Why your business needs page speed SEO
Your business homepage is one of the most visited pages on your site and needs a fast loading speed – it needs page speed SEO. You will learn why page speed is critical for ranking on Google, get mobile speed tests results of top US business homepages, and understand the effects of slow page loading.
Furthermore, you will learn what slows your homepage load time and how you can improve mobile homepage load speed. In the end, your business can rank higher on Google by optimizing the page speed of your homepage.
What is page speed optimization?
Page speed optimization is the process of increasing page loading speed. For example, a homepage that has many images will have a slower loading time. Page speed is measured by the type of device that loads a web page. Primarily, page speed is optimized for desktop and mobile devices. To understand which device is most important for ranking on Google, you need to know a brief history of Google search.
A Brief History of Google Search
On December 18, 2017, Google announced it would use the mobile version of the content for indexing and ranking. Why? To better serve Google’s primarily mobile users. Thus, it’s critically important you have a responsive web design that correctly displays content for mobile devices.
On July 9, 2018, Google is now rolling out for all users “page speed as a ranking factor for mobile searches.” Google’s “Speed Update” will only affect pages that deliver the slowest experience to users. Thus, if you want to rank on mobile searches, you need to avoid a slow loading homepage on mobile.
The Importance of Mobile Search
The graph below shows the mobile share of organic search engine visits in the US is 58% as of the 4th quarter of 2019.
In the third quarter of 2013, the mobile share was just 27%. Then three years later, it almost doubled to 48%. The mobile share peaked in the third quarter of 2019 at 60%. Thus, over six years, the mobile share of organic search engine visits more than doubled. In 2020, a high percentage of mobile searches makes mobile page speed essential.
Mobile Speed Test
You can test the mobile speed of your web pages at PageSpeed Insights. Just enter your web page URL and click analyze button. The graphic below shows the mobile speed of Amazon.com is 65.
Amazon.com’s mobile page speed is faster than Walmart.com, which has a slow page speed of 40. Apple.com is even worst with a speed of 30. Apple site is all about showcasing its products, such as the new iPhone. Thus, Apple’s website contains lots of graphics that slow loading speed on mobile.
However, a competitor of Apple is Fitbit.com. Their mobile page speed is even worse at just 16. One of the issues that slow down this homepage, according to PageSpeed Insights, is redirects. Fitbit.com redirected the homepage to Fitbit.com/us/home. For faster page loading, do not use redirects on your homepage.
So how does Rank Rise mobile page speed compare to these Fortune 500 companies? The Rank Rise mobile homepage loads faster then Walmart, Apple, and Fitbit at a speed of 51. What’s your mobile page speed? Next, we will find out what affects the page load speed.
Page Load Speed and Bounce Rate
Page load speed is directly affected by the megabytes of the web page. For example, a homepage with lots of graphics will contain more megabytes and load slower. Conversely, a homepage with fewer graphics and mostly text will have lower megabytes and load faster.
The “Homepages in Megabytes” graph below (data from webpagetest.org).
In the graph above, Amazon Walmart and Apple all have homepages with about 2 Megabytes. Amazon has the fastest page load speed. Webpagetest.org reports Walmart fails to compress images. Apple fails at cache static content, as does Fitbit. Moreover, the Fitbit homepage is more than double the page weight at a whopping 4.6 Megabytes. Consequently, the Fitbit homepage has the slowest page load speed.
The longer it takes for your homepage to load, the higher the bounce rate. So it is critical you keep your homepage file size down for faster page speed. Rank Rise mobile homepage file size in only 729 KB. That’s less than 1 MB. As a result, Rank Rise mobile homepages loads in 2.7 seconds according to webpagetest.org. When you have a fast loading homepage, you keep your bounce rate low.
What is Bounce Rate?
A bounce rate is the percentage of people who visit a web page and then leave, or “bounce” rather than clicking a link on your page. The bounce rate is either the result of a slow loading page or poor content. At Rank Rise, we optimize page loading speed, so your page delivers a good visitor experience. Moreover, Content Writing SEO at Rank Rise provides relevant information to your visitors and answers to their questions.
To provide the best user experience, you want to lower your bounce rate. You do this by optimizing page loading speed and writing high-quality content. Rank Rise offers both of these essential SEO services. Speak to an SEO expert at 813-368-1500 or request a quote.
The Effects of Slow Page Load Speed
First, slow loading pages, especially on mobile, will kill your chance of ranking on Google. Second, visitors will either bounce or wait. However, users who wait for slow pages to load will lose confidence in your site and not buy your product or service.
In other words, slow loading pages causes you to lose organic traffic and sales. Page speed is a big deal. It can be the difference between business success and failure. Thus, you need to optimize your pages so that they do not load slowly on mobile.
What Slows homepage load time?
The more images on your homepage, the slower it will load. Furthermore, a photo with a large file size (kilobytes) will also load slower. Moreover, if you link to an image on someone else’s site, it may fail to load and show a broken image on your site or take longer to load. Therefore, Rank Rise recommends you upload all images to your website and not link to photos on other people’s websites.
Other web page media types include audio and video. When you add audio or video to your homepage, it will slow load time. For your mobile homepage, Rank Rise recommends high-quality, well-written text and no photos, no audio, and no video.
How to improve Homepage speed on mobile
We will show you how to hide an audio player and large photo, so it is not visible on your mobile homepage. Likewise, you can hide other types of media with large file sizes such as a slider with multiple photos. When you hide these types of media, your mobile homepage will load faster.
Hiding Audio on Mobile Homepage
To optimize your mobile homepage, use the advanced setting in your WordPress page builder. For example, inside Elementor you click on audio player, then click the Advanced gear icon. Then you open the Responsive tab and select “Hide On Mobile.” After you update the change, the audio player will not be visible on mobile.
Hiding Photo on Mobile Homepage
To optimize photos on your mobile homepage, hide large photos. Inside the Elementor page builder, click on a large photo, then click the Advanced gear icon. Then click the Responsive tab and select “Hide On Mobile.” When you update the change, the image will not be visible on mobile.
Page Speed SEO for Your Business Homepage
To optimize the page speed of your business homepage, Rank Rise recommends you avoid the “one-page” website because it’s long, typically has large file size, and loads slow. It is better to design a homepage with two to three sections. The Rank Rise mobile homepage has two text sections. The Rank Rise desktop homepage has the following three parts:
- Intro with a large photo, audio, and text
- Body with only text
- Blog with images and text
Rank Rise mobile homepage has a page speed of 53 on PageSpeed Insights. Moreover, our desktop homepage has a page speed of 82. If you want similar page speed, then design your homepage accordingly.
Page Speed SEO Takeaways
Here are some of the essential takeaways of Page Speed SEO:
- Make sure you have a responsive website that displays well on mobile
- To rank on Google, you need to optimize your page loading speed especially on mobile
- Hide photos, audio, and video on your mobile homepage for faster page speed
- Keep your homepage file size down for a fast loading speed
Rank Rise can help you optimize your business homepage. We can help make sure your website is responsive and displays well on mobile. We can increase the page speed of your mobile homepage so it ranks higher on Google and gets more organic traffic.
Get Help with Page Speed SEO
Rank Rise can help improve the page speed of your business website. Call an SEO expert at 813-368-1500 or request a quote.