Google Speed Update is Here! - website performance and page load speed will determine your organic search ranking!
Just recently, Google announced that page speed will be a ranking factor for mobile searches starting July 2018.
But hey, I know what you're thinking. "Hasn't page speed always been a part of Google’s ranking algorithm? You are right, it has… but hold your horses, never on mobile! at least, not officially. Per the blog post Google released recently: "Although speed has been used in ranking for some time, that signal was focused on desktop searches...Starting in July 2018, page speed will be a ranking factor for mobile searches."
Google's Zhiheng Wang and Doantam Phan wrote:
"The "Speed Update," as we're calling it, will only affect pages that deliver the slowest experience to users and will only affect a small percentage of queries. It applies the same standard to all pages, regardless of the technology used to build the page. The intent of the search query is still a very strong signal, so a slow page may still rank highly if it has great, relevant content."
Performance not only impacts your search engine ranking it also greatly impacts the user experience and conversion. Performance should not be an afterthought, rather it has to be from the very beginning of the design discussion. Every aspect of the website building process has to be looked at through how it would impact the page load time. I mean the amount of HTTP Requests, number of images and image size, number of Java script, sometime external elements like ad pixels and tracking scripts will reduce the page load time. All of the page elements have to be planned and tested before implementing it on the production.
So, what is it to you? Is your site going to be penalized? And how are you going to ensure your website doesn't lag?
First off, test your page speeds and fine-tune your critical pages using some of these tools. Some are free so go right ahead and do it.
- Lighthouse, a Chrome Developer Tools for auditing the quality (performance, accessibility, and more) of web pages.
- PageSpeed Insights, a tool that indicates how well a page performs and suggests performance optimizations.
- GTMetrix, a free tool that analyses your page's speed performance and provides a recommendation for improvements. Its Waterfall Chart will give you good idea on where the problem is.
Next and fast, start making changes. Thank me later
- Adjust Your Mobile SEO Strategy for Google's Speed Update.
- Make the Switch to AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages).
- Leverage Search Console and PageSpeed Insights.
Google's Speed Update Impact Your AdWords Account? OMG! It does too…
Google claims that the Speed Update "will only affect pages that deliver the slowest experience to users and will only affect a small percentage of queries." However, Google is minimizing the importance of page speed as both an organic ranking factor and a component of Quality Score. And landing page experience makes up a significant portion of the Quality Score algorithm.
Take note, and act now. Schedule a call with us. And we also offer a free website performance review once we understand your business.