How Important Is Page Speed In 2022?
Search Engine Optimization or SEO refers to the process of optimizing your website to rank better on the search engine results page (SERP). Many factors affect your ranking and the best SEO companies will confirm that. One of those factors is page speed.
While it’s clear that reaching out to an agency doing custom web design in Miami can help you improve your page speed, let’s first explore what page speed is and if it’s really that important in 2022.
What is page speed and how do I measure it?
Page speed measures how fast a single webpage on your website loads. Let me give you a heads-up – many seem to confuse page speed with site speed. While they’re similar, site speed analyzes page speed for a sample of page views on a website.
Page speed can be analyzed from two different standpoints: as page load time and as a time to first byte.
Page load time measures how long does a webpage takes to fully load. As opposed to that, time to first byte tells you how much time does it take for your browser to receive the first byte of information from the webserver.
You can measure your page speed online, many tools will tell you your page load time. You can also use Google’s PageSpeed Insights, which is something we highly recommend because it will provide you with more information.
Is page speed really that important?
Now that you’re familiar with the basics, we can talk about the importance of page speed.
Quite frankly, not all experts are on the same page about this. Some consider it is one of the most important factors in the user’s decision-making process, while some think it’s not that important.
Back in 2018, Google announced the new “Speed update”. In their announcement, they stated that page speed will be a ranking factor for mobile searches, regardless of the technology used to build the website. They decided to take this step after conducting research which confirmed that people really cared about the page speed.
Now, the important thing is that they also stated that the “Speed update” will only apply to the slowest pages, which makes a small percentage of queries. For that reason, many believed that page speed, while important, most of the time does not affect the page’s ranking on the SERP.
However, they seem to forget about one little thing.
Page speed exists outside of the SEO.
Regardless of whether page speed is a factor in SEO, users still care a lot about it. According to the research conducted by Deloitte, the average order value increased by 9.2% when load time was decreased by 0.1 seconds in the retail industry. In their Page Speed Report, Unbounce found states that almost 50% of users admit they are less likely to purchase if an eCommerce site loads slower than expected.
Clearly, people are not that patient when it comes to waiting for a webpage to load. This is especially true for mobile phones since they often expect to get the results as fast as possible, on the spot.
How do I speed it up?
If you’ve found that your web pages load too slowly, there are steps you can take to make it better.
1. Watch out for the file’s size.
Images with high resolution that are not responsive will definitely take a long time to load. We advise you to compress your images before uploading them to your web page if you want to speed it up a bit. There are online tools that allow you to do this easily, such as TinyPNG.
2. Minify the code.
You can use different tools such as CSSNano or UglifyJS to minify the code on your own. However, if you’re not comfortable doing that, you can always ask your developer to do it for you.
3. Change the caching settings.
Caching allows a user’s browser to access a static HTML code from the dynamic code, which loads much faster. Each time the same user decides to come to the web page they have already visited, that page will load much faster than the first time.
Creating that static HTML code can be of great help.
4. Use a CDN
A content delivery network or CDN helps you increase the web page speed by saving multiple copies of the same data on a geographically distributed network of servers. This is used to cache the static content such as script files, CSS, images, and text.
This service is usually included in your hosting plan since hosts often partner up with leading content delivery networks that you can use for free. Of course, you can always upgrade to paid services once you feel the need to.
5. Check your hosting.
Choosing the right hosting company and the right hosting plan is crucial. You could have the best-optimized website and still have a slow page speed if your hosting is not good enough.
Upgrading to a better hosting plan, if that’s an option, is a simple and effective way that can help you. If not, you’ll have to change your web hosting company.
Another thing you should watch out for is the location of your hosting provider’s servers. If they’re too far away from the location of your target audience’s location, it might take too long for the web page files to load.
Page speed is definitely important, but you shouldn’t neglect the quality of the content just to speed your website up. Many other factors affect the ranking on the SERP than page speed, so letting your page load a bit longer is not going to be as much of a problem.
However, note that there are ways to increase the page speed without that making an impact on the content. We advise you to follow our advice and track your results in Google Analytics to reach your highest potential.
Also Read : How Do Millennials See An Advertisement?