Should how fast your site loads be a search engine ranking factor… Google thinks so!
The hot topic in the SEO circle is Google’s recent announcement that their algorithm is going to adjust rankings for speed. Some people think it may be only be a minimal factor. In comparison to relevancy and other algorithm factors this logic seems true because what really matters is not if a user gets the info in 1 second or 2 seconds, but that they get the best information.
Still, Google firmed up their commitment to site speed yesterday by adding an experimental feature in Webmaster Tools. This feature shows you information pertaining to the speed of your site. Through out this entire process, Google’s main argument for adding page speed as a ranking factor is that studies have proven that speeding up a site leads to increased user retention and activity.
Below is a preview our www.SweetSpotMarketing.com performance review:
As you can see Webmaster Tools is promoting the Page Speed Extension for FireFox.
The load time data is derived from aggregated information sent by users of your site who have installed the Google Toolbar and opted-in to its enhanced features. The data currently represents a global average; a specific user may experience your site faster or slower than the average depending on their location and network conditions.
The beta version of this tool is a strong indication that Google is serious about speeding up the web. By adding site speed as a ranking factor, Google is now holding web designers all over the world accountable to reduce file sizes and improve superfluous HTML code. Now when their is a better/faster way to display the same information you better do it – for Google sake!