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How to make your landing pages load 3-5x faster
By Nana Gilbert-Baffoe, View comments - Feb 03, 2014

One of the major causes of click loss is speed, or rather the lack of it.

I've written many times about some of the ways to speed up your redirects and landing pages, so today I'd like to focus on 3 things I recently implemented on the Prosper202 home page that resulted in a 3-5x speedup in the page load.

I few days ago I was thinking of all the cool things I could do to increase the conversion rate of the Prosper202 page when I realized I hadn't taken my own advise. The Prosper202 home page was taking between 3.8 and 4+ seconds to fully load. Here's exactly what I did to whip the site into shape

But before we begin...

The most invaluable tool during this whole process was my Chrome/Safari developer tools view. This showed me exactly how long the page was taking to load and which elements were slowing down my page.

The easiest way to get to this is to right click on your page and click inspect element in the context menu.

Eliminate

The easiest thing to do when speeding up your pages is to remove unnecessary content and elements from your pages. These could be widget, images, text, etc.

For me one of the slower widgets on the page was the Facebook like button. I removed this and immediately saw a boost in load times. 3rd party widgets can often slow down your page if they are not optimized. Also a lot of thine due to the number of people loading up the widgets the performance can be reduced by quite a bit.

Compress

You can reduce css and javascript file sizes by 20-50% or more by compressing them. There are online tools to do this such as http://www.csscompressor.com and http://javascriptcompressor.com they usually work by deleting any unnecessary whitespace and sometimes shortening long description variable names to cryptic single or double digit letters names. Browsers don't need code to be easily readable.

It makes sense that if your files are smaller, they will download faster. I had two css files on the page that I compressed. Another optimization that I could have done was to combine the two css files into one. This would save the browser from having to make two connections to download the css files.

Upload to a CDN

In general files on web servers that a are located closest to you will download faster. That's the general idea behind a Content Delivery Network (CDN). You updated your static files, css, javascript, images, videos etc and they will upload them to multiple servers in multiple geographic locations. So for example users in Europe will have files served to them from European servers while those in the US would get files from US locations.

For my optimization, I uploaded all the newly compressed css files to the CDN. Additionally I also uploaded my images to the CDN. Also remember how I mentioned that 3rd party widgets are sometimes the biggest culprits for slow loading pages? Well one trick I used was to move the contents of some of these 3rd party widgets onto my CDN server. This made it so the even though the original files was slow I wasn't dependent on it any more.

The one thing to be careful of when using this technique is that you will have to keep an eye on the original JS from the provider. If they change the code, it would be up to you to see this and update the files on your CDN.

The final results after doing all these was a huge difference in page load speeds. When everything is cached a the page can load in under 700ms. On average the page will load in 1-1.7 seconds. Sometimes its a little slower due to 3rd party content that I was able to remove or optimize based on how they were implemented.

Recommended CDN Providers

MaxCDN is one of the top CDN providers out there. I know a lot of affiliates use them already and they unders stand the needs of digital marketers. I reached out to them to secure a pretty awesome deal for all Prosper202 and Tracking202 users.

25% off your MaxCDN subscription for life

So when you search the internet you will see there are a lot of 20% off coupons out there. However if you look closely you will notice they are only for 25% off your first month. I've managed to get them to give us a discount for the life of your MAxCDN account. I hope you find this post helpful and if you have any questions or cools suggestions on how to improve some of the tips I covered I'd love to read your comments about it.

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