The global e-commerce market is blooming at a massive rate. People are now accustomed to shopping online without leaving the comfort of their space. E-commerce has simply bridged the gap between the sellers and buyers, and Shopify offers a great way for small as well as large businesses to leverage that opportunity. However, just like any other website, a Shopify website needs to be optimized for its speed and performance. That is because poor site speed can severely impact your website traffic, credibility and revenue generation.
Why High Page Speed Matters?
Before we discuss on how to improve your Shopify site speed, let’s first understand why it matters in the first place. There are two reasons behind this – Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and User Experience (UX). SEO is about ensuring your website gets found on the search engines and UX is about ensuring your users find convenient to use your website.
All the major search engines consider site speed as one of the crucial ranking factors. That means if your site loads quickly, your search engine rankings will improve. This brings a lot of potential leads to your site. And, if prospects can access your site immediately, there is a good chance that they will stay longer on your website and make a purchase.
Now, let’s dig into some effective ways to improve your Shopify store speed.
#1 Use only necessary Shopify apps
Every store needs external apps to extend its functionality. When these apps are added, they add script into the theme to run efficiently. Be aware that even if the apps are not in use, the script runs in the background, which can slow down the page speed.
Hence, it is essential to frequently review your apps and find the balance between the store features and speed. If you think some apps are interfering with your site speed, then disable some features of the app, or remove them completely if you don’t need them. Also, while removing the app, be sure to remove any code that was added as a part of the installation process. Removing unnecessary app code will most certainly help in improving your store performance.
#2 Install responsive and fast theme
Therefore, before you install any theme, check whether it is fast and responsive. See the live demonstration of the theme, so you get to try its features and analyze its performance. Once you install the theme, ensure to keep it up-to-the-date.
#3 Make your website super fast with AMP
Accelerated Mobile Pages or AMP is a standard framework developed by Google to create fast-loading mobile pages. In this fast-paced world, over 50% of shoppers buy through mobile devices. Hence, it becomes imperative for businesses to develop a mobile-optimized site, so users can access their site conveniently through mobile phones.
Shopify enables you to create AMP sites quickly and efficiently with the help of RocketAMP or FireAMP apps. Both these apps can assist you in transforming your webpages to fast-loading pages on mobile, which can also help you improve user experience.
#4 Optimize images to improve page load speed
Images are an important asset when it comes to enhancing the visual appearance of your website. Over-size and un-optimized images are often the most common reason that can significantly slow down your website. If your images take too much time to load, users might perceive your website to be slow.
Image compression is necessary and critical for faster loading websites. While optimizing images, make sure you compress images to an acceptable size and don’t add a multitude of images on a single page. Also, while compressing images, ensure you don’t compromise on the quality of the images. TinyPNG and TinyJPG are great tools that can help you reduce image sizes without losing its quality.
#5 Fix broken links and minimize redirects
Too many redirects and broken links can result into performance issues. If your website is experiencing the same issues, consider removing unnecessary redirects and fixing broken links. Shopify offers a builtin redirect function called ‘URL redirect’ that allows you to apply 301 redirects.
Broken links on your site can give a rise to too many unnecessary HTTP requests, which can cause a poor user experience. With tools like, Xenu and Broken Links Checker, you can identify and fix broken links across your Shopify store.
#6 Check your store performance with Google PageSpeed Insights
If you are not sure what is decelerating your website speed, you can analyze the performance of your web pages using Google PageSpeed Insights tool. With this tool, you can identify the elements in your store that bog down your store and fail to load quickly, and then work on the provided recommendations to enhance website performance and minimize load time.
Google PageSpeed Insights can give you insight on critical elements of your store, such as server response time, browser caching, landing page redirects and many more, so you can find what hampering your store speed and how it can be corrected.
Store with fast-loading pages is essential to attract and retain your prospective buyers. If a website loads quickly, more people will explore your store and learn about your brand. It can also boost conversion rates if your website displays all the relevant content quickly and seamlessly.
We hope these techniques help you performing Shopify store speed optimization. Shopify stores are designed to deliver pleasant and rich shopping experience to its users. Therefore, if you miss to install some features correctly, your online store may slow down. If you are not equipped with adequate technical knowledge to resolve these issues, seek professional help from skilled Shopify developers who can help you speed up your Shopify store and get massive traffic to your site.