The Website Obesity Epidemic. Is your Website Obese? and what does this mean for your visitors?

How do I know if my website has become bloated?

Google has a free tool that analyzes your website speed:
https://developers.google.com/speed/pagespeed/insights

What does this mean for your website?

The size of your website pages (in kilobytes) has a direct correlation to the speed in which it downloads. The speed effects the users experience (who has time to wait these days???). Slow page speed can also effect your Google ranking. The impact may be fairly minor, but Google does take website speed into account in its search algorithm.

How did my website gain so much weight?

A common term for website obesity is “Page Bloat”.  The most common causes for Page Bloat are:
  • too many images
  • large image sizes
  • redundant code
  • use of multiple libraries to achieve different effects
  • one-size-fits-all frameworks and templates (where redundant code isn’t removed)

The above causes can be due to an older website or simply: Developer Laziness. Page speed needs to be taken into account when developing a website and this takes an experienced Developer.

How can I help my website loose weight?

Ask your website developer to look at your website and give you and assessment of it’s speed and what can be done to fix this.

If you have a “CMS” (Content Management System) and are updating it yourself, ensure you are correctly optimising your images before uploading them – or ask a professional to do this.

It’s most often the cheaper websites, DIY, one-size-fits-all and template websites (commonly used by “Open Source” CMS systems such as Joomla and Word Press) that are the culprits. This may not be because of the system itself, but quite often non-experienced developers such has Graphic Designers (with little Development experience) use these tools to create websites.

If your website is old and obese – you may need to consider a complete upgrade.

In Summary - How important is it that your website goes on a diet?

Reducing page load times can reduce bounce rates* and increase conversion rates**. These should be priorities for every business website.

Having said this, it’s about weighing up the importance of the band-width hogging content to your user. If the content has no effect on the user (ie. redundant code and too many unnecessary libraries) than yes – slim it down!. If the content is a slide-show of images that assists the user in getting a feel for your product, then the extra second of download speed may be worth the weight.


* Conversion Rate: The proportion of visitors to a website who take action to go beyond a casual content view or website visit. For example they might purchase a product or fill out a contact form.

** Bounce Rate: A bounce occurs when a web site visitor only views a single page on a website, that is, the visitor leaves a site without visiting any other pages before a specified session-timeout occurs.

According to current statistics, the average page weight for websites has dramatically increased in the past year. Reducing page load times can reduce bounce rates and increase conversion rates. These should be priorities for every business website.

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Discover Me provide quality web design and web development services to Mornington Peninsula, Melbourne and Surrounds.

Our philosophy is to provide quality products and services within a highly customer orientated framework. We pride ourselves as leaders in our field through a passionate focus on what we do.

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