What is website performance?
The Ultimate Guide To Website Speed 2023 – Website performance is the phrase for this. The user experience and measurement of a website are referred to as website performance; this refers to how rapidly a website’s content is downloaded and shown on a user’s web browser. Everyone has experienced the irritation of visiting a website and waiting for a long time for it to load.
In actuality, a 5.3-second load speed is recommended practice (At Kaizen Five we recommend your site loads under 3 seconds). Consumers will abandon your website if you wait too long, which means you’ve missed the chance to convert them into customers and make a transaction.
When it comes to your website, time is definitely of the matter. You want clients to enjoy their online experience so they return again and time again.
The frustration caused by sluggish website performance extends beyond the user experience.
The effectiveness of your website also has an impact on where it ranks in search engine results pages. When users visit your website and then leave because it takes too long to load, Google will notice the high bounce rate and give priority to quicker websites that offer a better user experience.
Why does website performance even matter?
Users are very picky about loading times.
The smallest delay in page loading times will have a significant impact on traffic. Users also retain anger because it took months for user traffic to go up after Google experimented with slowing the page times on some websites. Here are 5 ways to increase traffic to your website.
For every second your website is delayed, you receive:
- 11% fewer page views
- 16% decrease in customer satisfaction
- 7% loss in conversions
These results were found by The Daily Egg.
Users are deterred from using your website, which lowers sales and harms your reputation.
Of course, it also works the other way around; Pinterest improved the performance of their site, which decreased wait times by 40%. Due to this, their signups went up by 15%, and search engine traffic rose.
Because potential buyers make hasty judgments about you in just a few seconds, it’s critical that your website runs quickly on all devices.
What affects website performance?
A successful website design is comprised of several elements, the majority of which have an impact on website performance. We have included 5 elements that determine how well a website performs, along with some suggestions for how to do so.
Your images affect the website loading speed
Large pictures make your web pages load slowly, which makes for a bad user experience. Image optimisation is the technique of lowering an image’s file size using a plugin or script to shorten the page’s load time.
If your image is over 300-400 kb, then you might be in trouble. While it doesn’t seem like much, when you have 20-30 images on one page, this can really add up and slow your website down!
The best tool at Kaizen Five we have found for image reduction is Squoosh.
An excellent way to cut down on excessively image-heavy sites is to strike a balance between those that need greater impact and those that need maximum performance.
The server or host will affect the loading speed
Your choice of web host may have a significant influence on how well your website performs.
Your choice of plan is crucial. For instance, many small company owners choose for shared hosting, which uses a server to host numerous websites.
If you expect less than 1,000 visits each day, this is a good option. All users on that server divide the expenses of shared resources like memory, CPU, and disc space.
Which is a fantastic cost-saving plan.
However, a shared host won’t do if you run a successful online business that receives a lot of traffic or if your website needs a lot of data for things like streaming movies or unique apps.
The performance of your site will suffer due to the RAM and bandwidth restrictions. causing a bad experience for visitors.
Website caching affects loading speed
Data is cached when it is kept in memory to improve speed. High-priority data can be stored in memory by web apps so that it can be processed more rapidly.
The information kept in memory serves as a short “snapshot” of a website that may be provided upon request. Utilising browser caching is a fantastic technique to speed up your website.
What plugins your site is using
WordPress plugins are extremely useful, and at Kaizen Five we absolutely love them. Plugins allow you to bolt on amazing features to your website, without having to code every single feature
Plugins can range from shopping add-ons, to simple backend changes that affect the way your user navigates the website.
Every plugin in the repository includes a variety of features and purposes. While some load front-end resources, others conduct database requests. Your load time will be slowed down by plugins that perform a lot of database queries and load a lot of assets.
When done correctly, you won’t notice much of a difference in load time, but if several plugins are flooding the server with HTTP requests, the user experience will suffer.
Sadly, there is no magic number for how many plugins you should have at one time on your website. It really relies on the plugins you use and the website you’re utilising.
While numerous decent plugins can only add a few more files, one poor plugin can load more than ten additional files. Although well-coded plugins limit the number of files they load, the plugin developer ultimately has the final say.
The amount of traffic your site receives
Many websites have a predetermined bandwidth limit. This refers to the volume of data moved during a specific time frame, usually a month.
High visitor volume is a positive indicator, but if your server doesn’t have the bandwidth to handle it, you run the danger of having your website completely shut down until your subscription period renews or you increase your plan.
Even YouTube would cost Google billions of pounds a month in bandwidth fees. When you factor in all of their additional assets, the sum becomes quite staggering.
You won’t need to spend much, but it does depend on the website you have. If you have an eCommerce website, you’re more likely to spend much more than a simple 5-page brochure site.
How does speed impact discovery on Google?
In 2018 Google announced that speed will be used as a ranking factor for mobile searches.
Here’s the announcement by Google – ‘Users want to find answers to their questions quickly and data shows that people really care about how quickly their pages load. The Search team announced speed would be a ranking signal for desktop searches in 2010 and as of this month (July 2018), page speed will be a ranking factor for mobile searches too.’
So what does this mean for your website or business?
If your website is slow, then there’s a good chance that Google will now prioritise other websites over yours if they are faster.
This means that because your website is slow, you may now not appear in search rankings, and this will ultimately lead to fewer conversions and less users on your website.
If you want to check how fast your website is, and where you can improve, then use these tools provided by Google:
- PageSpeed Insights – ‘An online tool that shows speed field data for your site, alongside suggestions for common optimizations to improve it.’
- Lighthouse – ‘a lab tool providing personalized advice on how to improve your website across performance, accessibility, PWA, SEO, and other best practices.’
How does website speed impact conversion rates?
Conversion rates are significantly and measurably influenced by website performance. Studies have repeatedly demonstrated that a fast page speed will increase conversion rates. In other words, a user is more likely to do the desired action on a webpage if it loads quickly.
Did you know that according to Portent in 2019, the first five seconds of page-load time has the highest impact on conversion rates?
If that wasn’t enough, Portent also said that ‘website conversion rates drop by an average of 4.42% with each additional second of load time (between seconds 0-5).’
How to check website performance
There are quite a few ways to check the performance of your website, so here are the 3 best ways to check website performance:
- Pingdom Speed Test – A popular website performance test tool with a long history is Pingdom. It has no login requirements, however the findings are less thorough than those from Google PageSpeed Insights.
- Google PageSpeed Insights – Google PageSpeed Insights has long been the preferred tool for evaluating and testing websites. It’s a straightforward tool developed by Google that ranks websites on a scale of 1 to 100 for both desktop and mobile. The quicker the website is, the higher the number.
- GTMetrix – You may access extensive information about your page speed, timings, performance score, and much more with GTmetrix. Additionally, GTmetrix offers details on how to address the problems the test revealed.
That is the ultimate guide to website speed in 2023. We know there’s a lot to cover and go over, but if you can really use this guide to its maximum potential, we can guarantee you that you will start to see an increase in conversions, and more high-quality traffic!