Users do not want sites which take a long time to load and they also do not want search engines which also take a long time to load. Users are in a hurry and they do not have a lot of time to spare. So, Google is keeping its promise and they will not use site speed as one of the factors when ranking. However, web owners should know that this does not mean sacrificing relevance in the name of speed.
Speed and why it matters
Since November 2009, Google has considered speed. This is because a study found that even just half a second of delay has a very big impact on sites. Business, particularly, can suffer from this delay. Google ran a test to see how users react to speed go to the website. They purposely slowed down the search results to see how people would react to it and the experiment showed that slowing down the search by 100 to 400 milliseconds has an impact on users of -0.2% to-0.6%.
Google discovered that when they slow their own users down, there is less engagement. Users do not have a lot of time on their hands so they want things done fast. If the sites are faster, users are happier. Fast websites are always good things.
How speed is measured
There are two ways Google measure speed and that is by:
- The response of pages to Googlebot
- The loadtime measured by Google Toolbar
If you are a user of Google’s webmaster tools, you will see that a new page speed report has been added. This will help determine how fast your site loads, which pages on your site are slow and what you can do to improve them.
Although Google is now looking at site speed, this does not mean that everyone should throw caution to the wind and neglect their content. It is still important and it is still king. Its impact on your rankings could not be stressed enough.
What this update only means is that you also need to focus on other areas of your website if you want to truly achieve the bets rankings. There are many things which come into play when ranking is discussed and it is a must for everyone to be well aware of them. Speed should be achieved not at the expense of relevance.
This update is significant and it goes without saying that a lot of sites will be impacted by it. If you have lost your rankings and think that it might be because of speed, it is time to take a long, hard look at your site. There might be something which you need to do to regain your footing in your industry. It is never too late to change things in your site to help it load a lot faster than it currently does.
Making your website fast will please users and will keep them coming back for more. You will definitely find great results after you check your site and improve it.