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How to Fix: Webpage is using Significant Memory in Safari

Learn to fix the Apple Safari error "This webpage is using significant memory" alert. You can try these mentioned methods to fix the memory issue quickly.

The Safari Browser error ‘This webpage is using significant memory. Closing it may improve the responsiveness of your Mac’ is generally due to overloading the RAM with heavy web pages and tabs. A few easiest ways to fix this error are to force quit the Safari browser, clear the browser cache, remove useless extensions, and close the less valuable tabs.

Fix: This Webpage is using Significant Memory in Safari

Surfing the web is the new norm now, and I won’t be surprised if you open multiple tabs on your Safari browser. Since the adoption of the feature of multiple tabs, it’s easy to open multiple websites and look for relevant details in one go.

But as you open websites, you might see this message multiple times: ‘This webpage uses significant memory’. A sub-message usually follows this: closing this tab can help improves systems performance.

Safari browser is very efficient regarding resource allocation, but this management can go haywire when you open multiple tabs (I’m talking 10+ tabs). A message like this can alarm you, but how serious is this, and what do you do to fix it?

Safari can hold many tabs easily, even with 4GB of RAM. Still, if your workload is higher, you will start seeing performance issues to the point where the Safari browser cannot open normal websites such as Google, Facebook, Reddit, etc.

Close Least Useful Tabs

Sometimes we can take all our power for granted, but power is not unlimited. You can’t just open 100 tabs in your Safari browser and expect it to run butter smoothly. I’m a person who keeps multiple tabs open and switches between them while working.

Hence, it’s a good idea to close all the irrelevant tabs when not in use. And in case you want them to visit later, you can always bookmark the links or put them into your reading list.

Force Quit Safari

Some web pages have buggy code, or I used to call spaghetti code. It is uncommon to have a website with a wrong code design, but it will use all your PC resources if it has. And as a result, Safari will throw you – the “This webpage is using significant memory. Closing it may improve the responsiveness of your Mac” message.

In this scenario, you can force quit the browser and rerun it. Any issues with jumbled-up code will get fixed immediately.

Here are the steps to force quit Safari on Mac:

  1. Click the Apple apple logo in the upper-left corner.
  2. Select Force Quit from the drop-down menu.
    This will open the Force Quit Applications window.
  3. Select the Safari app from the list.Force Quit Application window with Safari Browser
  4. Click the Force Quit button.

Relaunch Safari to see if the problem is solved. If not, try restarting your Mac, as a simple restart can fix various issues, including this one.

Use a Content and Adblocker

In today’s online generation, most websites are swamped with advertisements. These adverts use many of your PC resources, especially video advertisements.

Safari is good at blocking unnecessary junk code, such as tracking info and advertising info as such. But it’s not perfect, but other third-party extensions are good at blocking content to keep CPU usage at a minimum.

Here are the steps to install a content blocker:

  1. Open the Adblock website on the Safari browser.
    Get AdBlock Plus on Apple App Store
  2. Download and Install the Adblock for Safari Mac extension.
    AdBlock Extension in Safari Browser
  3. While installing, share all the relevant permissions, like webpage content and browser history.

Now Adblock will automatically block heavy resources using ads, so you won’t see any warning messages. If you do, we have more methods to fix it.

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Disable Extensions

Plug-ins are just a special name for extensions Safari. They are a small teeny-tiny program your Safari browser uses to give you extra functionality.

But they can use much of your resources, so I advise all my friends to keep plugin installation to a bare minimum. Here are the steps to disable extensions:

  1. Launch the Safari browser on the computer.
  2. Navigate to Preference/Settings and switch to the Advanced settings tab.
    Safari Preferences menu under Apple Logo
  3. Enable the checkbox for Stop plug-ins to save power.
    Stop plug-in to save power option in Safari preferences

It will disable all your plugins utilizing the browser’s memory. Now check the Safari browser to verify if the websites will run smoothly.

Clear Browser Cache

Browser Cache is a temporary file and storage database in your browser that helps certain websites load faster and improve usability. But if you don’t clean your browser cache occasionally, it can slow down your browser and, in some cases, ruin your browsing experience.

