The pursuit of performance

Published: 13/04/2023 By Dan Sayer - CTO

Optimizing Website Performance: Upgrading to HTTP/2 and Reducing Key Metrics for a Faster User Experience

Website performance is a crucial factor in user experience and can greatly impact the success of an online agency. A slow-loading website can lead to higher bounce rates, lower engagement, and decreased conversions. We have recently rolled out HTTP/2 which has become an important step in improving website performance. HTTP/2 is a newer version of the HTTP protocol that offers significant improvements in speed and efficiency over its predecessor.

One of the key benefits of HTTP/2 is its ability to handle multiple requests simultaneously through a single connection, whereas HTTP/1.1 requires multiple connections to achieve the same result. This allows for faster loading times and improved performance overall. Additionally, HTTP/2 uses binary instead of text-based encoding, which reduces latency and overhead.

In addition to updating to HTTP/2, we have focused efforts to reduce time on key performance metrics such as TTFB (time to first byte), LCP (largest contentful paint), speed index, and CLS (cumulative layout shift) for optimal website performance.

TTFB refers to the time it takes for the server to respond to a request and send the first byte of data back to the user's browser. This can be reduced by optimizing server response times and reducing the size of the initial response.

LCP is the time it takes for the largest element on the page to become visible, while speed index is a measure of how quickly the content on the page is rendered. These metrics can be improved by optimizing images, using lazy loading techniques, and reducing the number of resources loaded on the page. Finally, CLS measures the visual stability of the page as it loads, and can be improved by using proper sizing and placement of elements on the page.

In conclusion, updating to HTTP/2 has been an important step in improving website performance, but it is not the only factor to consider. Efforts to reduce time on key performance metrics such as TTFB, LCP, speed index, and CLS are also crucial for a fast and efficient website that provides a positive user experience. By implementing these strategies, we have improved your website performance and ultimately allowing you to achieve greater success online.

This is the only beginning of the optimisation process, work is continuing to allow even faster performance gains by sending only the content needed to allow a page to work, reducing dynamic loading and optimising assets for the fastest loading possible.

How do you benefit?

If you have an Atom website then you are already receiving these updates.

The advantage of an Atom website is that all these upgrades are provided to our customers for no additional cost. If you are still using one of our older templated websites, you can contact us to find out how we can move you to our latest technology.

Time to First Byte
How long it takes to receive a response from our servers
Start Render
How long taken to start rendering content in the browser
First Contentful Paint
The time taken to show content on the page
Speed Index
Shows that how quickly the information on your page is visible to the visitor
Largest Contentful Paint
How long it takes for the main content of a page to download and be ready to be interacted with
Cumulative Layout Shift
Reducing CLS stops the page jumping whilst loading
Removed CLS completely
Total Blocking Time
The amount of time the browser is not responsive whilst loading
Page Weight
The size of data to download