Magento is one of the most widely used e-commerce platforms today, chosen by people to grow their online business. To be fair, it doesn’t have too much competition, as 16% of the top 100,000 e-commerce websites are using Magento, 22% if we also include Magento Enterprise. And WooCommerce, which is an extension of WordPress, Shopify, Volusion etc, comes in at a close second with 12%.
The reason why Magento is so popular among online business owners is that it’s a very robust platform with a high level of functionality and easily customized. It is highly scalable, meaning there would be no need to change to a different platform later on.
Speed is highly important for online stores today, as people no longer have time and patience for slow loading sites. If an e-commerce site is making $100,000 per day, a 1-second page delay could potentially cost you $2.5 million in lost sales every year.
Making sure the e-commerce platforms you are using are running fast is one of the most important factors to your sales, SEO rankings, abandonment rate, and the shoppers’ overall user experience.
First off, upgrade to the latest version as updates generally contain bug fixes and performance improvements. Magento also does a good job of notifying you of important updates that become available within your notifications/messages inbox (depending on which version of Magento you’re using. Also, it will help you to enable the Flat Catalog module for products and categories in the Magento Admin Panel.
There are quite significant improvements by turning on this feature, especially on large catalogs, by simply going to System → Configuration → Catalog. Also, enabling the cache mode will reduce the number of database operations required for each page request. Do it by following System → Cache Management.
Optimize the images you use for your website. Approximately 56% of a website’s page weight is made up of images so optimizing them can significantly increase the speed of your pages as this decreases their download times. You can compress them before uploading them using PhotoShop or extensions used to auto-optimize images (for Magento2 there are two extensions available for this: TinyPNG Extension and Compressor Extension).
Next stop? Clean up your Magento Database and Logs. This is a no-brainer, really, as Magento keeps logs up to 180 days. This can result in your database growing quite large so you change it to just a few weeks or days in order to save space. To do so, navigate to Stores → Configuration → Advanced → System → Log. Then, under Save Log, Days change it to whatever you prefer, then simply click on Save Config.
After that, it’s pretty much compulsory to update your Magento indexes, which is already done on every object store by default, although in some cases manual updates are required. Indexes are used to speed up MySQL queries so they result in speeding up your site.
Update the Magento indexes by navigating to System → Index Management, then select all of the indexes (or the ones you want to update), choose Reindex Data from the dropdown and click Submit.
Last, try to use a faster web server. Simply replace the Apache web server with LiteSpeed Enterprise web server. LiteSpeed offers a 50% performance increase for PHP application and is up to 6 times faster than Apache serving static content.
You should see the differences almost immediately.