If you run a website, you want to ensure that your website’s users have a positive experience whenever they use it. Otherwise, they’re going to want to leave the website.
Getting web visitors to stay is challenging, but getting them into your website is much more complex, so you should care for user experience.
One way to improve your user experience is by paying attention to your website’s core vitals. These are metrics that contribute to an overall positive user experience.
This article discusses tips on improving your website’s core vitals efficiently.
1. Optimize Page Speed
When your website loads quickly, it reduces the waiting time for users, leading to increased engagement and lower bounce rates. A fast-loading website also improves user satisfaction, as visitors can navigate your site smoothly without frustrating delays.
Moreover, optimizing page speed positively impacts vital factors contributing to website core vitals. For instance, one of the core vitals is the Largest Contentful Paint (LCP). LCP is the metric for how long significant elements on your website to load. By optimizing page speed, you can reduce LCP and ensure that users see meaningful content sooner.
Another critical metric is Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS), which measures visual stability based on the number of instances your web page shifted in some way. A faster-loading website helps minimize layout shifts and provides users with a more stable browsing experience.
There are different ways you can optimize your page speed. Here are some of them:
- compressing images on your website
- leverage browser caching
- use content delivery networks (CDNs)
- removing unnecessary code
- uninstalling unwanted plugins
These optimizations not only improve loading times but also contribute to enhancing overall website performance.
Also, another added benefit to having a fast-loading website is going to be its SEO or advantages.
According to Sytian Productions web developer Philippines, search engines demerit websites that are slow to load. Therefore, faster-loading websites rank higher because search engines want to give them to users. Your website then becomes more discoverable.
2. Reduce First Input Delay (FID)
Another crucial metric that is part of your core website vitals would be First Input Delay (FID).
FID is the delay between when a user interacts with your website and your browser’s response.
Since you know what it is, why should you care about reducing FID?
As you know, everything on the Internet and in modern living loads fast. That’s why users expect your website to work fast when interacting with it. Frustration can quickly set in if there is a significant delay between their actions and the website’s response.
We’ve all experienced going into a website, clicking a button, and the website taking so long to respond that you start clicking on things repeatedly. This experience is something you do not want to emulate on your website; hence, why a low FID is desirable.
A low FID improves overall user experience and can positively impact your search engine rankings.
Ultimately, by reducing first input delay (FID), you prioritize user satisfaction and ensure visitors have a seamless browsing experience on your website.
3. Improve Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS)
We’ve mentioned earlier how CLS or Cumulative Layout Shift contributes to a faster loading speed for your web pages. That is one of the reasons why you want to improve your CLS.
As mentioned, CLS is about how often your website or web page layout shifts. When a website’s layout changes frequently, users have to shift how they use and interact with the website way too often. This confusing layout can frustrate your users, making them not want to stay on your website either.
Picture this: you’re on a website, as you probably always do. You try to click on something on the webpage when suddenly, a pop-up appears. This pop-up blocked whatever you wanted to click in the first place and made you click a different link, leading you somewhere else on the site you didn’t want to be in.
Annoying, right? That’s an instance that contributes to your site’s CLS.
To improve your CLS score, you want to determine where most of these layout shifts are coming from to address them correctly. The source of your changes usually comes from your page still loading, but there are some that come after your page has loaded all elements.
Once you know where these shifts come from, you can develop fixes that help your users avoid unwanted interactions or effects on the page.
4. Use WebP and Modern Image Formats
The images in your website are pleasant visuals that can make your website more appealing and its contents easier to understand and peruse. However, there is an effect that it adds to your website’s performance. It needs to use resources to load these images, which can affect your website’s loading speed and more.
This effect is why people pay attention to the image format on their website.
An image format that is recently gaining more attention despite being here since 2010 would be WebP. It is an innovative image format developed by Google that offers superior compression capabilities without compromising image quality.
WebP and other modern image formats can boost your website’s core vitals and enhance overall performance.
One of the key advantages of using WebP is its smaller file size compared to traditional formats like JPEG or PNG. This smaller file size means faster loading times for your web pages, resulting in improved user engagement and reduced bounce rates.
