Improving web page load times boosts revenue (Part 2)

Previously, we talked about the serious detriment slow web page load times can have on your revenue and the efficacy of your online marketing.

Factors that can influence its speed include the number and size of images you have on your site, the quality of your site design, and the speed of your server. People used to put up with a 4 second delay when waiting for a web page to load, but these days they only allow 2 seconds, which puts a lot of pressure on you and your web designer. Luckily, there are several ways you can go about fixing slow load times.

Use a web page analyzer

A web page analyzer can tell you several important pieces of data about a web page, including its size, composition, and download time. The size is determined by the amount of pixels, graphics, and other elements you include on the page. You can also see a breakdown of how big each element is, which script (HTML or CSS) was used to apply it, how many scripts there are, and how many iframes. You don’t have to pay for this service—there are free ways to do it on the web, though you can only do one page at a time.

I used a web page analyzer on an article from The web page analyzer returned several interesting pieces of advice, showing even a well-financed and highly popular website has things it can improve. For instance, the page I analyzed had 76 objects. The analyzer said, “Above 20 objects per page . . . accounts for more than 80% of whole page latency. . . . Combine, refine, and optimize your external objects.” It also suggested reducing the size of the images, which was 457275 bytes, to add up to less than 100k bytes. This can be done by compressing the images or changing them from JPG to PNG or by using Yahoo’s online tool

Invest in a dedicated server

You’re sure to notice a significant difference in your load time when you invest in a dedicated web server for your site. Though it’s a bigger upfront fee, Mike Quinn, president of Yellow Bridge Interactive, said, “Being on a slow server can cost you even more in sales long term.”

Utilize a CDN

If your site is very large, you’d be well served in getting a content delivery network (CDN) which allows you to host static cont (images, videos, audio clips, etc.) from multiple sites. Quinn explained, “The closer a CDN server is to a site visitor, the faster the content will be delivered to the visitor’s computer or mobile device.”



Web Analyzer

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