One of the big truths about the Internet and what is has done for society is that it has reinforced the NOW. Browsers want everything now, now, now. The accessibility of information and access to instant shopping and conversation has made the Internet all about speed. The biggest hurdle many businesses face with online sales is a slow loading web page. When you design a web page, it must be flawless and fast. Slow load times means that browsers have already closed the page. You have ten seconds or less to engage a customer, and if your page takes longer than that to load, say good bye to the sales opportunity. Businesses definitely don’t want to be the tortoise when it comes to web page load times, the cheetah would be a much better example. Slow and steady may get the job done in the end, but quick and complete is more in keeping with consumer demand. If you are unsure how to create a quick loading page below are some tips to help you get started.
- Optimise and Watch the Size of Graphics. There are ways to compress pictures for web display, and you can also chop an image so that it can load in pieces. Either method can improve your load times. Sometimes pictures are an essential part of web design, so good web programmers have created methods to give you quality images in record times. Chopping an image and loading the pieces as part of a table allow you to display the entire image much more quickly, and reducing the size of the image keeps quality high and load time low.
- Limit the Number of Graphics Per Page. Images are very slow to load. Even optimised and chopped images can create slow downs on page loading. To keep these delays minimal, it is important to keep the number of graphics displayed per page low.
- Avoid Special Effects. Yes, special effects can sometimes draw customer interest, but the fact is that most customers will be more interested in clean design, fast load times and quality content. If you have good content, you don’t need flashy effects.
Give your customers the maximum amount of time to browse your site. Online attention spans are very short, so maximise the time you have by reducing the load times for your pages.