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Optimizing the speed of your Magento server is very important for several reasons – most of all, it allows your customers to have the best user experience with your online store. Another important consideration is the value that Google places on fast loading websites. It will definitely be useful for all your search engine optimization efforts. Along with using performance measurement tools such as gtmetrix and Google’s page speed tool, you should also consider using some of the readily available Magento performance extensions.
Why is performance optimization important?
Page speed is one of the biggest killers of revenue when it comes to ecommerce stores. Studies show that about 42% of the consumers abandon a website that takes longer than 3 seconds to load and display products. Above that, the abandonment rates are even higher!
Magento is one of the most robust ecommerce platforms but, along with that, it has a heavy weight structure too which poses a slight challenge when it comes to performance. It is hence important to optimize your Magento site on a regular basis.
Here are a few tips for optimization:
Choose a server which can handle the load of the current traffic you are getting and also plan for the increased traffic you are expecting in the future. You must analyze your peak hours and ensure that underlying server infrastructure can support it. If the server shows a 100% CPU utilization, it’s time to upgrade. You will need to add both – CPU power as well as memory. You must also use a server that is geographically located near your target audience.
Server and caching
It’s a good idea to use GZIP compression for your server and also enable browser caching. Ensure that you always store temporary data in multiple locations – across a content delivery network. This ensures that your customers enjoy high availability of data and accessibility for all interactions. IT is also a good idea to use a web accelerator – which is also called a caching reverse HTTP proxy. Just like varnish, it can speed up your Magento store by 80%.
To begin with, uninstall the unnecessary PHP modules and use a PHP accelerator such as Zend. You can also check your db management system to optimize your database on frequent bases.
It is always a good idea to upgrade to the latest version of Magento. It not only gives you the latest features, but also has a number of bug fixes and makes Magento perform better.
It is important that you uninstall any of the extensions that you don’t actually use. Go to System, and configuration and then to advanced. Enable Magento cache in Cache Management.
By using the advanced configuration in Magento admin, you can easily merge the Java and CSS files across your Magento store. This will reduce the load time dramatically.
Be aware of all the options that you can use to optimize your Magento store and ensure that your customers get the best possible experience at your online store!
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