If you are a business owner who manages or operates a company website, you may well have heard of Google Core Web Vitals. These are a set of metrics which can be examined to understand how well a website is performing and how users will experience web pages.
One of the major components of Google’s Core Web Vitals relates to website load speed - considering the time it takes between a user clicking onto your site and the page appearing in full. Because let’s be honest for a minute, modern internet users want everything available at the click of a button and are not willing to wait long - meaning if your load speed is too slow, the chances are that they will end up abandoning your site and trying a competitor instead.
In this blog post, we dive into the importance of site speed - and what you need to know to ensure your website visitors are never left waiting.
The Importance of Website Load Speed
It has been reported that 47% of consumers expect a web page to load in two seconds or under - with Google Core Web Vitals agreeing with the masses and setting a good result at 2 seconds or less.
And that’s not all. Website experts found that for every second that a consumer is left waiting for a site to load, their satisfaction rate drops by a massive 16%. And if a website performs badly in the eyes of a consumer, 46% state that they will not return to the site again.
In short, it’s essential for your website to load quickly to improve user experience and reduce the likelihood of website visitors getting frustrated by waiting, closing their browser and never returning to your site. If your competitors have fast loading websites compared to your own, you could get left behind, even if you offer a superior product or service.
Conversion Rate and the Impact on Your Business
We’ve already found that a slow loading page results in a lower conversion rate. Conversely, when you focus on boosting your website load time, customers will feel more loyal to your brand; they will leave your website feeling satisfied and will commit to returning to your website in the future.
At this stage, it is important to remember that your website isn’t just trying to entice and retain customers and users - it is also in direct competition with other businesses in your sector. And if your website loads too slowly, you can be sure there will be a competitor with faster load times, just waiting to steal your customers.
Is the Load Speed Different for a Desktop and Mobile?
Yes - in fact, users expect more from their mobiles, and because they use them more that becomes a major point that businesses like yours need to focus on. Channelling time into testing and adjusting the design and layout of your website to optimise the load speed across all devices is a crucial part of succeeding with online marketing.
What Affects Website Load Speed?
There are a number of things which might be getting in the way of your website and preventing it from loading quickly, with some of the main ones being:
- Having poor quality hosting
- Having images on your website which are not optimised properly, with file sizes that are far too large
- Having too many unnecessary website plugins which can slow down the speed in which your webpages load
There are also factors which may be slowing the website load speed down from the user end, for example if they clear their browser cache so the website has to load completely fresh every time they visit, or too many browsers open which overworks their device.
As a business owner, you can work to improve the load speed of your site from the backend, with frequent tests allowing you to isolate any problem areas and fix them before they cost your business time and money.
What Can I Do to Improve My Website Load Speed?
There are many ways to enhance your website from the perspective of load speed, one simple way is to ensure that all new uploaded photos are optimised, before going back and re-uploading optimised versions of the existing photos on your website. A handy free, web-based tool to help with this is Squoosh (a tool which is now owned by Google so you can be sure it meets their requirements).
Here at Social Loop we understand that business owners have so many other things to work on, beyond their website and ensuring that it loads quickly. So why not let our experts take care of this for you? One of the key things we provide for our SEO and website development clients is to make sure that their site has been optimised to load quickly on all devices.
For more information on how we could help you, get in touch today.