In truth there are quite literally still millions of dial-up internet users out there. Remember that your website exists for the benefit of your visitors and customers and a fraction of them will have slow internet connections. Just because a visitor has a slow internet connection doesn't mean they don't want to buy things from your e-shop module or enjoy your website. They will click away very fast if they find your website doesn't load quickly enough. If anything, as the internet has become faster, attention spans have gotten shorter. Your page loading time will even improve your search engine ranking now that Google uses site speed in their ranking algorithm. For all these reasons, I have prepared some easy tips to help you get your website is off the mark before its competitors:
Images and graphics are the main culprit when it comes to slowing down a website's page load time. Always say it with plain text where you can or use small thumb-nails instead of the full graphic. Remember that even a massive website that is all plain text will load significantly faster than even one single largish image. It is nice to show off the artistic qualities of your design but if it is at the expense of your visitors experience then it is detrimental. You should also try to use image-manipulation software to make your images the right size for the page. Try out PIXResizer, for example. You should avoid re-sizing your images from within uCoz (using coding languages such as HTML, CSS and such) without re-rendering them at the right size because the web browser will still have to load the whole image and then just squish it when it comes time to render it; this will take time. Try and avoid having duplicate images to by keeping all the images for your website in one folder because your website should, as much as possible, load from the cache (memory) of your visitor’s computer. Identical images with different file-names will get in the way of this. You should also try and avoid using animations and use a static, properly re-sized, image where possible.
Try and minimize the use of tables in your website if you can. Your web browser (Internet Explorer, Firefox and other browsers) don't display the contents of a table until it has loaded all the elements within it, so if your entire website is contained within a table, it's going to take a while to load. This will be an issue for users that decide to make their own template from tables. If you must use tables in your website, create as many different tables as you can. A different table should be employed for at least the header, body and footer of your website. That way, at least part of the web-page will appear to your visitor should they have a slow internet connection. Consider this, instead of tables, use CSS (there is a CSS style sheet in Control Panel -> Design Customization) to keep your page organized.
Some of the scripts out there can be fun but in an attempt not to mince words on the subject, it's 'fancy-shmancy'. Little applications that show the user what the weather is doing in their part of the world, for example, are fairly pointless and slow down their web-surfing experience. If your visitor wants to know what the weather is doing outside, they can look out the window. You should consider scripts to be a luxury item and the rule here is, if it isn't essential, loose it!
Adding videos to your site can also slow down your website significantly. If you absolutely must stream, make sure your videos are small in file size. A really fantastic way to save on website speed is to embed videos into your site that you have uploaded to YouTube. You can get the HTML embed code from the video at YouTube, or you can just use the BB tags (as displayed below) and just put the link in the middle. If that doesn't work then just use the embed code at YouTube. Also another great thing about YouTube is that the videos don't auto start so it won't slow the users internet down unless they decide to watch the video.
Embedding videos in this way also saves on the scripts you’ll have to add to your site for the video player to work and means that your website will function faster. The more you distance the content of your site from the HTML file that “builds” it, the faster your site will load. As an added bonus, the link to Google’s YouTube will even help the Search Engine Optimization (SEO) of your site and the more links to YouTube, the better!
Optimizing your page load time for your visitors will mean them a better experience and they will return to your website. Making a website for your visitors is extremely important. You must consider all the options and always optimize your site for them. Streamline your site, spread out your content neatly and stick to simple designs. All the really fast loading sites do...