Performance Boost: A Refresher on Speeding Up Your Web Sites
May 20, 2011
The Yahoo! Developer Network’s Exceptional Performance team wrote a fairly famous article in the web designer and developer circles that offers up 35 best practices to make your web pages faster. This article, entitled simply, Best Practices for Speeding Up Your Web Site, offers a staggering statistic that 80% of the end-user’s response time is spent at the front end of loading a page.
Consider taking a few minutes to read or re-read Best Practices for Speeding Up Your Web Site. While it’s unreasonable to think that any given web site would be able to follow every single best practice laid out, it’s a wonderful goal. You can do wonders for your web site just by reviewing the best practices document side-by-side with your web site.
It makes sense that talking back and forth with a server, asking for a file, waiting for a response and then downloading it is going to take time. Any way to reduce these server back-and-forth communications is going to be a positive for performance.
They fall into two categories:
1. Limiting the times a web page has to talk to the server.
2. Limiting the size of the files being received from the server.
By the way, this particular set of optimizations also can be a nice search engine optimization tweak as well. Fewer external files referenced also means the content — the meat of your page, shows up higher in the page for all those search engine spiders.
Minimizing files can be a fairly simple task as well. When saving out graphics for web pages, use programs that allow images to be saved for the web and allow you to tweak quality settings. The best balance of size versus quality will make your site’s speed soar.
These are just a few easy things you or your web team can address to speed your site up. Take a look at the full document for more ideas on how to tweak some more speed from your web properties.
The faster your site loads, the faster your audience can consume your content. Plus, rumor has it that search engines factor in site performance when it comes to ranking search results as well.