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January 2, 2014

Boosting the Speed of Your Site for a Smooth Experience

Photo Credit: Éole Wind

We all know that having a website is not enough to be seen and keep visitors on your site. You can spend large amounts of money to get traffic to your site or even perform conversion tactics to increase the amount of sales and leads; however, if the website is slow to load or to turn pages, your visitors will be gone within seconds.

We live in a fast-paced society. Everyone is on-the-go and wanting to get things fast — the reason fast food restaurants are so popular. If your website is slow to load, your visitors will be gone in a flash in search of one that will provide them with the services, products, or information they desire now. To boost the speed of your site for a smooth experience, first you must understand what makes your website slow. Some of the problems are within your control while others may not be as easy to fix or may be completely out of your control to fix.

The main causes and how to correct the problems are below.

1Step 1 – Defining Slow Hosting 

First, it is important to understand that when you have a website, there is a front end and a server. The front end of your website is what your visitors see and you are in control of all aspects of this portion.

However, the server is controlled by your hosting company and is just as equally to blame in most cases as what you have in your control. Both the front end and the server need a specific amount of time to perform their operations and allow visitors to see your website.

The server can cause your websites to be slow due to poorly written code, unstable network, location, or just not being powerful enough to generate the pages and process the databases quickly.

The three main reasons your hosting company is likely to blame for your website loading slowly are inefficient code, inefficient SQL, or just a slow server period. The only way to ensure that a hosting company optimizes their end is by comparing hosting companies and by reading reviews of their customers. Leading companies will have taken steps to rectify server issues with their hosting provider and will also have reported speedier Web improvements.

2Step 2 – Choosing a Template

The type of website you choose to use will have quite a bit to do with the speed of your site. Too many times, those looking to get their information, products, or services on the Internet, do not know much about the way in which the Internet works and may fall victim to a person or even a company that creates templates, but does really care if the code is clean and smooth or even if the scripting language used will slow down the speed of the site.

You may hear that flash websites are slow and often non-responsive; however, if you obtain templates from a company that specializes in their creation such as the ones found at Dynamic Flash Templates you will actually see a huge difference in the speed of your website.

3Step 3 – Choosing the Best Scripting Language

Behind the scenes of your template and all those scripts that make your website work is the computer scripting language. There are a few different types of scripting that work to get your website to perform the tasks you need to have your visitors enjoy their experience on your website. Today, the most popular and often the best to boost the speed of your website are CSS and HTML. CSS known as Cascading Style Sheets actually define how HTML elements will be displayed to the world.

The easiest way to explain how CSS makes your website speed increase is that all the information on how the scripting will be displayed such as font, color of font, and other appearance aspects of your website are located in one place: the CSS file.

This makes finding and processing the information both quicker and more efficient, thus speeding up your website.

4Step 4 – Optimizing images

If you consider a puzzle and all the little intricate pieces that can be involved, you may be able to get a clearer picture of why optimizing images for the Web is so important. Heavy, large images that are not optimized take up large amounts of space on the server, use more bandwidth to process the file, drive up the cost of hosting due to the amount of resources being used, and will definitely slow down your website so much that your visitors may have a negative experience.

Step 5 – Cutting Down on the Scripts

We all enjoy trying new things and giving our visitors as much to do as possible on our website. The problem is, if you have too many scripts running, it will slow down your website just as much as large images, if not more.

Remember, everything has to be read and then placed in front of your visitors. You may have banner ads, news feeds, chat, videos and other items all going and loading at the same time. Visiting websites where you have to sit and wait for an ad to appear to be able to go down the page to read an article is often a waste of time for some and they will find the information they need on a different website. Many news websites have this issue due to the large number of scripts they are running in the background, such as adding cookies to visitors’ computers.

5Conclusion

When putting your business online, it is important to ensure you are not just stuffing keywords to get attention; but that you are building a website that your visitors will enjoy browsing. In the end, this will do more good than anything else you can do to get visitors to become loyal fans. By speeding up your website, you will actually be improving their experience and increasing their desire to visit more often.


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Nikhil Jain has almost a decade's worth of experience in the Internet marketing industry. When he is not dabbling in SEO, media-buying and other forms of marketing, Nikhil finds pleasure in taking photographs of clouds, and ponders why he refers to himself in the third person. You can also connect with him at Google+ and Twitter.

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