Nowadays, the average online customer expects nothing less than quick loading times and a seamless page experience to discover the best products or services on the web. In a world that celebrates instant gratification, users will no longer tolerate a poor page experience, especially when they know about the countless other options on the web.
If your website takes five seconds to load, up to 90% of your traffic may leave and not give your business a second thought. These grand expectations make page speed critical now more than ever. Having designed countless WordPress websites, Premiere Creative understands the ins and outs of website speed optimization. Follow these tips to keep your website’s speed and user experience up to code.
What Makes for a Good Page Experience?
Page experience focuses on how users feel about the experience of interacting with a particular webpage. While Google keeps algorithmic secrets under lock and key, the Premiere Creative team knows that Google uses several specific signals to gauge page experience, including:
- Core Web Vitals
- HTTPS for secure browsing
- Mobile friendliness
- Non-intrusive pop-ups or page interruptions to reduce the chances of annoying your visitors
Although Google places great emphasis on a website’s content and relation to a search query when assigning rank, a poor page experience will undeniably position your website at a disadvantage when making a statement on the web. Therefore, maintaining superior page speeds can give your business a competitive edge to overtake your industry rivals.
What are Core Web Vitals?
Core Web Vitals refer to specific metrics for gauging user experience, including loading speed, page responsiveness, and visual stability. Website owners can reliably use these scores to infer how a website fares in terms of usability:
- Largest Contentful Paint: How quick is the website’s loading performance, particularly in the first 2.5 seconds?
- First Input Delay: How well does the page react to user actions?
- Cumulative Layout Shift: How visually consistent is the site?
By regularly conducting website audits and improving these metrics, you offer a better browsing experience for your users.
How Page Speed Can Affect SEO and Page Experience
Increase your visibility on SERPs (Search Engine Result Pages) and satisfy all three aspects of Core Web Vitals by following these nine suggestions:
- Clean Unused Code: Did you ever change your website design? If so, you may discover CSS classes or customizations your website does not use anymore. Removing these bits of unused code will help cut file size and speech uploading times.
- Enable Caching: If you use a CMS such as WordPress, try looking for a caching plug-in, such as NitroPack. With various levels of paid subscriptions, NitroPack can simultaneously boost loading speeds while taking the burden off your database.
- Image & Video Optimization: In most cases, you will not need the image or video sizes at their absolute highest quality. Compress these larger media files or consider using third-party hosting to reduce loading times.
- Switch to Lazy Loading: Opt for lazy loading if you have a website saturated with images. Through lazy loading, the content below the visible screen does not download or render until the user scrolls down. WordPress plug-ins such as A3 Lazy Load or Lazy Load are both free options you can consider.
- Remove Redirect Chains: When a user gets redirected from one page to another multiple times and creates a loop; this impacts site speed and may result in an impatient customer. Reduce this frustration and try to minimize redirections as much as possible.
- Conduct a Plug-in Audit: Log onto your CMS and check the list of add-ons currently installed. You should uninstall any you do not use. You will also want to eliminate plug-ins with overlapping functions. Furthermore, some plug-ins may even conflict with others or your website theme. Thus, you can potentially resolve several functionality issues at once by tossing unused plug-ins.
- Upgrade Your Hosting Capabilities: When all else fails, add more short-term memory storage space (RAM) and processing power (CPUs) to your hosting. You may have to explore specialized IT services to make these changes.
How Can I Improve Page Experience?
Page speed is not the only thing you should focus on when working on SEO (Search Engine Optimization). The overall page experience is another thing to consider. Review these site features to ensure the best browsing experience for your users.
Most users today conduct searches on a mobile device rather than a desktop. Accordingly, your website design must be responsive so that users can easily read your website’s content even when they are on their phones. Consider shortening your paragraphs and reducing pop-ups for more comfortable reading. Although pop-ups are great for grabbing your reader’s attention, smaller screens make them harder to navigate and can also be annoying.
If you display ads from an ad network on your website, they may slow down your load time. Typically, the ad network requires you to add extra coding to fetch and serve ads on your website. Confirm that the ad network you use, such as Google Ads, does not negatively impact your site.
Regularly run security checks for malicious coding, malware, or viruses to keep your visitors’ information safe. If Google flags your site as compromised, you will lose a sizable faction of potential customers. Users may be unwilling to proceed to your site if they receive a warning message from Google. Furthermore, your website may not appear in SERPs at all, making it difficult for new customers to discover your content.
To ensure a safe and secure browsing experience for visitors, convert your website from HTTP to HTTPS. This aspect is particularly important if you want users to input confidential information such as credit card numbers for purchasing.
Revamp Your Website with Premiere Creative
Several critical factors go into making an engaging website. Each business – even in similar industries – has divergent needs, which makes building a unique site layout for increasing conversions laborious. Luckily, Premiere Creative’s talented web designers can develop the most effective design that is mobile-responsive, fast, and representative of your brand while sharing content important to your customers.
Whether you want to start your website from scratch or improve what you already have, call (973) 346-8100 today to connect with the Premiere Creative team. Our renowned website developers look forward to delivering a seamless website experience for your customers.