No one likes to wait for a slow web page to load. And since Google likes to focus on pleasing their customers (searchers), the speed of your website can effect your ability to rank well in search results.
Google PageSpeed Insights is a free web page analysis service that can help you identify your slow loading pages and provide you with recommendations on how to speed it up. You can access the service through the PageSpeed Insights page or you can install the Google Chrome and Firefox browser extension.
Getting started is easy – simply enter the URL of the page you wish to analyze and click “Analyze”. In this post, I’m using the popular TechCrunch home page as an example. Here is the summary page that comes up after clicking Analyze:
(click on the image for a larger version)
The first item you see is an overall score – 91 out of 100 in this case. This reflects how much faster the page “could be”, so this page is fairly well optimized.
The next section, Suggestions Summary, displays a prioritized list of, you guessed it, suggestions for improving the pages speed. Details about the suggestion can be found by clicking on a hyperlink in the summary section, or in the list that appears in the left hand column.
The default suggestions are geared for a desktop searchers experience. You can also get suggestions for mobile search by clicking on the button at the top right corner of the page:
So what does all of this mean for the small business owner?
Keep in mind that this is a tool for developers, so don’t feel bad if the suggestions sound like Greek. Share this tool with your website developer and review the high priority suggestions first. Remember that your overall score gives you an indication of how much faster your page could be. While you would certainly want to improve on a 50 out of 100 score, it may not make sense (depending on your business) to spend a lot of money trying to improve a 93 out of 100 score.
If you don’t have a web developer to help you or if you have questions about items on your analysis page, feel free to contact me.