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Page load time is a measurement of the length of time it takes for your entire website to load a page and display it to a visitor. It is also an important factor when it comes to SEO, as page load times help determine your website’s position in search results. Google has used site speed as one of the major benchmarks for website rankings since an update of their search ranking algorithms in early 2010.
Here are some snippets from an article published by Google concerning site performance:
- “Google’s goal is to provide users with … a great user experience.”
- “Fast sites increase user satisfaction and improve the overall quality of the web.”
- “Page load time is the total time from the moment the user clicks on a link to your page until the time the entire page is loaded and displayed in a browser.”
In addition to website rankings, page loading time also impacts lead generation and conversion rates. When searching for service providers on the internet, potential customers have literally hundreds of choices at their fingertips for any given category. Web shoppers typically move quickly from website page to website page searching for information and, when encountering a slow loading website, will often close it immediately and move on to the next. A slow page load time negatively impacts the visitor’s web experience and turns them away.
Quickly Give the Users What They Want – Reduce Page Load Times
Advancements in web development technologies combined with increased internet speeds have changed the way people use the internet. Information is being absorbed at lightning speed, and web users have come to expect websites to load quickly. If you find yourself asking, “Why is my website so slow?” think of how potential customers must feel. A slow website gives visitors a poor impression of your business, leading to lost sales. Avoid the adverse effects of high page load times by investing extra effort into speeding up website performance.
The most important factor that goes into the loading time of a website is the website host. The web host is responsible for the server technology that drives the website as well as the connection to the internet. A website host that is skimping on hardware or bandwidth will negatively impact the speed of your website regardless of any other factor discussed later. Hiring an expert web design company to assist you with your website is the best way to ensure you will have a stable web platform for your business as they will know of and use only the fastest website hosts for your website.
In addition to a fast web host, here are a few other factors that can help improve page load times:
- Image Optimization – A major reason behind high page load time is the incorrect use of images. Using the correct image types for your website can drastically reduce the size of your pages and decrease the time it takes to load them. GIF images are best for logos and graphics with few colors, PNG images are good for high quality transparent graphics, and JPG should be used for most other images. JPG is the best overall image format when it comes to page load times because a JPG image is compressed to the smallest possible size. Finally, it is very important to use an image editor to resize all images to the exact height and width required for the page before uploading them to the server.
- Compression and Cache Management – The use of compression on the server can help reduce the size of data that must be sent from the server to the user, helping to speed up page load times. In addition, storing copies of files on the user’s computer in their browser cache dramatically enhances website responsiveness.
All of the above tips will help reduce page load times and improve the user experience. As a result you should experience improved organic SEO rankings, higher lead conversion rates, and increased sales. If you are a business owner with high website page load times, take action immediately! We are an expert website design and SEO company and can help you manage your hosting, images, scripts, code, and other web elements with an eye towards increased speed for increased sales.
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Tags: code optimization, compression and cache management, image optimization, Importance of page load time, Increasing in sales, minimizing HTTP requests, organic SEO, page load time, page load times, SEO optimization, site performance, slow website, web development technologies, website rankings, website slow