In competitive e-commerce, the performance of your Shopify site can make or break your business. Stopping at a slow-loading website results in lost sales. During this time, when every second is important, you must focus on improving the speed and performance of your site.
With this guide, you will learn crucial steps and tactics to supercharge your Shopify site and make shopping easy for your customers. Well, fasten your seat belts as we start cruising in the arena of optimizing performance for your Shopify store.
This guide will help you to understand the vital factors of your site speed and how to optimize them. Whether you are planning on hiring the best Ecommerce SEO company or have an in-house team handling your site’s performance, these tips will help.
Why does Site Speed Matter?
Let’s break it down before we delve deeper into the technicality of site speed on your Shopify site. Customers also have a lesser attention span and want everything as fast as the world speeds. In addition, one of the major considerations in search engine rankings is the speed of a site.
Slow loading of a site can demoralize your SEO efforts, leading to reduced or no organic traffic. Site speed also affects customer experience and is instrumental in conversion rates. As such, Google and other search engines keep focusing on the user experience, so you should also optimize your site to load faster.
Effective tips to boost your Shopify site’s performance
Choose a fast-loading theme:
The theme you select greatly determines how fast your site runs and performs. Although Shopify provides numerous colorful themes, they are not necessarily the best in terms of performance. Choose a theme that is light and loads quickly as per your business requirements.
Furthermore, it is also important to keep your theme updated with new plugins that may come in the future. When hiring a company to optimize your site, make sure to consider what their Ecommerce website SEO packages offers, as they should also offer you a high-speed theme.
Compress and optimize large images:
A vital aspect of eCommerce sites images, however, they can also cause a slowing effect to your site. There will be a delay in the presentation of large high-resolution images, which can also affect site speed. It’s important to minimize each and every image by compressing and simply optimizing them before you upload any of them to your Shopify site. Using online tools or plugins, you can compress images without any form of distortion.
When compressing images, make sure they are in the right web format. For instance, photographs look best saved as a JPEG while PNGs work well for graphics that have transparent backgrounds. In addition, try leveraging a content delivery network (CDN) for even better image loading performance.
Minimize the use of plugins:
A broad spectrum of helpful plugins is available on Shopify but too many may slow down your site. With each additional plugin, you add more code and require more requests to load your site which negatively impacts site performance. One of the important optimization components is to do a regular inspection and clean up plugins that are not necessary in the operation of your site.
Go for relevant plugins but avoid unnecessary ones, which may not serve your business needs.
A lot of the plugins may even not be used by you, yet they still increase your site’s load time. When selecting plugins go for the best ones that add value to your website and make it valuable while ensuring it has a great user experience.
Use static images instead of GIFs:
GIFs are a popular choice for adding visual experience to your Shopify site. But they have a major impact on loading time of the site. Unlike static images, GIFs are heavier and thus will require even more resources to load making your site slow. You may want to use static images instead of GIFs to make your site faster and more efficient.
On the surface, gifs are quite eye-catching but could be intrusive and irritating to some users. In addition, they are not necessarily mobile friendly; hence will not be able to reach a greater percentage of your audience. Instead, opting for still images will enhance user experience and improve the loading time of your website.
Leverage lazy loading:
This is a technique where the loading of non-critical components on your site including pictures and videos, among others are delayed referred to as lazy loading. This means, these elements will not be loaded when the page is loading but as they are about to come into view.
Lazy loading is a best practice that can do wonders to speed up a site and decrease its load time. This is very useful in particular for those sites which contain many images and videos. Lazy loading can be applied for your Shopify website via third-party apps or plugins. In these tools, the code necessary to add it in your site will be added automatically by them and do organization for lazy loading.
Therefore, it is important to be cautious with adding external scripts or media to your website and consider using methods like asynchronous loading as well as lazy loading in boosting Shopify site.