Site speed – is it important and does it impact on search rankings?

Site Speed and page load times are important to Google and SEOIs Site Speed a factor in SEO?

In 2010 Google announced the web site speed would begin to have an effect on how a site ranked on its search engine. Now, the speed at which someone could view the content from a search result, the site speed,  would be a factor and would have an impact on search ranking.

It has become obvious that Google is acting on what is intuitively obvious which is that sites offering a poor user experience and slow site speed deserve less promotion in search results.

This is a summary of what we have been able to correlate.

Time To First Byte. (TTFB)

With no correlation between search ranking and what is traditionally thought of a “page load time” or “site speed”, we expanded our search to the Time to First Byte (TTFB). This metric captures how long it takes your browser to receive the first byte of a response from a web server when you request a particular URL.

Our data shows there is no correlation between “page load time” (either document complete or fully rendered) and ranking on Google’s search results page. This is true not only for generic searches (one or two keywords) but also for “long tail” searches (4 or 5 keywords) as well. We did not see websites with faster page load times ranking higher than websites with slower page load times in any consistent fashion.

Do websites rank highly because they have better back-end infrastructure than other sites?

What does this mean?

While we have found that front-end web performance factors (“document complete” and “fully rendered” times) do not directly factor into search engine rankings, we did find that the back-end performance of a website does directly impact search engine rankings. The back end includes the web servers, their network connections, the use of CDNs (Cached Delivery Networks), and the back-end application and database servers.

Page Load Speed Test Results Of Affinity

Affinitys Super Fast hosting package load time is in the top 1% of all websites in the world, Our Super Fast Hosting include a Cached Delivery Network and for a limited time, a free SSL certificate allowing a secure connection from a web server to a web browser.

Google wants to encourage site owners to switch from HTTP to HTTPS to “keep everyone safe on the web” and Google webmaster Tools, Now called Search Consul, has been upgraded to better handle HTTPS sites and reporting on them

For full details, read the Moz blog How Website Speed Actually Impacts Search Ranking