In my last post, I talked about the importance of having fast page speed. Today I’m going to talk about some of the steps that can be taken to make your website as fast as possible.
First of all, what is a fast page speed? Well, Google offers us no definition. So we really have to be concerned with how the user reacts to page speed. Users are very impatient. Half of all users expect a page to load in less than 2 seconds.
However, our goal should be to do better than that since 1) we have to compete with other sites in our category which might have a faster loading time and, 2) a faster loading site will lead to a better user experience which should, in turn, lead to a higher Google ranking.
Here’s a screenshot of this website taken on May 20, 2021.
Although all of the Core Web Vitals are important to Google now, LCP (Largest Contentful Paint) is the key metric pertaining to this discussion. LCP is a measurement of how long it takes for the main content of a page to download and be ready to be interacted with. LCP was chosen by Google as a key metric for the Core Web Vitals score because it accurately measures how fast a web page can be used.
GTmetrix says that it should be 1.2s or less for a good user experience.
Get a baseline reading of where your site stands by testing it here.
So what steps do you have to take to enhance your page speed? Keep in mind that these are general recommendations. If you’re on a WordPress site, there are a plethora of plugins to help you enhance your page speed. Here are a few:
—Accelerated Mobile Pages makes your website faster for mobile visitors.
— Asset CleanUp: Page Speed Booster decreases the number of HTTP requests loaded and eliminates render-blocking resources.
—Autoptimize optimizes CSS, JS, Images, Google fonts, and more.
— Smush reduces image file sizes.
—W3 Total Cache adds browser, page, object, and database caching as well as minify and content delivery network (CDN) to WordPress.
—WP Optimize-Clean, Compress, Cache cleans the database, compresses images, and caches pages.
Note: Some of the functions of certain plugins may overlap with each other. Also, overdoing it with plugins can slow down your page speed. Ensure that any plugins that are not being used are not only deactivated but deleted.
Other factors which may affect page speed and which, for the most part are out of your control except for website hosting, are user location, connection type, browser choice, and device choice.
As with so many other aspects of SEO, improving page speed can be complicated. Unless you have a deep background in SEO, or have someone on your staff who does, it’s best to contact a company like Get Ranked On Page One for your SEO needs.