Your website loading speed plays an important part in retaining your potential customers
Website loading speed can make or break a user’s decision to engage with a piece of online content
The amazing thing about the internet is that wherever we are, whatever we want, it can effortlessly provide us with a limitless wealth of information.
We choose, to a greater or lesser extent, which corners of the internet we are going to consume that information from.
This, of course, means there are countless sites out there that will provide your potential customers with the information or services similar to yours.
But you want to be the one providing them.
There are two steps to making sure you are gaining the lion’s share of potential clients:
- Ensuring your customer finds you first
- Retaining that customer
Your website loading speed affects both of these.
Website loading speed and bounce rates
Google looks at your ‘bounce rate’ when ranking you. A bounce is a “single-page session on your site”.
Essentially, to calculate bounce rate, Google analytics tracks the number of visitors who come to your site and leave without viewing any other page, or engaging with the page they landed on.
If you have an abnormally high bounce rate, it can be a good tell that you have SEO issues concerning your website.
One of these may be that your site is not loading fast enough for your user, causing them to run off to another site.
So your task is now to optimise your site, decrease your bounce rate and get your customers to stay, interact with your content and ultimately buy your services.
What can I do to ensure my customers stay?
There are a few things. Ensuring your website is nicely designed is one of these.
Ensuring your loading time is as quick as possible is another. Google has a good tool for checking your page speeds.
Humans have short attention spans. They get bored easily. They’ve grown used to being provided with information instantly. They know that if they can’t be provided with what they want from one site, they can just move on.
This means that your page taking a couple of seconds longer to load can be the decision between whether they stay, or bounce.
This means that mobile web traffic is on the uptick, so it’s important to note that your site needs to load quickly not just on desktop, but on mobile too.
How can I decrease my website loading speed?
A majority of page speed fixes require input from a web developer who specialises in coding and can work out the kinks for you.
However, in the interim, there are a couple of things you can change about your site, if you’re concerned about the speed:
1) Remove any large, uncompressed images
Uploading images to your site without compressing them first means your site’s speed will seriously suffer. If you’re unsure about how to do this, check out mashable’s list of image compressors for decreasing your website loading speed.
2) Get rid of flash files
If you’re concerned about your website speed and you’ve got a flash file on your site – get rid of it. Flash largely isn’t used on websites anymore and for good reason. If there’s something specific you wanted Flash to do, ask a professional, who will be able to design a more effective, more website friendly alternative.
3) Don’t host your own videos
Got videos of your work process on your site? Maybe a timelapse of a rennovation? Awesome! But instead of hosting videos on your website, use an external video player, such as Youtube. The additional benefit here is that you can then promote your business on Youtube too.
Here at Shake and Speare, we’re always here to help with all things internet. If you have a burning question you can’t solve, feel free to email us or tweet at us. And if you want to chuck your website out altogether and start again, that’s fine too! We offer free one page web builds, no strings attached – just check out our Websites for Trades page!
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