One very quick and easy way to put off the visitors to your website is to force them to sit for more than a minute, just waiting for everything on the page to load. Broadband technology has been quickly adopted around the world, but it isn’t present everywhere, so don’t assume that your website is fine because it loads quickly on your own 20Mb connection. Instead, utilise some of the following tips and tricks to optimise your website design, helping it to load quickly for all of your prospective visitors.
Tip 1 – Minimise the use of images
There is no denying that the use of images can certainly enhance a website design, but too many images can drastically slow down its performance. Consider some very successful websites such as eBay or Amazon, or even Google; you won’t see many images as load time for these internet giants is very important. Stick to a minimalistic website design and it will look professional and load quickly.
Tip 2 – Utilise CSS
CSS, or Cascading Style Sheets, allow a website browser to quickly load your webpages, because it only needs to read the information regarding the formatting of your pages once. Without the use of CSS, a browser will need to gather this information each time a visitor clicks onto a different page within your website.
Tip 3 – Keep your pages short
Content will obviously load more quickly on a shorter page than a longer one, so if you find yourself with a long scroll bar why not split your content into several shorter sections? Not only will this improve your load time, but it might even encourage your visitors to stay as particularly long scroll bars can certainly be daunting, as our attention spans online are not overly long.
Tip 4 – Use Flash only when necessary
Flash websites can look incredible, but they can also feature the longest loading times of all other sites on the web. Use Flash within HTML code for quicker loading, rather than creating an entire website through it, and only use it where it is really necessary, and where no other alternative will work.
Tip 5 – Reduce the number of different fonts
Believe it or not, using many different fonts can actually slow down how quickly your website will load. Cluttering up your content with a range of different font styles is also not very easy on the eye, so pick your favourite and stick to it. If you need to emphasise different points use other features of your font such as bold, italics, underline or even a larger font size.
These five simple tips will help your website design to load quickly on any internet connection. However, before announcing your site to the world why not take advantage of one of the free online tools that will calculate a load time for you? If it is unacceptably long, go through these tips again and see if there is more optimisation that you can do to help your website to load as quickly as possible.