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What can you do to fix a slow website?

By Robert Galvin in Technology on May 24th, 2019

Your website is slow and is costing you money right now, there’s no question. According to a study by Google, the average website takes a lethargic 8 to 10 seconds to load. That doesn't sound like a lot, but it is.

Research into consumer behaviour has shown that anything beyond 4 seconds is too long. The quicker, the better. On a desktop, your website should be loading in 1 to 4 seconds if possible and no longer than 10 seconds on mobile.

Your bounce rate likelihood at 1-6 seconds over that length is over 100%. The slower your website, the quicker you lose customers.

A lot can happen in a second:

For everyone single second delay beyond 4 seconds in loading your webpage:

  • Your views have gone down by 10%

  • Your customer satisfaction by 16%

  • Your conversion rate is down 7% 

The Real Cost

The shocking truth is that one second can cost a lot of money. For amazon, every second delay on their site costs them 16 billion dollars! If we scale this down to an e-commerce store generating 1000 euro per day, a 1-second delay can lead to 25’000 euros in missed revenue over a year. That’s an awful lot of money to leave on the table.

Money talks and these kinds of numbers are shouting one thing; your website needs to be fast, really fast.

It’s even worse on mobile with loads times of 15 seconds on average. On mobile, every one-second delay means a 20% lower conversion rate.

At dazzle works, we don’t make slow websites. 

We make sites with state of the art static site generator technology that guarantees our sites load 50-75% faster than anything else out there. If we built your site, you wouldn’t need to read this blog post. 

However, we know a thing or two about speed in general. If your current site is sluggish have a look below for five things that might be slowing it down and what you can do to fix them. 

Five reasons your site is slow and how to fix them

There are numerous possible reasons why your website is slow. We have listed five simple ones here that you can correct or get fixed quickly. There is only one simple 100% guaranteed fix, however. Read to the end to find out what it is.

1. Your cookies are too big

Cookies are great. They help you gather information on how people are using your website, and they optimize the experience of the user at the other end.

One thing to remember about Cookies, however, is that they are files too. As files, they take up space in kb and the more space they take up, the more load time will lag. The average size of a cookie might only be around 8kb, but if your page loading request transmits hundreds of them, then you can start to see real problems. The average Wordpress website transmits 100+ cookies.

The solution to this is to minimize cookie size and cut down their number. Make sure that only things that need to send out cookies do so. 

2. Your images are not optimized 

Extra-large images can hog a lot of bandwidth on your site. Particularly on image-heavy sites, you might find you have lots of full-size images that have not been resized for the web. The fix for this is simple. Resize or compress your images.

One way to fix this is to resize all your images individually. Reduce their size and width to fit the purpose they serve on your page. You can also try to change the image format or reducing the quality over all of the images.

However, what about the images? Compressing images does not necessarily mean making them look bad. For example, you can reduce the quality of a Jpeg by up to 75% without losing any noticeable detail. 

3. Some of your links are broken.

Sending your users 404 requests slows down your site. 404’s increases the amount of HTTP requests your site makes and unnecessarily slows downloading times.

You fix this simply by auditing your site and making sure all of your links either work or are removed. 

4. You have too many externally hosted media sources embedded 

Embedded media, such as videos or music, hosted elsewhere, can seriously slow your site down. When you embed something in your website that is hosted elsewhere your site is now running at a maximum of wherever that media is hosted. 

This means that if your media’s host site is slow, your going slower. The solution to this is simple, host your all your own media on your own servers. This guarantees faster load times for your site.

5. Your local network is slow

In some cases, a slow website might not be your direct fault. Your local network could be slower than it should be. You can check this by loading up your web page from another location nearby and doing a speed test on it then ask someone else to do the same from a different location.

If your speed is slower than your friends, your local network is the problem. Have a look at switching network providers and see if you can improve your speed.

The 100% Guaranteed fix

It’s simple……...get a new site. We can build you a well crafted, blazingly fast website that doesn’t serve hundreds of cookies, optimises your images on the fly serving the best formats and returns the cost in double-quick time. 

In the time it takes you to read this, we can arrange a free consultation to discuss your needs, and we'll see what we can do to help. Our sites are fast; your’s should be too.

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Author: Robbie is our freelance content and SEO specialist. As a writer by trade and a surfer at heart, Robbie is never too far from either a classic book or the freezing Atlantic swells

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