7 Common Causes of a Slow Website (and How to Speed It Up!)

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7 Common Causes of a Slow Website (and How to Speed It Up!)

A slow website can seriously impair user experience. We explain 7 common causes of slow loading website with tips on how to speed it up.

First impressions count when it comes to websites. But if you have a slow website, you might not even get a chance to introduce yourself. Mobile users are 123% more likely to click off a slow-loading website of ten seconds or more.

It does not matter if you have great content. Part of your SEO strategy also has to be how to speed up a website. Whether you have a slow WordPress site or another web hosting platform, a slow website has common causes.

If you are asking yourself, ‘why is my website slow?’, read on. Here are seven common reasons for a slow-loading website and what to do about them.

1. Unoptimised Images

Unoptimised images are one of the leading causes of a slow website. There are several reasons why your photos are loading slowly:

  • They are too large
  • In the wrong file format
  • All images load at once
  • No clear dimensions
  • The cache does not store images
  • Not optimised for all devices

Large images can take up bandwidth and increase your website’s size, which slows down the whole site. Other media files such as videos can also slow down your site. Unoptimised images also impact your SEO performance too.

How To Speed up a Website With Image Optimization

First, check which format your images are in and set image dimensions. For future images, upload into formats such as JPEG, which is a lighter format. You can also convert current images on your site with a reputable plugin.

You can also resize and compress images. You can compress and lose some quality or compress without losing any quality to your pictures. Image optimisation plugins can speed up the process.

You can use lazy load, so images only load when the user sees the photos. Be sure to check that your site is responsive, too, so images can load no matter the device.

2. Too Many Ads

Ads offer many benefits, especially for sites with high traffic. But they can also cause a slow-loading website. Ads can cause many HTTP requests, which means a slow or even unresponsive website.

How To Speed Up a Website With Ads

Do not overload your website with ads. Pick responsive ads to list and fewer media-heavy ads. You can also find ways to use time delay, so not all ads appear at one time.

3. Code Issues

It is an achievement to build a website, but code can have its issues. If you notice unclean code, such as white spaces or anything else that is unnecessary, it could be slowing your website as it needs more load time. Unless you have the resources to manage dense code, such as Google who has 2 billion lines, you need to clean it up.

How To Clean Up Code

Speed up your website by cleaning and minifying code. Minifying refers to removing unnecessary characters from your website code without damaging how your website works. If you do not feel comfortable doing this, many IT services offer this service.

You can also try to keep to one CSS stylesheet instead of many.

4. Multiple HTTP Requests

If your website has many Javascript, CSS, images, and other causes of a slow website, then there are too many HTTP requests. Excessive HTTP requests are often responsible for slow-loading websites. Every time someone visits your site, the browser sends too many requests to the server to load the files, which overloads the system.

How To Speed Up Your Website

The goal is to reduce the number of HTTP requests. The best way to do this is to minify your code and Javascript files. You can also address image optimisation issues.

Also, check how many external scripts you use, such as social feed plugins. Third-party and external scripts can also send unnecessary HTTP requests. Get rid of any you do not need or are willing to sacrifice.

5. No Content Delivery Service (CDN)

A CDN is a network of servers that are in different parts of the world. They work together to deliver internet content faster. The network caches content from the website, and the server closest to the person’s location will send the cached website content.

Use a CDN Network

Consider using a CDN network if you are not happy with your website loading speeds. CDN reduces the round-trip time and can improve website speed. If most of your traffic is local, it may not be worth it, but for international traffic, it can help.

6. No Caching Techniques

A cache is a temporary storage zone that helps load site information faster. Caching is the process of storing content you regularly visit, which increases how quickly the server can retrieve the data. If you are not using caching, it could be contributing to your slow-loading website.

How To Improve Caching

CDN can help cache your website. However, you can also start caching your website in other ways, such as browser and server caching. You can cache everything from HTTP to images.

7. Javascript Issues

Javascript can either aid or disable your website, dependable on how you use it. When Javascript is causes issues such as render-blocking and code bloat, you will have a slow website. The best way to check is through your browser for Javascript errors.

How To Fix Javascript

Take the time to audit your Javascript and remove anything you do not need. You can also use inline Javascript instead of external files, which can slightly improve site speed. You can also use asynchronous loading or defer script loading.

Improve Your Slow Website With Support

There are many reasons you can have a slow website. If you implement these changes and still have issues with a slow-loading website, it is time to get more support. Or get a professional service to optimise your website for you.

JW Host is a UK web hosting platform like no other. We can offer you a quality hosting platform that will enhance your website performance. We also provide additional services such as CDN, website care plans and managed WordPress hosting.

Contact us today to learn how we can support your website.