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How to Increase Blog Loading Speed | Optimization Tips
If you have any queries like "How to increase my blog speed" or "How to make my blog load faster". These are the perfect solutions for you. Many search engines including Google, consider the page speed performance as an important aspect in SEO. Websites or blog with higher page load time are frustrating for the Internet surfers. In addition, slow blogs cannot attract advertisers.
Faster blogs provide a better user experience. Reducing page load times can reduce bounce rates and increase conversion rates.
What is page load time?
Page load time is the total time from the moment the user clicks on a link to your page until the time the entire page is loaded and displayed in a browser.
Things that makes web pages slow
There could be several reasons for slow webpage loading. The most common problems behind the slow loading time are:
- Widgets and plugins
- Large image size
- Space between the theme code (html, css, javscript etc)
- Social Media Buttons
- Bad theme coding
- Lot of animation
Check the Current Speed of the Blog
The first thing you will want to do is to analyze your current page speed. This allows you to track your improvement and ensure that any changes you make positively improves your page load performance.
Various free online tools are available for this purpose. Here are few of them which I like to use:
- Pingdom is an easy-to-use site speed test examines all parts of a web page.
- Page Speed Online from Google, analyzes the content of a web page, then generates suggestions to make that page faster. It gives your page speed score out of 100. This blog got an page speed score of 93 out of 100.
- Web Page Test is another good tool that shows you the speed and performance of your website in different browsers.
- Which Loads Faster shows you page loading comparisons between two sites.
I would recommend to test the loading time both for your blog homepage and the post page. This is because the page speed of homepage and the post page may vary a lot in some cases due to widgets and plugins only installed for the post page.
How to speed up your blog
I have shown the most common practices below which will surely increase your blog's loading speed. Remember, speed optimization is not a one time process. You have to keep the speed factor in mind every-time you write a new article on your blog.
Use right theme/template
The theme or template you choose can make a big difference. Many bloggers make the mistake of choosing a free theme. Every blogger should go for premium themes. Premium themes are more carefully coded and optimized than free ones.
Its not always about choosing the paid themes, its about choosing the right and nicely coded theme. A free theme can do wonders for your blog if it is nicely coded.
Every single whitespace takes up one byte. You should remove whitespace from your theme coding which can reduce the page load time significantly by about 5% to 10%.
One disadvantage of compressing code or removing space is it becomes too difficult if you need to edit the code later. So I would advice to take a backup of the code and then compress it. White space can be removed manually or you can use some of the tools available online:
- CSS compressor : http://www.csscompressor.com
- Clean CSS : http://www.cleancss.com
- HTML code compressor : Text fixer
Remove useless widgets and plugins
Some bloggers have a habit to fill up the blog space with extra plugins or widgets because they think it will make their blog look cool. Actually the coolest blog design is the one which is very simple and aesthetically pleasing.
Avoid unnecessary plugins. The less plugins you have on your blog, less time it takes to load. Remove any extra widgets and plugins you’re using on your blog, which are not necessary. Only use plugins which are really needed for your site.
Use a good web hosting service
Hosting plays an important role in your blog’s loading speed. You should review your host because it can make much difference. Shared hosting can slow down load times. If you can't afford dedicated host at least don't go for free hosting. Majority of the free web hosting have poor uptime rate and comparing to paid hosting they are very slow.
A website with no image would make your webpage damn fast but it’s not possible to avoid images on your website. A good illustration on your website not just makes you website look elegant, it also helps the visitors to understand the content quickly.
Use the appropriate file format for your images. Changing to a different file format can decrease the file size of an image:
- JPEG format should be used for images with lots of colors and details like realistic images.
- GIF format is ideal for images with few colors like logos & clip-arts.
- PNG should be used when you need high quality transparent images. PNG is the right choice for images with text, webcomics, graphs or images having more white space.
You can compress images to a smaller size without loss in image quality with various online tools and software. You can use Adobe Photoshop to make the Image Size Smaller and remove the excess white space.
Use social images instead of buttons
Social network buttons take so much time to load, and can really slow your blog down. Displaying two or three buttons might be okay, but if you want to show all the buttons, I’d suggest you use images instead like I have used (see besides blog logo).
Minimize HTTP Requests
Want any more information on decreasing your webpage's page load times? Ask us by commenting below.