Google has just revealed that the Speed Update, previously made public in January of this year, is rolling out for all users as of this week.
While page speed has been a large ranking factor on desktops for quite a while, this is officially the first time it will have an actual impact on mobile rankings. Google’s main focus time and time again is user experience, so this newest rollout is just another way for Google to ensure that their search engine results are showing the most relevant and user-friendly websites.
In a post written by Google, they do share with users possible tools and services that can be considered to see if your website is up-to-speed, which is an added benefit to those who may not know how the site is performing.
“Chrome User Experience Report, a public dataset of key user experience metrics for popular destinations on the web, as experienced by Chrome users under real-world conditions
Lighthouse, an automated tool and a part of Chrome Developer Tools for auditing the quality (performance, accessibility, and more) of web pages
PageSpeed Insights, a tool that indicates how well a page performs on the Chrome UX Report and suggests performance optimizations”
By using the tools above, you and your business should get a pretty good understanding of how your mobile website performs. If you have been working hard to improve the mobile experience and speed load time of your website, then you should see little to no effects to your rankings and even traffic.
However, if you’ve let mobile page speed improvements take a back seat to other pressing issues, then you may see your rankings suffer, thus less visitors, thus less business. If your mobile site is in need of a pagespeed overhaul, here are some ways in which you can help it along!
1. Optimize images
Large, high definition images often slow down a website. With improvements in both resolution and size of mobile device screens over the past several years, you clearly want to present visitors with high-quality images, but in reality, these images can significantly impact page load speed.
2. Get rid of the redirects
Every time you click a link and your browser is told to redirect the entered URL to another, a little ‘time to load’ is added to the page load speed. These milliseconds really count on mobile devices, as they’re more likely to be connected to non-wireless networks with slower speeds.
3. Minimize server response time
“Time to first byte” (TTFB) is the length of time it takes for your web server to return a response. Naturally, you want this to be as short as possible. ‘Improving your web server software or configuration and ensuring adequate CPU and memory resources are available are steps you can take to improve your server response time’, according to BrightLocal.
4. Prioritize visible content
Google has mentioned the importance of having your website first load the content that the user will see right when they arrive on your website. This is generally ‘above the fold’ content. So you’ll want to ensure that the top bit of content loads the fastest.
If you’re unsure of how to handle the improvements needed to speed up the user experience on your mobile website, Upright Communications is here to help! Just give us a call!