Too many videos can significantly increase the loading time of your website. It will bog down the site, causing your visitors to lose interest and click away in search of something more responsive. As such, it’s important to strike a balance between using video as part of your website design strategy and keeping the site’s load times at an optimal level. A web design firm may emphasize creating content-heavy sites that load quickly, even if they don’t have the bandwidth to support it, which can lead to problems with user experience and SEO results. Here are some tips that can help you find that balance and create a website visitors will be eager to stick around!
Reduce your Embedded Videos
No doubt adding videos to your site provides a valuable educational or entertainment experience for your readers. However, if you embed them from YouTube or other sites, you’re using more of your page load time transferring video information than you need to. Optimize for speed by hosting videos on a third-party server and then embedding them into your content with a link rather than embed code. This helps speed up load times because only text needs to be transferred instead of text and video information.
Add CDN Service
A content delivery network (CDN) is a group of servers that stores copies of your site’s files on different servers so your users can download them faster. Google also prefers CDNs because they make pages load faster, which helps improve search engine rankings. Many video hosts have integrated CDNs with their services or have their separate CDN. Check with yours to see if it offers these types of services.
Remove Your Flash Objects
Flash is not only heavy, but it can be a major drain on your site’s speed. Numerous tests have shown that swapping flash objects for HTML5 elements can reduce your load time by up to 40%. Once you’ve made that change, test your site speed again to ensure it still works for you.
Reduce your Image Size
Thanks to compression technologies, videos load at lightning-fast speeds, which compress images into easily manageable chunks of data. This allows us to save time by not downloading a gigantic image file. Smaller images take less time to display on a webpage, so make sure your video thumbnails are no larger than around 250 by 250 pixels in size. Likewise, remember that videos are embedded through iframes, which may be a single-pixel (if you’re using YouTube).
Separate Video from Text Content
When you can, separate video content from text-based content. Using YouTube or another video-sharing platform that supports URLs makes it easy for visitors to watch videos without redirecting away from your site. If you want your page speed metrics to look good, consider putting videos on a different domain so they won’t count against your main site. This is especially important if you host videos through a third-party player.
Although your website may not be as fast as some would like, there are still ways you can speed it up. Today, we discussed a few ways to improve server response time, upgrade hardware components, and add dedicated bandwidth. If you have any other suggestions for speeding up a site, please share them in the comments below! Happy optimizing!