Sunday, August 20, 2017

Website speed is important for seo, user experience; web hosting too has a role in it

Google has made it very clear that it considers website speed as one of the signals by which it ranks websites for search. There is a logic for this: if a website loads slower when Google's bot crawls it, the bot would not be able to crawl all the pages on the site within the allocated time and would move ahead.

Let me hasten to add that though Google includes website speed as one factor in search results, it is not too big a factor. However, it is a bigger factor from user perspective. Look at the pointers below we have copied from a Kissmetrics article:
  • 47% of consumers expect a web page to load in 2 seconds or less.
  • 40% of people abandon a website that takes more than 3 seconds to load.
  • A 1 second delay in page response can result in a 7% reduction in conversions.
  • If an e-commerce site is making $100,000 per day, a 1 second page delay could potentially cost you $2.5 million in lost sales every year.

Improving website load speed

There are a dozen things you can do on-page to reduce the load time of the website and that of individual web pages. These would include minifying the HTML, zipping some elements, reducing the need to call many web elements such as scripts, optimizing images for the web, removing bad plugins and so on.

But you also need to look for the server side parameters. If your blog or small website does not have much traffic and visitors do not have to make instant purchase decisions, you can afford to accept normal server and bandwidth resources available in cheap and shared plans. However, if you are in competition with high-speed sites, you need to look at this aspect with all seriousness. A VPS or higher level of web hosting will definitely take care of server end speed. Other things being equal, a cloud web host is likely to provide a better speed because of distributed servers. A dedicated server and accompanying resources give a much higher speed than the shared (therefore, likely cramped and crowded) hosting servers, but that is for big big companies.

Website speed is an important factor for Google search.

You can visit this detailed compendium of articles from Google about improving web page/ website speed. You can also use Google's trusted and free webpage speed testing tool to test the speed of your website or blog and make use of their recommendations.