What is Page Speed?

Page speed is the measurement of how fast the content on your web page loads. This is calculated by three major measurements:

  • Loading: Largest Content Paint (LCP)
    • How long it takes for the largest piece of content to load on the page
  • Interactivity: First Input Display (FID)
    • How long it takes for the first piece of content to load on the page
  • Visual Stability: Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS)
    • How much your website layout shifts during loading

It’s important to note content refers to more than just the words or text on the page. Content could be images, video embeds or any other HTML elements of the page.

Does Page Speed Really Matter?

Absolutely! Page speed directly affects how your website ranks in search results and how likely users are going to interact with your web page resulting in a conversion. Here are the top 4 reasons page speed matters:

#4: Better User Experience (UX)

Page speed directly affects user experience, which makes or breaks your website’s overall performance and rankings. User experience encompasses all aspects of the user’s online and offline interaction with the company, its services and its products. With the digital world we live in today, almost every first impression is made online.

User expectations must be satisfied, not only to gain new customers but also to get noticed more online. With the Google Page Experience Update, user experience on each page will heavily influence how well your web pages rank in Google search results. 

A responsive web design is only a small first step into the world of user experience. Your online presence must be consistent, relevant and quick to find. If you want to know how your overall user experience is performing, start by asking yourself the following questions:

  • How long does it take for my website to load?
  • What are my customers looking for and how fast can they find it?
  • Does my website have up to date information about my business, services and products?
  • Can my customers contact my business easily through contact forms, emails, chatbots or phone numbers?
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#3: Lower Bounce Rate

The more relevant your website is to your customers, the lower the bounce rate will be. A bounce is a single-page session on your site without triggering any other requests on the page (i.e. clicking a link to a new page). Bounce rate is calculated by single-page sessions divided by all sessions. Bounce rate is often influenced by slow page speed, irrelevant content or no call-to-action on the page.

Search results take bounce rate into account while ranking your website in search results. A high bounce rate often indicates a poor user experience and irrelevant content. Therefore, Google will not serve a web page with a high bounce rate over a more relevant web page with a lower bounce rate and faster page speed.

#2: More Pageviews

Once you have lowered your bounce rate, you will start to see an increase in website traffic and pageviews. Pay attention to which pages receive the most traffic versus the pages that receive little traffic, if any traffic at all. Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and page speed should always be evaluated at an individual web page level. Otherwise, you will never be able to diagnose the exact problem or weak spot with your website. 

Evaluate the page speed and keyword rankings of your lower traffic web pages to help come with an action plan and content calendar that focuses on your weaker pages. This will help bring more overall traffic to your site.

#1: More Conversions

Once you see an increase in traffic, the next metric to evaluate is conversions. A conversion is an action that is attributed to a specific source or interaction with the page. Conversions can be page views, downloads, video views, contact form submissions, click-to-call phone calls or any other interaction on a web page you want to track closely. 

Users expect immediate results. The longer it takes a user to find a product or service, the less likely they will make a conversion. Page speed is one of the many factors that influence your sales funnel, and it’s becoming increasingly more important and influential. That’s why improving page speed should always be a part of your digital marketing and SEO strategy.
Points Group is a full-service marketing and consulting agency. Since 2002, we have specialized in helping medical practices grow and increase revenue through a multi-channel marketing approach. Contact us today for a free website analysis.

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This document was last updated on July 24, 2014