Why Won’t My Page Load?
Are you having trouble loading your web pages? This can be frustrating for you and your business, even losing traffic and revenue. However, it’s also bad for your visitors. Slow loading times or pages not loading at all can result in a poor User Experience (UX).
Fortunately, there are ways you can troubleshoot your website and fix its loading times. The solution might be as simple as clearing your cache or updating your browser. Then, you can get your site back up and running as soon as possible.
In this post, we will look at some of the common causes of page loading issues. Then, we’ll show you how you can troubleshoot your website with six quick and easy tips. Let’s get started!
Why Won’t My Page Load?
Before fixing your website, it can be helpful to understand why it won’t load. Here are some common problems:
- If you see Connection Interrupted, Connection Reset, or Page Timed Out, these messages often indicate issues with your site’s cache.
- If your web pages load but aren’t displaying correctly (or the images don’t show up), you may receive an error message. This might say Unable to Process Your Request or Error Occurred.
- You might see a security warning such as Secure Connection Failed or Potential Security Risk Ahead. These messages mean your browser can’t verify the certificate provided by the site or ensure the encryption can protect your privacy.
- If the page loading problem doesn’t happen in a different browser, it’s a browser-specific issue. If it continues in all browsers, there’s likely an internet connection problem.
- Your browser may try to access the internet through a proxy server, usually when your Internet Security Program (ISP) is blocking it. A proxy server is a computer that has an IP address of its own. It acts as a gateway between users and the internet, providing a valuable layer of security. If your page doesn’t load, the proxy server might be refusing connections, or your browser might be unable to find it.
- If the site’s URL ends in a colon followed by a number, such as: 23, it may be a restricted address. Try deleting that portion of the URL, or replace the number with 80.
These are just a few situations where your page might not load. In the next section, we’ll explain how to troubleshoot this issue.
How Can I Troubleshoot My Website?
Here are a few easy ways to troubleshoot your website when experiencing slow page loading times!
Step 1: Clear Your Cache and Cookies
When you use a browser to access a web page, it stores information from websites to load content faster. This way, your browser avoids downloading duplicate files each time you view them. However, the stored data can weigh your browser down, causing slow load times and formatting issues.
The stored information is known as your cache. The method for clearing your cache and cookies differs between Windows and Mac. It can also depend on which browser you use, whether Google Chrome or Internet Explorer.
If you use Safari, you can find the option to clear your cache in the menu panel. Go to Preferences > Privacy. Then, under Cookies and website data, click on Manage website data. Here, you’ll see a list of all websites that have stored data in your browser:
You can select which sites you want to remove or click on Remove all. Although this action will clear your browser cache and cookies, it can also log you out of websites with saved login details.
Step 2: Check Your Browser Settings to Enable Content to Load
If the web page still isn’t loading, you’ll need to determine whether it’s a browser issue. You can do this by trying to access the page through a different browser. If the problem persists, you know that it’s a website issue.
However, if the site loads in another browser, check your browser settings. This step lets you see if your browser is blocking certain types of content, such as images.
If you use Safari, you can do this by clicking on Safari in the menu panel. Then, select Preferences > Advanced. Tick the box that says Show Develop menu in menu bar:
Next, find Develop in the menu bar, and make sure there isn’t a tick next to Disable images or any of the other menu items:
The process will be a little different if you’re using other browsers like Chrome or Firefox. If the page still isn’t loading at this stage, you could try disabling or uninstalling any extensions in your browser, such as web accelerator software or Google Analytics.
You’ll typically find this software within your system preferences or settings:
If you’ve verified that cookies are enabled, your settings allow content to appear, and software isn’t blocking the site, there might be an issue with your system or the website itself.
Step 3: Correct Your Certificates to Avoid Security Warnings
Having an SSL certificate for your website is essential to creating a trusted environment. It can help users feel comfortable visiting your site. SSL certificates keep data secure, verify website ownership, and prevent attackers from creating fake versions of your site.
Without an up-to-date SSL certificate, browsers can’t verify a secure connection. Therefore, there will be no way for users to access your site. As the website owner, you can update your SSL certificate. However, if you’re trying to access another site, you need to alert the site owner.
Fortunately, WP Engine provides you with two certificate options right out of the gate. We handle all the technical elements for you, making the process quick and easy.
Step 4: Update Your Browser
If you can access the website using a different browser, you’ve identified a problem with your browser. However, maybe you’ve followed the steps above, but the page still isn’t loading.
Websites aren’t always compatible with older versions of browsers. Therefore, you might need to update your browser to the latest version.
