Role of Server Response Time in Website Performance

Website performance is as important as having a website for businesses these days. A slower loading website results in frustrated visitors who may simply skip the site and may not return back. Therefore, the web server response time becomes one of the crucial factors in determining the performance of your website, and thereby, your business. Hereunder are some key points that illustrate the importance of server response time for a website, the factors that affect it and the ways to improve it.

Server response time determines website speed. Server response time is the time taken for the server to respond to the client's request. While there can be many other reasons for the slowdown of your website, a slow responding web server can be one of them. Whatever the level of programming and web designing may be that you do to your website, if the main server is processing the requests at a slow pace, the performance of the website will definitely be affected.

Impact of slower loading website on business. Many studies conclude that the maximum wait time of website visitors is only about two seconds. A website taking a longer time to load will create a negative impression of the site as well as the company, among visitors. It not only results in the loss of a sale or lead at that moment, it also may make the visitor abandon the site forever. Some search engines consider the load time of a website among many factors, so a slow loading website can result in lower search engine rankings.

Factors that impact server response time. There are several factors that may impact server response time. A web server is a complex machine with numerous applications and high-end hardware components. A deficiency in the working of any of these resources will simply impact the working of the web server and thereby, its response time. There can be external factors too like power outage, DoS attacks, requests overload, bandwidth limitations or even natural calamities that can result in slower server response time.

Monitor web server performance regularly. The impact of slower server response time on website performance is not something that can be ignored. Having said that, it is not even possible to completely eliminate the factors that cause it. Hence, the best way to handle this issue is to continuously monitor the web server performance. This way, you will at least be alerted on when and why your server is causing the website to slow down. Further, regular monitoring enables you to attend to the problem as soon as it arises. Delayed action may affect other functional areas and ultimately create a major problem, which may be difficult to resolve. Hence, taking necessary actions at the right time will reduce the impact on website performance.

While a well-resourced server can give your website a competitive edge by enabling fast performance, it is hard to predict whether your server will perform at its best always. As there are many factors that can impact the response time of your web server, continuous monitoring is required to keep track of it.