When building a top-performing SEO campaign, one element that’s often overlooked is website page speed. Website loading time can make or break the performance of your SEO.
The truth is that most SEO providers don’t emphasize the importance of website loading time to pest control companies, but they should. If your website doesn’t load in under three seconds, then your SEO is likely suffering due to a slow website loading problem.
In this article, we will provide some tips on how to improve page speed for better SEO for your pest control company and a better user experience.
The Basics of Increasing Page Speed
So, what is page speed and why does it matter? Page speed is often confused with website speed. This refers to the amount of time it takes for a website to load. Page speed refers to “page load time” or how long it takes for a browser to display the content on the page, such as text, images, and video.
Increasing page speed can have a measurable impact on:
- How long visitors stay on your site
- Your organic search rankings
- Conversion rates
If you have noticed a decrease in page speed by a second or two, you might not think this is a big deal. However, a decrease in page speed from one second to three seconds can increase bounce rates by up to 32 percent!
How to Improve Page Speed
The most common culprits of page speed problems include too many files, heavy images, and page redirects. Here are some tips for combating these issues and increasing page speed:
1. Compress files. If your site has a lot of files, such as images, video, text, PDF downloads, or other coding files, then this can seriously affect your page speed performance. However, before you go in and start deleting files from the back end, one of the easiest ways to combat this issue is to enable compression.
2. Optimize images. Similar to the point above, if your website is very image-heavy, and your images are various sizes and formats, your page speed could be reduced.
The best approach is to go through all the images and ensure they are all the right sizes and file types (without sacrificing quality, of course). For example, PNG and JPEG files are usually best for images. Remember, the smaller the image file, the easier it is for them to load.
3. Reduce page redirects. If you have multiple page redirects set up, then this can increase the amount of time visitors wait for a page to load. Each redirect decreases page speed and website loading time.
Over time, however, browsers can get blocked up with a lot of extra “stuff”. Think of this as a closet in your home that become packed with stuff that you needed at one point or another. By occasionally clearing the browser cache, you can increase page speed.
Why is Page Speed So Important?
At its most basic function, a website should be easy for visitors to navigate and find what they are looking for. If pages load quickly and also provide quality content, then users will remain on your site longer and visit other pages. The longer they spend on your website, the higher chance they will convert.
Which is the Best Page Speed Tool?
Google offers a number of tools, including Google Analytics, Google Page Speed Tools, and even a Chrome browser extension that are all great for testing page speed and also provide some recommendations for improving it. There’s also other 3rd party tools and web apps that will let you test your website page speed.
How Do I Test My Website Speed?
If you are curious about what your page speed time looks like on your website, you can do a website performance test. Here are some of the easiest and most popular page speed tools you can try:
Google Analytics — Site Speed/Page Timings
Google Chrome (Inspect Element) — right click anywhere on the page –> inspect element –> Lighthouse
Does Page Speed Affect My Rank?
Although Google says engagement metrics don’t directly impact rank, there is a clear correlation between higher engagement metrics and higher rankings.
That said, Google does say site speed (and therefore page speed) is part of their algorithm and a signal they use to determine search engine rankings. So even if engagement metrics such as click through rate, and time on page theoretically do not impact rankings, site speed and page speed do. And we’ve shown, page speed affects how visitors interact with your site.
Improving Your Website Page Speed
Increasing page speed should be at the top of your priority list when measuring SEO performance. The faster your website and pages load, the more likely visitors will stay on your site rather than jumping over to a competitor’s site that is faster!
Now that you are armed with some information and knowledge about website performance, you can do your own website performance test to see where you currently rank and what you can do to improve it.
Any good SEO company will provide a list of action items centered on these areas. If you have questions or need help, then give us a call or contact us! We’d love the chance to help you.