The speed of an eCommerce site matters a lot when it comes to determining its usability, accessibility, and of course, search engine ranking. A web visitor would abandon your website or leave your site in the middle of checkout process if your site takes more 3 seconds to load. It doesn’t matter what you are selling, you will just need to ensure a fasting loading site to give your real-time customers a soothing shopping experience.
Since Magento keeps on releasing its latest version, you will get more features and options to enhance the speed of your eCommerce site quite frequently. The latest version of Magento i.e. Magento 2 has some incredible capabilities that will help you improve your site speed with ease. Here, in this blog post, we will share some of best tips to boost your Magento 2 store speed:
1. Audit your Server Requirement
The performance of a website largely depends on how you pick your server. If your server doesn’t function properly, your site will load all the web pages slowly..very slowly – not at all good for your conversion rates.
So, make sure you choose a dedicated server or VPN over shared hosting to boost the overall performance of your web store. Never opt for shared hosting if you have a Magento store. And to optimize your cost, choose cloud hosting plans either from companies like Amazon Web Services.
Apart from this, don’t forget to check your Magento 2 system requirements such as:
- Linux x86-64 Operating System
- Apache 2.2 or 2.4 Web Server
- PHP 5.5
- Nginx 1.8.x
- MySQL 5.6.x database
- A valid security certificate for HTTPS (SSL)
- Redis 3.x cache storage
- Varnish 4.x
- Memcache 1.4.x
- Mail Transfer Agent or an SMTP server as Mail server
Tip: Carefully check all the server requirements of your Magento 2 web store. This will help you improve your site speed easily.
2. Use Caching
The best part about Magento 2 is that it offers a ton of caching options to let you speed up your web store, without any third party extension. All you need to do is to enable the caching option from the back-end of your Magento store.
SYSTEM → Cache Management → you will see a variety of Caching options → Click on the desired options → Select ‘Enable’ option → Submit.
It will cache your full web page (categories, products, etc.) to reduce server response time, curtail the total page load time and prevent downtime as your traffic grows high instantly. This will let you give your potential web customers a rich and seamless shopping experience.
3. JS and CSS file compression
Fortunately, Magento 2 comes with an inbuilt functionality to let you merge both the files with ease. You just need to consider the following process:
(a) To compress JS files:
- Click ‘Yes’ to merge JS files
- Click ‘Yes’ to minify JS files.
- Save Config. to save the changes
(b) To compress CSS files:
- Access your Magento 2 back-end, STORES → Configuration → ADVANCED → Developer →CSS Settings
- Click ‘Yes’ to merge CSS files
- Click ‘Yes’ to minify CSS files
- Save Config.
4. Enable Flat Catalog (Categories & Products)
Both the flat categories and products play a significant role in determining the performance of a Magento web store. Since it can take a huge time to load the database, you should enable the Flat Catalog to improve your site’s speed.
This will improve the read speed and offloads the number of the database once it gets a request to display the product. Simultaneously, it will reduce the complexity of MySQL query as well to help you speed up your eCommerce store. To enable the Flat Catalog:
Access your Magento2 back-end. STORES → Configuration → CATALOG → catalog → Storefront, Select ‘Yes’ in Use Flat Catalog Category field to enable it.
5. Use Content Delivery Network (CDN)
CDN is basically an appended system of distributed servers that help you deliver web pages and other content of your site to your potential visitors instantly. Since it is based on geographical proximity, a user can instantly load your web pages on the go. The system not only helps you improve site speed but also take the user experience to the higher level.
Setting up CDN for Magento 2 web store is super-easy. All you need to do is to:
Access your back-end, STORES → Configuration → General → Web → Add your HTTPS URLS in the given secure base URL.
This setting will make your Magento store to run faster.
6. Image Optimization
We can’t imagine an eCommerce site without beautiful and high-quality images. They are one of the most imperative parts of any online store – as it represents your products, allow web visitor to see the desired products virtually from different angles, and encourage them to take buying decision.
But, these images make your site extremely slow. If you are using a heavy size of images, it will take longer to load on your site. To combat this, you should optimize all your images to make them load faster on your web store.
So, make sure that your product images should be in JPEG format, while your layout and logo should be either in PNG or SVG format.
No matter how many features and capabilities you have incorporated into your Magento store, if it is not fast enough to load the product pages, you won’t be able to generate higher conversions as well as sales.
Fortunately, Magento 2 comes with a various of speed optimization options to let you optimize your store for both the search engines, and your web customers. These tips will help you improve your web store speed, without spending bucks on third party tool or any technical assistance.
About the author:
Linda Wester is an avid blogger and web developer by profession. She loves everything to do with web development and her passion revolves around creating Magento based websites for businesses. If you are about to hire Magento expert or to check out her latest publications, follow her on Twitter.