Matt goes to Brighton SEO!

Fresh off returning from Brighton SEO, one of the biggest if not the best Search Engine Marketing conferences in Europe – our Search Engine Optimisation geek Matt is here to share with what you should be doing to make your website more SEO’d in 2019!

Speed is CRUCIAL

If it wasn’t already etched into your mind, it’s become clear that now – more than at any other time – that you should be putting the user of your website first!

When we mention SEO, many of you may automatically think of keywords, meta information and page titles – all ingredients that form part of a Colonel Sanders-esque secret recipe of Search Engine herbs and spices – replicated the world over but without anybody ever quite knowing what the perfect blend is. Whilst these are still key components of a successful website that flourishes in the SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages), there is a fundamental factors that you could be and most likely are neglecting.

Since the July 2018 Google Update, Page Speed has been a ranking factor for mobile webpages. Although Google insisted it would only affect the slowest sites, it was a signal of intent and how webmasters should be improving Page Speed to keep our users happy (and onsite).

Bounce Rate increases by 90% when a page load time increases from 1 to 5 seconds!

“Speed is something that does matter quite a bit to us and it has a big effect on users, so that’s something that I, personally, would take seriously.” John Mueller, Webmaster Trends Analyst at Google.

We may be getting away with it – research suggests that 50% of users actually blame their internet connection for slow loading times instead of the website they are trying to view. But attitudes are shifting, and there are clear opportunities for those of us willing to invest in making our websites lean, mean, loading machines!

And why wouldn’t you – the probability of bounce rate increases by 90% when page load time increases from 1 to 5 seconds – and people who have a negative experience first time around are 62% less likely to make a future purchase.

3 Ways To Supercharge Your Page Speed

  • Correctly sizes images

Make sure you are sizing your images correctly, an image size of 2.6MB compared to one of 85KB looks the same except the bigger one will slow down your site. Adequately naming each file and giving the image complimentary alt attributes will also help with Search Engine optimisation.

  • Critical Rendering Path & Defer Offscreen Images

Unless told specified, the server will try and load the content of a web page simultaneously. But that can mean painfully slow loading times, especially on mobile devices. A handy piece of code can tell the browser to load only the portion of the page the user will initially see – and loading the rest afterwards – this can shave seconds of your load time.

  • User Experience (UX) – Can the user find what they need?

The above points will give leave your website users smiling ear-to-ear with lightning quick access to a page, but those feel good endorphins can just as easily disappear if they can’t find what they’re looking for. Think about what the main point of each page is – get those Call-to-Actions in a prominent position!

So business owners, do you want the good or bad news first?

Thought so, well the bad news is that if you don’t do anything about it, your organic traffic may drop off and bounce rates increase. Google are clearly putting an emphasis on the speed and usability of a webpage. Websites will be rewarded for being quick and user friendly.

Best practice suggests that your page should be loading within 3 seconds with a page content weight of less than 500kb. Do you know how your website stacks up?

Good news, we can help you to get ahead of the trend and future-proof your website from dropping in the results pages.

Let Launch Online tell you how you’re getting on. For a comprehensive website SEO audit and an ongoing SEO optimisation strategy, contact Launch Online.