The page load time is one of the most important part of your website’s visitor experience. Of course, the design of the website is important, but do you know what the visitor is more concerned about? It’s how fast the pages load. And it depends on the size of all of the files that have to be downloaded by the client browser. Consider a delay of just one second can reduce customer satisfaction and result in loss of conversions. Which is why, web developers work tirelessly to improve the website load time. One such way to increase the page speed is to compress the files that have to be downloaded by the browser. It does not only improve the website’s load time, but also cheaper to those who have to pay for the bandwidth usage! In this guide, I shall tell you how to enable
gzip compression on Nginx web server and how it helped my site to load faster.
You can configure Nginx with
gzip a popular data compression program to compress files on the fly. Those files are then decompressed by the browser that support
gzip with no loss whatsoever.
Test Nginx default behavior for gzip compression
On my fresh installation of Nginx, lets check whether the
gzip has been enabled?
$curl -H "Accept-Encoding: gzip" -I https://techglimpse.com HTTP/1.1 200 OK Server: nginx Date: Wed, 29 Nov 2017 11:14:25 GMT Content-Type: text/html; charset=UTF-8 Connection: keep-alive ETag: W/"52f49928-fe89" Accept-Ranges: bytes
From the above result, there is no mention of compression!
Enable gzip compression on Nginx server
Let’s configure Nginx to compress not only HTML files, but also other file formats like, Images, CSS, JS etc., that can benefit from compression.
Open the Nginx configuration file in your favorite text editor and insert the below code.
For the new configuration to take effect, test the configuration for errors and then restart Nginx.
# nginx -t # systemctl restart nginx
Verify Gzip compression
$curl -H "Accept-Encoding: gzip" -I https://techglimpse.com HTTP/1.1 200 OK Server: thing Date: Wed, 29 Nov 2017 12:00:46 GMT Content-Type: text/html; charset=UTF-8 Connection: keep-alive Vary: Accept-Encoding Link: <https://techglimpse.com/wp-json/>; rel="https://api.w.org/" X-Cache: MISS Content-Encoding: gzip
Google gives importance to website’s load time when ranking and placing your website in search results upon your competitors. Enabling gzip will increase organic traffic and visitors like websites that load faster – especially mobile users!