Google Announces Speed Update

Thursday, 1st January 1970

Google's Speed Update as a ranking factor has been extended to include mobile

Squeezing as much efficiency out of your website’s performance is vital if you want to attract, keep and convert new visitors.

At the starting point of the User Experience (once your excellent SEO has given your website the visibility it needs to attract a visitor) is page load times – fairly simply put, the faster your pages load, the better your site’s chances of retaining a visitor.

Google’s research shows that a 3-second load time increases the bounce rate by 32%, and 5-second load times by 90%!

To help developers and website owners track and understand their page load times more effectively, and implement changes to improve load speeds, Google has released its latest Speed Update to include mobile search (to date this had been only for desktop) as one of the ranking factors that can bring the fastest-loading pages to the top of search results.

Whilst the update is both a welcome and a necessary one, Google has reiterated that site content still remains the key search indicator for ranking:

“The ‘Speed Update’ will only affect pages that deliver the slowest experience to users and will only affect a small percentage of queries,” says Google’s Zhiheng Wang.

“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 pace may still rank highly if it has great, relevant content.” 

To analyse your website’s speed performance, you can use the Google Pagespeed Insights tool.

For advice and guidance on improving your website’s performance and SEO, contact Realnet today on +44 1223 55 08 09.

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