Overview

How fast is your website?

If your site is slow, you are losing business. It is as simple as that.
SEO
October 8, 2021

In Google’s own words, “speed equals revenue.” The speed of your website has a direct impact on SEO and conversion rates. Not taking the time to make improvements can be a costly mistake.

Why? Users are far more likely to bounce from a slow website, and the probability of this happening increases by over 100% if a page load time goes from just 1s to 6s:

There is a real need for speed, and Google’s free PageSpeed Insights tool is a fantastic resource to help you find and fix issues that could be slowing your site down. Understand how to use the PageSpeed test, how it works, and how to speed up your site using the recommendations. Plus, learn the truth behind a couple of common myths before your competitors do.

Why Speed Matters

There is an expectation for the web to be fast. As far back as 2010, Google confirmed page speed as a ranking factor. Then, it “was focused on desktop searches,” until a specific mobile PageSpeed update rolled out in July 2018. While speed is one of more than 200 ranking factors, none of us want to unnecessarily lose business. Especially for something usually within our control. In fact, SEO blog Backlinko analyzed 1 million Google search results and found “a strong correlation between site speed and Google rankings.”

Say Hello to Google’s PageSpeed Insights Tool

PageSpeed Insights is a free tool offered by Google to help you analyze your website’s performance and see suggestions on how to make it better.

In fact, it’s arguably the most popular page speed analysis tool out there, so it’s worth your time.

You’re probably wondering, ‘how can I get a 100/100 score with PageSpeed Insights?’ Slow down. First, you need to know how to use the tool properly and how to implement the suggestions it makes. Otherwise, you might not see those performance gains that can make such a difference to your site. It’s also important to understand what PageSpeed is and what it isn’t.

What Is a Good PageSpeed Score?

Even if you aren’t achieving 100/100, you can still have a fast-loading site. Remember, PageSpeed, on its own, isn’t a direct indicator of load time.

The likelihood is that you may never reach a perfect score, despite making drastic improvements that positively impact the load time of your site. Focus your efforts and resources where they make the most sense. As stated by WordPress hosting platform Kinsta, “getting a 100/100 in Google PageSpeed Insights isn’t actually that important." It is often cited as a common myth that you need to score 100/100 for your site to perform well.

Be mindful that the real indicator of performance for your site is its loading time, not a PageSpeed Insights score. That said, we see that Google itself breaks down that a poor score is between 0 and 49, an average one between 50 and 89, and a good score is 90+. Aim high, for sure, but don’t obsess over getting a score of 100. It is also important to understand how the sites you are directly competing against on the SERPs stack up, to some extent. If you have got a faster load time and a better PageSpeed score, yet still only score, say, 92/100, there is a good chance your efforts could be better allocated elsewhere.

How to use PageSpeed Insights

1. Go to the PageSpeed Insights tool:

What PageSpeed Insights tool looks like

2. Enter the URL of a web page. It doesn’t have to be the root domain/homepage. After the tool calculates the scores and recommendations, you will see the following:

What it looks like to add root domain/homepage to the tool.

3. Notice you are served performance scores for mobile, as default. You can switch to desktop with the tab at the top left of the page:

What performance scores for mobile looks like.

Source: SEM Rush

Authors

Ivonne Lopez
Graphic & UX Designer