How do loading times affect website traffic?

7 May 2009

Long loading times for a website are able to affect your website's traffic a lot!

These days most users have broadband and so loading is a lot quicker anyway - but still, even on broadband, there are website that take a long time to load.

If people travel to go to a supermarket and join a queue they'd usually be quite happy to wait it out - But, if people are going to buy something on a website and the page is taking ages to load then they can quite easily type a new website and buy the product elsewhere, and the chances are that they won't come back to your website.

Long loading times on a website can be very frustrating and visitors are likely to get bored.

Losing a website visitor once is likely to impact their decision of ever coming back.

In order to minimise loading times on the page I'd suggest the following steps:

  • Optimise images - Make the dimensions smaller and reduce the quality slightly.
  • Minimal database activity - Only open a database connection once (unless using multiple databases), rather than opening a database connection each time you want to carry out a database query. Also only select to view table data that you need rather than selecting all the fields every time.
  • Host videos externally - Instead of using your own web hosting space's bandwidth you can host your videos on an external website such as YouTube, and then just embed the video on your website.

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