Google is a complex search engine and it uses a set of algorithms in order to calculate the ranking of a particular website. However, few people know that in addition to keyword-optimized and unique content, the age of the domain or the quality of the inbound links, the Google crawlers also pay attention to the website speed when determining the search engine ranking. This is a relatively new change, as Google has introduced this algorithm that targets website speed a couple of years ago.
Matt Cutts, the head of the Webspam team at Google, said: “If your website is very slow, then we have said that we use page speed in our website rankings, and a site can rank lower.” In other words, the slower the speed of your website, the lower the overall ranking. This can be a major drawback for webmasters who have put a lot of effort to come up with top-notch, unique content and a well-designed and optimized website. The reason why Google algorithms pay so much attention to website speed is that a website that performs poorly will result in poor user experience, and the end purpose of Google is to boost user experience.
Despite the fact that Google does not clearly define the page load times, one thing is for sure: the time required for your website to be fully rendered does play an important role for the overall ranking of the site. Basically, the notion of fully rendered time refers to the time your website needs to load and display the media files, the written content and the banners and advertisements, if any. However, webmasters must understand that the page load speed is equally important both for desktop search and for mobile search. In other words, you must make sure that your website loads quickly regardless of the device your visitors use to access your website.