7 Tips to Ensure That a Slow Site Does Not Affect Your Google Rankings
In an age where Google is coming up with products like Instant, the role of ‘speed’ in defining user experience is more significant than ever before. Users on the web try to find relevant information as fast as possible. And, the longer it takes for a page to load, the lesser time a visitor will spend on it. Penalizing for such poor service and inspiring for better user experience, search engines give an edge to sites loading faster over slow loading sites in the search results.
7 Tips to Speed up Your Site
Online businesses must take the below listed simple, yet effective measures to provide a better user experience to their visitors. This will ensure that they get rewarded by search engines in terms of better search rankings.
- Defining the height and width of images lets the browser continue with loading the remaining part of the page. Since the space for the image is already defined, it gets filled up later.
- To keep high quality images, along with the fast-loading preview images, multiple versions of images should be created. While the PNG format is great for high quality images, it grows in size really fast on adding colors. So, for larger images full of color, .JPG should be the format.
- Do away with as many images as possible. Use typography wherever it can replace graphics. As search engines crawl text, that’s better for SEO. For all images that are essential, make them as small in size as you can.
- Bring down the size of the HTML page. Shorter the code, faster a site loads. By editing the code manually rather than using automated HTML generators like Frontpage, coding can be kept efficient and any tag that is not required can be eliminated. It can get troublesome for some browsers to load numerous levels of nested tables. If you have a skilled programmer, he/she will identify such an improperly nested table easily. If it still can’t be figure out, developers need to rewrite the code and simplify it.
- Using XHTML or “valid” HTML enables the browser to efficiently process the code. Several browsers become really slow in the “quirks” mode. Moreover, a lot of small mistakes get through. W3C’s Markup Validation Service helps in diagnosing errors in the code.
- Use a small style sheet that excludes redundant formatting specifications. While using a shorter style name helps, don’t try to replace any of the standard tags, such as H1 and H2 since Google crawler reads them better than any other unique tag.
So, can you afford to lose a visitor just because he gets bored waiting for the site to load and leaving without even looking at your content? You lose readers and thus, everything you are trying to make money from – be it ad impressions or click-throughs. You don’t have an option. Pace up!