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The Importance of Page Speed for SEO - our research

by Elena TikhonovaFebruary 20th, 2024

This morning, I made a quick Google Analytics research about the importance of page speed for SEO.

Recently, our developers launched a new project where they worked on page speed optimization.

Our developers managed to improve website performance to 100%, according to Google Page Speed service.

Perfect page speed

Below, I posted the basic data about this interesting project.


E-commerce store

Hydraulics Products Online Store

The main features of the online store:

  • Migration from Volusion to CS-Cart

  • 2,000 categories

  • More than 20,000 products

  • Instant store search — less than 3ms

  • A very fast-loading website

  • Simple and user-friendly web design

Basil Sabbah

Thanks a lot for the effort. Guys, thank you so much! It’s been a long journey but I like how it looks

Today I want to examine what has changed in SEO after our website performance optimization, how fast website loads impact the user experience and search engine ranking, and I want to show you the importance of page speed for SEO.

Understanding Page Speed

Home page speed

What is Page Speed?

Page speed refers to how fast the content on any given website page loads.

What happens if you fail Core Web Vitals?

The Core Web Vitals are a ranking signal, which means that your site may rank lower in Google if it doesn't pass the Core Web Vitals assessment.

What is a good page speed score?

90 or above

A score of 90 or above is considered good. 50 to 89 is a score that needs improvement, and below 50 is considered poor.

How do you analyze page speed?

Page speed can be described in either "page load time" (the time it takes to fully display the content on a specific page) or "time to first byte" (how long it takes for your browser to receive the first byte of information from the webserver).

Why is Page Speed Important for SEO?

The relationship between page speed and SEO is symbiotic.

  1. Search engines prioritize the user experience, and fast-loading pages contribute to a positive user experience.

  2. Consequently, search algorithms favor websites with faster loading times, leading to higher rankings in search engine results pages (SERPs).

  3. Additionally, page speed influences various SEO metrics, including:

  • views per user,

  • bounce rate,

  • dwell time (=average engagement time in GA4),

  • mobile-friendliness

All of these metrics impact your website's performance.

page speed insights

Start our brief SEO research on TitanFittings

As you understand, the user experience is paramount in today's digital landscape. A website's speed directly affects how users perceive and interact with it.

Let's examine how speed affects after our changes on the project's website.

We took two periods:

Old and slow website

  • November, 1 - November, 15 2023

Updated and fast website

  • February, 1 - February, 15 2024

There is some explanation for why we took these periods.

  1. There was an old website in November. We measured the data for this period.

  2. In January 2024, our developers moved the website to a new website variant with new URLs, so it has 301 redirects!

  3. In February 2024, Google finished indexing all new URLs, and it was time to check the results.

What will we check on the old slow website and on the new fast website variant?

  • views per users,

  • bounce rate,

  • dwell time ( =average engagement time in GA4),

  • mobile-friendliness,

  • website organic traffic,

  • organic keyword positions (due to ahrefs service).

Pay attention to the fact that we will check data only for the home page of the website, as only the homepage kept its URL. All other URLs were changed, and the data will not be honest.

Before and after page speed optimization

Let's examine how speed affects the Google Analytics (GA 4) metrics after our changes on the project's website.

We took two periods:

  • November, 1 - November, 15 2023 (before our changes)

  • February, 1 - February, 15 2024 (after page speed optimization)

Data for the home page/organic search only.

views per user
Views per user increased
Fantastic result. After we sped up the page loading time, the number of views per user went up by 250%. This means that on average, visitors are now checking out more than 6 pages when they come to TitanFittings website.
Bounce rate increased
Bounce rate increased
Note, it's a bad result. The lower the bounce rate, the better. Even though there's been a slight increase in the bounce rate (only 40%), it's still considered good for an e-commerce website.
Engagement time
Average engagement time increased
Good result. In GA4, Average Engagement Time provides a more precise measure of Dwell Time. I observed that visitors began spending significantly more time on the fast-loading website, with a remarkable increase of 181% in dwell time.

Mobile-Friendly Optimization

Search engines like Google prioritize mobile-friendly websites in their rankings, meaning that an e-commerce site that isn't optimized for mobile may also suffer in terms of visibility and organic traffic.

Here are a few traits we often see in sites that have been built with mobile in mind:

  • Sites are quick to load

  • Sites have less text

  • There are fewer moving parts

  • There are fewer pop-ups

  • There are fewer text boxes to fill out

  • Menus are simplified drop-downs.

  • Contact information is strongly featured

  • Store hours are large and in charge

  • Calls-to-actionare prominent

  • Buttons are large and easily targeted

Titanfittings mobiles

Core Web Vitals for Mobiles in Search Console improved

I noticed that after our web developers improved the page loading speed, the number of URLs that provide a good page experience on mobiles increased to 100%.

Better core web vitals for mobiles

Strategies for Improving Page Speed

Optimizing page speed requires a multi-faceted approach that addresses various aspects of website performance. Here are some effective strategies to enhance your website's speed and improve SEO:

1. Minimize HTTP Requests

Reducing the number of HTTP requests required to load a page can significantly improve its speed. Combine CSS and JavaScript files, optimize images, and utilize browser caching to streamline the loading process.

2. Enable Compression

Compressing files, such as CSS, JavaScript, and HTML, reduces their size, resulting in faster loading times. Gzip compression, for example, can dramatically decrease file sizes without compromising quality.

3. Optimize Images

Large, unoptimized images can significantly slow down a website. Use image compression tools to reduce file sizes without sacrificing quality. Additionally, implement responsive images to ensure optimal performance across various devices.

4. Leverage Browser Caching

Browser caching allows browsers to store static files locally, reducing the need to re-download them each time a user visits your website. By specifying caching directives in your server's configuration, you can improve page speed and user experience.

5. Minify CSS, JavaScript, and HTML

Minification involves removing unnecessary characters and whitespace from code files, resulting in smaller file sizes and faster loading times. Utilize minification tools or plugins to optimize your CSS, JavaScript, and HTML code effortlessly.

Best Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How does page speed affect SEO rankings?

Faster-loading pages tend to rank higher in search engine results pages (SERPs) as they provide a better user experience and meet the criteria set by search algorithms.

What is the ideal page load time for SEO?

While there's no definitive answer, aiming for a page load time of three seconds or less is generally considered optimal for SEO and user experience.

Can slow page speed negatively impact conversion rates?

Yes, slow page speed can lead to higher bounce rates and lower conversion rates as users are more likely to abandon a website that takes too long to load.

How often should I monitor my website's page speed?

It's advisable to monitor your website's page speed regularly, preferably once a month, to identify any performance issues and implement necessary optimizations.

Does page speed optimization only apply to desktop users?

No, page speed optimization is essential for both desktop and mobile users, as mobile traffic continues to grow and users expect fast-loading websites regardless of the device they're using.

Are there any tools available to help improve page speed?

Yes, there are several tools available, such as Google's PageSpeed Insights, GTmetrix, and Pingdom, that can analyze your website's performance and provide recommendations for improvement.

In conclusion, the importance of page speed for SEO cannot be overstated. By prioritizing website performance and optimizing page speed, you can enhance user experience, increase engagement, and improve search engine rankings. Implementing the strategies outlined in this article will not only boost your website's speed but also contribute to its overall success in the competitive online landscape.

Want to increase website speed?Contact Alt-team developers

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