for your website?

In addition to retaining users on the site, you will also experience a number of other benefits.

  • Better sales. If your website sells products to customers, a fast loading speed makes your website much more attractive to shop on. This also means that your website already has a good and simple structure that is easy for customers to navigate.
  • Greater involvement of users. Traffic will be much higher and users also tend to stay on a website for longer if the loading time is fast combined with a simple and good website setup.

Remember to speed-optimize the mobile version of your website

Many users use their mobile phones to surf the web, and it is important to keep this in mind when optimising the speed of your website. There is a difference in how you speed optimise the mobile version of your website as opposed to the desktop version. Additionally, we recommend that you prioritize both optimizations, as many users already use their mobile to visit websites.

If you want to know more about how to check the speed of mobiles and desktops, we recommend that you read our article on Google PageSpeed Insights, as this program can give you insight into both.

How to get a fast website

We recommend that you use Google PageSpeed Insights and Pingdom Website Speed Test to analyse the load time of your website. Remember to choose a location near you when using the latter. Both tools are free and give you concrete tips on how to increase the speed of your website. Optimally, load times should be below 500 ms, but for many websites this is hardly a realistic target.

Be sure to check different subpages on your website, as loading times may vary depending on the content. For example, test the front page, a category page and a product page. Also be aware that the score given to your website by the tools is not an indication of the actual loading time, but an indication of some pre-established criteria of how fast your website is.

Among the most effective means of speed optimisation are:

  • Image compression. Make sure that the images on your website are not larger (length x width) than you actually need. You can often also compress the image files, reducing the file size up to 50 % or more, without compromising image quality. Automated compression tools are available for most CMS systems, including Kraken.io. You can also use a more manual tool such as TinyPNG.
  • File compression. As far as possible, collect all JavaScript and CSS code in one file each to minimize the number of requests to the web server. Also make sure that undermine files to reduce the file size (remember to save the original file in case you need to edit it later). You can minify files manually using JavaScript Minifierand CSS Minifier, or you can use other more automated solutions.
  • Caching ring. When a user visits your website, the browser automatically saves the website's static files so they are not reloaded the next time the user visits the website. In addition, you can set up caching ring on the website, so that not only static files but the whole (or parts of) the website are cached. Be aware that in this case users will not always see new changes to the website unless you first clear the cache.

If you have a multinational website that caters to users in different countries far apart, you should make use of a Content Delivery Network (CDN) such as Cloudflare. And CDN in simple terms, spreads the website's files out on servers all over the world, so that the website can be loaded quickly by the user, wherever the user is located.

Frequently asked questions about speed optimisation

What is speed optimisation?

Speed optimisation is the process of improving the loading time of a website.

Why is speed optimisation important?

Speed optimisation is important because it has a direct effect on your position in Google search results. The longer the load time of your website, the more likely users are to bounce off your website.

What is an optimal loading time?

The ideal loading time is between 2-3 seconds. Internet users expect websites to load quickly as we have got better internet speeds over the years, so if load times are slower than that, users are likely to drop out.

What elements affect the speed of my website?

There may be several elements on your website that can have a negative impact on the speed of your website. It can be anything from its HTML code, large images, videos or unnecessary text boxes.

Listen to "Faster server and greater reach globally with CDN" on Spreaker.

Field compressed

Mark Molgaard

Partner & Senior SEO Specialist

Se forfatter

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Do you need help with search engine optimisation (SEO), or are you considering whether it makes sense for your business to focus on SEO? Contact Henning Madsen for a no-obligation discussion about your SEO project.

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