A number of factors can determine how a website ranks in search, and most of the focus is usually on content. However, the speed of the website or how fast it loads could negatively affect its search ranking.
Google’s Mobile-First and Page Speed
Google has now rolled out its mobile-first search indexing. With this, websites will be indexed based on their mobile versions, and speed will play a role in the index and ranking of websites.
Google/SOASTA Research from 2017 shows that that a slow loading website has a higher bounce rate on average. In fact, the probability of bouncing increases to as much as 90 per cent as page load time moves from 1 to 5 seconds and 123 per cent for a website taking up to 10 seconds to load. No one wants to sit and wait a long time for a website to load; this is why people leave. Even websites with great content may suffer if it loads slowly, and this is an indication that they are not satisfying the users.
The new mobile-first being rolled out by Google is just the beginning. The number of people viewing websites via mobile has risen, and the focus is such that webmasters will need to deliver not just on content for mobile web sites but also on speed. An experienced website designer in Cardiff like (https://ambercouch.co.uk/) should be able to assist you in improving your website loading speed and increase your web site ranking.
Ways to Improve Website Speed
Update your website, especially if you are using a content management system (CMS) such as WordPress. Ensure all plugins, themes and WordPress versions are the latest.
Optimise videos and images. Resize images to reflect the size you want instead of adding very large images, which take longer to render and increase page loading time.
Use the latest PHP version. Using older unsupported or limited-support PHP versions slows down websites.
Use caching plugins. This will cache your static website pages so users will be served a cached version of those pages.
Use Critical Delivery Network (CDN) so website visitors are delivered information from the servers closest to them.
Check your website routinely, both desktop and mobile versions. You should also use Google’s page speed tools (https://developers.google.com/speed/) to help you.