15 Apr Guidelines to increase Mobile (Responsive Websites) Page Speed
How likely are you to stay on a website that takes minutes to load?
Isn’t switching to a lighting fast website a far better option and that too when there are ample of such fast loading websites available just on a single click?
At the end of 2015, India had 239 million Smartphone users; the number is predicted to rise up to 705 million by 2020. According to a survey, 60.83% online shoppers prefer mobile websites and apps. Retailers have reacted well to the scenario; 58.5% retailers have mobile shopping apps with purchase capability, 93% of the retailers have mobile websites. It is a great effort when you see these figures. But there is more to it actually.
People shop on the go because they are in a hurry. So your mobile website has got to be faster than your peers’. A study claims that an online shopper waits less than 3 seconds for your mobile website to load; if it takes more than that, the consumer is annoyed, he or she gets off your site, decides never to return, you lose a potential customer and worst of all: Negative word of mouth marketing happens. But as a marketer what can you do about mobile page speed? Technically, nothing!
But you are the one responsible for your brand’s popularity and of course for lead conversion; take the stats for it; you are going to lose it all without great mobile page speed. 79% of online shoppers do not go back to a site they were once disappointed by. So, do interfere in the mobile page design and use the following tactics to increase mobile page speed before it is late.
- Get rid of complexity; it wins you nothing.
An average web page consists of hundreds of assets which involve dozens of host servers. A lot of these assets are un-optimized and unmonitored thus unpredictable. Speaking from experience, these assets play a vital role in slowing down the web page.
- It is imperative that you give a good amount of thought to the essentiality of these page elements and make sure that you are not trading off the page’s speed for them. If the results are unsatisfactory, sit with your developers’ team and get rid of these elements.
- Next on the ditch list is the number of images. You probably cannot imagine your website going live without being decorated with a fair amount of product images, logos, and graphics; you are right as long as you know what the ‘fair’ amount is. Use of the images and other multimedia beyond that ‘fair’ amount would start making the page slow beyond consumers’ tolerance, thus dropping the conversion rates. The pages with higher conversion rates are found to have 38% fewer images than the ones with lower conversion rates. Also, make sure that the images have the right formatting. There is no point having PNG format if you can have JPEG format which cuts the size by 50%. Give it a thought and keep only what is necessary.
- While it is unavoidably important to track your consumers’ behavior on the page, you need to take into consideration the mobile page speed it costs you. Review the tracking codes and keep only the ones that are absolutely necessary.
- Video embeds are really good for customer engagement but they also cost you substantial page loading time. So, you need to be careful while you embed a video onto the page. Remember, every second of delay can cause your brand thousands if not millions or billions.
- Reduce bounces by increasing speed.
DOM (Document Object Model) ready time of your site needs to be sped up in order to reduce lag and the resultant bounces. As we are already convinced that the loading time of your page is causing you valuable business, let us be ready to take any measures possible to speed things up.
- Decrease full page load time by optimizing the font and structure of your website and making sure that the redirect links are avoided.
Decreasing full page load time is proven to reduce bounces and it has to do a lot with your brand’s popularity.
- Caching can be a solution to multiple problems
With the advent of HTML5, using your browser’s local storage has become way easier. If you can cache some frequently required data it cancels the constant need of pulling data from the server. It helps your cause in ways more than one.
- As a lot of data is locally stored, the load time decreases.
- You save some expenses on server usage and bandwidth.
- Your site retains partial functionality even when the consumer is offline or your server is down for maintenance.
- Never considered using CDN services? It is about time you did
Content needs time to travel as does everything. Yes, it can travel to Amsterdam from New York in a blink, and thus even a single asset that adds a tiny bit latency matters a lot. Things would be so much better if your page could exist on multiple servers throughout the world so that wherever a customer peeps into your site, he or she sees it in full shape before getting annoyed. Content Delivery Network or CDN can do it for you. It can store your page in servers all over the world so that your page is at a blinking distance from any customer around the globe.
You can avail Google’s CDN services called ‘PageSpeed Service’ for free for a while but then you will be charged competitively. You can choose any other service at any time; a lot of them are available but none are free. So, if you are truly concerned about mobile page speed as you should be, it is worth the expense.
Minification involves removing every unnecessary object from the downloadable files. Avoid adding useless comments and get rid of any white space that your JS and CSS files might have and you are good.
- Index your database
If your website uses a database that stores loads of consumer information acquired through the site or social media or other sources then your browser goes through real pain when it has to pull out data from the huge storage. Whenever it needs some information it has to browse through hundreds of thousands of records. It takes time.
You can cure this problem by indexing your site’s database. If the things in the database are classified in proper order then it becomes really easy to pull out information as the browser knows where to look.
You, as a marketer, have worked real hard to ensure a strong online presence of your brand; do not let two seconds of delay take it all away. As per statistics, every second of delay costs your website 7% conversion rate. So implement these tactics and get the wheel spinning.
Framing up the above points in a nutshell:
- Optimize images and graphics to ensure only the necessary remains. Web pages with images up to 19 have shown better conversion rates. Get rid of unproductive elements.
- Review the font and structure of your page to ensure less full page loading time.
- Use Caching whenever applicable to have more mobile page speed.
- Employing Content Delivery Network services is a great way to enhance speed.
- Index your database to save your browser some effort and valuable time.
These tips are tested and applied and many have enjoyed the profits. So, employ these tactics by yourself or seek professional help from expert website designers, later being the wiser decision and enhance your mobile page speed along with your site’s conversion rate.