Evaluating the page speed is important, not only as a website owner, but mainly for the first impression toward your audience, as well as a major ranking factor.
The users’ needs are satisfied faster when content is delivered faster. So what is page speed by definition?
Page speed can be defined as the amount of time needed for your website’s content to be shown, from the time the browser received the first set of data from the server.
There are many page elements that have a significant effect on page speed such as videos, images, multimedia, CSS elements for page styling, and html code.
It is important to mention that the page speed differs from mobiles to desktops, resulting into two different experiences for the users. And this is logical as each channel has differences in technology.
In addition, another important factor is to differentiate site speed from page speed and vice versa. Both parameters may look and sound the same but are they?
Page speed describes the amount of time it takes for an individual page to load whereas site speed describes the length of time needed for a set or several pages to load.
Let’s list below the main reasons as to why website and page speed is vital:
A. First lovely impression
A fast loading site will make a great first impression to your users. Fast websites are perceived as professional and trustworthy.
B. Speed expectations
By default, users generally expect fast loading speeds. Approximately 45%-50% expect a loading time of less than two (2) seconds whereas 37% – 42% will leave the site if it takes more than three (3) seconds for the site to load. Around 85% – 90% of the audience uses mobile devices and therefore they expect fast loading speeds.
On the other hand, in the case of high authority sites, such as Facebook or Google, users have more patience in the condition of loading delay.
C. User experience
Users expect to find what they need or search for fast, and therefore a user friendly website that gives visitors this experience has awesome probabilities of ranking faster to the top, as well as generate tremendous traffic.
D. Slow loading sites influence conversions
It is statistically proven that 40% – 45% of the audience abandon websites if the loading speed is greater than three (3) seconds. Slow speeds drive people and probable sales away.
Taking into consideration a numerical example of a website having around 50,000 visitors a month, but having loading speed issues and delays 4 seconds, then this site may lose 20,000 potential clients.
E. Long-term negative outcome
Over the long-run, slow moving websites have significantly huge negative issues, as to the word-of-mouth where users will be talking about it to others, as well as the issue that other websites will not be backlinking to a slow loading website.
F. Google ranking issues
And the most crucial factor is Google ranking. A slow loading website will be facing serious issues when it comes to ranking higher in Google.
Compressing images is vital
There are various page speed tools that can help you identify your site’s loading time, as well as tools that can help you compress images and other multimedia items (view this article and point H. Optimizing your images for WordPress) or if you are not using WordPress, you can then use other tools.
The three metrics of page speed
Server Response Time: This metric focuses on your hosting provider, as to the time it takes for the server to respond to various requests in milliseconds. A great hosting provider is one that can provide you with superb loading times.
Largest Contentful Paint (LCP): This is a time measurement of how long it takes for the first element to load in seconds.