Also, smaller file sizes contribute to lower bandwidth consumption, making it ideal for users with limited internet connectivity.
Another benefit of WebP is its support for advanced features such as transparency and lossless compression. You can then maintain high-quality visuals while reducing file sizes further. By optimizing your images with WebP, you can strike the perfect balance between visual appeal and website performance.
5. Optimize Fonts
Another seemingly insignificant but impactful factor you should also keep in mind is the fonts you use on your website.
One method to be wiser with your fonts is to choose web-safe fonts or use font subsets to reduce file sizes. Additionally, you can leverage caching techniques or utilize content delivery networks (CDNs) to enhance font delivery speed.
Also, use only a few kinds of fonts. Not only does it not look good, but it also makes your website hard to read.
6. Lazy Loading
Lazy loading is when your website intentionally delays loading certain elements, such as images and videos until the user needs them or the details become visible within the user’s viewport.
One of the main benefits of lazy loading is its ability to reduce initial page load time.
By deferring the loading of non-critical elements, your website can load faster and provide a smoother browsing experience for users. This improved speed directly impacts core web vitals metrics such as LCP and FID, which we mentioned earlier.
Lazy loading also helps optimize resource usage by only loading content as necessary.
Visitors to your site will only download what they see or interact with, reducing unnecessary data transfer and conserving bandwidth. As a result, core web vitals related to network efficiency will improve as well.
7. Minimize Third-Party Scripts
Third-party scripts can significantly impact the performance of your website. These scripts come from everywhere, a prominent one being social media. They often require additional server requests and can slow down the loading speed of your pages.
By reducing the number of third-party scripts on your website, you can optimize its performance and enhance user satisfaction.
Minimizing third-party scripts also reduces the risk of compatibility issues or security vulnerabilities because of these external sources. By keeping control over the codebase and limiting external dependencies, you have a better chance of maintaining a stable and secure website.
8. Prioritize Critical CSS
Sometimes, it could be our own CSS impeding the performance of our website. It might be old code that no longer does anything but is still bloating our website. Going through your CSS and ensuring that you only have critical ones can significantly help reduce your website’s load and improve overall performance.
To prioritize critical CSS, identify the key elements you want to render immediately upon page load. These elements include:
- navigation menus
- hero images
And any other critical content visible without scrolling.
Next, inline or embed this critical CSS directly into your HTML code. Doing so eliminates additional HTTP requests required to fetch external stylesheets and enables faster rendering of above-the-fold content.
Consider minifying and compressing your CSS files to optimize their delivery further. This step reduces file size and improves loading speed across devices and network conditions.
9. Mobile-Friendly Design
Implementing a mobile-friendly design can boost your website’s core vitals in several ways.
Firstly, mobile-friendly designs are optimized for smaller screens and touch interactions, ensuring users can navigate your website seamlessly on their mobile devices. This ability leads to improved loading speed and overall performance.
Secondly, a mobile-friendly design often results in simplified layouts and streamlined content presentation. This approach will reduce unnecessary elements that can slow page load times or disrupt user interactions. Your website’s core vital metrics will significantly improve with faster loading speeds and smoother interactions.
By accommodating all devices, you are making changes on your website that improve website performance and user experience for as many users as possible.
10. Regularly Monitor and Optimize
Boosting your website’s core vitals isn’t a one-time thing. Acknowledging that this is something you must be conscious of and care about for a long-term basis or as long as you have your website is a great mindset.
That means you prioritize user experience so that everyone who goes into your website knows what they’re expecting, gets what they want, and has an easy time navigating it. This mindset will ensure that your website will always be a pleasant experience all the time.
Knowing these website core vitals should help you understand the parts of your website that affect its performance the most. By being aware of them, you can always watch when your website might not be offering the best user experience and know which factors and elements you can quickly fix to improve web performance.
Thus, make sure that you apply these tips to get a website that reaches the goals you want it to without making it an unpleasant experience for your web users.