Does Page Speed Affect Google Ranking?

Posted on 14th Oct 2017 11:09 AM

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Long tail keywords, quality content, high standard backlinks, etc., are some of the Google ranking factors. Even if a website has all these but still, exit rates are high. Why so? Google Search Algorithm has about 200 factors, in which page loading speed is one of the on-site seo factors. Even though, in a recent survey, it was found that not more than 1% search queries are affected by Speed Signal, but yet considered by Google

What is a page loading speed?

It is the term describes the “time taken to display the content on screen when you open a website”. Google had made it official that site speed improves ranking, reduces operating costs and improves friendly user-experience on your site. “The speed the site is, the better the ranking”

What happens if page loads slow?

  1. Many of the users expect to load a page within 2 seconds, if that doesn’t happen, they jump onto other sites, these are one of the reasons why e-commerce websites even with high quality content are backing off, due to poor page loading.
  2. Even mobile users also expects the same, as 2/3rd of them are now accessing through smartphones, so make sure it is mobile compatible
  3. Search engine crawls only few pages using a crawl budget which leads to negative indexation.
  4. Most of the users doesn’t again look up to site and abandon site due to bad experience with site loading
  5. Slow loading pages has high bounce rates and low conversion rates

If testing is done on page load speed, make sure both web version and mobile version gets tested.

How to check page load speed?

  • Pagespeed tools are one of best tools analysed and developed by Google Labs called Page Speed Online. In this tool, website is rated on the basis of loading. From 0-100, if rated above 90, then your website is in good state. Some optimisations are suggested to improvise.
  • If using wordpress, provide site speed features, through this we can know that how fastly or slowly page is loading across the world..
  • Pingdom, Gmetrics, YSlow, YUI compressor are also some of the tools available with DNS check and grading type and helps in improving in page loading.

What are the ways to increase page speed?

GZip Compression : GZip is a tool reducing the size of files, giving more space which loads faster and transfer files to other system more quickly. Reducing the size of files like CSS, HTML and Javascript which are larger than 150 bytes

Enable cache: It stores recently used data, so that it can be quickly accessed later. Always update cache regularly, so that whenever, page loading encounters a problem, cached version can be relied upon

Optimise images : Make sure that images are not larger and are placed in right file format. Use CSS Sprites as it combines images into one large image that loads at one’s and display only those sections which you want to show, thus saving loading time and making users to wait for images to load. It’s better to prefer PNG for images and JPEG for photos

CDN : Content Delivery Network : Use proper CDN so that the content/site is reached from a location which is close to visitor

Minimising Javascripts and CSS : Make your CSS and Javascripts load at external files by optimising code and removing code comments, unused codes, formatting and any other unnecessary codes. Saving scripts and CSS in external files helps in individual page load more quickly.

Disregard cheap web hosting : never go for a cheap/low cost web hosting, on the long run it may lead to low page speed. Choose the optimal host which suits your business size and needs.