The well-known aphorism tells “Time is Money”. In the era of high technologies what all the customers require is SPEED. Particularly for eCommerce customers speed is the key factor defining the positive user experience. There are a plethora of factors that can slow down your WooCommerce site, but fortunately, we are here to share with you tips to speed it up.
Speed is Key!
If your WooCommerce store is slow it will affect your business negatively in several ways. So obviously keeping the speed of your website is key to success in eCommerce.
- There is never a second chance to make a first impression on your customers; speed is the first thing visitors encounter on your website.
- Speed is key for generating profits from your WooCommerce site. The faster the loading time, the better the user experience and the happier customers, which in its turn leads to better SEO and sales results. If your performance is poor, Google won’t like it, and consequently, your website will lose its chances to appear on the first page.
- Online shoppers have a shorter attention span. Thus, you need to make your eCommerce site as fast as possible, otherwise, you will find yourself losing your customers. It is estimated that sites that take longer than 3 seconds to load are most probably abandoned by the shoppers. If it takes longer than 3 seconds to load 40% of the shoppers will leave the site and go on to seek faster shops. Proper eCommerce hosting can speed up your website.
Measuring WooCommerce Site Speed
You can’t manage what you can’t measure! So long as you are not aware of the speed of your store you can’t know if it needs improvement, or what steps to take to improve it.
The website speed tests can come in handy and help you gauge your WooCommerce website speed. These tools help not only to measure the speed and responsiveness of your website but also to identify what possible factors are causing your poor performance.
For the start, you can make use of Google PageSpeed Insights, GTMetrix, or WebPagetest speed testing tools. These stunning tools will enable you to instantly test your site’s speed, reveal why it’s slow and discover optimization opportunities.
Aside from speed tests, you can also make use of the Query Monitor plugin and some other WordPress plugins to debug inefficient database queries, errors, actions, and hooks, thus helping you to identify the plugins and functions that are performing poorly.
Therefore, you can make use of the tips given below to speed up your WooCommerce site and enhance your site’s overall user experience.
Tips to Speed Up WooCommerce Site
With the ready report of the speed test, you can already come up with an actionable plan to optimize your slow WooCommerce site. Here are a few ways to speed things up.
1. Pick a Lightweight WooCommerce Theme
Choosing the right WooCommerce theme among the hundreds of thousands of themes available out there is always a tough challenge.
The choice of the right WooCommerce theme matters a lot for the overall success of your site. A stunning theme with extensive built-in features can sound lucrative, but it may fail in actual use. Feature-rich WordPress themes are one of the factors affecting the load speed of your websites. WooCommerce themes may break a store’s success, with some having a remarkable influence on load times. Thus, while choosing a theme for an eCommerce site, you need to make sure that it’s well-matched with WooCommerce. With this in mind, you can make use of the following themes, which are extremely lightweight, fast, and feature-rich
2. Choose High-Quality Hosting Service
A hosting service enables website owners to use a host server to store website data, media, and other necessary files. It is considered to be the cornerstone of the website as it controls all traffic and data of the website. Consequently, poorly performing hosting services can affect WooCommerce website performance, traffic, products, or offers. Sometimes, not that high-quality hosting services are unable to cope with the increasing traffic of the WooCommerce site, which surely has a negative impact on the further growth of the site and business.
Hence, choosing high-quality and fast WooCommerce hosting is among the top priorities. A good hosting service must comprise the following qualities:
- Technical support working 24/7 to solve any issues and problems that might arise.
- Data centers worldwide.
- Stellar cloud infrastructures.
- High level of availability for customers to be able to always reach you (e.g. SSD).
- Flexible and dynamic with your website’s growth.
WordPress officially recommends going with one of the following three hosting services:
3. Get Cache Plugin
Another must-to-do for having a smoothly and quickly running eCommerce site is caching. Having a highly-optimized and quality cache plugin uploaded to your WordPress will entirely speed up your site from checkout page load time to product details pages by reducing the number of time-consuming processes, such as asking for the stored information or generating new copies per visitor.
While using cache plugins you need to take into consideration the following caching types:
- Server Caching: Server caching allows the server, which creates the web page, to remember portions of the page so that the entire page does not need to be created from scratch every time.
Recommended Caching Plugins
4. Optimize Product Images
Building a successful e-commerce website requires a lot of images since you need to persuade customers to buy your products. However, while dealing with images on your website it is crucial to keep the golden mean between image quality and size. In other words, before importing any image you need to optimize it and there are a few ways to do this:
- Resize and compress images: Resize large-file-size images to the suggested sizes before uploading them (800px max-width). For resizing photographs, there are various internet programs available, to remove backgrounds, etc., in order to save space
- Lazy load images: This means loading images on a page when those images are actually needed or viewed, instead of loading them up front, thus making your site faster.
- Convert images to WebP: Before using images on the site, convert them to the web format, as it is more lightweight.
- Disable hotlinking: Prevent individuals from copying and pasting your media assets onto other blogs and websites, this consumes the site’s capacity.
Fortunately, you can make this tedious and time-consuming process of optimizing images manually automated. What requires from you is to simply upload an image optimization plugin and the plugin will do everything for you.
Recommended Image Optimization Plugins
5. Apply Content Delivery Network (CDN)
Your WooCommerce site’s speed will increase if you add a CDN since the closer a customer is to your server, the quicker your website will load in their browser. Your visitors are always close to the server thanks to CDNs that are spread out almost everywhere.
Recommended CDN Services
There are many CDN services that you can use to enhance your website performance:
Read our “Top 5 CDN Tools” article to learn more.
6. Optimize Database
A database is a system that is used to store and organize your website data. In the context of eCommerce sites, these data are classified as follows:
- Site Content: This type of data is used to create dynamic HTML pages including content pages, product pages, and category pages.
- Transactional Data: This type in its turn includes data that is the direct result of the user’s action, it might, for instance, include the order details of your customers and inventory updates.
If you require large data, try to organize hundreds of products, or have a very complex database, it may take a while to process the request which leads to a slow server response time. Cleaning up the database can help you increase the page loading speed and will free up a lot of space for your WooCommerce business to operate more quickly and efficiently.
Recommended Database Optimization Plugins
You can upload the following database optimization plugins to clear up your website’s database:
In the case of a WooCommerce site time is literally money. A fast and optimized WooCommerce store brings leads, boosts conversion, improves SEO, and thus raises the overall revenue of the business. Consequently, speeding up your WooCommerce defines the success of your online store.
Hopefully, the speed optimization tips listed in this guide have helped you to fix your WooCommerce slow page and provide your customers with a highly optimized, fast, and dynamic website.
Though I don’t expect you to follow all the speed optimization techniques listed in our guide, I strongly recommend you to look through them and choose the techniques that apply to your personal needs and aims.
Let’s be honest! No one is ready to wait for a site to load. So, let’s speed up!