Video: How does Google determine page speed

The speed at which your individual web pages load in a browser is extremely important and a slow loading web page can affect your search engine ranking results. This is an important element of the Search Engine Optimisation Process that is very often forgotten

As broadband internet connection speeds have improved, your website visitors have become more demanding and have a high expectation of fast web page loading times. Your visitors are no longer prepared to wait for a slow web page to load up. It is therefore important to monitor your website loading speeds and fix any issues that are preventing it from loading, as fast as possible.

Apart from annoying your web visitors who may simply decide to view one of your competitors sites, slow web page loading speeds can also have an impact on your rankings, particularly on Google. You should therefore be prepared to invest some time in optimising your website’s page load speed to ensure that you are not being penalised.

The following top tips will help you to achieve a faster loading speed for your website:

Optimise your images

It is recommended that you only upload images with a Jpg extension. Images that have been saved in this file format offer a good compromise for multicolour graphics, illustrations and photos, as it offers excellent colour quality and compression size. Both Gif and Png file formats can also be used, but Jpg images offer the best all round solution.

Before you upload your images to your site you should consider the overall file size for each image. For most websites an image size of between 250 and 350 pixels is the most popular. If you wish to use larger size images make sure that the resolution is compressed by using image compression software. This will help you to reduce the overall size and still retain a high quality image.

Optimise your website code

Many websites contain bloated or unnecessary code which can slow down the loading of a particular web page. Try validating your code using the W3C Validation Service. This will help you to identify possible errors in your code that are preventing your web pages from loading correctly.

Use JS files sparingly on your website as they contain lots of white space and other non related characters that are not required to run a particular script. Just like images, it is possible to remove any unwanted characters and reduce the file size drastically, which will help to make your web pages load faster.

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Minimise HTTP requests

Http requests are messages that your web browser needs to send to the server in order to locate the correct page to display in your browser. If your web code contains a number of links to external resources that need to be displayed on the page, such as an image, then the browser will need to send further requests in order to find and display those images on your web page. Therefore the browser may need to send a number of requests in order to display a single web page correctly. Obviously, minimising these Http requests will help to speed up the load time of your web page.

Server issues

If after reducing the file size of your images and optimising your code you are still having problems it is possible that the issue may be with your web hosting provider. The majority of webmasters tend to purchase the most affordable hosting package which is likely to be on a shared web hosting basis. This type of hosting package can sometimes have implications for web page loading speeds, compared to virtual private server hosting or dedicated server hosting, which of course will be more expensive. It is worth contacting your hosting company when you have any questions or issues with regards to the speed of your website, as they may be able to help you or at least offer you valuable advice.

There are many free online tools available that can check your web page loading speed, such as Pingdom. It is important to understand that every page may load at a different speed; therefore you will need to check every page, not just your Home page.

If your site is suffering from slow web page loading speeds, then by following these useful tips you should be able to improve the load times to a more acceptable level.

We hope that you have enjoyed reading this article on How To Improve Website Loading Speed. Please feel free to comment and share this valuable information with your friends and colleagues.

Analysing the speed at which your web pages load in a browser is only one of well over a 150 ranking factors that can affect your website. To find out how you can improve your search engine ranking results Get Your FREE Website Analysis Report right now!