13 Tips on How to Make a Website Load Faster

13 Tips on How to Make a Website Load Faster

Chances are you came here to learn how to make a website load faster because you already know that time is of the essence – both for business people and consumers. Finding the desired information, products, and services fast and easy is a key factor for the success of any online business.

No matter, if you run a startup website or an established online business, page speed matters – for the user experience (UX) and also for the search engine ranking. Do you want to take a step back? You may want to start by building a website. WordPress is the most popular CMS and easy to use. Learn how to create websites with WordPress in this easy-to-follow step-by-step guide by your trusted web development agency China Gravy.

Introduction to Make a Website Load Faster

Did you know that slow load times are among the top reasons why people leave your website? In this week’s blog article, China Gravy, the online marketing agency of your choice, reveals 13 tips on how to make a website load faster.

Learn how to speed up your website, minimize the bounce rate and improve the user experience of your visitors! Besides, a website that loads faster will improve the ranking of search engines – ask your local SEO company!

Practical Steps: How to Make a Website Load Faster

Are you ready to learn how to make your website super fast? You can start by going to Pingdom or Google PageSpeed Insights. These are free tools to test your website’s page load time and get a hint on what the issues are. After you made the improvements on your website, go back to check and compare the page loading results! Speed web page: ready, set, go!

How to make your website faster - Speed up your website today - China Gravy 2

1. Web Hosts (Best Way How to Make a Website Load Faster)

One of the easiest ways to speed up your website is to look at your web server. Instead of the cheaper shared hosting, consider changing your hosting plan. Traditional “shared hosting” hosts websites on a physical server where all resources are shared (often not equally) among the websites. 

On the other hand, cloud hosting ensures virtually limitless resources for all applications. Besides, cloud hosting offers more control over how users can customize their servers and install the required software.

TIP: China Gravy has made very positive experiences with the provider Cloudways

2. It’s All About the Cache

If you wonder where all the cached data is stored, the answer is that it depends. There are different types of caching, which follow the same principle but work differently in practice.

Browser Cache (User Level): Website caching means that the browser cache stores larger static files so they don’t have to be loaded every time a user visits a website. This is mostly for scripts, CSS, and other static files like images. This allows visitors to access a website more quickly because the client/browser does not have to request each file every time.

Server Cache: The server cache works the same way as the browser cache – on the server level. The webserver cache can be emptied in WordPress with Breeze and Cloudflare.

Distributed Cache (CDN): A Content Delivery Network (CDN) is a geographically distributed group of servers. They work together to provide fast delivery of online content. These global servers share the static files of a website, such as images, videos, CSS or JavaScript. And they deliver them from the server closest to the user’s physical location. For example, when a user clicks on a video, the file loads faster because it is distributed from a nearby server. Websites use CDNs to make sure that visitors from around the world have a more accessible and faster experience. 

TIP: The most common CDNs include StackPath, CloudFlare, and Amazon CloudFront. The CloudFlare CDN is free and it provides additional security like DDOS protection and firewall settings as well as a free SSL certificate.

TIP: WordPress offers some popular caching plugins like W3 Total Cache (one of the most popular plugins for WordPress) and WP Super Cache (ideal for high-traffic sites).

3. Configure the “expires headers”

For all types of cache, there is an expiration date in the file header which determines how long these files will be stored on the visitor’s computer and on the servers. The default is set to zero seconds, so everything expires right away. Images (jpg) are set to 1 week.

TIP: Increase the “expires header” for static files like images as high as you want. The expiration date for dynamic data that you update frequently should remain at zero seconds.

4. Use Essential Plugins

Almost 50% of the 172 million websites worldwide run on WordPress. Plugins often make your life easier. But the more plugins there are on your website, the longer it takes to load. Old plugins can slow down website performance drastically.

For example, instead of the Google Analytics plugin, you can add the tracking code to your website footer manually.

TIP: Remove plugins, which you don’t use anymore or which don’t do what they are supposed to. Maybe there is even a better plugin available for what you want to do by now? Keep in mind that outdated WordPress plugins are often security vulnerabilities.

5. Optimize Your Images

According to HTTP Archive, 61% of a website’s page weight is images. The overall size of your small business website, and the image size in particular, greatly affect your site speed. Obviously, the larger the content, the slower the site.

You can start by reducing the number of images. But this may be boring. So, reducing the file size of your images is a great solution. Change the resolution (quality) of the image to the standard web resolution size. This is 72 DPI. Another simple way, which reduces the size, is compressing the picture and/or cropping the image (cutting unneeded areas). 

