Site Speed Used in Google Ranking Algorithm!
Site Speed is a Factor for Ranking in the Google Algorithm!
You may not have heard, but Google has implemented a website’s download speed into their (over 200 ranking factors), Google algorithm that judges your site, then gives you your search-engine rankings. You can read Matt Cutt’s (head of Google’s Webspam team) blog post from April 9th to learn more.
Below are a few reasons why the Google engineers decided to implement your site’s page speed into their algorithm.
- Faster websites create happy users
- Improving site speed reduces operating costs
- Users place a lot of value in speed
You can read the full story at: GoogleWebMasterCentral.com/site-speed/
Google ran several different experiments to show that the searcher would like fast loading page speed with their searches. Here’s what Google had to say: “At Google, we’ve gathered hard data to reinforce our intuition that “speed matters” on the Internet.”
One of their experiments showed that slowing down search results pages by 10 to 400 milliseconds had a measurable impact of the number of searches of each user by -.2% to -.6% that was averaged over a period of 4 to 6 weeks. This experiment showed a reduction of searches by .2% to .6% for a change that measured under a half a second!
You can read more about these page speed tests at: GoogleResearch.com/speed-test/
There is a website that you can run a page speed test… this website will run a comparison between your site and a competitors (or whomever you want), then give you the milliseconds that it took to completely load your page.
This site will give you incentive to decrease your page download speed to further enhance your ranking. The website to run your speed test can be found at: http://whichloadsfaster.com/
Since website speed is a factor, you will need to get rid of all the garbage on your site that is not necessary or vitally important for your readers.
SEO Tips to Speed Up Your WordPress Site:
Removing Unnecessary Widgets and Plug-ins
This was a hard lesson for me considering that I was first introduced to blogging 6 short months ago. I was excited to be able to add all of the fun stuff to my sidebar, but left out one very important factor in the process. There are many people out there (me included) that will hit the back button when I see the “Loading, Please Wait…” widget.
Getting rid of all the unnecessary plug-ins and widgets that are not important to your readers will reduce your site’s loading time. If you have the ability, you should hand-code as many of your functions as possible directly into the pages of your theme.
What hand-coding will do is minimize that amount of calls that your site makes to other servers in cyberspace to receive the updated information. My Facebook Like Box on the sidebar is a perfect example… when a person clicks on a link to visit an article, the Facebook Like Box widget refreshes, asking for undated information (how many people ‘Like’ your site, or the live feed if you have it).
The WordPress W3 Total Cache Plug-in
I know I just told you to remove all unnecessary plug-ins, but there is one that you need to help reduce your site’s download speed. This plug-in is the W3 Total Cache, which is a must-have plug-in for any WordPress user.
This is a plug-in that creates static cache, HTML files without the processing of the standard WordPress PHP scripts. What this means is that it takes a picture (sort of) of your page and saves it. The way that the standard PHP script works is it asks the server, “I need this file, plus this information, and this, and a couple of those, and don’t forget to include this…”, you get the point!
This type of action can take time (milliseconds that you don’t have) to create these types of pages, which are known as dynamic pages. This plug-in is compatible with most servers and server configurations, and gives you the choice of creating the cache on your own server, or using a content delivery network.
Closing Comments About Page Downloading Speed
In order to have good user experience with your readers, you may need to optimize your site for faster download speeds, instead of having all the fluff that is fun to look at.
Google provides an entire speed-related mini-site with tons of resources and videos about speeding up websites. There are some great tools and tutorials from Google to help you decrease your websites download speed… take advantage of every possibility to have “happy to return because of a good experience”, visitors to your site.
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What Are Your Thoughts About Google Using Your Site’s Speed in Their Ranking Algorithm… Will This Help Make a Better Reader Experience… Do You Have to Make any Changes?
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About the Author (Author Profile)
John Engle, known as ‘The Blog Optimizer’, is a Search Engine Optimization Blogging Specialist Taking SEO by Storm! He Specializes in Keyword Research and On Page Optimization. If You are a Busy Entrepreneur that Would Rather Concentrate on What You Do Best, Leave the Keyword Research and Optimization to an SEO Specialist, Hire John as Your SEO Blog Post, On Page Optimizing Specialist.