31 Jul 2018
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3 Easy Ways To Make Small Business Websites Faster
With the ever-increasing rise of mobile devices, it is becoming more important to have a website that loads quickly and efficiently. These load times need to be taken into account across all device types and need to be under 2-3 seconds to be optimal. Whilst, in general, it takes a lot of technical knowledge to speed up a website this article is about giving you some great tips that you can do yourself.
Make Images Smaller
When setting up your website we all know that images can speak a thousand words but they can also add a critical second to your load times. The internet is one place where low-resolution images are king. We are always being bombarded as business owners with needing high res images for print but a website is different.
You see when making a website an image doesn’t need to have huge dimensions and high resolution because when it’s being displayed on a screen it doesn’t matter. Try to make your image smaller in dimension most websites are under 1200 pixels in width. The only exception to the rule is in the case of a slider or full-screen image where you will need to aim for about 2000 pixels in width.
Next, the web looks great in 72 dpi or higher, in saying that though there is really no need to go much above 144 dpi. You see the average computer or mobile device screen doesn’t do much more than that resolution. Every point of resolution or size you save is kb or MB you save from having to be loaded.
Don’t Go Over The Top
There are literally thousands of great ideas floating about online but just because something looks cool doesn’t mean you need to have it. When planning your website design and layout look at each element and ask yourself does it add value to the design and does it help my client find something.
Truth is in most cases you will find many websites have items that do not serve a purpose and are simply taking up valuable load time. Also, don’t forget load time is an every page thing, not just a homepage thing. This means that you need to make sure you are saving load time on every page of your website.
Keep Your Website Up To Date
The final tip here is to keep your website up to date. With most websites using a content management system, there are updates. I am going to speak from a WordPress perspective and describe the basics you can do at home. Be warned though whilst you can do it at home yourself be sure you are confident at doing it as often times things arise that will need a professional to help you fix it.
On a WordPress website at least monthly you should log in and go to the WordPress updates page weekly is even better practice.
When on this page make sure you update WordPress itself if it needs it (this is risky but necessary if you are not confident get yourself a WordPress Care Plan and leave it to a professional).
Secondly, update any plugins that are asking for an update. These plugins updates are important as most successful hacking attempts come via out of date plugin weaknesses.
Finally, update your theme if required. Once again a warning updating a theme can cause things to go missing if the website went built properly or has out of date items. Problems can also happen if your theme itself is poorly coded.
Key Take Aways
Do everything you can to make sure images are not too large.
Don’t go over the top adding items that don’t provide any value to the website or the client.
Make sure things are kept up to date all the time.