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My store loads slowly, how to fix it

Your store speed depends on several factors. Sometimes the speed issue can be local — like slow internet connection, sometimes they are common — for example, too many heavy images in your website take more time to load.

Below are several simple steps that you can take yourself to find out what causing the problem.

Table of contents
  • Check the internet connection
  • Check your device
  • Check different browsers
  • Check different sites
  • Report the problem to Netcash Shop
  • FAQ — How to improve my store loading speed

Check the internet connection

Internet providers may have technical problems that slow down the speed or even block some resources on the internet. To check your connection, run the speed test on the device where your store loads slowly.

The easiest way is to check your store page both on desktop and on your mobile device if you use different internet connections there, i.e. mobile vs wire internet.

If your store loads quickly with another internet connection, contact your main internet provider for further help.

Check your device

Sometimes a particular device may affect the store performance. If your store works perfectly on your smartphone but loads slowly on your PC, try to:

  • Reload PC and check if the issue persists on this device.
  • Disable antivirus. The antivirus program may be blocking some resources when you open a website and slow the loading speed. To check if that is the cause of your issue, temporarily disable your antivirus system and refresh the website page. If you notice that the issue is gone, please record a HAR file. Then email us the file and the name of your antivirus system. We’ll check what’s causing the conflict and how to fix it.

Check different browsers

Check how your store is loaded in other browsers. If it works fine in all browsers except one, it means that something is wrong with this very browser. In that case the conflict with page loading may be caused by:

  • a browser plugin or extension
  • your browser cache

Turn off the extensions

Sometimes a browser extension can slow your site down. Disable your extensions one by one to see if it makes any difference to your store loading speed.

For example, if your store is slow in Firefox with Firebug installed, try to disable it temporarily. It’s a known fact that Firebug can slow down AJAX sites.

When you find the extension which affects your website loading speed:

  • delete the extension if you don’t use it
  • if you want to keep the extension, email us its name. We’ll check if there is anything that we can do to fix the issue.

Clear cache

Cache is the info from visited websites stored on your computer. When you have been browsing the internet for a long time, it may build up a sizeable cache. This may affect the speed and performance of your computer. Clearing the cache frees up some space and may speed things back up again.

Try to clear the cash in your browser and then open your store again. If the issue is gone after that, it looks like you saw the issue because of cache.

Check different sites

Sometimes something on your website may slow the loading speed down. To find out if there’s a problem:

  • contact us to see how our demo shop works
  • check how your Instant Site works: https://store[store id].shop.netcash.co.za (where STORE_ID is your actual store id)

If the Instant Site and our demo website work OK, it indicates that something on your site slows down the store loading. The reasons may be:

  • heavy images or videos
  • third-party scripts that don’t load

Re-upload the site images

If you have many images and videos on your website, it may slow its work. Try to optimize the heavy images and re-upload them to your website. You can learn How to Optimize Product Images in the Netcash Shop blog.

Review 3rd-party scripts

Sometimes the third-party scripts in the code may slow the work of the website. Ask your system admin or site designer to check the code of your website to find any scripts that may slow down the speed.

If the demo store works fine, but the Instant Site loads slowly, it means there is some issue with your Netcash Shop. In that case contact the Netcash Shop Customer Care team to find out the reason for low speed connection.

Report the problem to Netcash Shop

If all the above steps didn’t work, you can write to the Netcash Shop Customer Care team to find out what’s causing the problem. To help us understand your issue and its cause, please email us the following details:

  1. Your device and browser info
  2. Do you face the issue in several browsers (Safari, Chrome, Firefox, etc.)?
  3. Your demo shop store ID and link to your Instant Site.
  4. Can you reproduce the issue on a different device with a different internet connection?
  5. Do you run antivirus software? If so, what is its name?
  6. HAR file — this file shows the processes that happen in the browser when you open your store page. Please follow these steps to record a HAR file and attach it to the email.

FAQ — How to improve my store loading speed

My store works fine but I want to make my store load even faster. Can I do so?

Yes, you can. If your store loads in a few seconds, but you want it to load even faster, you can increase the speed by collapsing the categories and showing fewer products on the storefront page.

To do so, go to your Shop admin → Design, scroll down to the Category view section and select Collapse categories. After you do it, fewer products will load on the front page at once and the site will load faster.

One more step to improve the speed is to get rid of rarely used apps.

Although applications from Netcash Shop App Market are a great way to enhance your store, sometimes the less the better.

If you have too many apps in your Shop admin, they can also slow the site down a little even if you are not using them.

To review your applications, go to Apps → My Apps and make sure you only have those apps that you are actively using in your store. If you see the apps that you don’t use anymore, uninstall them and check how it affects your store speed.

My store works fine but Google PageSpeed shows low results. Why so?

The score loading on the Google PageSpeed Insights is not the only indicator of the work of your site as PageSpeed Insights is a synthetic test. The site is loaded in an emulated environment. Because of that the results may be lower than the actual loading speed.

Very often the low speed result by Google PageSpeed is shown only in this tool. Try different tools like GTmetrix or Pingdom and compare the results. In most cases you will see that actual loading speed and other tools results are different from the Google PageSpeed scores.