5 Shopify Speed Optimization Tips
The full load speed of your Shopify website is the most important criteria of a successful eCommerce store. Very often store owners forget about website performance while chasing traffic and trying to raise the number of sales.
In the contemporary world people (in our case customers) accustomed to the fact that everything happens quickly. For instance, think about Amazon. You can do just 2-3 clicks and spend approximately 5 sec. to make an order. Sometimes people don't even realize that they bought something 😅
If the first page of your eCommerce website loads for 3-4 seconds, your potential customers will quit. I just want you to remember: people don't like to wait. That's a fact. That's why I want to go over this topic and share a few tips with you on how to speed up your Shopify store.
Google loves fast websites
If you want to get organic (free) traffic from search engines you can work on the content of our website, for instance, write tons of blog posts. But if you want your website to appear on the top five positions in Google search, the page loading time plays the main role, no matter how cool and unique your content is.
If you have some experience in the web development world, you should be familiar with the "bounce rate" expression. Bounce rate is the percentage of people who land on a page of your website, and then leave.
Having a high bounce rate can mean three things:
1. The quality of the page is low.
2. Your page load speed is too low.
3. Your audience doesn’t match the purpose of the page.
So, Google knows on which websites people stay longer and engage with the content. Also, Google is interested in showing websites where people can find the right information. If people stay longer on the website, it means that Google did everything right and will do that again.
Based on the idea above you should understand, that if your website has a low page load speed score, Google will never show the website on first positions in search, even if you do the best marketing ever and write super unique blog posts 🤓
Take a look at the image below. It shows you how likely a person will leave a website based on a page load speed time.
How to check your website performance score?
There is a lot of tools to check your website performance with. Here is my top 5:
- Google PageSpeed Insights (for mobile version - Think With Google)
- Load Impact
5 tips to speed up your Shopify store
1. Use fast and optimized Shopify themes.
In case you just started your way in eCommerce business I would recommend you to use one of the free themes that Shopify provides you with:
But if you have tested your product idea and made sure that it's profitable, I would recommend you to buy a paid theme. Paid themes have a lot more customizable options than free ones. And it'll allow you to stand out among competitors. If you buy a good code optimized theme with no code errors you will make the first step on the way to fast performing eCommerce website.
2. Reduce store apps amount
When you install an app it applies external/internal code to your website. The more code files linked to your store the slower it is. Make sure to install apps that you really need.
Right now go to your Shopify Admin panel and click on the "Apps" link. Carefully go through your apps one by one and think if you really need them and if they give you any profit. If the answer is "I'm not sure" or "Maybe" - you should delete it.
Very often is not enough just to click on the DELETE button.
Sometimes when you delete an app it still leaves the code in your store. Almost all apps have instructions on their website on how to delete them properly.
3. Optimize your media files
Don't forget to check on file size (image, video, or gif) before adding it to your store. For example for products I wouldn't recommend using files heavier than 300kb. You can compress your images using TinyPNG or ILoveIMG online tools. Or you can do it with Photoshop. Go to File -> Export -> Save for Web -> JPEG (high, progressive) -> Save.
4. Use Google Tag Manager
You can optimize your online store load speed using Google Tag Manager. Google Tag Manager is a free tool that allows you to manage and deploy marketing tags (snippets of code or tracking pixels) on your website (or mobile app) without having to modify the code. If you are using some third-party eCommerce tools you should notice that very often you should put some code in your theme.liquid file. When your eCommerce store is loading it fires these tags one by one. Eventually you will have a huge line of tags that slow down the load speed process. Using Google Tag Manager, you can easily apply specific code snippets to only particular pages or particular products, which saves loading time for other pages.
Do not use Google Tag Manager for Google Analytics or Facebook Pixel. Shopify has specific fields in the Admin Panel for these tools (Online Store -> Preferences).
5. Use AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages) pages
This advice will be for those who already are getting traffic from Google search but still want to improve the results. AMP is an open-source HTML framework developed by the AMP Open Source Project. This tool coverts pages of your Shopify store to AMP and provides almost instance load speed for the mobile version of the website. If you want to use AMP in your Shopify store I would recommend you do it with the Shop Sheriff app.
In this post, I covered the best and easiest ways to speed up your Shopify store. I really hope it will be helpful. Happy coding!