How to Check Website Load Time on WordPress
If you’re the owner of a WordPress website, then you’ll know that load time can be a major problem. According to HubSpot Blogs’ research, 40% of online shoppers leave a website if it takes more than 3 seconds to load. If you’re worried about your site’s load time, then there are a few things you can do to improve it.
Reduce The Number Of Images On Your Site
One of the biggest causes of slow load times on a website is the massive number of images it contains. While it’s great that your website contains images to highlight specific products, too many can seriously affect performance. There’s no exact science to determining how many images are optimal, but you can start by reducing the number of photos you have on your site. Instead of a dozen or so small images, include only one large image.
Pro-Tip: Look into using a tool like Google’s Goggles to quickly search for images on your phone. This tool can be really handy when you’re on the go and don’t have access to a good Internet connection. Just open up the app on your phone and point it at an image on your site. The tool will then analyze it and show you a quick thumbnail of what you’re looking at.
Use A CDN To Deliver Your Content
A content delivery network (CDN) is a collection of servers that deliver content, most commonly Internet content, to clients. When a request for content is made, the CDN handles the load by sending the content to the client from a location that is closest to the user. This reduces the time required for the user to download the content.
Why do you need a CDN? If you’ve ever tried to load a video on your site, you’ll know that it can take a while for the first frame to load. This is because most Internet videos are hosted on video hosting platforms, like YouTube, which host the video on servers that are hundreds of miles away from the user.
Thankfully, there is an easy fix for this. You can use a tool like CloudFlare to deploy a free CDN onto your site. When a user attempts to load a video, CloudFlare will start watching the request and will either route it to a nearby server or will proxy the request and load the media files from the nearest server.
Optimize The Uploads Folder On Your Blog
One of the first things a potential visitor will do once they’ve arrived on your site is to look at the menu at the top of the page. Assuming you’ve done your research and know what products they are looking for, your site should have a logical flow for them to choose what products to buy. Once they’ve made the decision and submitted the order, it’s time for you to deliver their content.
The problem is that visitors have different Internet connections and upload speeds. Some may have faster Internet connections and be able to stream videos easily, while others may have slower connections that prevent videos from loading smoothly. To fix this, you can optimize the uploads folder on your blog to make sure that videos, in particular, are easily accessible by search engines and visitors.
What is the uploads folder? Think of the uploads folder as a catch-all for all the files that aren’t supposed to be on your site. For example, if you’ve ever uploaded a Microsoft Word document to your site, that file will be saved in the uploads folder. One of the first things you should do when you log in to your WordPress dashboard is to remove any files in the uploads folder. This will help prevent unnecessary files from taking up room and putting additional stress on your server.
Reduce The Number Of Redirects On Your Page
A redirect is a special response that a website can give to someone who’s trying to access it from a different URL (web address). A redirect can be used for mobile websites or blog posts in order to improve their performance. The problem is that sometimes, when developing a mobile site or blog post, you don’t know how the URL will be accessed and so you’ll end up with a bunch of redirects.
If you’re on a mobile device and you’ve clicked on a link that takes you to another website, you’ll most likely notice that some of the content is not displayed. This is because the content is not yet available on the new site. While the content may load later, at the time it was accessed the Internet connection was not strong enough for the content to be downloaded in its entirety. This is why you need to minimize the number of redirects on your pages.