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October 16th, 2018

Improve your website load time: adjust the quality of your images from your editor

Posted by liveBooks

We’ve changed our online habits these past years. The internet is right in our pocket, so we expect our mobiles to give us the information we ask for ASAP. Yet we have reached the point where we abandon our half-filled carts, read only the news titles and go through only half of those 25 pictures of cats doing crazy acrobatics. The culprit in most cases is the slow loading time for pages we’re visiting.

We might find more patience when browsing from our desktops, but on mobile, to wait is not an option. On average we’ll give a page around 3 seconds for it to load before we bounce to something else. Oddly enough, this study shows that it takes around 10 seconds for an average landing page to load all of its assets. So what do we do about this?

Before venturing any further, is best to test your website loading speed and get an accurate reading on your data. After all, if your website’s parameters are within normal, then there’s no reason to fix something that already works.

Adjust the overall image quality for your website

The main culprit when it comes to big loading times is the quality of the images you upload. If your website is image-heavy and you didn’t optimize them for web when saving them, that’s your bull’s eye. If you skipped this step and a big part of your content is represented by images, don’t fret! There’s no need to re-upload your photographs since this new feature in your Image Collection does exactly that.

Introducing Configuration for your Image Collection

Since the update on the old liveBooks Image Gallery, the new Image Collection brings new ways to tag, organize and optimize your images. This week we will focus on adjusting the overall image quality.

In your Image Collection go to Settings, located in the upper right corner of your window.

Here you’ll find the solution to the slow loading time of your pages due to your image quality. You can change the overall image quality by using the slider.

The recommended preset is half-way between website performance and quality, but this might differ from user to user, depending on the original image size. Once you’ve set the new image quality, make sure to save your change from the bottom right button. There’s no need to publish your site, as these changes go through automatically.

To give an example of the difference in loading time, we did a little experiment with one of our websites. It has 58 JPEGs provided by the great Unsplash community, each image having around 4MB, so way above the recommended size. We moved the slider to Best Quality and the load time stopped at 20 seconds. When we went to the opposite end of the slider, the load time dropped to 1.43 seconds, while the Recommended setting put it at around 8 seconds. Again, the images we used were absolutely huge, to begin with.

Pro tip: You can adjust the quality of individual images by going to its own settings and clicking the gear icon in the 4th tab.

Advanced options

You can also go in-depth with the advanced/custom options, which set different parameters for your JPEG, GIF and PNG images. We will go through the advanced settings and how they influence your loading times in another edition of Tuesday Tips, so make sure you follow us on Facebook and Twitter for updates.

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