Whenever a website loads slowly, it impacts the experience of human traffic and bots. As page load speed goes from 1-10 seconds, the probability of a mobile visitor bouncing increases by 123%, according to a survey conducted by Think With Google. Consequently, losing a site visitor translates to reduced revenue, which can make or break a business. Typically, slow websites display a negative impression on potential customers, further denting your reputation. Equally, search engines punish slow sites, negatively impacting your ability to rank highly and attract traffic to your site.
So, what is site speed, and why is it important? In this article, we will explain site speed, discuss its importance, and provide several factors that might lead to a slow site, all so that you can answer the question, “Why is My Website Slow?”
Site Speed Basics
By definition, site speed is how quickly users can see and interact with content.
Is my website slow? If you’re not sure, a few tools for assessing why your website is slow include:
- Google Analytics Site Speed
- Google Mobile Website Speed Testing Tool
- Google PageSpeed Insights
- GT Metrix
Some of the metrics used to measure site speed include:
- Page load time among a sample of users and in various browsers
- Execution speed, e.g., image load time or response time of a click of a button
- How fast a website avails a document
Benefits of a Fast Site
Now that you can measure your site speed, let’s discuss the reasons why site speed is crucial to the success of your website and business.
With the discovery of faster internet services like 5G, users are used to quick connectivity. Therefore, a typical website user may not be patient with a slow site, leading to a high bounce rate. Enhancing site speed makes users have a smooth experience, which also increases their confidence in your brand.
Search Engine Rankings
All websites fight for a slot on the first page of Search Engine Result Pages (SERPs). Unfortunately, a slow website loading problem is one of the factors that derail the ability to rank high. Google, for instance, favors sites with faster speeds, resulting in more traffic, clicks, and sales.
Some of the benefits of an enhanced site speed include reduced bounce rate and better customer service. These benefits are some of the foundations of a better conversion rate.
Ideally, if website visitors spend more time on your site, they’re likely to take further action, e.g., viewing your products or services. Eventually, they’ll become buyers, resulting in more sales and revenue for your business.
So, Why Does My Website Take So Long to Load?
Now that you understand the importance of site speed, its time to learn what casues a website to load slowly. Here are five common reasons why your website loads slowly.
1. Failure to Use CDN Service
Here’s how it improves your site speed:
- Compressing Images: Images stored on CDN servers are slightly compressed by almost 20-30%. Whenever a user accesses the files, it re-inflates itself to maintain quality.
- Minimizes Server Hops: Instead of roaming different servers across the US while locating a file, it reduces the time by utilizing the local server. Typically, it can take up to 30 hops without CDN, which is cut down to 4-5 hops using CDNs.
2. Images That Are Not Optimized
Images take a lot of website space which is why large unoptimized files contribute to a slow site. High-resolution files, for instance, require massive bandwidth, which is one of the reasons websites load slowly.
On the other hand, it’s crucial to choose image formats that are easier and faster to load. For example, the JPEG format is lighter and therefore loads faster as compared to PNG or GIF.
The process of optimizing involves reducing resolution, adjusting dimensions, and image resizing. You can use free online tools like JPEG Optimizer, Trimage, or Online Image Optimizer.
3. Excess Ads On Your Site
Many website owners place ads on their sites to make passive income. However, too many ads affect user experience and site speed. Ads contain rich formats like auto-downloads, pop-ups, and links that add up to the HTTPS requests.
The additional HTTPS overloads the site, which increases the processing time and makes the website unresponsive. Besides reducing the number of ads, you can apply ads during a timed delay to improve Click-Through-Rate and enhance User Experience (UX).
4. Not Applying a Cache Plugin
Caching is an excellent option for boosting the speed of a site. It stores data for frequently accessed files in cache memory. The caching option minimizes time-consuming processes like retrieving data or files for each visitor.
It’s therefore vital to install a cache plugin that delivers a static version of a webpage. A cache plugin functions by minimizing the data transmitted between the browser, WordPress database, and web server, resulting in faster loading times.
5. A Poor Hosting Choice
An excellent web hosting service provider can transform the performance of your website. If you’ve tried implementing the above ideas without results, switching the web host may prove instrumental. Before settling on a host, check their customer support, security, storage, and speed associated with their service.
Tips and Reminders on Slow Websites
- Avoid Redirects on Your Websites: Redirects add a second or fraction to load speed whenever an extra web destination is involved. Although redirects are essential, avoid them because every second counts when building an optimized website.
- CDN is not a mandatory step towards boosting site speed. However, it’s ideal if you have multiple visitors around the globe.
- Aside from improving site speed, optimizing image sizes can save you money by eliminating instances of bandwidth overage.
Still wondering,”Why is my site so slow?”
Adequate site speed helps rank higher in SERPs, improve conversion rates, and reduce bounce rates. It’s, therefore, crucial to assess why pages are loading so slowly before fixing them. That said, Ranksey Digital Marketing is the right company to partner with on this journey. We’ll conduct a free website and SEO audit to help fix the problem. Get a free consultation.