Every business owner knows that in order to succeed you must utilize the technology solutions available today. Without an online presence, your success and growth may be stunted.
If you’re thinking about upgrading your communication and productivity, a good rule of thumb is to do so as soon as you have at least five employees.
When your team have internet access to do their work, you cut out a lot of time wasted. With simple data, online connectivity and a digital or mobile device, everyone does their job more thoroughly.
Cloud-based Environments and the Need for Speed
However, a challenge that many enterprises using cloud-based technology face is lack of speed. Research shows that most people won’t wait for even more than two seconds for a website page to load.
In this day and age of speedy information and technology, consumer needs are even greater. People want results—and they want it fast.
If their first impression of you and your website is that it’s slow, this will make them unsure of your end performance. Are you willing to risk a bad first impression?
What Are the Statistics Telling Us?
If you need better search engine rankings to win potential customers over, having a slow-loading website won’t do anything to help. In fact, you’ll only lose clients that way. And what about the financial risks? Well, according to statistics from Kissmetrics:
· 79% of online shoppers say a slow website will stop them returning to it.
· 40% of people will abandon your website if it’s taking longer than three minutes to load the homepage
· Say you have an e-commerce site and are making $100,000 per day. You could risk losing $2.5 million a year due to slow-loading pages.
Better IT Decisions Really Do Lead to Better Sales
This is why it’s not just important, but vital for you to make good technology decisions. If you are using or offering websites and mobile applications, assuring great performance is key.
The question we get a lot is, “How do I improve my website and app performance? How do I know if I’m missing my targets and losing out on customer satisfaction?”
Thankfully, today you have tech options and tools for this. There are also ways to measure your website digitally and see if you’re really getting the most out of its performance. Some of these found online are free and open-source tools.
What Are the Website Performance Indicators You Should Monitor?
Aside from speed, what else tells you if your digital presence is as top-notch as it should be? Here are some tips:
1. Uptime vs. Downtime
Downtime is when your website is down and non-functional for even more than two minutes. This is crucial if your sales rely heavily on online connections. Workflow and income can be highly disrupted, jeopardizing not just your finances but your company reputation, too.
Checking your key pages and how they might load on different digital devices can give you an overall view of how your uptime is functioning.
2. Full Page Load Time
Essentially, this is the entire time it takes for one page to fully load. Ensure you make it easy for your consumers by not cluttering your page with unnecessary videos or chunky graphics. You improve the user overall experience when you focus on speed.
But this isn’t the only reason. Did you know that Google will take your page speed into account as one of the algorithm’s ranking factors? If you want to be found online easier and make search engines love you, focus on speed.
3. Dead Links
This is a huge no-no in website design! Always check for any dead or broken links. They are just plain frustrating and will give an impression of sloppiness and unprofessionalism. Plus, if they are on a sales page, broken links will affect sales conversions. This will lead to a dip in your overall page rankings and a decline in visitors and sales.
There are online tools such as W3C Link Checker that can scan and help to check your website. Perhaps you didn’t intend to insert a broken link, but you may have changed a page name and the URLs need to be re-linked. There are many reasons why dead links may appear on your website.
What Are Some Ways to Performance-Tune Your Website?
There are a few things you can do today that will ensure the quality, performance, and speed of your website. Here are just a few:
1. Check Your Images
High-quality images resized to fit the optimal scale, and Images that are tagged with the keywords your readers are looking for are best.
2. Balanced Text and Images
While your images may be cute or nice to look at, too many or the wrong formats can slow down your site. Make sure you have a good balance of striking visuals, plus texts. If there are too many pictures, exchange them for optimized text instead.
A common mistake some people make when setting up their website is copy/pasting a bunch of HTML from other applications. This results in the overuse of complex HTML, causing slow-loading pages. You must ensure that your site can load on all types of browsers.
Technology at your disposal.
As technologists here are a few things we do to squeeze out the extra RPM’s.
1. Use a CDN
Contend Delivery Networks are services that help get static files – normally images and video – to your users faster. They do this by being distributed across the world so that requests and data don’t have to travel as far. They also help alleviate bandwidth problems on your server by offloading larger content to the network rather than using your servers bandwidth to deliver the files.
2. Minify & Combine
Modern websites use a lot of CSS and JS code. These file don’t need to be human readable when in production. Significant space and bandwidth can be saved by passing them through a process called minification. This process takes out extra spaces and replaces variable names with shorter ones. Another common step is to then combine all the CSS and JS into single includes. This reduces the number of HTTP request a browser has to make to display a site. Each round trip to the server can add 30-100ms depending on server speed and distance, reducing the request count can improve site responsiveness.
3. Propper Cacheing
There are many levels of cache used by today’s web browsers. Making sure your site is configured to correctly use these caches is important. Browsers try and make the best use of bandwidth and only download files when they need to. If your server isn’t responding with the right cache headers or is preventing the browser from caching files your users will have to download the files more often than needed. It is also important to have proper caching inside your application. Accessing third-party APIs can be slow and expensive operations. Adding a proper server-level cache of these operations can significantly speed up the response time of a project.
Design and IT Development Solutions
There are many more technical issues that can make or break your website–and eventually, your business.
While you can find many free tools online for monitoring speed and growth, it’s better to get professional help. IT is a huge task and can go way over your head if you’re not aware of technical details.
Having a firm do this with you can improve site and app performance. If you outsource this part of your company’s needs, you won’t need to stress over losing out on sales and growth.
Phalanx Digital is an ad agency offering an extensive range of services such as website testing, website development, design and digital production. From advertising and marketing to digital sales and online advertising, it’s our job to help you reach your business goals and ensure quality for your clients.
We know what works in today’s interconnected world. Give us a call today and let’s work together!