Website Review: Does Website Speed Matter to My SEO Rankings?

A Complete Website Review for SEO

A general rule of website review SEO is that anything that affects the user experience matters to your ranking. Especially with Google?s crack-down on content farms and methods developed specifically to ?game? the search engines; all in the interest of making sure the end-user is getting what they want from your landing page. A slow-loading website negatively affects the user-experience, and you are well aware that Google seeks to minimize anything that does this.

The Effect of Website Speed on Visitors

Google hasn?t specifically stated that page speed is a factor in their complicated algorithm ? although they tend to remain mum on things related to their code anyway.? But it?s clear from the way the search results work that people will navigate away from a page that?s loading too slowly. This is especially true in the new mobile-oriented Web space. Furthermore, losing visitors after a short interaction reflects a low time-on-page metric, which definitely affects search rankings.

Exactly What Elements of Your Website are Affected?

website review seo rankingsIf you have a Google Adsense Account, then you?ve probably noticed that your linked websites will tell you if it is optimized for Adsense in several different ways. If your images aren?t optimized, for example, then that usually means they?re larger than they need to be and the landing page is loading more slowly. Too much of this problem spread across the website may cause visitors to navigate away ? negatively affecting your bounce rates in Google Analytics.

Even more important in website review SEO is page load time for mobile. Your prospective customers are on-the-go, and they simply won?t have much patience if they can?t get what they need, when they need it. Basically, then, website speed hurts all aspects of your site.

Top Reasons for Slow Websites

It?s all about optimization. For example, there?s no need to use HD images for a thumbnail that was never intended to be clicked. This takes up so much more space than an appropriately-sized image ? a picture is worth a thousand words, literally, in terms of megabytes. Other reasons are a bit more involved:

  • your content and images are hosted on a server that has too many other websites, thereby ?clogging? the bandwidth
  • latency between your website and the server, which can be solved by putting your content on Content Distribution Networks, which do not discriminate between geographic regions
  • various coding inefficiencies or outright errors, which a website assessment can locate and design a program for fixing them
  • website review SEO also concerns itself with the status of your click-through-rates, which requires people to spend time on the landing page

The takeaway here is that website speed definitely affects search ranking; both directly and indirectly. It?s a part of Google?s complex ranking algorithm, and manifest itself in the form of metrics such as bounce rate and time-on-page ? which can be seen on your Google Analytics dashboard. The indirect effects come from people simply giving up on your site while it loads, which means you?ll lose out to the competition for your chosen keywords. Ultimately, you could also lose a couple of spots in the search results pages if the page-loading issues aren?t resolved.

Website review SEO is concerned with optimizing your website to deliver the best results you can in your specific industry. From on-page factors such as your content and meta-tags, to some of the more obscure elements of your analytics profile, it can teach you where your site stands the best chance of attracting more customers and leads. Take the free Inbound Marketing Assessment to get started.

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