Tips for Improving Magento Website Speed Optimization

In 2021, there were approximately 150 million online shoppers annually, compared to about 135 million online shoppers in 2020 India. This increase can be attributed to the growth of the e-commerce industry in India and to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, which led to a change in the shopping behavior of consumers. In 2022, the number of online shoppers is expected to increase further. As per the statista reports.

To be able to compete, it is important that your online store works well. Speed ​​plays an important role in this. First of all, Google thinks it is important that a website loads quickly. The loading time of your website can therefore have a positive or negative influence on your ranking in Google. 

In addition, visitors themselves of course also look at the loading time of a website. Almost half of the visitors expect the website to be loaded within 2 seconds. For every extra second of loading time, the number of conversions decreases by 7%. A longer loading time not only results in fewer conversions but often also in fewer returning customers. Findability in search engines and conversions are therefore two important reasons to improve the speed of your Magento store. There are many different ways to Speed up your Magento Store such as Magento speed optimization services and using Magento Extension to Speed up Your Magento Website.

How good is the speed of your Magento Website?

When you go to your own Magento website, you already get an idea of ​​the speed at which your website loads. Still, it might be more reliable and better to use the Google PageSpeed ​​tool for this. The tool analyzes the performance of your website. Enter the link of your website and click on "analyze". After the tool has finished analyzing the Magento website, you will see how well the website is optimized.

The moment you score below 80/100, it is important that the website is optimized. The PageSpeed ​​tool itself provides a number of optimization suggestions. Of course, a PageSpeed ​​score of more than 80 does not mean that nothing needs to be optimized on the website. There are often a few small things that can be optimized to make the website even faster. It is important to remember that a 100% score in the PageSpeed ​​tool is virtually impossible. With a score of 90/100, you can be very satisfied.

Improve speed, do it yourself or outsource?

Improving the speed of a Magento Website is an extensive process. There are many different points to consider. Two examples of this are improving the time to the first byte and reducing the CSS. Chances are that you have not heard of the above points before. That is why we advise you not to make adjustments yourself to improve the speed of your website. The improvement of the points must be done very accurately to prevent the website from multifunctioning. However, there are a few points that you as a website owner can address yourself. These points have to do with the content of the website. We explain below how you can do this yourself.

Still curious about the more technical points for improvement? Later in this blog, we discuss the technical points with which the loading time of your website can be reduced and what we can help you with.

Optimize the content for better loading time

Content can cause a page to load slowly. When a page consists only of text, the page will load faster than when a page is full of images. Still, you can make sure that a page with images loads faster. It is necessary for the images to be reduced in size. You can do this via Google PageSpeed ​​or manually in a photo editing program. Important to remember:

  • Images must be compressed
  • Save logo and icons as PNG or SVG file
  • Save product images as a JPG file
  • Turn JPG files into progressive JPGs
  • Save images in the actual format

Photoshop is a program that you can use for this. Here you can save the images for the web. With this option, it is possible to save images with a smaller file size. In addition to images, videos can also cause a slower loading time. It's best for speed not to add any videos to the website at all, but this isn't always possible. If you still want to add a video to the page, it is best to load it via YouTube or Vimeo. Choose not to play the video automatically, but only load it when you want to watch the video.


Check the list of extensions

Magento websites often use many different extensions. Magento 2 Extensions are plug-ins with which the website can be provided with new features. Obviously, extensions take up extra space. Some extensions can have a detrimental effect on the page loading time ( time to first byte ). To ensure that this is as minimal as possible, it is important to sometimes check whether all extensions are still being used and remove unnecessary extensions from your Magento store. An overview of all extensions of the website can be found in the Admin Panel of Magento.

You can get here in the following way: System > Configuration > Advanced. You will then see a list of extensions. Check all extensions and consider whether you are still using them. If there are extensions that you no longer use, you can ask your developer team who develop your Magento website or you can also disable them from your admin panel.

Don't Save on hosting

Hosting is very important for every website. A website cannot run without hosting. However, not every hosting is good for a Magento website. Magento websites take up more space than simple websites. It is therefore important that there is sufficient space for the Magento store and the data of the website. Choosing good hosting is therefore very important and can improve or worsen the loading speed.

First, choose a type of web hosting. A choice is often made between shared hosting or dedicated hosting. With shared hosting, multiple websites and/or Magento stores are hosted on the same server. With dedicated hosting, you have your own server. The disadvantage of shared hosting is that certain properties of the server can only be adjusted when this is possible for each site. This is possible with dedicated hosting, but dedicated hosting is a lot more expensive. In addition, it is important to look at the following two points when choosing a hosting:

Time to first byte (TTFB): an indication of the response speed of the server hosting the hosting. This is the time it takes a server to send the first byte to your visitor's computer. Simply put, this means that when you type in the address bar, a request is sent to the server to show the website. The time it takes for the first byte to be sent back is the time to first byte. The faster the server responds, the faster the website starts loading.

