In July 2018, loading speed became a key factor in Google’s mobile search rank algorithm. So, how can you ensure that your page loads as quickly as possible on mobile?
Tips for increasing page loading speed to increase overall page rank
Here are two quick tips for speeding up your mobile (and desktop) page loads and, ipso facto, your Google search rank.
1) Keep your images small.
High-resolution images are considered “high-res” because they have a lot of pixels. The larger your pixel count, the more detail there is in a photo, so you can zoom in closer before the image becomes blurry.
This is great for big photos like hero images (the banner-like photo at the top of most homepages and internal web pages). It’s also important to use high-resolution images for internal page photos so you don’t leave your website visitors wondering what they are looking at, but big photos come with diminishing returns. The larger the photo, the longer it takes for your browser to bring all those pixels into view.
Super high-res photos (think 2000-plus pixels) take a long time to load, but you want your website to look good. One way to keep your page speed up without losing the advantage of eye-catching imagery is to keep your images on the lower end of the high-resolution spectrum.
Standard practice for RG Media Company’s internal images is to limit them to 900×900 pixels. This way, you have a high enough resolution image to satisfy the eye without overloading your browser and diminishing user experience with a slow page load.
2) Embed your videos (host them somewhere other than your website).
If pictures are worth a thousand words, videos are worth about 10 times more—especially when it comes to page speed. As a result, hosting a video on your website can decrease drastically the speed of the page where it lives.
One way to include those creative and engaging videos on your website without a lag in load time is to host them on a third-party website and embed them within your own. This may sound technical, but it’s as simple as copying the link to your video on YouTube and pasting it into the page on the backend of your Content Management System.
There are many places where you can host video to link to from other sources. YouTube is one of the most popular free video hosting options. Hosting your video on YouTube is also a great way to earn SEO points for your website, as it is the fourth most searched website on the web.
Other video hosting companies offer free hosting, including Vimeo, Streamable, Wistia and Dailymotion. These companies offer free accounts with space and feature limits. If you want extra features such as live chat support, higher bandwidth and additional video space, you can pay for video hosting with sites such as Vimeo, Wistia, Sproutvideo and Brightcove.
User experience and page speed: How to avoid the dreaded buffer
User experience is especially important in mobile online searches. Someone surfing the Web on their phone is likely to be on-the-go or looking for information that they plan to act on promptly. One third of smartphone searches for local businesses are made right before a visit. So, if your website takes too much time to load, potential customers may move right along to the next, speedier option.
By sizing your images down to the appropriate pixel size and embedding your videos, you’ll improve your website’s load time on mobile (and on desktop) and increase your mobile search rank on Google.
Give your website visitors their best chance to absorb your content before they aim their attention elsewhere. RG Media Company has experienced website design experts who are ready to help you optimize your website content to gain traffic and generate more leads. Contact us today to learn more about our array of digital services.