A few months back, the Google webmaster team indicated that they will start ranking websites based on page loading time. Websites which take ages to load slow down the entire internet and Google is considering this factor seriously.
Apart from other parameters like the meta title, meta description, etc., Google will also consider page load time as one of the biggest factors for your website’s .
In an official blog post, the Google team confirmed that they have started putting this into action, though the number of websites affected by this is minimal.
This is an official statement from the Google blog:
“While site speed is a new signal, it doesn’t carry as much weight as the relevance of a page. Currently, fewer than 1% of search queries are affected by the site speed signal in our implementation and the signal for site speed only applies for visitors searching in English on Google.com at this point. We launched this change a few weeks back after rigorous testing. If you haven’t seen much change to your site rankings, then this site speed change possibly did not impact your site.”
In my opinion, this new parameter for site ranking is a good move. Fast loading webpages give a better user-experience. Moreover, this will also make those lazy webmasters serious about updating their website.
If you are using WordPress, it’s easier for you to make your website load faster with the help of plugins. Before I share some tips to make your page load faster, here are a few posts (which you should open in a new tab) to help you learn more about improving the page load time of your website:
- 7 Quick Tips To Speed Up Your Website Load Time
- Does Website Load Time Matter For SEO? Learn how to improve
- Awesome Free Sites To Check Your Blog Loading Time
Now that Google is ranking based off of page load speed, many webmasters will have to start looking at optimizing their sites.
Here are a few things which you can do to optimize your site load time:
CSS Sprites is a technology to convert multiple images into one big image. This will reduce the number of concurrent connections and your website will load faster. You can read more about CSS Sprites here.
- Also see: How To Use CSS Sprites To Boost Your Site Performance
- 9 Free Online CSS Sprites Generators
By caching your pages, you can serve your website faster.
The request will be served directly from an earlier saved page on your web host thus reducing the server load and serving up your site’s pages instantly. If you are on WordPress, you can use the Super Cache WordPress plugin or W3 Total Cache.
Reduce your image sizes
Another quick way to speed up your site loading time is by decreasing the size of your images.
You can use many web tools to compress your images without reducing the quality.
(One such tool you can use on your WordPress blog is Smush.it.)
Web hosting also plays a major role in your website’s loading time.
If your server is a slow system, chances are your website will take ages to load.
Don’t use underpowered web-hosting and make sure your hosting is fully compatible with all of the technology you are using.
If you are blogging with WordPress, I recommend Bluehost to host your WordPress site. They are officially recommended by WordPress and one of the best and easiest to use web hosts. You can check out this guide to learn how to move your site to Bluehost. If you are planning to start a blog, here is a guide for installing WordPress on Bluehost.
So now that you know Google is ranking websites based on load time, how does your site hold up? What are you doing to make it load faster? Also, do you think this is going to improve the overall user-experience of the internet? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below!