New years resolutions for your website!

January 1, 2015

Happy New Year! As we enter 2015, you may have made personal new years resolutions, but what about your website? Making your website leaner and meaner can help you rank better in Google, keep your site secure and reduce the amount of space and bandwidth you use.

Going back to existing pages and code can be boring when you want to get ahead with fresh content, but reviewing your existing content is a necessary task which can even be inspiring once you get into it.

Delete, delete, delete

Get rid of any themes and plugins you aren’t using, which will help you keep your website secure as well as freeing up space. Now’s also a good time to delete all those emails you keep ‘just in case’ or because you forgot to delete them. Your mail server will thank you.

It’s worth checking through your content as well; deleting, redirecting and amalgamating pages can help you improve visitor experience, cut down on your sitemap and ensure you keep organised. Just be careful you don’t leave a trail of 404s or delete pages important for SEO purposes, and back up your website before going on a deleting spree just in case.

Sort out your scripts and stylesheets

Put all your CSS into one file where possible to improve page speed and cut down on the number of files you have. If you’ve ever used any JavaScript on your site, it’s also worth going through your pages and includes to delete any lines of code no longer in use. Remember to delete any additional files (such as images) that are used by/associated with the scripts as well. Another tip is to include your JavaScript at the bottom of the page rather than the top to increase page speed.

Optimise your images for the web

It’s an annoying extra step in the design process, but it can make all the difference to your page load times and so can even affect your search engine ranking. As well as optimising your own individual images, check any premade themes and templates and optimise where possible to speed things up. Find out more about saving images for the web here.

More golden rules for using images include: Avoid animations, use thumbnails rather than large images and use the right format for the job.

Speed up your site

After you’ve made your site lean, make it fast with these guides and tutorials:

Yahoo’s best practices for speeding up your website

Google’s speed tutorials

How to make your website really, really fast