Designing for Speed: Accelerating Load Times for Better User Experience

Designing for Speed: Accelerating Load Times for Better User Experience

Even if we don’t like to admit it, the vast majority of modern humans have rather short attention spans. We live in a world where a mind-boggling amount of information is available to us – quite literally! – at our fingertips, so it’s no surprise that we can get a little frustrated if things take too long to load. This is why it’s so important for all New Zealand businesses to focus on speed and performance in their website design. 

Just think about it – how long are you willing to wait for a website of a business you’ve never heard of to load? Let’s say you’re looking for a new clothing store site to shop at, but you’re not sure if this is the one you want to support. If you click on their website and then sit there waiting for way too long for the page to load, you’ll probably leave and click on the next Google search result. 

This is why you need to optimise for speed – you never want to be the site that gets skipped over due to slow performance. A slow site could mean that thousands, if not more, people are missing out on your amazing goods just because they don’t want to wait. 

But improving your New Zealand site’s website design isn’t as easy as clicking a few buttons. You and your web design team will need to be smart and take innovative action if you want to make your site faster and more user-friendly. 

How Can I Boost My Site’s Speed?

Site speed is so important for countless reasons. For one, if you ask any web developer how you can improve your site’s UX (user experience), surely one of the first things they’ll say is, ‘Make your site faster!’. Modern people love quick results. Plus, fast load times mean that your guests can zip around your site quickly to see everything you have to offer. 

Fortunately, there are quite a few ways that web developers can make your site faster. Consider the following tips and tricks to boost your site and your user experience:

Analyse Your Site’s Current Setup.

Before you or your New Zealand website design team do anything, it’s always best to analyse what you currently have – it’s difficult to make changes for the better when you don’t know what’s wrong.

No worries, this doesn’t involve you delving into the coding yourself. There are helpful tools online that you can use to quickly analyse your site. For example, Google’s Page Speed Insights tool lets you plug in your site and see what your speed is like. Plus, it’s completely free. 

Once you have an overview of your site, you’ll have a better idea of where to start.

Optimise Images.

Across all time, across all cultures, across all civilisations that humans have built, there’s something quite obvious – we love art! Gorgeous images can make us smile, laugh, cry and think. So, using imagery for your business is a very smart move. Users are far more likely to become interested in a site with beautiful colours; and interesting imagery than they are to become interested in a bland site with nothing but uninteresting text. 

But using too many images does have its drawbacks. Images are often the largest files on a site, so too many of them can slow a site down. 

Don’t worry; you don’t have to get rid of your favourite photos just yet; – images can be compressed to make their file sizes smaller, thus improving your site’s performance. This doesn’t degrade the quality of your images, either, so there’s really no reason not to optimise your photos. 

Use A Content Delivery Network.

CDNs have become popular in the world of website design in New Zealand because they can improve page speed and performance. A CDN is basically a geographically dispersed group of servers that can deliver your site’s content to people based on the server that is closest to them. 

This reduces the distance that your site’s content has to travel from the server to the user; which can improve load times.

Use A Lightweight Theme or Template.

Naturally, too much going on in a site can make the site slower than you’d like. Using a lighter or less-busy theme or template can help you keep things beautiful while keeping things speedy. 

If you’re struggling to think of good web design layouts, you can always look at other well-designed websites for inspiration.

Minify HTML and CSS Code.

Minifying your code can help to improve load times. ‘Minifying’ involves removing unnecessary whitespace and comments from the code; which can make the code a lot smaller and, therefore, easier for the browser to load.

Use A Caching Plugin.

A caching plugin can store static content, such as images and CSS files, onto the user’s computer. A caching plugin can be a very good addition to your New Zealand website’s design because this can improve load speeds. 

When a user visits your site for the first time, the caching plugin will store static content in their browser. Then, when they visit again later, the static content won’t have to be downloaded once again because they’ll already have it in their browser. This is especially good for frequent visitors to your site.

Lazy Load Images.

Lazy loading images means that images are only loaded when they’re visible on screen, not when a page is loaded. This means that if a particularly long page with many images is clicked on; it won’t take forever for the page to load. Instead, the images will load in when the user scrolls down to them. If the user never scrolls to the bottom of the page; then the page won’t need to waste time loading unnecessary pictures. 

Where Can I Find Excellent Web Design Services in Aotearoa?

All of these speedy tactics may seem confusing and difficult at first, but there is one easy thing you can do to ensure your New Zealand site has excellent website design – work with us at Kiwi Website Design! 

We specialise in services that are designed to make your site better than ever. These include web design, SEO Services and more. For more information, we invite you to visit our website or call us at XXXX. 

Make your site better for everyone, entrust your web development work to Kiwi Website Design! 

Leave a Reply