In our e-book, 5 Common SEO Mistakes Found on Company Websites—And How to Fix Them , we address the most frequent mistakes we see and provide tools for making improvements that will drive better SEO performance. One of these mistakes pertains to slow website load times—a factor that can keep visitors from remaining on your site and negatively impact your Google ranking.

In April 2010, Google released an announcement increasing the importance of load time into its overall algorithm of ranking websites, making it one of the biggest factors for your site’s search engine ranking.

In this announcement, Google wrote, “Speeding up websites is important — not just to site owners, but to all Internet users. Faster sites create happy users and we’ve seen in our internal studies that when a site responds slowly, visitors spend less time there. But faster sites don’t just improve user experience; recent data shows that improving site speed also reduces operating costs. Like us, our users place a lot of value in speed — that’s why we’ve decided to take site speed into account in our search rankings.”

Bonus tip: Although site speed is important, Google goes on to say, “While site speed is a new signal, it doesn’t carry as much weight as the relevance of a page.” Make sure that your site and its pages are helpful and relevant for your visitors. This is always the best tip to keep in mind!

Think about what you do when you click on a search result. If the site takes more than a few seconds to load, you likely assume that the site is down or not working properly, you hit the back arrow and potentially scroll to another search result. This “bounce” off of your website tells Google that there is an issue there—either the site content isn’t relevant, or there’s another user experience error there. Google does all that it can to provide the best user experience for people using the internet, and it’s your job to ensure you’ve done all you can to make the user experience the best it can be.

To find out more about website development, SEO and other online marketing services, read our e-book, 5 Common SEO Mistakes Found on Company Websites—and How to Fix Them.

Typical issues that we’ve seen affecting site load time are image sizes, browser caching, and render-blocking JavaScript and CSS in above-the-fold content.

To find out what load time issues your site may have, you can use the new tool PageSpeed Insights or some of the other tools Google provides in its article.

To fix these issues, or to determine which issues you should prioritize, work with your webmaster, or you can shoot us a message. Contact Bob Goricki, Director of Digital Marketing, at 440-605-7234 or email Bob.

5 Common SEO Mistakes E-Book