How to Speed Up Your Hubs = More Traffic
Why You Want a Fast Hub
There is one obvious reason you would want your hubs to be faster: your readers will have a better experience.
Sounds pretty straightforward and obvious, right? The thing is that you really want your hubs to be as lightning fast as possible. With a large percentage of readers browsing on their phones, a slowly loading website could make you lose traffic.
Another major reason you'll want a fast site: Google penalizes slow sites. This means fewer people will even have the opportunity to experience your slow load time.
One pitfall to using HubPages is that a lot of the page speed is up to the folks who run the show from HQ. However, there are a couple of things you can do to SERIOUSLY cut down on load time.
Finding the Culprits
The first thing you'll want to do is find hubs that are really slowing things down. Usually, these are hubs with lots of images and video, but there's an easy way to find the culprits right in Google Analytics.
In your Google Analytics account for HubPages, click "Behavior", then click "Site Speed", and then finally click "Page Timings."
Once there, you'll see a list of 10 hubs/pages and their load speeds. Note that these are relative speeds. The ones in green with negative are your faster pages and the ones in red are your slower pages.
Work on the hubs in red first!
You can see more hubs and their relative speeds by using the arrows at the bottom (or by changing "Show Rows" to a number larger than 10.)
Get Rid of Excess Video
If you have a video that describes what you're talking about in your hub, that's awesome. Keep that video. Media tie-ins can really make a hub shine!
If you have a hub on something like, "The 10 Best Pop Songs of the 90s", don't put ten videos up. You might think you're being helpful, but it will make your hub slow down to a crawl and visitors may click off before the page has even finished loading. What you can do is create a playlist on YouTube and put the first video on your Hub and let users know that if they view the video on YouTube, they can hear all the songs.
If you have a hub about your favorite travel destination and then finish off the hub with your favorite song (that's completely unrelated to your topic), get rid of it. This is the equivalent of your
Social Media Image Sizes
Social Media Site
1200 x 627
1200 x 1200
1200 x 717
880 x 440
800 x 600
600 x (infinite)
Resize Images to Boost Page Speed
Images are a major culprit in slowing down a site. Resizing can significantly reduce the size of an image file (which means it takes viewers less time to download them.)
Make sure you keep your images large enough to look nice on sites like Pinterest and Google+ where images really boost social shares.
Just make sure your photos aren't so large that they would take up a city block if printed out. If you make them *just* large enough to look fabulous on Google+, you're golden.
One of my very favorite WordPress plug-ins is Smush.it. This is a free service offered by Yahoo. Smush.it reduces the size of your images by removing excess "junk" from images.
However, you can use Smush.it without using WordPress through the Smush.it site.
It's extremely important to note that Yahoo does this losslessly. This means that your images look completely unchanged. Your images have the same dimensions, same awesome colors, and same amazing look, but the files are smaller.
When I found out that some of my hubs were on the slow side, the first thing I did was optimize images. This really sped things up.
Before I attached images to this hub, I ran them through Smush.it and I cut the file size of each by around 50%!
What is slowing down your hubs?
Show Fewer Comments
If you have a hub with a lot of comments, you should show a max of 50 comments at a time. You can toggle the amount of comments shown by hitting the edit button on the comment on hubs.
This doesn't prevent readers from viewing other comments. If a reader wants to view more comments, they just have to click an extra button. All other readers who aren't interested in reading every single comment on your hub just earned themselves a much faster load time!
Now that you know how to speed up your hubs, you can get to work on really boosting the experience for your readers (and perhaps even see a boost in search rankings.)