The amount of carbon that is released as a result of internet use is astounding, yet since the internet offers so many advantages, people are unlikely to cease using it. As a result, we need to be more cautious about our online behaviour and consider the environment.
Over 70% of all businesses have a website. The chances are – if you’re reading this, then the business you own or work for also has a website. We all visit a number (quite a large number, actually) of websites each day. So, it just seems logical that we have to look for ways on how to minimise our digital footprint, just like a lot of us have swapped train journeys for bicycle rides and plastic cups for compostable cups, it is possible to make your website environmentally friendlier and more sustainable.
What is sustainable web design?
Currently, the internet contributes just under 4% of the world’s carbon emissions, a percentage that is increasing as we become more data-hungry.
Sustainable web design is a method of designing and developing websites that prioritises the needs of people and the environment. It provides digital services that adhere to the Sustainable Web Manifesto’s six guiding principles: clean, efficient, open, honest, regenerative, and resilient.
The goal of sustainable web design is to create websites that have no detrimental effects on the environment.
What can you do to develop a more sustainable website?
It might be difficult at first to understand how websites ‘pollute the environment’, however, the easiest way to look at it is by understanding that the more data is being transferred the more energy is being used – thus the bigger the CO2 footprint. The goal of creating a sustainable website is to minimise the data transfer whilst reducing the impact on the environment. Here are some simple yet significant things that your business can do to make a difference.
Green hosting: There are choices we can make in the backend of websites and web applications that can greatly minimise carbon emissions. Any type of web hosting or data centre that uses carbon offsetting techniques or is entirely powered by renewable energy sources is referred to as “green hosting”.
WeAgile is proud to state that our website is hosted on 100% renewable energy-powered servers. Our hosting company, Digital Ocean, is based in the UK and uses only renewable energy sources that have been certified as being 100 per cent clean.
Code minification: Any source code can be subjected to the minification process, which shrinks files by eliminating extraneous characters without compromising functionality. Smaller source code files mean less weight for your website and faster device processing times.
WeAgile considers minification to be a crucial component of our strategy because it guarantees user-friendly website loading times while also minimising its negative environmental effects.
Optimising your images and videos: There are techniques for content optimisation that can lower the overall carbon footprint of your digital product throughout the design phase of a project. To ensure that imagery and video offer value to the experience and are uploaded at the proper scale, they should be carefully selected. To make image and video content as light as feasible, file format and compression can also be used.
Simplify your user journeys: Shorter user journeys are valued by users. They increase the chance of conversions and lower the amount of time a user spends on your website before reaching their destination, therefore, keep this in mind while developing or planning your user journeys.
Eliminating obstacles like drawn-out checkout processes and cryptic copywriting results in a more effective user experience and, as a result, a website that uses less energy.
SEO Search Engine Optimisation: You may make it easier for users to find the information they need as fast as possible by optimising your website for search engine rankings. Effective SEO causes customers to spend less time exploring for information and visit fewer pages. Because the user is concentrating on information that is pertinent to them, less energy is wasted.
If you want to find out more about building a sustainable website, why not get in touch with the team at WeAgile via the form below today!