Does your website load fast? A slow loading website can make a user decide to go somewhere else. Speed is important because slow websites can lose money and users. No one wants to wait until your website loads.
Why is your site slow?
Many factors could be slowing your site down. The common ones are:
When you get a report from these tools, you’ll see many metrics. Focus on these three metrics: Largest Contentful Paint, First Input Delay and Cumulative Layout Shift. Google calls them Core Web Vitals. Core Web Vitals measure the user experience — loading, interactivity and visual stability.
5 Website speed optimization tips to start with
What do you fix first? It depends. You’ll need to decide what affects the users the most.
1. Large image sizes
Large image sizes can drag down your website’s loading time. You can use a Website Image Analysis Tool to decide which images to handle first. Tools like ImageOptim can help to optimize your images for the web.
2. Large CSS files
CSS files get large over time. They can include leftover unused selectors, workarounds and duplicated code. To fix these problems, you need to refactor your CSS. Refactoring CSS is not an easy task but necessary one. Use this guide on how to refactor CSS without creating new problems.
4. Old legacy code
Code can get old and not for the better. Is your code using old code that has been depreciated? Look at your code to see if you can remove it. Or refactor it and make it better.
Are you using plugins that you no longer need or have newer versions? Make sure your plugins or widgets aren’t slowing your site down.
5. Server issues
Is you website still slow after fixing other web performance issues? If yes, then you need to look at your hosting server. Are you using a server that fits you needs? You may need to consider moving to a new host or paying a bit more for a premium service.
Semantic HTML is using specific tags when writing HTML. These tags convey meaning about their intended purpose. Both humans and computers can understand the meaning of your code when you use them. Browsers, search engines and assistive technologies use these tags to create a better user experience.
Why should I use it?
It makes your code easy to read. You’ll be able to scan quickly through the code to understand how it is structured. Semantic tags also make it faster to write code. You don’t have as many decisions to make when you use the semantic tags.
How to get started?
HTML5 introduced new tags – semantic tags. Tags like <header>, <main> and <footer>. With these tags, you create a web page structure that is readable to both search engines and people.
Your main content lives inside <main>. You can use tags like <p> and heading tags like <h1> to provide some structure. To provide further meaning to the content, use tags like <article> and <section>. The <article> tag contains content that can be removed and put on another page. You can use the <section> tag when you need to wrap groups of related content. Use the HTML semantics cheat sheet to learn when to use which tags for the right job.
What about the <div> tag?
HTML has non-semantic tags like <div>. Its generic nature allows you to define its purpose through code. You can use the <div> and <span> tags in your code. Use them to group elements that don’t have any specific meaning. When you need more specific meaning, choose semantic tags over non-semantic ones.
What are empty states? These are spaces on your app or web page which can be empty or blank. Screens or panels where no data or content displays. Why? Your users haven’t entered anything or data can’t be displayed.
You might be familiar with empty states. Some typical scenarios are:
When a search returns no results
You have downloaded a new app and haven’t entered any data or content
An error has occurred
When you have deleted all of your data
What can you do? You could leave it empty. Or display information to the user. What kind of information would you put here? You want to use this space to communicate the app’s status. Teach new users how to get started or discover new features.
Communicate status to the user
When you use an app, sometimes you may wonder if it is working. This can occur when you run a search and get no results back. Or an error has occurred.
Teach users how to get started
A blank or empty space can be intimidating to first time users. Use the space to teach your users what to do next, you help them to get started using your
Show your users how to create new content with examples. Use starter content to give them an idea on how to fill the space. If you sharing photos, you may put a couple of photos in to demonstrate how that works.
Don’t leave your users guessing what the app is doing. By using empty states, you help your users to get started using your app quickly. Learn how it works and be confident they can get what they want to do done. Refer to Designing Empty Spaces in Complex Applications to learn more.
Everyone can feel tired, bored or exhausted from doing work. Why? Too busy. Your tasks are repetitive and unchallenging. Or you deal with people who drain you. You need to focus on things that you can control to help deal with developer burnout.
Here’s a list of things to try:
Take a day off and do nothing. Relax, sleep or go somewhere different.
Change your sleep routine. It may need a bit of tweaking. You may need to change your nightly routine.
Break a habit or pattern. Take a different route to work. Eat at a new place for lunch.
Whether you are a beginner or experienced programmer, programming keeps changing. You have to keep up with the changes. How do improve your coding skills?
Most people learn by doing. You get better by writing code and sharing what you learn. Or getting involved with the programming community. To keep improving your coding skills, use the following tips:
1. Write code every day
Write code. Experiment with new ideas. Learn how others write code through copy work. It is the process of recreating an existing work as closely as possible. Writers and painters use this technique to improve their skills.
2. Read books
Why read books? Programming books can explore a topic more deeply than an online tutorial. They show you code in detail. You can reread it and gain new insights.
You can find podcasts on any topic. Pick from coding to tech news. Find one or more to get tips, tricks or updates on new technology. Don’t know where to start? Try FreeCodeCamp’s list of best tech podcasts for software developers.
5. Take a class
Pick a class to learn more about a programming topic or to pick up a specific skill. Get started with sites like Treehouse or FreeCodeCamp.