Increase Conversions By Making Your Website Run Faster
Do you want your website to convert more? Make it faster. It’s that simple.While website speed will only get you so far, it is something you can easily optimize to reliably increase your conversion rate. After all, the faster your website loads, the more time a visitor can spend actually learning about your business and browsing your products or services.Further, people won’t even stay on your website if it’s too slow. Large-scale research by Google shows that pages that take more than 3 seconds to load lose almost half their visitors.What’s more, visitors will actually spend more time on faster websites. Sites that load within 5 seconds have average session lengths that are 70% longer than those of sites that load within 19 seconds.And you should be aiming for speeds much higher than 5 seconds. On average, websites with a load speed of 2.4 seconds have double the conversion rate of websites with load speeds of 4.2 seconds.Yes, you read that right. For the time being, you can forget about design, color psychology, button placement, call-to-actions, etc. – all you have to do is make your website faster and your visitors will start converting!So what exactly can you do? Let’s have a look at it.
Compress your images correctly
Images are large and will take a long time to load. Lowering image quality is an obviously bad solution to the problem as you’ll just be creating another one: blurry images.The solution? Image compression.To put it simply, compressing images reduces their size without greatly reducing quality. There are two different compression formats: jpeg and png. As a rule of thumb, only use png when you have simple transparent images. Otherwise, the file size will be unnecessarily large.Another compression file type that is gaining in popularity is Google’s WebP format. WebP files provide higher compression rates than jpeg files while maintaining similar image quality. A WebP file will be 25 to 35% smaller than an equivalent jpeg file with the same quality index. If your website can handle it, WebP images are generally superior to their jpeg counterparts.Other than making sure your images are the right file type, modern content management systems, e.g. WordPress, offer valuable tools to further compress your images efficiently. For WordPress, we recommend using either Imagify or Smush. These plugins can reduce image size by up to 50% without sacrificing much in the way of image quality.
Take Advantage of Browser Caching
Caching reduces the load on your web server by serving visitors with a mere copy of your page rather than reloading the entire site each time someone new visits the website. This process also compresses your files and codes. All of this will make your website much faster.WordPress provides tools to help you set up caching. We recommend WP Rocket or WP Super Cache.
Manage your Plugins
Plugins are a great way to add functionality to your website. They’re much less expensive than paying a team of developers to create a custom solution and usually get the job done.However, a lot of plugins come with a multitude of different functions, many of which you’ll never use. These extra functions will slow down your website, even if you don’t use them.This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t use plugins. Just make sure not to install too many unnecessary plugins and try to pick plugins with fewer functions. You can read more about the dangers plugins pose to your website here.
Keep external Script-Usage low
Like plugins, scripts can be incredibly useful to your website. Be picky when it comes to implementing extra scripts, however, as some are poorly made and even those that are well made can slow down your site. Stick to only using necessary scripts such as Google Analytics and Facebook Pixel.
Pingbacks and trackbacks are used to reference and link different blogs and blog posts. Although these are often considered great tools for reaching out and collaborating with other websites, ultimately helping SEO, these can increase website load time. Depending on your SEO situation, it might be advisable to turn off pingbacks and trackbacks.
Use a Content Delivery Network
There are two factors that affect website speed: the website code and the webserver. The larger the website code (more images, more plugins, etc.), the more time it takes your webserver to deliver it to end-users. However, a bad server will also slow down your website, as will one that is far away from your users.A Content Delivery Network makes sure your website is optimally hosted on a network of servers around the world. This way, users can access the website from servers close to them rather than from one central server that might be on another continent.If you host your site on a server in New York, for example, your website will load more slowly for someone in California. However, if you are using a CDN, users in California will access your site via servers in Nevada, allowing for much faster website speeds.
Speeding up your website is one of the easiest ways to increase your conversion rate. Trim the code on your website and make sure you have high-quality hosting for better results.And if converting more isn’t enough (it should be) a faster website will also improve your search engine ranking, increasing traffic to your site. So a faster website will not only increase your conversion rate, it’ll also increase the number of visitors that can convert. What are you waiting for, go speed up your website!Recommend Reading: Sustainable Advertising Utilizes the Interplay of Google and Facebook