CSS stands for Cascading Style Sheets, it is a style sheet language used to describe the look and formatting of a document written in a markup language such as XML or HTML. If you want to build an engaging and beautiful website, CSS or Cascading style sheets are essential.
CSS provides a separation between a website’s presentation and its content, making websites more accessible on all devices. There are three ways to integrate CSS in HTML: Internal, External, and Inline. Unoptimized CSS can cause slower pages and decrease conversion rates just like unoptimized images. By optimizing your CSS, you can deliver a consistent, high-quality experience across devices of all shapes and sizes.
CSS can be used to apply styles and layouts to a page without requiring the browser to recalculate the layout. It’s important to optimize your CSS for maximum performance, and you can do that by following the steps below. In this article, we’ll look at some tips and techniques for optimizing your CSS to load faster, be easier to use, and be more effective.
Find and Remove Unused CSS
The unused entries to your CSS files boost the web page load time of your internet site and affect the site’s performance. You can check your web page in the PageSpeed Insights tool and it will show what are the folders/files that contain unused CSS. One of the easiest ways to get rid of unused CSS is the tool “UnusedCSS”. Removing unused CSS can make pages load faster and save valuable cellular data for mobile users.
Reduce CSS file size
By removing or minifying all the unneeded code it reduces the CSS file size. Reducing unused CSS files can reduce render-blocking behavior to speed up your website load and improve your visitors’ page experience. Minifying CSS files can help reduce their file sizes by removing white spaces, redundant code, and comments.
Replace Images with CSS
It can take a lot of time to load all the images on a website. We can replace traditional resource-intensive JPG and PNG images with native CSS effects. Whenever possible, use CSS effects to generate graphics instead of referencing an image. Defining an “image” with CSS uses a lot less bandwidth and is easier to edit or animate later.
The @import message allows you to import one stylesheet from another valid stylesheet and it causes additional HTTP requests for the server and browser which increases the page load time. It can block parallel downloads so never use this directive to include external style sheets. You can avoid CSS@import by combining CSS files, using inline CSS in HTML, and using link tags in the HTML. It will allow the browser to load your website faster.
Choosing simple class selectors can benefit performance when rendering your site, especially on devices with lower processing power. Keep the CSS hierarchy simple & clean and it will reduce the dependency on another selector and increase reusability. It’s better to consider using BEM and OOCSS or other flavors and combinations.
No matter how amazing a webpage looks after loading, none of your efforts count if users leave the page before that point. A little CSS basics knowledge can enhance your apps, revolutionize your workflow, and noticeably improve performance. Implementing these CSS techniques will allow you to create websites that load faster and perform more consistently.