Meta: Are your customers frustrated by slow or lagging load time? Continue reading to find out how to optimize your e-commerce site’s speed and boost sales today.
When it comes to establishing your own e-commerce site for your small business or large corporation, you must ensure it is as accessible and user friendly as possible. This can build customer loyalty and trust and allow you to convert more sales. Continue reading to find out why your e-commerce site could be negatively impacted by slow load times and how to alleviate the problem.
1. Page sizes are too large
If your page sizes are too large, your website will suffer from slow load time. The ‘heavier’ a page is, the longer it will take to load. So, it might be a good idea to take a look at your website design and check if there is anything making your page too large and slowing down your site. Page size depends on a number of factors including HTML, CSS, images, scripts, and multimedia. To limit your page sizes, you should review your website and remove any unused or unnecessary elements. Some JS and CSS files can also be merged to limit server requests and speed up load time. Images are a common culprit when it comes to slow load times. By removing or resizing large images, you can ensure your e-commerce site is functioning accordingly and your online domain is as user friendly as possible.
2. The wrong web hosting provider
Web hosting allows businesses to make their website visible to prospective customers on the world wide web. The web hosting provider you choose can affect the speed at which your website loads and operates. You must choose a web hosting provider with the best loading speed. As a general rule, most search engines tend to prioritize websites with the fastest loading speeds over poorly performing sites.
As a result, your website could be getting lost in the pile. Don’t be tempted to choose the cheapest option for website hosting. By familiarizing yourself with the average loading speed of your web hosting provider, you can retain your existing customer base and prevent consumers from abandoning their purchase at the first hurdle. Some web hosting providers also provide additional features for e-commerce sites, so your business is equipped with the best platform to sell online.
Image Source: Unsplash.
3. Too many third-party extensions
Third-party extensions were designed to streamline the entire purchase process on e-commerce sites. Whilst this may be the case for most of them, some or too many can impede the functionality of your website in the long run. This is due to poor quality combined with poor coding practices. To fix this problem, you should revise all third-party extensions and delete unused plug-ins or those with far greater disadvantages than advantages. If you are able to do so, it may also benefit you and your customers to fix any coding errors that are contributing to slow load time. There is a fine line between the right number of third-party extensions and too many. Knowing where to draw the line can have a positive impact on your website as well as your brand.
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4. Too many HTTP requests
Each time a request is made on your website, a HTTP request is submitted. With this process being repeated each time the browser is required to fetch a file from your server, your website is guaranteed to suffer from slow load time. There are however a number of steps you can take to reduce the amount of HTTP requests. Reducing the file size of existing images is a great way to reduce the length of time required to make a HTTP request. As a result, load times will be significantly lower. You can also combine a series of images using CSS Sprites. With this handy tool, you can display a bundle of images with just one HTTP request as opposed to multiple.
5. Broken links
A broken link is a hyperlink to a webpage on your website that no longer exists. As each server request still requires a HTTP request, this could be eating up memory and slowing download time. By taking the time to check for broken links on a regular basis, you can ensure your site is being subjected to regular upkeep and maintenance and provide a great user experience for new and existing customers. If your website is relatively large or complex, there are several broken link checkers available online free of charge. By failing to remove broken links within an appropriate length of time, your customers may become frustrated by dead ends and take their business elsewhere which can cost your business money in lost sales. This can lead to a loss of customer retention as well as profits over time. To guarantee the success of your e-commerce site, it pays to be observant.
Slow load time is one of the most common complaints for customers of e-commerce sites. By taking steps to prevent this problem from occurring, you can maximize site traffic and boost profits. A website that is accessible and user friendly is key in today’s oversaturated digital landscape.