CASE STUDY

PAGE SIZE VS PAGE SPEED

Client:  A small, private medical facility.

Problem:  While the facility has a nice website, it wasn’t getting much traffic. The homepage took a long time to load and visitors would leave before it loaded.

Solution:  An analysis revealed that one of the most pertinent problems was that the homepage was very large in size. It had photos, videos, and graphics as backgrounds. While the plan to speed up the load time involved several steps, the first step was to minimize the size of the homepage.

An initial analysis provided by GTmetrix.com

This would involve removing unnecessary media, shrinking the size of media to match their display size, and compressing the media to decrease file size.

Outcome:  

  • 88% reduction in load time
  • 84% reduction in page size
  • No loss in visual quality

After working with the client, we were able to identify some files that could be removed. However, the client did want one of the backgrounds to be a video. Because it wasn’t a main element, we were able to decrease the video quality, remove the audio and compress the file to around 47% of it’s original size. The final file was around 2.9 MB.

We were able to remove a few photos and significantly decrease the file size of many others without any noticeable difference in quality. In the end we were able to significantly decrease and the size and improve the load time of the homepage.

The same GT Metrix statistics after file optimization

This kind of situation isn’t uncommon. Some website developers can build beautiful sites but fail to consider some other important factors of website design.

Here’s another example of the same situation. A comparable, but not as severe, situation occurred on another client homepage. Similar steps were taken to reduce the size of the page and instantly improve the load time.

While you always want your website to look nice and have interesting features, both visitors and search engines also prefer a fast-loading, easy to use site.

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