How Search Engine Speed Will Affect Your Search Engine Rankings

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Fast and optimized mobile pages have always been a recommendation made by Google, however, they are now a requirement for webmasters who want to show up higher on search engine results pages. The faster your pages load, the bigger your chances of ranking highly.

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On July 9 th last year Google made page speed a major ranking factor for mobile searches as part of their "Speed Update". While page loading speeds have always had an impact on search engine rankings for desktop searches the growing use of mobile devices to use Google and browse the web pushed Google to increase their relevance on desktop and introduce them as a ranking factor for mobile searches. Embed Tweet Fast and optimized mobile pages have always been a recommendation made by Google however they are now a requirement for webmasters who want to show up higher on search engine results pages. The faster your pages load the bigger your chances of ranking highly. Which Sites Are Affected By this Update Not all mobile sites need to worry about this Googles "Speed Update" was brought about to compel the owners and webmasters of some of the slowest mobile sites to pick up their slack and sort it out. This means that if your websites pages already load fast and in under three-to-five seconds performing further optimizations to increase your speeds by a fraction of a second isnt going to help you rank higher. This focus from Google on mobile sites page loading speeds comes a lot later than expected too. It is not as if mobile usage is an emerging trend. There is no doubt that users like websites that are fast to load. After all quick loading speeds mean a better user experience and a better user experience means you have a higher chance of making conversions. If your visitors have to wait long for a page to load they will simply click away and look elsewhere. Optimizing Pages for Better Loading Times We recommend that you consult a web design agency to handle this for you. If you have pages that arent loading quite as fast as you want them to —anything above five seconds is going to cause a problem but ideally you want pages to load within three seconds —and you want to have a go yourself there are plenty of things you can. 1. Optimize your images If you have a website that has a lot of visual elements these can cause page speeds to slow down if they are not optimized. The general rule of thumb is that all images on a page should be below 100kbs kilobytes in size because the larger an images file size is the longer it will take to load. Have a dig through your sites images directory and look at the file sizes. If you have lots of high-quality images and graphics these could be anything from a few hundred kilobytes in size to several megabytes. If you find anything above the 100kb mark optimize them. There are several ways you can do this — Commented 1: https://twitter.com/googlewmc/status/ 1016276644321996800ref_srctwsrc5Etfw7Ctwc amp5Etweetembed7Ctwterm5E10162766443219 96800ref_urlhttps3A2F2Fwww.searchenginejo urnal.com2Fgoogle-speed-update-is-rolling-out-now- for-all-users2F2602932F

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● Install Apache PageSpeed as per Googles advice ● Use third-party apps such as Tinyjpg or ShortPixel or ● Use a built-in library such as ImageMagick. Lots of websites have image optimization problems and it is these that can cause the most harm to page load speeds. 2. Cache your pages Caching your sites pages means that their loading requests are saved on your server and this drastically reduces loading times. By caching your pages you effectively eliminate the need for them and all their elements to be loaded afresh each time somebody visits them. If you are using WordPress or a similar CMS there are plenty of third-party plugins you can use to do this for you. SuperCache is a very popular choice. 3. Reduce your sites code We arent saying you should go and start removing bits and pieces from your sites source code. Rather we are saying that you go through these files and remove things such as empty elements white space and unnecessary comments. Doing this will decrease your pages size thus speeding up its load time as there are fewer lines of code for Googles crawlers and visitors browsers to comb through. There are tools you can use online that will do this for you if you arent comfortable doing it yourself. For WordPress users Autoptimize is a great option whereas others such as Will Peavy minifier also get the job done. This is also something an SEO company can help you with. 4. Reduce the number of redirects on your pages Sometimes it is necessary to redirect pages on your site to another one. Sometimes however they are not so necessary. Each time a redirect is initiated it triggers an extra HTTP request and adds an additional delay to the final pages load time. An example of this might be redirecting a mobile user to your mobile site even still you should ideally have a mobile-optimized version of your site instead of redirecting to a purpose-built mobile site on your domain — 1. Your visitor visits yoursite.com 2. They are then redirected to m.yoursite.com 3. Finally they are redirected to the page m.yoursite.com/services These two additional and unnecessary redirects mean that your page will load slower. Go through all your sites redirects and only keep the ones that are necessary from a technical point of view. 5. Use browser caching It is not just through your server where pages can be cached they can be cached in your visitors browsers. Caching works by saving information images CSS etc. temporarily so

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that when a visitor comes back to your website their browser doesnt have to reload the entire page from scratch. Google has lots of information on the subject of browser caching. Slow Pages Cant Be Ignored Until recently it was the case that mobile sites page speeds werent accounted for much at all by Googles algorithms when ranking a site. Last summer that all changed. Today if your mobile sites pages arent loading quickly then you are not going to be ranking very highly on search engine results pages. We recommend outsourcing your on-page optimization to the best web designers for the best results.

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