When I was young my parents had a red Subaru hatchback. We’d take that little car camping all over the backcountry, and we’d load enough stuff for a family of four to survive the wilderness for a weekend (and then some) on top of the roof–including a wooden canoe! Loaded up like that, her bumpers barely cleared the road and she sure didn’t win any awards for speed. But, she did get us to where we wanted to go… eventually.
Your website is an awful lot like a car.
If you’re happy with a slow site, feel free to load up as much as you want. Just realize that few people on the internet are as patient as we were in that hatchback, and they won’t wait around for eventually.
So how about we look at what you can do to help your website perform better?
Don’t load canoes on your site
Well, not literal canoes. I’m talking about heavy items like really big images or long videos or other files. The more of these you have on a single page the slower your page will load. There are things we can do on our end to help you out but that carousel with six images? That’s a canoe. You’d be better off with a single hero image containing a call to action relevant to your current promotion, rather than six images with six different calls to action which may never even be seen by a visitor!
Reduce the amount of stuff you’re packing
It’s easy to overpack for a camping trip and it’s even easier to overpack your website. Every chatbot, image, special font, tracking pixel, or web beacon will add to your load time.
The worst place to overpack is on your homepage, and this is where we see the worst performance for most websites! Your homepage is important, it is the first page most site visitors will see, but if you overpack your homepage:
- It will take a while to load which will lose you visitors AND ranking in search engine results.
- There will be visual clutter, which distracts visitors from converting the way you want.
Overpacking your homepage usually happens because the conversion goal for the page isn’t clear; examine what your goals are and revise your strategy for your homepage.
Don’t expect a family hatchback to perform like a Ferrari
The fastest cars are designed from the ground up to be light and powerful from inception to rollout. Anything that would slow down a Ferrari is thrown out before it hits the assembly line. It’s the same for websites. The best performing websites I’ve ever built have been designed for speed from conception to creation.
If you already have a website loaded down with canoes it’s more of a challenge to get it to go fast. You have to rethink your strategy and concentrate on what’s truly important, your conversion goals, and ditch the rest.
Do you want to speed up that old red hatchback with the canoe on top? Well just contact your Online Marketing Manager –or firstname.lastname@example.org— and we can help you determine your goals, so we can pack only the essentials and get you there faster!