Unbounce recently in their latest blog post shared how page load times are going to influence the marketing world in 2020. At Apexure, we have been pushing the boundaries of how to increase page speed and decrease page load times. In this post, I would like to discuss the various routes we undertook and the results. I call them “1-second landing pages.” or “#1sLP”.
A landing page which takes less than a second to load. It does sound very simple from the surface but under the hood, there is some clever stuff set up.
Here are some factors which can help achieve less than 1-second load time:
- Web Host
Yes, your hosting provider and their data centre location have a huge impact on load times. This is especially true when you are running PPC or paid traffic campaigns over a geographic location. When we compared highly optimised landing pages hosted on the US vs UK servers for UK audience, the results were quite dramatic. We were able to achieve 0.6 second load times for a landing page hosted in the UK vs 1.0 second when hosted in the US.
- Tiny Images
One major sin I find marketers and sometimes content writers do is to upload images over 500kb, sometimes over a megabyte. One basic tool which should be in your arsenal is Tinypng You can upload images and get a highly compressed image. Although tinypng or tinyjpg is great, these compressors don’t take into account actual dimensions. They do reduce file size but what if you actually wanted to use the image as a thumbnail? There is still no point in using a 1280x800 image as a thumbnail. So you need an image and a resize app + an image compressor. You can use Photoshop or an online tool. Once you have resized the image, then compress it and reduce the file size even further.
- Sprite Images
Do you have icons, badges and other images on your landing pages? Why not combine them into one image and using some clever CSS, swap the image around? This technique reduces the HTTP requests your browser makes every time it needs to load a new resource. So if 100 tiny images are bundled as 1 image, there will be only 1 HTTP request vs 100.
- Minified HTML/CSS/JS files
Minifying is the process of removing any whitespace from your code files so the code is compressed. This again saves few KBs of data. Every little helps!
- Use AMP
For mobile campaigns, we would recommend using AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages). As an early adopter, we currently build all our mobile landing pages in Unbounce and love the flexibility of drag ‘n’ drop in an otherwise restricted system.
- Use a CDN
Having a host local to your campaign is great, but if you are targeting multiple countries or have dedicated SEO landing pages, I would strongly recommend using a Content Delivery Network (CDN). A CDN maintains a cached version of the images, HTML or any content and stores them in various geographical locations. With CDN, users download data from servers closest to their proximity which increase page speed.
By Ifrah Bashir
Senior Web Developer
Use CSS3 and HTML5
CSS3 and HTML5 framework is lightweight and designed for speed. When developing custom web pages you should always utilise the latest frameworks.
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