PHP 7: This is the latest version of PHP available. This PHP version has a number of important improvements compared to previous PHP versions. PHP 7 is a lot faster and that is largely because this version uses less memory. A test showed that the loading time of Magento with PHP 7 was 0.3 seconds faster than with PHP 5.6. So when choosing to host, check the type of web hosting, the TTFB, and which PHP versions are supported.

With shared hosting, PHP 7 may not be possible because other websites on the server do not work on this version. If your Magento website can run on PHP 7, it is therefore recommended to see whether the shared hosting supports this PHP version. In addition, there are hosting providers specialized in hosting for Magento 2. It is good to also include these hosting providers in your choice for good hosting for your Magento store.

Enable caching of your website

Cache or caching is probably a term you've heard of, but may not know exactly what it means. Caching actually means storing certain parts in an easily and quickly accessible place. Due to caching, the website does not have to be completely reloaded every time, but certain files are reused that have already been loaded before. When looking at Magento, different caching methods can be used:

Full page cache: with this method, all static content of a page is cached. Static content means, among other things, the product information and the footer on a website. This is the same for every visitor. Content that should not be cached with this is, for example, the shopping cart. The content of the shopping cart differs per visitor and should therefore not be stored in the full-page cache. If this is cached, it may show that there are three products in the basket, when it is actually empty. To ensure that the correct number of products is included, it is important that this part is not cached.

Varnish cache: Varnish is an HTTP accelerator used for caching the website. Varnish stores data in virtual memory and lets the operating system decide what is stored in memory and what is retrieved from the hard drive.

PHP OpCode cache: when a website uses PHP code, every time a website is loaded the PHP code has to be compiled into bytecode. With PHP OpCode cache, the PHP code is compiled into bytecode and this bytecode is cached. This way, the PHP code does not have to be compiled every time.

Redis cache: with this caching method, the cache is stored in the memory of the server instead of on the hard disk of the server. The memory is faster than the hard disk and therefore loading is also faster.

Also Read: 15 Tips for Page Speed Optimization for e-commerce stores

Website in different countries? Use a CDN

CDN stands for Content Delivery Network. A CDN is a large network of several proxy servers distributed over different locations. With a Content Delivery Network, it is possible to cache static files from the website. This concerns, for example, images, texts, and other documents. When a website uses a CDN and a visitor comes to the website, the static content is loaded from the nearest proxy server. This is especially useful if you have a website in different countries.

For example, the moment the server is located in America, someone from India wants to visit the website. The network allows the static content to be loaded from a proxy server from India instead of the server from the America and this makes the website page load faster.

5 tips for improving the speed of your Magento Website

The above tips should already ensure a faster Magento website, but we have also listed five other tips below.

Merging JavaScript and CSS files

The fewer files to load, the better. It is therefore important for speed to reduce the number of files to be loaded. You can do this by merging several JavaScript files. The same goes for CSS files. In Magento, it is possible to have this done automatically. It is important not to do this directly on the live website. Merging and reducing the code may cause the website to no longer function. So test this first before applying it to the live website.

Flat catalog

A flat catalog consists of two parts in Magento, namely: flat categories and flat products. If not enabled, Magento will use different tables to store product or category information. When a product needs to be loaded, the correct product information must be searched in various tables. When using a flat catalog, the information is put in one table. This makes the information faster to retrieve. Just like merging JavaScript and CSS files, activating a flat catalog should be done carefully. If a product or category is not properly configured, the flat catalog may not work properly and certain properties will not be displayed with the product or category.

Production mode

Magento 2 you can choose between three different modes. The default mode is on by default. In addition, you can also choose developer mode and production mode. Developer mode is only used during the development of the Magento website. Production mode must be activated when the website is put into use. Production mode is the fastest mode of Magento.

Latest Magento version

It is recommended to always use the latest version of Magento. Magento updates service usually contains bug fixes and performance improvements. Before you do this, however, it is important to check that all extensions can also work in the new version. You will probably have to update the extensions before you can update to Magento.

Update indexes

Magento performs updates to the store itself, but sometimes manual updates are also required. When indexes are not updated manually, Magento has to figure out what has changed. This makes loading pages much longer. So always make sure that the indexes are up to date.

Does improve Magento website speed? Ask us for help

The above points can ensure that your website becomes faster. A faster website means a better user experience and possibly also a better position in Google. However, many of the improvements require technical knowledge. Is your Magento website slow or would you like your website to work faster? Contact us. Our developers help you to improve your Magento Website speed.