Do you often click on a web page, see that it takes too long to load and you just skip it or close it down?
I do and I’m quite a patient person.
So how long is too long?
1 minute – definitely
20 seconds – yep
10 seconds – getting better
Your web pages have to load under 10 seconds, otherwise you could be losing a lot of potential visitors.
So how do you check and what can you do about it?
Using a free tool like Pingdom will tell you how long your site took to load and the potential bottlenecks that are slowing the loading time.
When I first tested the home page of this blog, it took just under 10 seconds. Using the results from Pingdom, it’s now just over 6 seconds – a 40% improvement.
And in my experience, by far the most common thing that slows down the loading of sites is ‘images’.
These days more and more people are adding images to their blog posts. But often the web owners don’t ‘optimize’ the images. They take the image or copy the image and load it and that’s it.
Those images you insert into your web pages can often be huge in size.
So my recommendation is always optimise your images.
For instance, by optimizing the images in this post, I reduce their size by 31% with minimal degradation (if any) in image quality.
Do that for all the images on your web pages and that can amount to some serious time saving when loading.
So how do you optimize your images?
Use a free tool called IrFanView (for Windows only).
Download and install.
Then simply open your image using IrFanView.
Then you have a number of simple and easy to use facilities to:
Plus lots of other facilities.
After changing the image as you wish, simply ‘save as’, select a JPG type file and slide the ‘save quality’ in the pop-up window to 85 or even 80. I’ve found using 80 makes little difference to the quality of the image but often reduces the size by 30%.
Click on ‘save’ and you’re done.
Then install the newly saved image rather than the original.
Do that to the images on your home page, go back to test on Pingdom and see what improvements you make.
As I say I made a 40% improvement just by optimising my images.
Let us know what improvements you experience.