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Hackernoon logoHow to Optimize Your Web Server for Better Website Performance by@ajiabs

How to Optimize Your Web Server for Better Website Performance

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@ajiabsAji Abraham

In this digital world, the success of your website lies in its first impression and user experience. A website that takes a loading time more than a blink of an eye makes them so frustrated and abandoned the website. It can create an adverse impact on search engine ranking and business of that website.

Optimizing web servers means reducing the length of response time. The majority of the users expect a website to load in less than 2 seconds, if they didn’t load within their expected time, obviously they will move on to the next website in the queue.

Web performance optimization includes identifying and rectifying the obstructions in both client-side and server-side code. The client-side relates to page load time, downloading all the required resources, running JavaScript code in the browser, and so on. The server-side relates to how long the server takes to execute requests.

This in-depth website optimization article explains the necessity to optimize server and also provides techniques to boost the speed and security of your website.

Common Mistakes that Ruin Website Performance

Owning a website for your product brand or business is an appreciated thing. But, can you ever imagine committing with a website having no reviews, comments, or feedback?

You may have a lot of mistakes on your website that have to be taken care of, and we have listed some of them, take a look at it:

1. Image Optimization

Images are an integral part of a website, as a single image can be equalized to a thousand words. Even though images are important, we should not stuff the site with images. A better site should always have good and informational content along with supportive images.

Large-sized images lower the speed of your website, which negatively influences the visitor count. So they should have to undergo a lossless compression without compromising its quality.

2. Not Mobile Friendly

In this digitized era, where people are fully dependent on smartphones for everything, their expectations are high. If a user searches for an answer and faces any discomfort like unresponsive websites for their mobile device, they would immediately drop the site and move on to the next mobile-friendly website.

Nobody likes to spend too much time zooming small text and images. In a user’s view, a website should be simple and easy to navigate. Therefore in this competitive field, if your website is not mobile-friendly then that may be the end of your website story.

3. Without Social Media Tags

Social media are always the best platforms to promote and create awareness about your existence hence creating value within the customers. Today, each one of us will check the reviews or feedback first before we purchase anything from a website. If your website does not have any social media tags, then the customer may refuse to build trust in you as well.

If you have profiles or pages, on social media promote them on your website as social proof. It helps the customers to realize that you have interactions with the real people and also to make decisions easily on whether to have a deal with you or not.

4. Redirects

Redirects are not highly recommended, but if you want then go for 301 redirects. When these redirects are improperly done then it may lead to chain-redirection. These chain redirection cause redirection delays hence slow down the website speed and harm the SEO and ranking of the website.

5. Bad Layout and Design

The first impression has a key role that improves the visitor’s flow to the website. Non-optimized web fonts are considered as render-blocking and slow down your site speed. So update your site with web fonts that are both attractive and easier for the users to read.

Along with the content you need to update the outdated template and design of your site too. Explain the scope of your website and bring out new and unique designs. Always stick on to the new and trending technology for your website.

6. Unclear Contact Details

Contact details of a website are the direct link for a customer to reach out to you. If you have not provided clear cut details then being a customer they won’t further search for your details instead they will move on to other sites. Because of this mistake, you may lose a customer, which
is not favorable for your business.

Therefore remember to include a distinct phone number, email address, and links to your social media pages in the footer section of your web page

Best Tools to Monitor Website Performance Bottlenecks

It is certainly important to spend your time identifying and rectifying the errors that affect the user experience and security of your website. Here we have listed some website performance testing tools and the way it dissects your website and figures out the areas that need improvements.

1. Pingdom

Pingdom is seemingly a familiar website performance testing tool which
provides the website’s availability and performance that helps to improve the overall user experience. Their report includes up time monitoring, performance grade, page analysis and history. The user needs to enter their website URL and the rest will be handled by Pingdom. By using this tool, customers are informed of concerns so that they can concentrate on their business. The platform allows customers to easily and quickly set up monitoring without any technical work.

2. SupportPRO Server Scanner

SupportPRO Scanner is a free server/website scanner tool that helps to identify performance issues and security holes associated with the web servers. The user needs to enter their domain and then the scanner starts analyzing the whole site and provides the complete list of flaws found on it. It quickly performs a flawless test against servers.

The unique tests that SupportPRO Scanner performs include the current state of security, performance, connectivity, network, or storage. Users can instantly test the performance of web servers without compromising the overall server performance.

There is a server admin team that works 24/7 for the assistance of the site owners, and thereby they can easily fix the errors and boost the overall performance of the website.

3. Acunetix

Acunetix is a website vulnerability detection tool in which its engineers have implemented the web application security scanning technology. It covers a 360-degree view of a website. It has many unique features like AcuSensor Technology, SQL injection and Cross-site scripting testing, security testing of Ajax and Web 2.0 applications, Two Factor authentication mechanisms, and so on.

4. GTmetrix

GTmetrix is a website speed testing tool, in which you can search from different locations. It is advised to register and create an account for free so that you could have more advanced features. It has other unique features like video playback to analyze the area that needs more attention and also the ability to run Adblock plus.

5. Google PageSpeed Insights

PageSpeed Insights is a bit different, ie, it grades our website on a scale of 1-100. Higher the number means your site is well optimized. PageSpeed Insights analyzes the content on your web page and then generates a report with suggestions to improve the page speed. PageSpeed also provides a performance report for both mobile and desktop view of your website.

How to Trigger the Speed and Security of Your Server and Website

Now you are familiar with the mistakes that affect the overall security and loading speed of a website and the tools that help to figure out the voids on the website. A faster loading website will have a low bounce rate; hence results in a better position in search results.

Consider the following tips to optimize your website for optimal performance and better user experience and security.

1. Enable Compression and Minify Files

File compression and minifying files are significant actions that help to gain good page load speed. When you have a lot of JavaScript and CSS files, it stretches the page load time and server response time.

Gzip compression is an effective way to compress and minify large-sized HTML, JavaScript, and CSS files. If you reduce the length of code and number of JavaScript and CSS files, then this will automatically boost up your page load speed.

2. Content Delivery Network (CDN)

A content delivery network is a collection of web servers that are distributed across various locations, and they deliver the web content to end-user by considering their location.

Normally when you host your website on a single web server, then all the requests from users are processed on the same server which increases the load time. With CDN, the user requests are forwarded to the nearest server and the requested content is delivered even faster which improves the website performance.

3. Reduce Unused Plugins

We know that plugins provide various special features to a website and in many cases plugins can never be avoided. But too many plugins can cause security issues and also take more loading time. All you have to do is check all the installed plugins and delete the unused ones. Avoid such plugins that add a lot of scripts, database queries, and styles.

4. Website Caching

Caching is the process of storing the frequently requested data and the cached web pages when requested will not send database requests each time.

Website caching is much needed when a server receives multiple requests for the same page. It reduces the server speed and takes more time to deliver the web page to the user. So enabling website caching can enhance the performance of the server.

5. Reduce Redirects

Redirects create additional HTTP requests which negatively impact the website performance. The more redirects a page holds, it causes redirect delays and slowdowns the page load speed. So you have to discover all the redirects on your website first. Then check if it is necessary and If not remove them.

So a better website will be directly proportional to faster loading time, increased site visitors, better user visibility as well as usability and thereby results in high revenue. Therefore, if you follow the tips we discussed so far to rectify the mistakes, then your website will fire to success.

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