Does Website Speed Affect SEO?

When it comes to digital marketing, your website is one of the most important tools you have at your disposal. Research has shown that 57% of consumers would not use or recommend a business that had a poor website, and one of the most important factors of a website is load speed.  

It takes just seconds for web users to make an impression of your brand, and the longer your page takes to load, the more likely they are to leave and seek a competitor. However, does website speed also affect your Search Engine Optimization (SEO)? We thought we would take a closer look.  

What is page speed?

Before we take a look at how it can impact your SEO, it is first important to understand exactly what page speed actually is. As the name suggests, this is a metric that search engines review when ranking websites, and it measures how quickly certain pages on your site load.  

There are many things that can impact your overall page load speed, from the number of images you have to the server that you are using. 

So, does it affect your SEO?

The loading time of your pages does play a significant role in your SEO. Search engines such as Google utilize hundreds of different factors when deciding where to rank a website, and they are increasingly looking to reward those sites that give the very best user experience 

A slower website has far higher bounce rates and leads to a poorer experience for visitors, meaning you are more likely to be penalized in terms of ranking on social media. A faster website will also lead to increased page views, higher conversion rates, and better dwell time, all of which help to improve your organic SEO results.  

How can you improve page speed?

If you are finding that your website is taking a long time to load, then there are several things that you can do to help improve its performance. Some of the most effective include: 

Optimizing your page

One of the biggest factors that can slow your website speed down is the size of your pages. Having vast pages with reams of information and images means it will take a lot longer to load. That is why you should first focus on optimizing your page as best as possible.  

To do this, you should reduce the file size of images and documents, using tools such as Kraken or ImageOptim, which will compress them without lowering the quality. You should also try to reduce the number of plugins being used on each page, as well as minimizing all JavaScript and CSS files.  

Use content delivery networks

Another great way to boost your page speed is to use a content delivery network (CDN). This is a set of different web servers that are situated across various locations, helping to spread the load. When you use a single server, every request is sent to the same hardware; however, a CDN redirects each request to the nearest available server, significantly increasing the load speed.  

Use a proven web host

One of the biggest things that can impact your page load speed is your web host. When first launching a website, many of us are tempted to opt for the cheapest option. However, as your page grows and you get more visitors, you might find that the host can no longer meet your demands.  

That is why investing in a proven web host will give you the peace of mind that your website will be able to meet all of your demands as you grow.  

Looking to improve your web page speed?

Are you looking to improve the load speed of your website? Get in touch today to find out how we can help you!  

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