Here are the steps to clear the browser cache:

  1. Launch the Safari browser on the computer.
  2. Navigate to Preference… and switch to the Advanced settings tab.
    Safari Preferences menu under Apple Logo
  3. Enable the checkmark for the Show Develop menu in the menu bar option.
    Show Develop Menu in Menu bar option in Safari PreferencesThis will enable the new Develop tab in the menu bar.
  4. Click on the Develop menu, and choose the Empty caches option.
    You can also use the keyboard shortcut Shift + Command + E to open the Empty cache window.
    Empty Cache command in Safari Developer Menu
  5. Choose the Time period from the drop-down list.
  6. Hit the Clear History command button.
    Clear History for Last One Hour option in Safari Mac

After clearing the cache successfully, all your websites will function normally. However, you may need to sign in to accounts that you’ve recently visited and get cookies cleared.

Check for Mining Scripts

Some websites, especially mining websites, use CPU resources rapidly, and as a result, you might get these error messages. That is understandable if a website such as an online editor or tool shows you this message.

But if a typical website shows you the error message of using significant memory in Safari, it must use some Mining scripts. Check for the website sign some online mining detector tool; if it contains mining scripts, do not use the website.

Update Safari and macOS

macOS developers update the OS for better resource management, security, and performance. You must update your system if your device is relatively old and you’re using some old Mac OS version.

  1. Select System Preferences/Settings from the Apple apple logo menu.
  2. Open Software Update to automatically check for updates.
    It will automatically check and let you know if any updates are available.
  3. Click on Upgrade Now to update OS.
    Update Software Operating System in Mac

You can click on More Info for further details about the software update.

Upgrade RAM

RAM and CPU are the two main key factors of your PC performance. If you have to use a resource-hungry website for work purposes or your college research work for some reason, you need to upgrade the RAM of your Mac.

Upgrading the Mac PC’s CPU is impossible as they are soldered onto the logic board, and it’s pretty expensive to upgrade. But you can upgrade RAM to get better performance.

Bottom Line

As you see, the severity of this problem is not so much, and with simple troubleshooting, you can fix this problem without any professional help.

Now, if you use the internet much more often and need to open multiple tabs (more than 10), this message will greet you many times. So it is a good idea to upgrade your RAM and other components to match your PC energy needs.

Let us know if these methods have helped you resolve the Safari error. We can help; please share any other troubleshooting that fixed your problem.

Lastly, if you've any thoughts or feedback on How to Fix: Webpage is using Significant Memory in Safari, then feel free to drop in below comment box. You can also report the outdated information.

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Rahul Verma

Rahul is a Computer Science Engineer with a MBA degree. He is keenly interested in the field of tech and cryptocurrency. He has 6+ years of technical content writing experience, mainly experimenting with and troubleshooting computer and mobile operating systems. Connect him on LinkedIn.

7 thoughts on “How to Fix: Webpage is using Significant Memory in Safari”

  1. I have a brand new Mac Mini with 16 gig of Ram. Safari only has one window open and I get this message. I haven’t added any extensions yet or really anything to this computer. This is a page that I get the error. Nothing else is open and I just booted the machine. Not sure what to do as the page reload error message really sucks!!!

  2. I have only one tab or window open and this message only pops up on this one website. There are no ads on the webpage. How do I know there isn’t something going on in the background?

  3. I was getting that message regularly on my 2014 iMac even after upgrading to 32gb ram.
    Now 4 months ago I purchased a Mac Studio Ultra with 64gb of unified ram.
    Safari is still giving this message but not the second part about closing it may improve the responsiveness of your Mac.
    I normally clear Safari site history twice weekly but today have cleared the cache & history.
    Only had one tab open, a stock trading platform web page with news & charts which I thought was not too heavy on usage as it worked quite well on the 9 year old iMac apart from the message.
    Only apps I had running apart from that was TradingView charts, IP Vanish VPN and Quick Time Player was open but not being used.
    I take it that these shouldn’t be too much for the Mac Studio to run well.
    Wasn’t doing any video or music editing at the time.
    Does anyone have any pointers or should I just clear Safari cache & history everyday?

    1. Hi Pete, Mac Studio Ultra with 64 gigs of RAM is a pretty powerful machine. I’m just anticipating that VPN might create the issue here since it generally needs to send and receive network packets more often than a machine without a VPN.

      I’d suggest trying the same scenario without VPN for a few days to notice the changes.

      Clearing Safari cache & history every day is not a long-term solution. If the issue persists, then you can check with Apple Support for further troubleshooting.

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