The Internet is a huge virtual environment and as such there is a lot of people putting up blogs, social posts and of course websites. A website is a virtual real estate where you can do anything from talk about your cat fluffy to selling the hottest product and service that will revolutionize the way we live. One issue people have when it comes to websites is the time it takes to load.
If you visit a site on multiple occasions the site will be cached in your browser. What caching is, is your web browser downloading a copy of the website to your local computer. What the browser will do is go and check to see if there are any updates to the site. If there are the browser will download the new changes and show you the site. If there aren’t any changes to the site then your browser will show you the cached version. By doing this it will help make frequently visited sites load faster.
But what if you haven’t been to that site before or if the site is new to the Internet? What can you do as a web developer or someone who hires a web developer to ensure that your website loads as quickly and efficiently as possible? Let’s face it, we are now living in a got to have it now society and we don’t want to wait for anything.
- One thing that you can do is have your designer develop your site using PHP or another scripting language. By using a scripting language such as PHP the designer not only has the power to give you a more interactive website but with PHP the site can send back information faster since it is compartmentalized on the server as well as items are stored to be more efficient.
- If for some reason you or your developer don’t want to use PHP or another scripting language for your site you will want to make sure that your developer makes the content on the sites short and sweet. Make the content on your pages smaller and more compact. Don’t try to say something in 1000 words that can be said in 500 or even 250. The more content you try to cram into website the longer it will take the server to grab it and send it off to the user.
- Another thing that you can do is choose a dedicated hosting company. Most people use budget shared hosting companies. A shared hosting company is a company that has several different people using the same computer to host their sites. Now if someone on the server you are on has a popular site it can force the bandwidth to slow down which could cause your sites to be slow. So if you have a popular site or a site that will become popular you may want to look into getting a dedicated server to ensure that your stuff isn’t slow for the visitors.
- Make your sites short and sweet. What I mean by this is you don’t want to put more on your site than you need to have there. You will want to remove white space to make your text fit. Instead use tables or div tags. Make sure that the images that you have are optimized and are as small as possible. When I mean small I am talking about KB size. Of course you want to make your images professional and clear but you still want them to load fast. You don’t want grandma sitting in front of the computer for an hour waiting for a picture of baby Timmy to load in his soccer uniform.
- When you are dealing with a programmer or web developer make sure that they know what they are dong. You don’t want someone to fill your site up with excess code that isn’t doing anything and dragging down your bandwidth. You want your sites to be optimized and your code clean so that the search engine spiders will find it and rank you on the terms and keywords that you want and not get your rank lowered just because your developer wanted to try out a new piece of code.
- Plan your site from start to finish. One thing that I have found is that people want the world to happen from a simple website. They want to promote a thousand items, have all the cool features, neat gadgets and items like video, audio, games or whatever just cluttering up the website just because they think it is cool. The truth is you want to design your site in a way that will get your result.
- If your result is to fill out a form to collect an e-mail address then that is what your site should be about. If you are selling something directly to the consumer then you will want to get that message across. No matter what you want to do or what you are trying to do make sure that your site reflects that and is not filled with a bunch of content and files that will never be seen or utilized by the visitor.
- The most important thing I guess I am trying to get across to you in regards to getting your site to load up quickly for the visitor is to design the site for the visitor. The visitor doesn’t care how you get an image or a video on the screen, all they care is that they get it as quickly as possible. So design your sites accordingly.
- And the final thing that I want to say about getting your sites to load quickly is this, test your sites on multiple browser platforms and at different connection speeds. You will also want to test these at different times of the day and on different days of the week. Just because you design your site for ultimate optimization doesn’t mean that it is working that way. There are a lot of factors that go into getting your site to load quickly and efficiently. I have just mentioned a few of them here. The biggest key is to keep tweaking and testing to see how your site performs.