What Is Prefetching?


Prefetching is a technique used by web browsers to improve loading times. When a user visits a website, the browser will look for resources that are needed to load the page, such as images, CSS, and JavaScript files. The browser will then download these resources in advance to be available when the user needs them.

It can improve loading times because the browser does not have to wait for the server to send the resources before downloading them. This can be especially helpful on slow connections or when a website is overloaded with traffic.

Prefetching is only sometimes perfectly accurate, and sometimes the browser will download resources that are optional. However, in most cases, prefetching will improve loading times without using up too much bandwidth.

How does prefetching work?

When a user visits a web page, the browser will look for links to other pages on that site and fetch them in the background. This means that when the user clicks on a link, the page will already be loaded and will load much faster.

Prefetching is most effective when users are likely to click on a link based on their past behavior. For example, if a user always clicks on the first link on a page, the browser will prefetch that link. Prefetching can also predict where a user is going next and pre-load resources for that page.

Prefetching is transparent to the user and happens in the background. The user does not need to do anything special for prefetching to happen, and it does not impact their browsing experience.

Why is Prefetching important?

Prefetching is essential for several reasons:

  1. It can improve the performance of your web application by reducing the number of network round trips needed to fetch data.
  2. Helps reduce the latency of your application by allowing you to fetch data before it is needed.
  3. It can help you avoid race conditions by quickly fetching data and storing it locally.


Prefetching is a great way to improve the performance of your website or application. By fetching resources ahead of time, you can eliminate latency and ensure that the user has a smooth experience. There are many different types of prefetching, so be sure to choose the right one for your needs. With a bit of planning, you can quickly improve your site’s performance with prefetching.

Need help to improve the website’s performance? Get our website optimization service!

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