6 Tips to Improve your CS-Cart Speed

Do you know that faster sites sell 40% more? Here, every second counts. Literally. So, increasing your site speed will trigger more sales.

There are methods which allow you to increase site speed without sacrificing the design or switching servers.

Techniques for optimising content to speed up CS-Cart

1) Use the correct image format and size. Images are very important in your store, but a lot of them can significantly slow down page loading. So reduce their size and save as .jpeg (for photos or realistic pictures) and .png (for graphic files).

2) Reduce the number of HTTP requests. This is very useful for achieving better performance, especially for first-time visitors.

  • Combine images into CSS sprites. This would mean creating one image out of all image files you’ve got. Then you specify just the part of the image that will be demonstrated in the specific place on the page. This helps to reduce the number of http requests, as the webserver will just look up one file, instead of several ones. There are multiple tools available for creating CSS sprites.

  • Combine JavaScript – if you have a number of scripts on page, combine them into a single script.

  • Combine CSS – using one stylesheet made up of multiple ones can reduce the response times.

3) Apply CSS and JavaScript minification. If the code contains many unnecessary characters, it renders much longer. You can reduce loading time by getting rid of spaces, tabulations and comments. The code will still work, but faster.

4) Keep JavaScript and CSS external. If your pages contain widgets, social media buttons etc, the CSS and JavaScript files are required. However, it is recommended to avoid making them inline, as this prevents these files from being cached by the browser.

5) Place Java and CSS correctly. You can minimise loading time of the page by placing CSS files at the top, as they facilitate rendering. Similarly, it is best to set Javascrips at the bottom, as they block parallel downloads, meaning that while script is loading nothing else will.

6) Avoid redirects. In many instances, 301 redirect is an easy solution when you need to connect a new and an old site, or different part of the site. However, this affects user experience by slowing down page loading time. So, every time you’re doing a redirect, think twice whether it is really the best option.

Last, but Not Least …

As soon as you implement any optimisation methods, test the performance of your CS-Cart to see the result and discover the scope for further improvements.

Actually, you can automate this process with the help of Shopping Cart Diagnostics. This web service will monitor your CS-Cart speed regularly.  Register an account to locate what’s slowing down your store and get optimisation tips.

You would also be able to discover the source of strange CS-Cart errors and get email alerts in case anything goes wrong within any area of your store.

The details are here: http://www.shopping-cart-diagnostics.com/supported-carts/cscart/