What is the average time a user waits for a site to load?
Less than you imagine. One of the most important problems we have as bloggers, is the speed of our site. Because who really wants to wait for a slow site to load? And since people don’t like waiting, Google ranks slow-loading sites more difficult.
But then no one wants to visit a bland site. Just text; no images, no videos… no fun. And images and videos are some of the main reasons that sites load slowly.
So I’ve been wondering lately about how to increase the website speed of my blog. Here are the ways I found!
1. Resize Images
First of all, images. When you created your blog, you probably didn’t think about the size of your images. Don’t worry. Pretty much, no one does unless they have experience with websites. Since I didn’t have experience when I started, my images were pretty large when I started.
So, let’s say you take a photo with your phone and you want to put it in a review. Ok, so far. But your mobile camera is what? 10MP? The image size will be about 3800×2500. No one will see this image in these dimensions. That’s why there’s no reason to upload the image in this size. A larger image will only take up more space and it will take longer to load.
What To Do:
Check out the image size you want to have on your blog and then, resize your image to these dimensions. Keep the aspect ratio of the image so that it won’t be distorted. More tools will help you with this. Usually, it’s enabled by default.
2. Compress Images
Now, even if your images are in the correct size, they are probably not compressed. So they are not as small as they can be.
You can use again the same tool to compress your images. Based on how high-quality you want them to be, you’ll have to make a decision. Speed vs High-quality.
As always, the answer is somewhere in between. I can’t tell you how much to compress them. What I can advice you is to see for yourself how the image looks before you use it on your blog. If you use Resizeimage.net, there’s an option View Image so you can see the image before downloading it.
If you use another tool, save the image and see how it looks. If you like it, use it. Otherwise, just try again. After a while, you’ll start judging easier how much to compress an image.
3. Lazy Loading
As I said above, images and videos are the main reasons sites are slow. But you see, one of the problems is that when you go to a site, you have to wait for the whole page to load before you see it.
Lazy loading is a way to get around this. You get first the data that are “above the fold”, a.k.a. what you can see without scrolling down. Then the images, the videos and sometimes the comments, too, load as you read. This way, when someone comes to your site, they get the first part of the page fast so that they can read it. Then, as they scroll, there is time for everything else to load without annoying your readers with delays.
A good plugin I can recommend is Lazy Load by WP Rocket.
4. Reduce Your Plugins
The number of plugins you have on your site affects your site speed a lot. If you have 10 or more, for example, think about deleting some. Do you really need all of them?
And any plugins you deactivate, make sure to delete them from your site so that they don’t take up space.
If you believe that you need all your plugins, maybe it’s time to change your theme to something that has more features.
5. Good Theme
Speaking of themes, a theme can increase or ruin your site speed. So, if you have all the rest done and your site is still very slow, then maybe it’s your theme, after all. Check out some reviews for your theme; maybe it’s not fast enough. And do this for every theme before you get it. Check out how often it gets updated, how fast it is and if it’s responsive – almost everything is now, but check it out to be sure.
If you’re looking for recommendations, some themes I love are the ones from StudioPress. They are Genesis themes. Or if you’re looking for a free one, GeneratePress is a good one.
6. Good Hosting
Even if you do everything right, there’s still something that you can’t control directly. What your hosting does with your site. Here’s the thing: Usually, cheap hosting is cheap because it’s also not good. They have a lot of sites cramped in the same server and your site speed tanks.
If your blog starts to grow, you may want to think about hosting it somewhere else. You don’t have to rush your decision. Take the time to find a good one. I host my site in the same place I got my training as an affiliate marketer. If you’re thinking about changing hosting and taking courses on internet marketing, check it out.
Test Your Website Speed
Let’s see now, a couple of ways to check your website speed:
Google PageSpeed Insights
Put in the URL of the page you want to check and click Analyse. After analysing the page, you’ll get the results and some suggestions to increase your site speed. You can use them to improve your speed.
You get the results on both Desktop and Mobile devices. Check out how fast your site is on both devices. Mobile searches are increasing every day and now, they’ve become an important factor, even for ranking son desktop…
Test My Site
You can check the mobile speed of your site with Test My Site. If you have a problem using the tool, try it in incognito mode. After the testing, you can ask for a report with the results. You can use it to see what slows down your site and fix it.
These are some easy ways to make your site load faster. I used them on my site and the speed improved, so I hope they work well for you, too! Check your site speed as soon as possible to fix what needs to be fixed.
Let me know what you think about site speed. How much do YOU wait for a site to load?
If you have any questions, I’d be happy to answer! Any suggestions are always welcome, so tell me about topics you’d like me to write, and if you liked this, check out more tips for bloggers.
See you next time!