A New Secret to Increasing Your Page Views

Do you want to increase the page views on your website? Everyone does right? Well this is something I have been spending a lot of time thinking about, and I recently found out something quite surprising.

In hindsight I probably shouldn’t be surprised but I have had a bit of a spike in visitors in the last few weeks and it’s because of one set of changes. I have spent months tweaking the content and improving links and all that stuff, but this time it was something much more basic that didn’t involve the content or design at all.

I Made The Website Faster!

Speed – you hear it all the time but it’s not until I actually tried optimising the speed of my website that I realized just how much of a difference it really makes. In fact last month I got over one hundred thousand page views for the first time ever, and with the continued improvements I am on target to get around 115 thousand page views this month!

How I Made My Website Faster!

The biggest improvement was when I changed from website caching to APC (Alternative PHP Cache). Installing APC on my VPS (Virtual Private Server) and making use of W3 Total Cache gave me an instant spike in visitors. I was seeing an extra 500 to 600 page views a day – with no effort. However there are a whole bunch of changes I have made over the last few months and I am now wondering if they have had an effect as well.

All the changes I have made (that I can think of) include:

  • As I mentioned above, I installed APC caching and combined it with W3 Total Cache. This alone made the biggest increase to traffic.
  • I moved static content to a Content Delivery Network (CDN).
  • Move most javascript to bottom of the page. Javascript often slows down the loading of the page so making it load last speeds up the display of the content. This change is actually an improvement to the Elemental theme.
  • I optimized TimThumb speed – you can read about these changes on my last blog post.
  • My VPS was running 3 or 4 other websites so I moved some of the smaller sites off of the VPS and onto nearlyfreespeech.net allowing the faster server to focus on the more important websites.

These optimisations just show how much speed plays a part in website success. Google knows what they are doing so it’s really worth paying attention when they say things like website speed are important.

Was it good/ useful/ a load of old rubbish? Let me know on Mastodon, or BlueSky (or Twitter X if you must).

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