TIP: On WordPress, there is a free plugin called WP-Smushit. This removes hidden information on images. This plugin scans images as you upload them, and prevents unnecessary data from being attached. Therefore, it decreases the file size while keeping the quality of the image. 

TIP: Tools like Picturefill or Adaptive Images help you to save bandwidth and improve the page speed of your site. You can also consider using new image formats like WebP and JPEG XR. This helps to reduce image weight by 20-25% without sacrificing image quality. 

TIP: Use caching for images. This means storing images in the cache so they don’t have to be loaded every time a visitor is looking at them.

6. Combine Images with CSS Sprites

An image says more than one thousand words. But if you have several images on your page, you are forcing multiple roundtrips of the server to get all the resources. This slows down your site loads. Image sprites are a great way to bypass this issue.

For example, an image sprite can combine all background images on a page into one single image. This means all images appear when the main “sprite” loads. This also reduces flickering images and a smoother experience for your users.

TIP: WordPress offers several plugins for this purpose or ask the WordPress development company of your choice for assistance.

7. Compress Your Content

Besides images, you can also optimize the rest of your content. This significantly contributes to improving your website’s performance, in particular, grouping JavaScript and CSS files.

TIP: GZIP compression is a function of the compression of HTML, CSS, and JavaScript.

8. Clean Up!

Remove outdated and irrelevant content and broken links.

9. Limit External Requests

If a website requests a lot of files from third-party servers like Google Fonts, Facebook, and other social media sites as well as CDNs for JavaScript files, the speed suffers since you first have to connect to a lot of servers. 

TIP: Minimize these requests and store files locally wherever you can.

10. Physical Server Selection

For example, if your target audience is in Germany, choose your web server in Germany to make your website load faster.

How to make your website faster - Speed up your website today - China Gravy 3

Now you have learned 10 hacks on how to make a website load faster. Do you still want more? China Gravy, your trusted digital marketing company, is also an expert in the Chinese market. Without further ado, we provide 3 more tips on how to make your Chinese website faster and bypass the “Great Firewall of China”.

How to Make a Website Load Faster for the Chinese Market

In China, a website that is not optimized takes 25 seconds on average to load. According to several surveys, around 50% of all consumers expect a page to load in 2 seconds or less. Therefore, if your website is not optimized in China and across the globe, users will not open it!

Lucky for you, you opened this blog article from your preferred marketing agency. We will show you how to optimize your website for the Chinese market.

1. Select Your Channels

Avoid connections to blocked websites like Facebook and Google, including Google fonts. This will only result in a time-out and slow down your website.

2. Use a Chinese CDN

In terms of server location, if you have a registered Chinese company you can host directly in China and use a Chinese CDN via Alibaba Cloud.

TIP: A less expensive way- without the need to register a Chinese company – is to host your website in Singapore, Seoul/South Korea, or Hongkong to get the best speed in China.

3. Use “good” Keywords

Avoid keywords that are regarded as “bad” by the Chinese government. Examples of sensitive topics are politics and human rights. If you try to publish content on sensitive topics, the “Great Firewall of China” will likely block your website.

TIP: Focus on business-related communication. Read more about internet censorship in China.

As Chinese e-commerce is booming, make sure you are doing business in China efficiently. This includes setting up a website tailor-made to the preferences of Chinese customers and targeted marketing

How to Make a Website Load Faster in China – The Takeaway

You now learned 13 ways how to make a website faster – in China and around the world! Put this knowledge into practice and increase your site performance today!

Does this sound like too much work or you are not sure where to start? China Gravy is the digital marketing agency of your choice to make your life easy. Sit back, relax, and let us do the work for you! 

Our dedicated team is excited to help you to set up and improve your website – in China and across the world! From website design for small businesses to digital marketing services like strategy development, popular social media management, and improving SEO. Increase your brand awareness, boost leads, and sales. And the best part – our affordable prices won’t break your bank!

Are you ready to get started? Discover more Chinese marketing tips for Western companies. Or try China Gravy’s FREE audit of your website! This individual manual screening reviews the speed and user experience on your website, SEO, security, and legal GDPR compliance. Besides, we check the social media integration of your online activities. Contact us today!

Disclaimer: This blog post contains affiliate links. For us to support our blogging activities, we may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for our endorsement, testimonial, and/or link to any products or services from this blog post. As a marketing company for small businesses, we only recommend or endorse the products and services that we approve of and value, and feel would be helpful for our readers.

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