Does Website Speed Matter?
Yes, website loading speed does matter. Faster loading times will result in increased site traffic and more time spent on your pages. Your SEO and search engine rankings will also improve because Google looks at page load times as one of its ranking factors.
Fast websites look more professional and reliable, which improves people’s overall impression of your site. Your website visitors will also relate your site’s speed to your company’s efficiency and trustworthiness. All of these combined will eventually lead to better user experiences and higher conversions.
Measuring Page Load Time
Page load times can be measured as either document complete time or fully rendered time.
- Document Complete Time measures how long it takes to retrieve and load the different elements of the page onto the browser. It doesn’t mean the page itself and all its elements are fully displayed yet.
- Fully Rendered Time measures how long it takes to fully display images, CSS and scripts. Once the page is fully rendered, you can interact with everything on it.
The graph above shows that fully rendered time usually takes around 2 seconds more than the document complete time across the board.
The left part of the graph shows the page load times of the highest ranking search results. There isn’t much of a difference in page load times compared with the lower ranking pages to the right, but we do see a pretty significant dip for the top 3 results. Fully rendered times are also slightly faster for the top search results.
Your Visitors Expect Fast Loading Times
Here are some key stats we’ve summarized from a recent survey.
- 47% of people expect your site to load in less than 2 seconds
- 40% will abandon it entirely if page load times are longer than 3 seconds
- 85% of Internet users expect a mobile site to load as fast or faster than on their desktop
Here is the breakdown of the survey results as seen in the pie graph above:
- 11% of those surveyed said that they expect their load times to be much slower on their phone
- 12% said that they expect that load times on their phone to be faster than their desktop
- 21% said that they expect their load times on their phone to be about equal with their desktop
- 25% said that they expect their load times on the phones to be almost as fast as their desktop
- 31% of those surveyed said that they expect their load times to be a bit slower on their phone
Tips to Increase Website Page Load Speed
Minimize your HTTP requests
- Delete unnecessary images
- Delete other unnecessary files
- Reduce file sizes
- Create a CSS image sprite
Use a caching plug-in
One of the most convenient ways to enhance the speed of your website is to install a caching plug-in such as WP Super Cache. Many of the caching plug-ins are easy to use and free to download. Caching allows for faster loading times because it stores many of the files needed to display a web page on the computer so that the browser doesn’t need to download the files it needs every single time a new page is loaded.
Use a Content Delivery Network
When you use a content delivery network you offload your web traffic onto different servers all over the world. This ensures that your pages are delivered to every user as fast as possible. It also allows you to save up to 65% of your server bandwidth since your web host doesn’t need to respond to every single request from your users.
Optimize Your Images
Images are important and they make your web pages more engaging and dynamic. But you have to make sure your images are properly optimized so that their file sizes are as small as possible without losing too much image quality.
If you’d like to learn more about website speed and how to improve it, we discuss it further in this blog post.
Our team of professional web designers will help you create a modern financial advisor website that’s streamlined and optimized for speed and efficiency. Contact us today by sending us a message through the contact form below.