You will typically see a notification if your browser has a new version available. Otherwise, you can find a message saying you’re using the latest version:
If you continue to encounter issues after updating your browser, your Internet Security Provider might be blocking the connection. In this case, you will need to contact your ISP. If you’re unsure who your internet provider is, you can visit this website to quickly find out.
Step 5: Change Proxy Server Settings
Your browser may try to establish a connection through a proxy server if your ISP blocks access. Therefore, you could try changing your proxy settings, or you can check the connection settings in your browser.
With Safari, you can find these settings under Network Preferences > Advanced. Under Proxies, select Change Settings:
If you don’t connect to the internet through a proxy server (or you’re not sure), make sure none of the proxy settings boxes are ticked. Then refresh your page and see if it loads.
Step 6: Address Internet Connection Issues
If it’s not a browser issue and not a website issue, your ISP might be blocking your internet connection. Make sure your system’s date, time, and timezone settings are accurate because they can cause problems validating your certificates:
Furthermore, it can be easy to overlook basic solutions, such as checking your internet router. You should also make sure to check DNS settings. If there are discrepancies between your DNS server and the IP address, they can prevent your browser from accessing certain websites.
6 Tips for Website Troubleshooting
Here are some general go-to troubleshooting tips for website loading issues!
1. Use Website Down Checkers
If you’ve made sure that your internet connection is not the problem, the URL is correctly spelled, and you can access other websites from your computer, there could be an issue with the site itself. You can confirm this by using tools such as Down for Everyone or Just Me:
This tool lets you determine whether other users are experiencing the same issue. Therefore, you can quickly see whether the problem is on your end.
2. View a Cached Version of the Page
You may only need to access a website for a specific page. For example, you might be trying to read an article.
In this case, you might be able to find an older cached version of the page stored on Google:
To do this, click on the three-dot icon on the Google search results page, and select Cached at the bottom of the pop-up. If there is a cached version available, it should load instantly.
3. Check Add-Ons and Interfering Software
If you use the website down checker website and discover the site is only down for you, the problem is on your end. You might have software installed on your browser, such as ad blockers, interfering with your connection.
In this scenario, you check your browser settings and look for any add-ons or software that might be blocking the content. To do this, you can follow the instructions in Step 2: Check Your Browser Settings to Enable Content to Load.
4. Look For PC or Browser Problems
If the website loads in a different browser, you can try following Steps 1 and 2 in our troubleshooting tutorial. You might be able to identify browser-related issues.
If the page still doesn’t load, try accessing the website on other devices, such as your phone or tablet. This approach can help you narrow down the problem to your computer.
Furthermore, you’ll need to verify your router settings if you can connect to the website without WiFi, but not when WiFi is turned on. There may be firewalls or parental controls blocking your access. In this case, we recommend contacting your internet service provider.
5. Change Your DNS Server
If your DNS server has gone down, it can stop you from accessing certain web pages. If this is the case, you have three options.
Firstly, you can change your DNS server. Unless you’re switching to an unknown server, this process is very safe and can increase the speed and security of your site. If changing your DNS server does not fix the issue, you can easily switch back.
Your second option is to change your DNS settings. Not only can this method address internet connection issues, but it can also be a reasonable safety precaution, increasing your privacy.
You can generally change your DNS under your network settings:
However, we recommend writing down your existing settings so that you can change them back if needed.
Alternatively, you can flush your DNS cache to reset your computer’s connection to the internet. Still, we encourage you to try other options first, such as clearing your browser cache and cookies and adjusting your settings.
6. Use a Virtual Private Network (VPN)
A VPN may be able to get around the page loading issues if no other solutions work. A VPN works by routing traffic through another server before arriving at the destination. It sends the connection through encrypted tunnels for maximum security and privacy while you’re online.
For example, one of the most popular options is NordVPN, offering rapid server speeds and extra privacy perks such as double encryption:
However, if you already have a VPN, check to see if it was running when you tried accessing the website the first time. If it was, switch it off and try loading the page again. There might be an issue with the VPN itself.
It can be frustrating when your web pages won’t load and inconvenient for your site visitors. Slow loading times result in poor UX and can affect search rankings.
However, you can follow these six steps to troubleshoot your website’s page loading problems:
- Clear your website’s cache and cookies.
- Check your browser settings to make sure your content can load.
- Correct SSL certificates to avoid security warnings.
- Update your browser and make sure it’s a recognized program.
- Check or change proxy server settings.
- Address internet connection issues, including checking your DNS settings.