A sluggish website is not only irritating your visitors but it’s ultimately costing you money; a lot of money. Website optimization is vital to converting site traffic into paying customers. KISSmetrics recently released an infographic on web performance and state that every second your website visitors have to wait is rapidly increasing page abandonment. There are a variety of excellent blog articles discussing mobile first design, cutting edge user-interfaces and the latest web frameworks but none of these apply if your visitors are leaving before the page ever loads. Here at Appnovation, we are often asked to audit the design, development, and performance of a live website and provide insight on how these areas can be improved. Although a slow website can be attributed to an array of outside factors, here are 3 things you can do to boost your site's performance:
- Compress your images. The 450KB jpeg image on your homepage might look beautiful (and I’m sure it is) but it’s severely hampering your page load speed. JPEGmini and ImageOptim are a couple examples of tools that will shed weight off your images without compromising quality.
- Minify your CSS/JS files. Generally CSS/JS files are formatted in such a way that make it easier for a human to read. This works fine in a development environment however the extra whitespace is unnecessary in production. UglifyJS and UglifyCSS are just a tools that can compress your CSS/JS and speed up your site.
- Sprite Images. Limit the number of image files a visitor requires from your server. Rather than having individual requests for each image, group similar images in a single file and serve it once. You can then utilize the power of CSS to display the correct image while reducing the number requests to your server