1 November 2021
Or Yahel Asbag
A product manager’s job is, among others, to plan the user experience and constantly invest in product development. As a product manager dealing with website design and development, I took part in the development of a technique knows as “Lazy Loading”. This term refers to a strategy used to detect components of website pages that aren’t immediately critical for the UX and “blocks” them in order to improve it. The following is a review of this technique, complete with its advantages.
Video and pictures are the most desired components for most websites and take up more broadband than any other website component. The problem arises especially when the webpages include many pictures, .gif files or video files, and therefore take longer to load. This harms the surfing quality and the overall User Experience.
Lazy Loading (AKA "Asynchronous Loading”) is a technique meant to make internet content display more efficient by delaying component reload (mainly video, picture, and .gif components) until they are required. This technique claims that rather than load the entire webpage and process it all at once, it is best to load and display the content gradually upon the user scrolling down. For example, delaying video file loading on a webpage until they are revealed to the user, may make its initial display faster. This technique makes these components’ utilization, which may tamper with the page’s loading, more efficient as it operates on minimal reload time. Only when users’ scroll and encounter a video or picture, these components are loaded and displayed on the webpage. If the user does not scroll and is not exposed to these components, their content will not be loaded. This, in turn, saves on broadband and grants users a better, faster surfing experience.
Despite Lazy Loading’s advantages, Google advises not implementing it on components located at the top of your webpage, as they are the first element that the user sees on their page and must load as quickly as possible. Lazy Loading, in these cases, will slow down these components’ loading and negatively impact SEO performance.