Time is Money: Impact of Page Speed on SEO

Is your web page too slow? If so, this could be causing multiple issues for your search rankings, as well as your business growth. A study conducted by The Verge shows that the average user has no patience when waiting for a web page load. Since 2010, Google have used page speed as one of their ranking factors. A slower page speed results in search engines not being able to crawl as many pages as they maybe could, which can negatively affect a company’s indexation. The main results of a lower page speed would mean higher bounce rates and duration of time spent on the site will plummet. This could lead to reduced engagement rates and revenue as well as the development of negative brand associations from your consumers. Page Load Speeds SEOHere are some facts and figures that show what the consumers feel about waiting for web pages to load and what consequences this has:
  • 39% of people will stop engaging with a web page if it takes too long to load
  • 40% of consumers abandon a page if it hasn’t loaded within 3 seconds
  • 79% of shoppers who are unimpressed with a web page performance are unlikely to purchase from that business
  • A one second delay or three seconds waiting time decreases customer satisfaction levels by 16%
  • 44% of these consumers will tell their friends about their negative experience
These figures clearly indicate that even if you have the best products on the internet, people are less likely to proceed if the speed of the page is inadequate. Considering this, your business may be at risk of losing customers because the same reasons. It also impacts on overall customer experience of your brand, which is obviously highly important to helping businesses achieve their business objectives. With negative experiences, there is a chance that, not only that customer will not return, but also potential customers will not visit due to negative reviews. With this in mind, a lot of money could potentially be lost due to a problem that can be fixed. So any businesses would want to know exactly what could be doing this and how do they stop it from escalating any further.

So what causes pages to be loading slow?

  1. High-resolution images – Large image files will take a longer amount of time to load on a website as there is much more data to be processed than smaller images due to file size.
  2. Server performance – The longer a server takes to respond to the request of someone clicking on your page determines the speed of the page loading up. An ideal response time should be under 200ms.
  3. Traffic – If there are a high number of people on the site at the same time it causes the website to slow down or potentially crash. An example of this would be when there is a newly released product such as clothing; some of their sites will be temporarily unavailable. An example of this was when Topshop launched Beyoncé’s new Ivy Park clothing line it crashed their website temporarily in 2016.
  4. Redirects – Redirects are the instructions that take someone from one file to another location. Therefore on some pages they will have multiple redirects when they are not necessary. Simply put, the more redirects the slower the page speed will be.

So how can you check your own web page performance?

Below are a few tools available to check a websites speed and performance online using Google PageSpeed Insights. This is where you will copy in the URL and wait for the results and suggestions, easy as that! The most important thing to focus on is how to reduce the amount of loading time for your site; therefore here are a few ways of doing this:
  1. Optimize images – as this is the most common cause for slow web pages, it is important to change (and resize!) your images into a web friendly format depending on what the image contains.
  2. Browser Caching – this is when your browser downloads a temporary storage location on your computer to display websites.
  3. Compression – reducing the size of files will reduce the amount of time it will take to open the files therefore speeding up the process.
  4. Reduce number of redirects – Limiting the amount of old URLs being sent to one particular page on your site (for example a landing page / category page) will keep your page speed down as having a lot of redirects pointing to one place causes it to have a slower loading time.
Hopefully, now you have all the answers to why your web page is slow and have gained the tools to increase their speed and improve SEO. If you would like to learn more about our SEO services, call our friendly team on 01604 696385 or email info@star-digital.co.uk. Sign up to our newsletter below, to stay up-to-date with all our latest news.

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