Online, Speed Matters

A great website isn’t enough. A great fast website is essential. Your site needs to load quickly to have any chance of engaging.

A recent Unbounce study of 750 consumers and 395 marketers confirms that page load speed matters. Almost 70% of digital consumers say that page load speed influences whether or not they will buy from an online retailer. More than half of visitors will leave a web page if a page takes more than three seconds to load.

Here’s another reason to care: Google recommends a page load speed of five seconds or less. Pages that load quickly get higher rankings than those that don’t.

If your social media marketing isn’t generating results, the problem might be that your website is slow. If users aren’t getting a fast, valuable experience when they click website links in your social media posts, they will move on.  Your great website will never have a chance to make an impression.

Feeding Google’s Speed Addiction

For many years, Google has cited page load speed as a ranking factor. Faster loading websites and pages rank higher. This criteria has not gone away and seems to be even more important than ever.

Be sure to track your site’s speed performance by using Google Page Speed Insights. Page Speed Insights reports on the real-world performance of a page for mobile and desktop devices and provides suggestions on how that page may be improved.

It measures speed on a page-by-page basis. This tool also provides actionable things you can do to improve load time.  Following the guidance will help you to take the actions that will have the greatest impact on speed.

Page Speed Optimization Suggestions

The Google Page Speed tools provides a list of best practices that could be applied to a page.  Since the performance of a network connection varies considerably, the optimization addresses the network-independent aspects of page performance: the server configuration, the HTML structure of a page, and its use of external resources such as images, JavaScript, and CSS.

Implementing the suggestions should improve the relative performance of the page. However, the absolute performance of the page will still be dependent upon a user’s network connection.