Ensuring that your shop's page and loading speed are optimized is not only important so customers can easily browse and make a purchase, but also has an impact on your search engine optimization (SEO). While there are a wide variety of factors that can affect the speed of your store, here's an overview of general tips to optimize and improve performance.
In This Article
- Reduce and remove apps
- Update your theme
- Simplify content
- Reduce products per page
- Disable quick shop
- Optimize images
- Review links
- Speed testing tools
Reduce or remove apps
You can see which apps you have installed under the Apps dashboard in your admin.
You may want to uninstall any apps that aren’t converting well, or that you don’t really need.
If you've deleted an app, you'll also need to remove app code. Disabling an app on this dashboard may not completely remove the app. You may need to check with the app's documentation or support team for detailed uninstall instructions. Consider this article's steps for cleaning up leftover code from third-party apps.
Update to the latest version
Updating to the latest version ensures that you are working with the most refined version of the theme. Whether the latest version includes speed-specific enhancements or not, keeping up with the latest release is the best foundation for accelerating page speed.
For information on how to update to the latest version, check out this article: How to Update Your Theme
Pages with a higher amount of content, such as home pages with a high section count, typically will load slower. If you feel a page is loading slowly, consider removing or combining some sections.
Another option to consider here is to simplify the above-the-fold content.
'Above-the-fold' refers to the area immediately visible upon page load. This often includes the header (with logo, navigation, etc.) and content added for the page's introduction. Many themes include sophisticated features for this area, most notably slideshows, but with more features come more delay in the page's loading time.
Consider disabling your slideshow and replacing it with other image-based sections, such as Image with Text Overlay.
Reduce the number of products per page
If your shop has a ton of products in your Collection pages, you could choose to display fewer products per page within the theme editor. To do this, head into your theme editor (Customize) > navigate to a collection page, under Sections > Collections > adjust the "Products per page" setting.
Disable quick shop
Try disabling the Quick Shop feature from the collection pages. This can be especially helpful if your products have a large number of images, very high-quality images or videos.
Depending on your theme and its version, disabling the quick shop can be done by going into Customize > Theme settings > Product grid OR Theme settings > Quick shop.
If quick shop is important to your store, you may want to consider the Turbo Shopify theme, which allows for the use of quick shop popups without sacrificing speed and also includes an 'inline' option where no popup window is required.
Ensure your images are optimized
All Out of the Sandbox themes include responsive images which takes your largest available image and creates incremental sizes for different window or device widths. This helps to balance image quality with page speed.
However, we also recommend optimizing your images before uploading them to your shop. Use a free or paid image optimizer to reduce your image file sizes. Remember to try this on any banner images as well for best results.
For more information on how images are converted and handled, check out this article: How Shopify themes handle and convert images
Tie up loose ends with your links
Avoid broken links (leading nowhere) and redirects (leading to one page, then another) as much as possible. These can impact a store's performance and customer experience.
Test your store's links manually to confirm their accuracy. You can also use tools like Online Broken Link Checker for this task.
The Turbo Shopify theme includes an integration with InstantClick which can be enabled in Theme settings > Performance, by choosing "Ludicrous" – this enhancement loads links in the background to reduce loading time.
For more information about Turbo's performance settings, check out this article: What's the difference between "Ludicrous" and "Sport" mode?
The rest of the Out of the Sandbox themes include an integration with InstantPage, which similarly to InstantClick, uses page-preloading to load links in the background.
Please note: Artisan does not currently include the InstantPage integration – coming soon!
Speed testing tools
There are a wide variety of tools available that purport to test and "grade" your page speed. However, please note that many of these use different criteria to gauge your speed and therefore the results should typically be viewed more as general guidelines.
If you're seeing Google PageSpeed Insights warnings or using it for testing, there are some important points to keep in mind about this tool. For more information about Google's PageSpeed Insights, check out these articles:
- How much weight should you give Google's PageSpeed Insights?
- How can I resolve Google PageSpeed Insight warnings?
Turbo users should be aware the theme's advanced page preloading feature is not detected by most speed testing tools, including Google's.
Other Speed test tools/analyzers other than Google PSI for detailed reports: