7 Tips To Improve Your Website Page Speed

The speed associated with your company’s website is essential to your overall success. When the website is slow your current customers along with potential leads are not going to wait around for your site to load. Kissmetrics, recently stated that around ½ of all the Web users expect that a website should load within 2 seconds, and often abandon the sites that have not loaded successfully within 3 seconds.

How To Test The Current Speed Of Your Site

The 1st step when it comes to improving page speed on your website is to know where you currently stand. After all, you will need something that you can compare with in order to assess whether you have successfully made any improvements. Today there are various tools which have made this task easy and some even offer recommendations on what you should be doing to improve.

1. PageSpeed Insights

PageSpeed Insights is a tool from Google that measures performance of websites. The benefit of this tool is that it is easy-to-use. All that is required is to enter your URL of the site and the tool does the rest. It will return your score and offer recommendations on what you should be doing to improve your current speed.

2. Pingdom

Pingdom is another especially useful tool as it provides a way to test your current speed from various locations across the globe, which is essential when your business caters to an internationally based audience. The tool also offers suggestions on what you can improve on and a breakdown of the load times according to content type along with others.

Once you have saved the results, you now have your own “control” test that you are able to measure from when you start to make changes. Below are 7 essential tips you can use to successfully improve your website page speed.

Tip One: Change Your Hosting Plan Or Host

When it comes to creating a site, many people choose from the cheaper hosts or the cheaper hosting plans, which in most cases includes the use of shared hosting. The issue with this is that many people do not take into consideration is that hosting is associated with the site’s speed and as these sites grow, they become slower due to using hosting which becomes inadequate for the needs of the site.

If you have a website that has outgrown the hosting you are using, then a simple and quick way to improve your website speed is to change to a more efficient hosting plan or host. If you still use shared hosting, then you need to seriously consider using a dedicated VPS or server which will result in significant improvements in your overall load time.

The experts suggest Virtual Private Servers (VPS) hosting as they use a number of servers when it comes to distributing content. This option is scalable and typically the better option for the smaller to medium sized businesses
If you decide on a dedicated-server you are offered with more control as well as the benefit of not having to share with anybody else, which includes bandwidth, RAM or CPU. However, this option is less flexible as there is only one server. In addition, this option is usually more costly compared to the VPS option. If you are hesitant to change hosts as you are unsure of what is required of you to migrate the site, you really don’t need to be concerned. Today the majority of the hosting companies will provide full instructions that are needed to migrate your site, or they have technicians that will assist you, particularly when you have chosen a dedicated or VPS server-hosting plan.

Tip Two: Optimize Images

Your images are the largest elements on webpages, directly after videos. Large images translate into slower load times. In addition, if the images have not been optimized correctly the load time will decrease even more. The issue comes in that when you are looking to attract traffic, you will need images. Another problem is that these images need to be of the best quality and large as the latest screens demand this. Here are a few tips to optimize images on your site to increase your website page speed:

• Do Away With Superfluous Images

To begin with go through your site and make a decision on whether you need so many images to achieve the effects or results you are aiming for. It is true that images work well in attracting visitors, yet the simple designs are often better from aesthetic viewpoints as well as performance.

• Replace Images With JavaScript Or CSS

Try use JavaScript and CSS over images when ever possible. Code, when done correctly will transfer much faster in comparison to images, which is the reason why you should be replacing as many of your image files that you possibly can. Effects like shadows and gradients, along with animations are easy to replace with CSS.

• Do Away With Any Text Encoded As Images

If you have images that only contain text, they need to be replaced with a web-font. It easy to find a variety of typefaces which will not only complement your overall design, but you also improve your load speed along with user experience. When text has been delivered in the form of an image, then it cannot be accessed, zoomed, selected or searched. For this reason, make sure all the text on your site is available in the form of a web-font.

• Select The Correct Image Format

Dependent on your needs, there are 3 image formats that you can choose from GIF, JPEG and PNG. GIF is only used for animation as it features a color palette that is limited which means it is not the ideal choice for most images. When you are looking to preserve fine details and high resolution, PNG is the best option.
In the majority of cases JPEG files is the best option as a combination of lossless and lossy compression will be used, which allows for smaller files and still maintains a decent quality.

Tip Three: Clean Up Add-Ons And Plugins

If your site has too many add-ons or plugins, your site will slow down dramatically. It is especially important to pay attention to this when your website is associated with Drupal, WordPress or Joomla. Users have discovered that cleaning up plugins has resulted in increasing the speed of their sites by up to 300%.

Plugins may be necessary as they can improve functionality of a website, but it is vital that you are only using plugins that are really necessary. Plugins will affect load times for your pages in the way of issuing more calls and requests to servers than core WordPress files are already demanding. This can result in increasing the load times of your pages. Here are a few ways to fix these issues.

• Remove The Plugins That You Don’t Need

This step includes manually going through every plugin and removing the types you aren’t using or don’t need. Deactivating these may work but will mean that there are still codes hanging around that will still have an effect on your sites speed. For this reason, it is a better practice to delete the plugins completely.

• Update Existing Plugins

Once you have deleted the plugins you no longer need, you should follow up by updating all the existing plugins. It is true that the plugins should automatically update, but this is not always the case, which is why you should be checking on each plugin manually.

