You may be wondering why our website is so slim.
No flashy loading, no scrolling images, just pure information.
The answer is simple…
Website speed is paramount!
In this article, we won’t tell you how to optimize for speed – that’s for a later article.
Simply, why you should optimize for speed, and why our site does away with all but the essentials.
The Importance of Website Speed
If you haven’t heard, website speed is becoming ever more important.
It’s not just us saying that. Here are some quotes on site speed, from experts in the industry:
“2 seconds is the threshold for ecommerce website acceptability. At Google, we aim for under a half second.” Maile Ohye, Google
“For an ecommerce site making $100,000 a day, a 1 second delay in page speed can result in $2.5 million lost annually!” KissMetrics
“These days, even 400 milliseconds — literally the blink of an eye — is too long.” NYTimes
So, it’s clear that a fast website is a must!
Is Website Speed the Most Important Metric?
There’s no simple answer to this question, as it varies from site to site.
If you’ve recently started your website, then it’s unlikely you’ll need to worry about speed much. We would recommend doing minor optimizations using plugins. However, content, technical SEO, and other factors are of higher importance to get the initial traffic influx.
If you’ve already got a site up and running, even then site speed might not be the most important factor. It’s ideal to compare your metrics to your competitors. If you’re on par or better than don’t fret. There are even scenarios where worse speed sites rank better. However, as a rule of thumb we like all of our clients to have better speeds than their competitors. Getting solid speed metrics isn’t too difficult, and with hundreds of metrics required for ranking, every little helps.
However, if you run a large site, with tens of thousands of visitors per month, then a great website speed is an absolute must! Optimising larger websites can be difficult but it’s essential, not just for rankings, but also for user experience. Slow sites discourage users, and you could be losing new and existing customers if your website is slow to load.
Different Speed Metrics
When you’re optimizing a website for the best speeds, there are numerous metrics you can look at.
There are also plenty of website speed tools, and each will have its pros and cons. Furthermore, each SEO team will have a different preference.
At SEOTech, we prefer using 3 tools:
As you might suspect, Google PSI, is the most important one. While it doesn’t give a large amount of data, it gives you access to the factors that are most important to Google. When looking at PSI, you should always prioritize mobile view as since March 2018 Google has moved to mobile-first indexing.
The metrics that we find the most important are:
- Page Size & Compression
- Browser Caching
- Page Load Time and more specifically Time to First Byte
If you check any of the tools above, you’ll see that the SEOTech website is pretty well optimized.
If you’d like us to help you achieve similar results, then get in contact with us. We will also have a dedicated article in the near future, on how to optimize your site yourself.
As a side note, having a fast and slim website is also good for the environment!
According to a 2016 study by Berkeley 1.8% of Americas electricity consumption is by data centers alone. That doesn’t take into consideration any other factors such as ISPs, devices being used, etc.
Therefore it’s safe to say that the internet has a considerable impact on our energy use.
If we can reduce the size of a website, it will:
- Load faster and hence use less electricity
- Require fewer resources to run
- Require a smaller server
So if you have a well-optimized website, you’ll be saving the planet, spending less on website resources, and have happier clients!
It’s a win-win all around in our opinion.
How We Slimmed Down Our Site
To slim down our site and optimize it as best as we’ve could we’ve done the following.
- Using fonts instead of images for social icons
- Only loading text fonts that are required
- No flashy animations
- Vector based images as the more colors are in an image, the larger it is, and harder to compress
- Image compression
Bear in mind that these steps make sense to us.
Your website and business differ. Just because it works for us, doesn’t mean it will work for you.
And yes, we might bring in some additional features down the line, or even try to optimise further.
However, for now, we’re extremely happy with the way that our site loads and behaves. (A CDN is in the pipeline, but we’ll wait for some more traffic to justify it first.)
Is a Slim Website for Everyone?
Ok, so we’ll expand on that answer a bit, but a slim website won’t work for everyone.
There are sites, where animations and different fancy effects can set you apart. A few examples could be designers, photographers, video editors, and so on.
However, even large sites such, as Apple, are now moving to slim no fancy websites. And if we can be sure of one thing, it’s that Apple has the largest UI costs on the planet.
Do You Need Help With your Website?
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