Were you aware that the speed at which your website loads has an effect on your ranking in Google? Well, it does. There are lots of factors that go into proper search engine optimization (SEO) and page speed is one of those that seems to make a noticeable difference.
You might wonder why this is something that Google even cares about and the answer you would get from them is that it has to do with providing a better user experience for your visitors. My personal opinion is that it is a bit more self-serving for Google. If your page loads faster, they can crawl more pages in a shorter time. Whatever the reason, it does affect your ranking in their search.
It is also worth noting that page speed has been shown to have an effect on revenue. I won’t go into all of the stats here, but basically a faster site sells better than a slow site. It is probably due to our instant gratification culture. People just don’t want to wait.
What Can You Do to Speed Up Your Site?
There are lots of technical aspects to speeding up a website. Most of them have to do with making the page smaller and reducing lag times and server requests. See, technical stuff.
One easy way to make your page smaller is to use well-optimized images that are scaled to the appropriate size for the page. In other words, if an image is going to be shown at 400 pixels wide on the page, don’t use an image that is 800 pixels wide. Simple, right? You would be surprised. If we built your website, then your images are most likely optimized already, unless you add images to the site yourself, for instance in new blog posts.
Other things that you can do to speed up your page is to choose a faster web hosting company, use a content delivery network (CDN), remove scripts and plugins that cause speed barriers, and compress your site’s code. Again, technical stuff.
Interestingly enough, one of the culprits that I found slowing down our company site, in a recent audit, was Google reCAPTCHA, made by the company that penalizes you for slow sites. This is supposed to stop spam messages coming from our contact forms and it does an admirable job at that but is the cost worth it. We are still looking into this one.
If you feel like your site could be faster, give us a call or shoot us an email and we can do a speed audit for you to see what is going on.