Speed of a website will also improve the experience for visitors.
This should be common sense.
After all, how many times have you left a website because it was taking forever to load?
Don’t guess your “speed of a website” problems; diagnose!
There are a lot of great tools out there, but we always recommend starting with Google’s PageSpeed Insights tool. Enter a URL, and let the tool do its thing.
Any score above 80 is decent. That being said, higher is better.
If you’d like a second opinion, use a tool such as GTmetrix.
Notice that some tools will give you different scores. That’s because they weigh problems differently.
The following are the two most important things you need to ensure: that (1) your page loads quickly (under 2 seconds) and (2) your page is as small as possible with the least number of requests.
The Google tool is the simplest and a good place to start.
It will give you the most important issues to fix (in red). Fix the orange ones if possible, but they don’t usually cause too much of a slowdown in your loading speed.
You should use other tool for more details: With GTmetrix as an example, you can click on the “waterfall” tab to see the exact amount of time each request took to fulfill.
Once you know what your problems are, fix them. Honestly, there is no way we can cover everything in this guide, but we’ll show you what to do if you have some common problems for increasing the speed of a website.
Start with your images: If you do nothing else, compress them.
Most types of images have unnecessary metadata that take up space, which can be deleted without causing any harm.
Use a tool such as Optimizilla to compress pictures beforehand, or use a plugin such as WP Smush to compress any pictures you upload to WordPress automatically.
In addition, pick your file size carefully. JPEG files are usually smaller once compressed although not as high quality as PNG files. If possible, use vector images (SVG is the most popular format), which can scale to any dimension with no loss of quality.
Aside from optimized images, good web hosting and well-coded plugins, you have to make sure that you’re using proper caching.
For our setup, we use a plugin called W3 Total Cache.
W3 Total Cache is the fastest and most complete WordPress performance optimization plugin.
Here’s a few ways to increase the speed of your website in WordPress.
1. Choose a good host
2. Start with a solid framework/theme
3. Use an effective caching plugin like W3 Total Cache
4. Optimize images
Tools to Test and Improve the Speed of a Website
If you’re still having problems with site speed, or just curious to see how your page is doing in that area, there are plenty of free tools that can test the speed of a website. Here are ten tools that can test and help you improve the speed of a website.
1.) WebPage Test
This tool is supported by Google and allows you to run a free website speed test. It provides waterfall charts that break down content, check for Page Speed optimization, and make suggestions for improvements after receiving a page speed score out of 100.
2.) Pagespeed Insights
This is a must-use tool from Google. Besides being easy-to-use, you’ll receive a page speed score out of 100 and analysis of both the desktop and mobile versions of your site. You get recommendations that are divided into high-, medium- or low-priority.
3.) Google Analytics Plugin By Yoast
This is an essential plugin if you have WordPress for SEO purposes, plus it can also determine your load time across multiple browsers.
This was designed by Yahoo! and has some pretty neat features like grades determined by predefined rule set or a user-defined rule set, suggestions for improvement and summary of components of the page.
5.) Pingdom Website Speed Test
Probably the best feature about this tool is that it performs tests on browsers like Chrome, which better reflects real-world conditions. Another nice feature is that you can see how well your speed is measuring up to parameters set-up by Google Page Speed and Yslow.
Your speed will receive two speed page grades from GTMetrix and Yslow, plus a charted history of page load times, analysis page sizes, and request counts.
7.) P3 (Performance Plugin Profiler)
If you use WordPress, this is a plugin you shouldn’t miss. It examines which plugins are slowing down your site.
8.) Webpage Analyzer
Provides you with page size, composition, and download time. This tool also comes with a summary of page components with advice on how to improve page load time.
9.) Load Impact
Unlike the other tools we’ve listed, Load Impact simulates a scenario where your page is flooded with users. This simulation will determine the areas where your site cracks, as well as how to fix any problems before they happen.
10.) Page Speed Tool (Internet Marketing Ninjas)
Site speed remains a big deal: it remains one of the factors used by Google to determine your site’s ranking. It’s also important because the faster a page loads, the more satisfied your customers will be.
You don’t have to fix 100% of the problems that tools highlight, but be careful when you ignore one.
Just because one page may have a fast loading speed doesn’t mean that all your pages do.
We suggest testing at least 10 pages across your site, preferably the ones that are the longest or largest (with the most images usually).