From my previous experience working in retail management, I found the complaint that upset customers the most was waiting in line at the checkout for too long. As a customer, there is nothing worse than standing there spending your valuable time waiting for someone to be “ready” to take your money. For me, grocery shopping tops the list of things I hate doing on my days off. I can’t wait to get out of the store, and when someone prolongs that even more while I helplessly stand there waiting, my patience starts to wear and my anxiety increases. Very few frustrated customers actually take THEIR time to complain, so if you are having this problem, you were losing these customers and didn’t know it (except in the sales results)! Companies spend an incredible amount of money on making sure they can improve that checkout experience for their customers.
And….How does this relate to my website?
That same mentality that a shopper uses while shopping at a physical store is used when they visit your website. And there is virtually zero chance they are going to tell you that they didn’t stay on your website because it was slow to load. As a small business owner managing your own website, perhaps through a platform such as WordPress, there are some basic things you can do to make sure your website is loading as fast as possible so you can ensure your potential customers aren’t giving up on your website and taking their money to your competitor.
5 Things You Can Do To Get Your
Website Loading Faster
1. Think twice before adding audio or video content.
Several years ago it was considered kind of cool to have a little background music for your web page, nowadays, not so much! Audio and video content are usually not essential to the message of your website as a small business. If you do need to place a video in your page, make sure you are not auto-load and playing the video when you load the page. If you use YouTube, there is a setting for that when selecting the embed code to place the video on your page. The bottom line is to ask, does this content add value?
2. Think twice before embedding your social media feeds.
There are many people who want to embed their Facebook feed onto their web page. What they don’t realize is that in order to load that content, there are several things in the background that need to load into the page before the feed displays. This slows down the loading time of your page. Instead, simply use a Facebook icon with a link to your Facebook page somewhere on your page.
3. Think twice before using embedded fonts.
For the average small business owner, you would not need to use fonts that are from external libraries such as Google Fonts, Typekit etc. While this may look really fancy to your eyes, in most cases a font style outside the realm of what is already installed on computers is not necessary. Each time you embed a font into your site/web page, this slows down the load time of your page.
4. Think twice before choosing a website hosting provider or plan.
There are ways to find out if the response time, server speed your website is hosted on will load your site in an efficient manner. This will also help you see the aspects of your site that are slowing down your page loading time. This is one of the last things I would check, but before you decide to go with ABC Local Hosting company, make sure their servers are up to par with what your expectation is.
5. Think twice before adding images to your page.
Optimizing the size of your images makes a HUGE difference to the loading time of your website. If you need a picture to simply display in 1/4 of the width of your web page, aim to make the image as close to that size as possible. If you are using an image from your digital camera, or a stock photo website, you will definitely need to decrease the actual size of the photo. You should also consider how many and which images you are using on a page to ensure the images are providing value to your content. Design is definitely leaning towards simplifying web pages and using more images for the visuals, but the images you do use need to be sized appropriately.
Did you also know?
Website speed makes a huge difference when it comes to how your customers find your website. Search engine optimization is a process in making your website more findable online. Website speed is just one of the many factors taken into account by search engines like Google or Bing when displaying search results.