How Google’s Page Speed Update Becomes A Ranking Factor
Google often keeps on updating its algorithms not once, but numerous times in a year.
In fact, July’2018 has become an important and mysterious month for the marketers, when Google announced two updates back to back, and again in August’ 2018.
Well, let me remind you once again, what all Google did to the marketers.
- Google made the latest announcement of Broad Core Algorithm Update as on August, 1’2018.
- Before that, in the month of July, Google announced for the mandatory implementation of SSL certificates, in which marketers have to switch their websites from HTTP to HTTPS.
- And again in July’2018, an important announcement was made by Google. The announcement is related to the things which we are going to discuss now. And that is how Google’s Page Speed Update becomes a ranking factor.
Google has designed a new ranking algorithm for mobile searches. And the company named it as “Page Speed Update”. But this will impact only a few percentages of queries, which Google will reiterate to us.
Only those pages will be impacted with delivery rate to the users. It means that only those pages will be impacted that “deliver the slowest experience to users”– Google Says.
This is completely based on the fact that Google will finally use page speed of mobiles as a factor of ranking in the mobile search results.
As the Page Speed Update goes live in July, so the digital marketers and the webmasters have a lot of time to prepare their web pages.
Use the new Page Speed Update Report and also the Lighthouse tools to measure the speed of the page and make improvements accordingly.
Ok, Google also announced that the Page Speed Insight Tool is also updated to use data from the Chrome User Experience Report.
Put your website’s URL in the box and click on “Analyze”. Like this:
Let’s see the result for Moz.
The result will show you the Mobile Page Speed as well as the Page Optimization. This report also shows the Page Load Distributions.
These Distributions are based on the FCP (First Contentful Paint) and DCL (DOM Content Loaded).
Data from the Chrome User Experience Report indicates the page’s median FCP and DCL.
We can also see the report of the Page Load Distribution.
This Page Speed tool actually shows you how fast your pages will load which is based on real user data. Actually, this tool is using metrics from the “real-world Chrome users”.
Well, we can see that the pages are graded on three levels.
Three Levels Of Page
Fast: That means the median value of the metric is in the fastest third of all page loads.
Slow: It means that the median value of the metrics is in the slowest third of all paging loads.
Average: It shows that the median value of the metrics is in the middle third of all page loads.
The Google also describes the features provided by the tool which gives an insight to the Page Speed.
Features of Page Speed Tool
The Speed Score
The first thing that will be seen on the page speed insight report is the “Speed Score”. The speed score categorizes the page on the basis of three facts Fast, Slow or Average.
This categorization is determined by looking at the median value of two metrics and that is:
FCP (First Contentful Paint)
DCL (DOM Content Loaded).
It is observed that if both the metrics are in the top one-third of their category, then the page will be considered as fast.
The Optimization Score
This score categorizes the page into Good, Low or Medium, thereby estimating its performance headroom. The assumption is based on the calculation that the developer wants to keep the functionality and appearance of the page as it is.
The Page Load Distribution
The Page Load Distribution section shows how this page’s median FCP and DCL ranks are distributed in the data set, to present it in the fastest third of all pages.
We know that these events are categorized into Fast, Slow and Average by comparing all the events in the Chrome User Experience Report.
The Page Stats
This section describes that the median page on the internet requires round trips, to load the page’s render-blocking.
It also shows the total bytes used and the comparison of the round trips and bytes used in the data set. It can indicate that if the developer modifies the functionality and appearance of the page it can load faster.
This option is a list of best practices that could be applied to the page. It basically gives you suggestions if the page is slow. Like this:
But, if the page speed is fast, by default these suggestions are hidden. This is because the page is already in the top third of all pages in the data set, it will show as below:
Now the question is how to adjust mobile SEO strategy for Google’s Page Speed Update?
How to Adjust Mobile SEO Strategy for Google’s Page Speed Update
There are some of the strategies and tips to modify your mobile strategy for the Google’s Page Speed Update.
Let’s list them here:
Switch to Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP)
Well, you don’t need “AMP”, at least not in order to create super-fast mobile experiences, but if you are looking for a quick way to decrease your page load time, then it is worth switching to AMP.
Think About the Users Intent
It has been found that around 40% of the mobile searches have local intent- According to Google Mobile Moments Study.
Your page will be hit by the Google Page Speed Update if your home page is bogged down by uncompressed and interstitials images.
Leverage Your Google Search Console and Page Speed Insights
Leveraging your Google Search Console is a good way to check your website’s usability.
As far as page speed is concerned, Page Speed Insights is going to be your tool.
In the year 2010, Google said that the page speed was a ranking factor but at that time, it was focused on “Desktop Searches”.
Now, in July 2018, Google is looking at Mobile Page Speed and taking it as a factor of ranking.
It is yet not clear that whether all these ranking factors will also be applied to desktop searches. We are trying to get the information out of Google and will update it to you soon.
From an SEO perspective, I recommend you to consider switching an AMP, think deeply about the intent of the users, and also leverage the power of your Google Search Console and Page Speed Insights.
If you are an Adwords user, then make sure that you are optimizing and observing not only for relevance but also for load time and landing page speed.
So, I wish you all the best to you for your website to run faster on mobiles as well.
I hope you have found the article how Google’s Page Speed Update becomes a ranking factor worth reading.
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