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How To Optimize Your Website Using Google’s PageSpeed Insights

October 13, 2018 |
Technology, Web Design
Google’s PageSpeed Insights

Today, the entire web revolves around Google, and therefore it becomes very critical to analyse our websites based on Google’s algorithm, to do necessary changes. According to Google, a website can lose almost half of its visitors while loading. This highlights the importance and criticality of keeping the page load times to a minimum, to maximize user experience. That’s valuable information, but what’s the next step? Google’s PageSpeed Insights tools may be just what you need to leverage data collected through speed testing.

PageSpeed Insights

There are a lot of factors like too many large images, files, and plugins, which slow down a website speed or server response times and that is where PageSpeed testers come in. It’s a known fact that Google offers a variety of helpful resources for web developers and PageSpeed Insights is just one of the many free web performance tools that can help you check your speed score, boost your page load times and significantly improve the user experience. PageSpeed Insights is designed to direct your actions against slow speeds, resulting in bad performance. You’ll get a swift operation across all devices.

PageSpeed Insights is not an advanced level tool (which developers use for advanced analysis of slow load times), but a relatively lower-level tool that is useful for small websites, particularly those that run on a content management system (CMS) like WordPress.

To use PageSpeed Insights, all you have to do is enter a URL into the address bar on the PageSpeed Insights page, then click “analyze.” The test will take a few seconds to complete, and results for both mobile and desktop devices will be displayed in separate tabs. You’ll want to repeat this test for each page on your site or at least those with concerning speed issues.

Now that you know about Google PageSpeed Insight, here’s how you can optimize your website to achieve a better page speed using the insights from PageSpeed.

Optimize Images

High-quality, heavy images are the most common factor contributing to slow loading of a web page. This warning from Insights is best solved by installing a plugin such as Optimus Image Optimizer from KeyCDN. With a bulk optimization feature and a focus on compression without any loss, this plugin can drastically decrease the image size, without affecting the quality. With one click, you can compress your entire existing library, and all images will be compressed upon upload. To top it up, the plugin can compresses images to the .webp format, which can be used in combination with WordPress Cache Enabler to ensure much faster download.

Minify Javascript And CSS

Minification is the process of removing unnecessary or redundant data without affecting how the resource is processed by the browser. A Javascript or CSS issue can be highlighted by the PageSpeed Insight tool and it can also be fixed by installing a plug-in. The Plugin by the name of Autoptimize is the best way to deal with this issue. Within Autoptimze’s settings, you have the option to enable HTML, JavaScript, and CSS code optimization.

Render-Blocking Resources Above the Fold

Any JavaScript or CSS file that is above the fold is render-blocking. This issue can crop up from two sources – JavaScript/CSS files and Fonts. If the issue is of JavaScript/CSS files, it can be fixed by saving the following settings in Autoptimize:

Uncheck “Force JavaScript in <head>” under the JavaScript Options section
Check “Inline all CSS?” under the CSS Options section.

Some fonts can be problematic since they use CSS above the fold. Depending on what type of font you use, whether it’s Font Awesome, Google Fonts or any other type of font, all workarounds require you to bring these elements below the fold code-wise.

Use Browser Caching

This is an issue that can be solved with the KeyCDN plug-in alongside WordPress CDN Enabler. These two plugins deliver assets with cache-control headers. However, there are some cases in which themes or certain elements are not delivered with the CDN. In this case, you will need to play around a little bit with the code in .htaccess file in order to manually add cache-control headers to the server of origin.

Reduce server response time

Server response time (SRT) is the amount of time it takes for the web browser to receive a response. If the server response time of your website is relatively high, then that can lead to slow loading of web pages. If this pops up, you would need to first ensure that you have sufficient resources to handle your traffic. Choose your web server carefully, and optimize your web servers and database.

Talk to our experts to get more info on Google PageSpeed Insights and how it can be used to efficiently optimise your website.

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