These days, website speed can matter almost as much as content information. The vast majority of visitors to a website leave within two seconds if a website isn’t loading. In the age of instant gratification, and with the back button usually just a finger tap away, most casual internet users have no need to wait around on a slow-loading website. But there are even bigger reasons to care about website speed: it affects your rank in SERPS.
Google announced information in 2015 that site speed was becoming a more important ranking factor, and having a slow site speed (loading in a second or more) can do a lot to prevent your website from hitting the top rankings in Google. And if your website relies on organic traffic, that can be a significant loss. But, how can you tell if your theme’s to blame? We’ve put together some of the top tips for checking if your theme is slowing down your website.
Page File Size
How big are the pages that your theme codes? Just as with moving anything physically, the bigger a page, the more time it takes to arrive from a server to your browser! A quick and easy way to gauge how big a page is is to simply download it to your desktop. Inspect the file properties to see the size! Just as with other files, the size of a page should be measured in kB or MB. The fastest pages will be about 1MB or less. Anything larger is more likely to be slow!
Number of HTTP Requests
What Can You Do?
The Bottom Line
Unless you’re going overboard with high-impact images and graphic content for your website, chances are pretty high that it’s your theme which is making it slow. To start, see if you can’t upgrade to the fastest hosting in your budget. If you can, try to pick a theme which makes few HTTP requests, and which has a relatively small starting page size. But even if you’ve fallen in love with a theme which doesn’t meet these goals, not all hope is lost. You can use plugins and other tools to make that speed up in other areas!