Visitors prefer fast websites. Studies show that loading time has a direct impact on abandonment rate. Nearly 40% of visitors leave a website that takes more than 3 seconds to load. In other words, visitors are more likely to leave your pages if they load too slowly.
This is understable.
Visitors grow increasingly impatient the longer they have to wait for pages to load. If your website is not loading fast, then this has a direct impact on its performance. Here is what Google has to say about site speed:
“You may have heard that here at Google we’re obsessed with speed, in our products and on the web. As part of that effort, today we’re including a new signal in our search ranking algorithms: site speed.”
Site speed matters and it also has an impact on rankings. If visitors are quickly leaving your pages, this signals to Google that your website has poor user experience. This in turn leads to lower rankings in the search engines.
Site Speed Suggestions in Google Analytics
To see how fast your pages load, log in to your Google Analytics account. If you do not already have one, you can get started here.
In the Behavior tab, click Site Speed and Overview
The next page then gives a brief overview on your website’s average speed.
Clicking on Page Timings under Site Speed gives even more detail including pageviews and a map overlay. Click on Speed Suggestions to see which areas need improvement.
This tells you the number of visits each of your pages has along with the average loading time. Then click the link under PageSpeed Suggestions and you will be taken to a separate page.
Ideally you want this number to be as close to 100 as possible. Use these as a guideline when optimising the speed of your website then go back into Google Analytics for another test. The next step is to get started on the suggestions for each page.
Improving the speed of your website is highly beneficial for your visitors and has the potential to increase rankings in the search engines.