20. Pay attention to your blog’s load times (and make them faster)
Whether you’re running a business site, an e-commerce store, or a blog…page load times matter.
Google uses your blog’s page load times as a ranking factor in its search results, and your visitors just plain hate slow-loading blogs (especially on mobile devices, where most people browse blogs nowadays).
For example, as your page load time increases, your bounce rate (the % of visitors who leave without visiting a second page) goes way up. Look at this data from Pingdom comparing average load times and bounce rates:
To see how fast your blog loads, you can use a page speed testing tool like Pingdom or GTmetrix.
If you find that your blog is loading slowly, here are some ways to speed it up:
- Optimize images – images comprise about 50-80% of the average website. Using a free image optimization tool like Optimole lets you resize, compress, and lazy load images to shrink their size without affecting user experience.
- Use a caching plugin – a caching plugin speeds up your blog by serving static HTML instead of using PHP for each page load.
- Pick a faster host – your host always affects your page load times .
What’s key here is to be performance-oriented from day one when you’re figuring out how to start a blog, and not treat it as something you can come back to later on.