This Zen Cart tutorial is the last in a four part instructional series that offers the best tips, tricks and hints on how to speed up your zen cart site. Site speed is important for a variety of reasons, but the most prominent of these is because of the effect page loading time has on your conversion rates. It’s not a complicated subject; Slow loading time equals low conversion rates, while fast loading time translates into higher conversion rates, and happier customers.
One of the things you can do when trying to figure out what you need to do in order to speed your site up is to assess your Page Parse Times. This can be helpful in isolating a bottleneck scenario, and remedying it.
Another good step to take is to use the MySQL slow query log feature, which can help you identify database queries that perform less than optimally. However, you might have to speak with your hosting company to turn this feature on, and/or evaluate the logs that it generates. If this is something you can do, be sure to set it with a low threshold so you can see where the database spends most of it’s time.
You should also figure out whether you have any mods enabled that add their own tables to your database. These may be badly tuned tables, which can contribute to slow page load time.
You should also reevaluate any custom code or addons which run queries that attempt to join tables on unindexed database columns.
Take a look at Zen Cart’s page on Webserver Tuning Tips, and put as many as possible into practice in your zen cart store. Another great Zen Cart tip page is this one which has some good ideas about image cacheing.
And in case you haven’t already checked, you should ensure you’re not loading more than one copy of jQuery on your zen cart site site. There are a lot of modules/addons/plugins that come with their own copy of jquery.js or jquery-min.js, and loading them all is unnecessary, and taxes your web site. Generally, you should only be loading one, and it should be the latest version available.
If you need help with your zen cart web site please contact us for a quote.