One of the most important things that any web-designer is advised to take into consideration is how long does it take to load his or her web-page. The issues connected to site-speed are very common, and they have to be dealt with on a regular basis.
As most of you probably already know, both the site-speed and the page loading time are incorporated into Google’s algorithms for determining the Page Rank of your site. In plain words, if your web-site is slow, it will be poorly ranked and thus, the potential chance for the popularity of your page will be decreased drastically. Keep in mind that Google is under constant development, so it is virtually impossible to be aware of all their changes in algorithm and related updates at all times.
Now, Google offers the, so called Page Speed Service, and it is said to be something that “automatically speeds up the loading speed of your web-site”. With this service, Google asks you to send them the entire web-project, and they will “have it optimized” for you. Namely, they modify it in various ways, and, in the end, the version of the web-site that they make does load faster. The service is free, but there is a rumor that this will not last forever. You can say that it is only logical that, after some time passes, Google will be able to charge for their optimizing services, again, due to the constant development of this company.
First of all, it is important to state that the load time of any page is dependent on many factors. However, the most important ones are connected to images, animations, and other web-design experiments. So, here is a list of some tools where you can check your site speed:
This web-site can be used as a tool to analyze the performance of your page. It combines Firefox performance add-ons like Yslow with Google Page Speed. The site, also, gives suggestions on how to improve your site both in terms of speed and some other things.
This is a very important tool, particularly if you have a large web-site that is viewed by a great number of visitors regularly. With the free account you can examine the loading impact just with 50 simulated users. For anything more than that, you have to purchase a premium account.
This web-site can be used to emulate a regular browsing experience. It downloads your entire page along with all the images, CSS, JS, and all other files, just like an ordinary visitor. Then, you get a report where you see in detail which files are loaded and how fast this is done. With this report you can determine what you need to improve in order to reduce the loading time.
If you follow the link above, you will be able to see just how your web-site gets loaded with different internet speeds. If you can optimize your site so that it can be loaded fast with a low net speed, you show how much you care about your visitors. Some web-developers and designers have created special designs for their web-site dedicated to all those people that will have problems loading the page, if their original web-site is very complex. This is a good move, because you will vastly enlarge the popularity of your web-site.
This is an application that you can use for testing the performance of your web-site. It is an open source framework, so you can edit it as you like. With it you can run many python scripts at the same time to simulate loading in comparison to another web-site. This is an excellent way to both keep track of and stand out from the competition.
So, in conclusion, I think that everything stated above is enough to get you started on improving your web-site loading speed. Keep in mind that you can use this to attract many new clients. I cannot give enough emphasis on the fact that if you have a site that loads very slowly, you will lose a lot of traffic. So, get to work as soon as you can. Also, feel free to search for additional help.