Why Site Speed is Important when Working with Affiliate Programs
When you work with affiliate programs, it can feel like you have a lot to focus on. Especially at the beginning. There’s the content to create. The SEO to get right. The ads to make. Not to mention all the analytics, audience research, and the simple matter of getting to know your products and promotions. And it takes time to get everything right. But one thing that many affiliate program members forget about is site speed. And the difference it can make to your earning potential.
The Importance of Site Speed when Working with Affiliate Programs
What is ‘site speed’?
In basic terms, site speed refers to the amount of time it takes for web pages to be downloaded and opened in a user’s browser. While a faster site speed has always been desirable, it has now become a user experience essential. Making it a priority for anyone looking to maximise the potential of working with affiliate networks.
Why does site speed matter if you’re working with affiliate programs?
Site speed matters for a couple of reasons. Partly because it reduces attrition. If your web pages open too slowly, your users will click away. In fact, recent research has shown that 53% of mobile site visits are abandoned if pages take longer than three seconds to load. If you add on another two seconds, you will lose up to 87% of visitors. And you don’t have to be a genius to work out what that will mean for your pay per sale conversions.
But you also have your SEO to think about. Google’s ‘Core Web Vitals’ initiative means that site speed is now also used as part of the SEO ranking process. So, the slower your site responds, the lower it is likely to rank. And the fewer the number of people likely to view your content and dating offers.
How is site speed measured?
From a technical perspective, there are three main criteria used to gauge site speed.
- Largest Contentful Paint (LCP) – This refers to the time it takes for the main content of the page to open.
- First input delay (FID) – This is the time it takes for the page to respond when a viewer interacts with it.
- Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS) – This is less about speed and more about how your pages respond when loading. Does the layout change? Are there any visual inaccuracies?
These matters are important from an SEO perspective. But if you work with affiliate programs, your main priority is in ensuring that your browsers can view your content in less just a couple of seconds.
How can you improve website speed?
Site speed can feel like a daunting problem to tackle. But there several easy fixes to help ensure that you don’t lose any of that important dating traffic.
- Work with a Content Delivery Network (CDN). Most affiliate program members work with a single server. This can mean that the further a user is from your location, the longer the content takes to load. Which can be particularly problematic if you’re trying to localize your content. A CDN uses a series of servers. And directs every enquiry to the closest.
- Try a different host. Understandably, most people select the cheapest hosting option. But your webhost directly impacts your site speed. If you’re struggling, it’s a good idea to shop around.
- Reduce your plugins. Most websites evolve. Over time, this means that you acquire plugins. Many of which you will no longer use. By removing non-essential plugins, you will immediately improve your site speed.
- Optimize your images and videos. The internet is increasingly image-driven. But if you have poorly formatted or overly large images or videos, they will slow your site. If you use a program like Kraken or ImageOptim, you can use images without impacting your speed.
- Watch your errors. 404 errors aren’t just annoying for your users. They slow your site. Correcting errors can really speed things up.
Site speed can make a big difference if you’re trying to monetize a website through affiliate programs. If your site is slow and clunky, you’ll never get the traffic you need. So, take time to take stock of how your website is performing. Because just a couple of seconds is all it takes to lose a potentially valuable conversion.