Each time someone visits your website, that’s a good thing. You never know when a visitor will become a lead, and ultimately become a paying customer.
What’s not so good? The fact you have exactly three seconds to make your impression.
That’s how long on average people are willing to wait for your site to load (it’s six seconds for mobile websites).
So a slow-loading site can mean a loss of business along with the loss of patience. Your speed has a direct impact on your conversion rates.
Even Google will become impatient. It has announced that there will be a penalty for slow-loading sites. So as your loading speed plunges, so will your Google ranking, which can have a damaging effect on your bottom line.
The reasons for a slow site need to be uncovered, like the ones for bad content, so you can sharpen your competitive edge to keep and convert traffic.
You have an image problem
No, this has nothing to do with the public perception of your small business.
Let’s go back the early days of dial-up Internet. Back then, it took forever to load a large image.
With high speed now the norm, everything loads faster, but unnecessarily large photos can still take a toll and make a loading-speed difference that loses business.
So your images should be:
- Adequately sized. Why use bandwidth-hogging, print-quality pictures, for example, when lean web resolution will do?
- In the right file format. JPEGs, for example, are generally leaner than .png or .gif image formats.
Imagine putting a riding lawnmower engine inside a Porsche body.
No matter how nice the car looks, it’s just won’t get anywhere quickly.
The same applies to your small business website. No matter how well you’ve built your site, no matter how appealing it looks, if it is housed on a slow server, it will load slowly.
Poor server performance is the fault of your web host. If you have a substandard hosting plan, you are probably sharing a server with a lot of other businesses (maybe even your top competitors) with the consequent traffic jams and slowdowns.
Another issue may be the server’s location. Think about it:
- Your business is located in Oakville.
- Your customers come from Oakville, Milton, Burlington, and other surrounding areas.
- You’re active in your local community.
So why on earth is your server located in, say, Australia?
Although we live in a high-speed world, the time it takes data to travel across the ocean (the distance between Sydney, Australia and Oakville, Ontario is 15,532 kms) can take a toll on loading speed.
Too many elements
Slowdowns happen not only because you have large image and multimedia files, but also because you have too many page elements.
Every small element, whether it’s…
- Social sharing file.
- CSS file.
- Company logo.
- Anything else.
….requires a separate file request.
So let’s do some math:
- A webpage with 75 elements.
- 100 visitors are on that page at the same time.
- That’s 7,500 file requests all at once (75 x 100 = 7,500).
With numbers like that, server performance and site speed will suffer.
Similarly, in WordPress, if you are running a lot of plug-ins, each one has its own file to load, which can add up to a staggering weight if you aren’t careful. You need to ask yourself what plug-ins are essential.
Unnecessary page redirects
If you’re on the highway and get redirected to an alternate route, then your journey is going to take more time.
In the same vein, if you do a page redirect unnecessarily, then you wind up wasting valuable time.
Other reasons for slow-loading pages
There are more speed traps for your site than we can list here, and they’re all technical in nature. Some of the chief ones include:
- Poorly handled heavy traffic.
- Code density.
- Not caching your site.
- An outdated CMS.
- Social media scripts.
- Excessive use of ads.
- 404 errors.
- Big background files.
- Music played during loading.
Tired of your slow website? Have WEB ROI speed it up quickly for you
If you want to learn how to speed up your website and keep it purring along, contact WEB ROI today for your FREE consultation.
We will, of course, respond to all your questions quickly, and we can tell you what you need to remove from your site to make it more effective.