Page Speed Optimization: Metrics, Tools, and How to improve.
Page speed means how fast your web page loads. It is beneficial for your visitors if your page is loaded faster. Optimization of the web page is a crucial part of SEO, companies move to operate their business online because it is important. The average speed for your webpage to load is 4.7 seconds.
Want to load your page faster for your customers? Here are issue, ways to improve, tools to check, and metrics to optimize your page speed.
Issues that slow your webpage
The reason why your page is not loading fast is due to:
• Images aren’t optimized – Image takes time to load. If your image size is large the time taken to load your page will be slowed.
- Slow server response time – Due to cheap hosting your response time will be slowed, because of sharing server space with other websites. When visitors access your site, you may be in a queue with other sites.
- Server location – If the server location is based in India and the user visits your page from Brazil. The data requested will have to travel back and forth over the Atlantic and Africa. The location will slow down your page speed.
- Too many site requests – Web site server can only handle a certain number of requests. If there are too many requests then the server will take time to send the request, slowing down your page speed.
- CSS isn’t optimized – Cascading Sheet Style (CSS) is a style sheet code used to describe and present your document. If CSS is not optimized then it will delay your page speed.
- Too many plugins – The reason that slows down your web site and causes poor performance is due to having many plugins (allows the web browser to play additional content that is not in displayed.)
Ways to improve your page speed.
• Compress the images. Use programs like ImageResize, PNG, JPG, and Smush.it to reduce your image size. Steps to compress your image:
Step 1 – make sure to re-size your image before uploading.
Step 2 – compress your image.
For example, in my page the image size is 45MB (12,000×12, 000) it takes 45 seconds to load. After compressing the image the size is 2MB (3,840×3, 840) taking 9 seconds to load. This way the web site will load faster.
Turn on GZIP and make your page optimize
Three ways to turn on gZIP compressor:
- Add the following code to your site’s .htaccess file:
Optimization of the page with code
- Add the following code to the top of your HTML or PHP page:
- Install a Gzip compression plugin like the W3 Total Cache tool for WordPress.
• Upgrade your web hosting – if your server has generated more traffic and slowed your page speed you need to upgrade web hosting. Choose cloud hosting and VPS to make your page speed faster than shared hosting.
Use HostGator (website), to select the right web hosting plan to get faster and functional website.
• Insert the missing files – restore the missing files to solve the issue(page speed). Restoring the site with missing files from recent backup will improve your page speed and optimized.
• Remove the plugins – start by removing the plugins that are not used frequently. After removing the plugins, your page will load faster and improve its performance.
• Optimized CSS – Solutions to get CSS in your website:
– Combine multiple files into a single file.
– To load certain files use ‘media types’ to specify the files.
Inline CSS is used for a small portion of code. Specifying media type and combining with external CSS files will make your site load faster.
Tools to check page speed
An open-source, automatic tool to improve your site performance, quality, and correct your web is known as the lighthouse.
The lighthouse runs various testing of the page, then provides a report on how your site is performing, while auditing. After getting the report you can improve your site accordingly.
- Google speed
Page speed insight (PSI) generates the reports of the website’s performance on mobile and desktop devices and gives suggestion to improve it.
Both lab and field data of your page are provided by PSI. The Lab data will help to identify performance issues where as the field data will help to capture the user’s experience.
4 key metrics to improve page performance
Pay close attention to these 4 metrics that will help you to identify the issues and improve your page speed. It helps to optimize your page to provide better user experience.
- Time to first byte (TTFB)
The amount of time needed to draw back the information you search in your phone browser or in your PC is known as TTFB. There are three components of TTFB:
- Time is taken to materialize your request (HTTP)
- Time is taken to process your request by the web server
- Time is taken to send back the first response
- Transmission Control Protocol (TCP) Connection Time
TCP connection time is the amount of time taken by the browser to make a connection with a server. It is likely to face longer connection time if the user access the site from different server location. By using Content Delivery Network (CDN) or caching server you can improve your website performance and make faster connections.
- Page Load Time
The total time taken by the browser to completely load the web page is known as Page load time. Using efficient HTML, compressed CSS scripts and optimized images can result in better performance of your website.
- Page response time
Page response time is the amount of time needed to receive the first response from the server. If the response time is slow, it is likely to have higher number of users leaving the site. The best response time needs to be less than 200ms as per Google.
Understand the reasons why your webpage takes time to load. Use tools like Lighthouse and Google speed to know the details of your page speed. The metrics discussed above can help to evaluate your website’s performance and identify relevant issues.