• Find The Plugins That Are Causing Issues

There are 2 ways to find out if any plugins might be causing issues for your site. The 1st will require test tools such as Uptrends, GTmetrix or Pingdom. The 1st step involves taking a baseline-measurement of the load speed of the site with all your plugins activated. Check on all the major top-level pages and take a note of each speed.

The next step involves deactivating plugins that you think are causing the problems. Deactivate one at a time and take notes of your load time with each test. When you have gone through every plugin you will know which plugins to replace with the faster alternatives.

The 2nd alternative is using Query Monitor. It comes with a learning curve, yet it will effectively analyze each plugin and then show which plugins are causing problems.

Tip Four: Enable Gzip Compression

When using compression, it is easy to transform a 60mb file into a 5mb file, which dramatically reduces the size, and is what you will want for your website. Compression for websites use a tool known Gzip and works on compressing the files on your site and turning them into zip-files. This reduces their sizes significantly, while at the same time increasing the overall speed for your website.

In order to enable Gzip compression you need to find out if you run an Apache server or an IIS server. If you have an IIS server, you can enable the “compression” feature in settings. For an Apache server you will need to add code to the .htaccess file.

Once you have successfully configured your server, you need to check if Gzip is working. This is possible from checking online with a gzip test or directly from your browser.

Tip Five: Combine And Minify JavaScript and CSS Files

If you have a site with lots of JavaScript and CSS files, then the server is more than likely telling your browser to treat each one as an individual file, which will mean a new response and new request for each. This will really start to slow your site down. To solve this issue, combine your files wherever possible.

One of the other common issues has to do with codes in the files that often contain comments, formatting and additional white spaces that the computer does not need but is forced to read. The solution for this issue is to minify your code. This means cleaning the codes in the way of removing characters which are not needed for these codes to run.

You can choose to either combine and minify these files manually or with the use of special tools. Experts advise against trying to do this by hand. This is because you need to be aware of what should be removed and what needs to stay. In addition, when doing this task manually it becomes easy to introduce a number of errors compared to using special tools. The special tools include:

• CSS Minifier

This free online tool cleans up CSS code in the way of removing new lines, comments, indents and spaces. This tool will also assist in speeding up your site and ensures that everything is running smoothly.

• JavaScript Minify Tool

This tool offers the same benefits as CSS Minifier, excepting that it works for JavaScript. These tools are both simple-to-use and useful and you won’t need to adjust or fiddle with the settings.

Tip Six: Enable Caching

Caching really improves website speeds significantly for both new users and returning users, dependent on what caching type you have enabled. Browser caching or client-side caching will involve that the browser saves specific elements of the site on a visitor’s machine which means when they visit your website again it won’t need to download the files again.

The server-side caching will help with return visitors as well as new users. This has to do with that a copy of a page is saved within the memory in a temporary manner which means if 30 users are visiting your website in an hour, your server won’t need to search for these files repeatedly.

• How To Enable Browser Caching

In order to activate browser-caching this will require including an expiry time for the different file types on the HTTP headers. This process also involves modifying the .htacess file which you can find in your root folder. The file may not be visible at first as it may be hidden, but the FTP client such as FileZilla will offer a way to access these files. To change it, use notepad to open the file.

For CSS files, you should set times that are shorter as they are usually more frequently updated. Once done, save these files with extensions that it has already and not in the form of a text-file.

WordPress Users

If you use WordPress, then things become far easier. This is where you can use a plugin which will deal with all the caching needs of the site. One of the free options includes W3 Total Cache which offers loads of functionality. However, the better and more advanced would be WP Rocket which you will have to buy. The extensive range of functionality and features really makes it a worthwhile investment.

Tip Seven: Optimize Your Databases Constantly

Another easy yet extremely powerful way for improving your website page speed is to ensure that at all times your databases have been optimized, which is even more important for the WordPress users.

WordPress, including all your installed plugins save data on your database. Which means the more they are used, the amount of data increases that is saved in your database. When the data starts to increase, it takes longer for WordPress to find things in the database, that ultimately slows down your site. This is even more true for the plugins which save user stats and data, logs, along with having pingbacks, trackbacks and post revisions enabled.

What this means is that you can really improve speeds on your website when you clean your databases on a regular basis. You can either automate these processes when using a plugin called WP-Optimize or do these tasks manually if you do not use WordPress.

When it comes to manually optimizing your database, you will need to open MySQL database in PHPMyAdmin and then choose the tables you would like to optimize. To do this open a drop-down menu and click on Optimize table. On completion of the process, a message of confirmation will appear.

Test The Speed Of Your Website Again

When you have completed each of the above-mentioned tips, you need to run a test to assess how quickly the site is running. By now you should be surprised by your results. These are not the only tips you can use for improving your site’s speed, but these actions will have the largest impact.


Similar to everything else in life, you cannot do all these tasks just once. For example, optimizing images is something you need to do each time you decide to upload new images. In addition, most of these tips need to be repeated as you add new content, make changes or conduct updates. This will ensure you site keeps running as fast as it possibly can.

If you forget these tips and you fail to ensure that everything keeps running smoothly, your website will slow down once again, which means you will need to start from the beginning. For this reason, it makes a lot of sense that you ensure everything continues to run smoothly by keeping up with these tips with every change that you make to your site.