This is just a quick reminder of the importance of site speed in your internet marketing efforts. We’ve already talked about how site speed is one of the factors used in the “Page Load” multiplier of Google’s Search Results algorithm. However, aside from playing nice with Google, there is another reason to focus on page load times – Profits! There was a good article on the subject over at SearchEngineWatch.com detailing some of the findings of recent research.
As you can see, one extra second of load time can result in a 7% loss of conversions, 11% fewer pages viewed and a 16% decrease in customer satisfaction. Also, speeding a page up by 5 seconds can result in twice as many visits form the search engines and require half of your current server resources, saving you money on both ends.
A couple of the tools we like to use to find culprits of slow load times on a page is Pingdom, which will show you load times for each element of a page. You’ll be shocked to see how background images and other page elements are slowing you down unnecessarily, and a lot of these are easy to fix.
For instance, I borrowed that image from the original article – partly because it’s so pretty, but also to demonstrate what a difference the file type and image size can make. If you check the original article, you’ll see the same image, only slightly larger. Yet that slight decrease in size and the change in file type from .png to .jpg resulted in the image file size decreasing from 122kb to 24kb. That’s roughly a 500% improvement with a barely noticeable change in image quality. These things can add up and improve page speed big time.
Just a little something to keep in mind when you’re working on website optimization.