Optimizing Joomla Websites for Speed, Performance and SEO Success
April 29, 2013
If you have a Joomla website, optimization is not always easy because chances are that you will have installed many plug ins, templates, and other components and these will affect performance by slowing loading time, but there are several tips that will help you optimize Joomla speed.
Why is optimization even required?
Because loading time optimization is critical for SEO success on Google. The slower your site, the higher the bounce rate. If the bounce rate is high, it is an indication to the search engines that users don’t like your site and they are forced to replace your site with another on the SERPs.
Parameters to optimize
- Number of HTTP requests the page requires to load completely (the fewer the better)
- The total size of the page/file in Kilobytes (the smaller the better)
- The number and size of images required to be downloaded
- The number and size of CSS and JS files
While these are the parameters to be optimized on any website, one needs to know exactly what and how to do it on a Joomla site. This requires a fair bit of technical expertise and it may be a good idea to contact an experienced Joomla developer to help you.
Optimizing Joomla for Speed
- Improve site speed by choosing a simple template during website design. Joomla templates are designed to please the eye and it therefore follows they have heavy design images. These images affect loading time and you should consider using a template design focusing on content. If you have to use images, ensure they are compressed.
- Turn off and uninstall any Joomla component or plug-in that you’re not using. Taking off components will help reduce page size and also reduce the number of http requests required to display the page on your browser. In fact the gains can be so significant, that its worth your time to monitor all active components for performance and replace the slow ones with a more efficient alternate. For example, SEOs often use plug-ins to make URLs Search Engine Friendly (SEF). Some SEF plugs-ins have a major impact on server performance and it’s important to choose one that is efficient.
- Turn on Joomla Cache. To do this, visit Global Configuration, click on System, and turn on the option. Once you have done this, the web pages you visit will load faster when you make subsequent visits. It is, however, important that you turn this off for Web pages with dynamic content because you’d like to serve the latest version of the page as opposed to an older cached version.
- Turn on Gzip Compression by visiting Global Configuration, clicking on Server, and enabling Gzip Compression. This will help reduce page size making your website load faster.Other tips to improve SEO are enabling caching for modules, optimizing the database, and optimizing the index.php file. Turning off stats and instead use Google Analytics for what you need to track.
What’s important to know is that while these tips may help save bandwidth and optimize speed they could put additional load on the server. Each action is a trade off between functionality and speed and server load. If you don’t understand the implications it is recommended you contact an SEO company that has in-house Joomla developers and experience in Joomla SEO.
If yours is a Joomla Based e-commerce website, check out how to do SEO for ecommerce website and also check out these