As the volume of people visiting the site has increased dramatically over a relatively short period of time, we understand just how important it is to have the store load as quickly as possible in order to make the online shopping experience as pleasant as possible. We have been working hard behind the scenes to optimise the store to be as fast as possible.
Initial tests showed our front page would load in around 54.83 seconds on a 56K modem. After optimisation it only takes 27.30 seconds. That's over double the speed of the original unoptimised page.
This has been achieved using three methods, as follows :-
This site is now using HTTP compression, otherwise called content encoding using gzip
The various critical parts of the site have been optimised to remove unneeded characters from each source file, such as whitespace characters, comments and redundant code using a program called HTML Optimiser Pro. As PHP is an interpreted programming language, it needs to remove unneeded characters in real time as each page is displayed, so removing these unneeded characters ahead of time results in a good speed improvement. HTML Optimiser Pro was able to reduce the size of the critical files that make up the store by 24.3%.
All GIF images have been reduced in size using Trout's GIF Optimiser. Many critical images ended up being only a faction of the original size, which resulted in a good speed improvement.
We hope the results speak for themselves and do provide a more pleasant and faster shopping experience!
Please feel free to contact us with any questions that you may have.