Your campaign website serves as your digital campaign’s hub. It’s where all your online and offline activities intersect. So, naturally, the performance of your website, specifically its load time, becomes crucial.
Both Google and Facebook factor in website speed into how they rank a page in search results or news feeds. Studies also indicate a direct correlation between swift website loading and increased conversions. Similarly, if voters can locate their required information without a hitch, they’re more likely to spend more time on your site. In turn, this could lead to them returning to donate, volunteer, or learn more about your campaign.
In this article, we’ll explore six key tools to help supercharge your website’s performance by reducing load times.
Pingdom Website Speed Test
Pingdom provides a free tool to gauge your website’s load speed. Simply enter your URL, select a location closest to you, and let Pingdom do the rest. The test not only provides a performance grade but also gives valuable feedback on improving your website speed.
Google PageSpeed Insights
PageSpeed Insights, a part of Google’s web developer portal, evaluates your website’s performance across desktop and mobile devices. Remember, page load speed influences Google search rankings. This tool offers recommendations and performance grades based on Google’s Core Web Vitals:
- Largest Contentful Paint (LCP): Assesses loading performance. Aim for an LCP within 2.5 seconds from when the page starts loading.
- First Input Delay (FID): Measures interactivity. A FID of 100 milliseconds or less is desirable.
- Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS): Gauges visual stability. Maintain a CLS of 0.1 or less for a good user experience.
Large, uncompressed images can slow down a website. Tiny PNG allows you to compress images without sacrificing their quality, thereby enabling your website to load faster. For optimal results, resize images to their intended dimensions on your website to minimize unnecessary file weight.
Cloudflare offers a suite of tools for website builders. Its most valuable tool is a Content Delivery Network (CDN), which caches your website content to expedite load times. It also offers protection against certain types of cyber attacks. Cloudflare is free and offers additional protection for qualified political candidates through Defending Digital Campaigns.
Yoast SEO Plugin
Google Search and social media are two significant referral traffic sources for any website. Yoast SEO helps enhance your site’s visibility on Google and enables you to optimize how your web pages appear on social media platforms. This, in turn, can improve your click-through rate, leading to increased site visits.
Google Tag Manager
Google Tag Manager is a free tool that helps manage your website’s scripts like Google Analytics and ad retargeting. By consolidating the number of tracking codes on your website, it reduces load times while capturing essential data.
Website speed continues to be a vital metric of success for digital marketers, especially for political campaigns. Utilizing these free tools can significantly improve your website’s performance and make your overall digital campaign more effective.