Google says that as your site load speed increases from 1 to 7 seconds, your bounce rate increases 113%. Missed opportunities; bounced prospects means missed sales.
I tested my own website against a number of other sites on the Google Test My Site tool and here’s what I found.
My site www.mccordweb.com – 3 second load, excellent rating, low loss of visitors. My site is a responsive design in PHP and only uses WordPress for the blog.
Fulfillment company legacy HTML website that is over 8 years old, but the owner is not ready to do an update yet. 7 second load time, fair rating, 26% estimated visitor loss.
Pest control company legacy PHP website that is over 10 years old, but the owner is not ready to do a site update yet. 6 second load time. fair rating, 24% estimated visitor loss.
Medical business redone responsive WordPress website, but the owner was not speed-focused. 7 second load time. fair rating, 26% estimated visitor loss.
GPS technology business newly redone responsive WordPress website with a very glitzy look, but the designer was not speed-focused. 10 second load time. poor rating, 29% estimated visitor loss.
What I have found is that the WordPress sites with the slide show on the home page are not testing well for speed. The PHP based websites that do not have a slide show cover and are more text focused and utilize created AMP pages are testing as speedy.
Need help with your website? Check us out to see how we can help you get a speedy rating and not risk visitor loss.
No offense intended, but to not be paying attention to your website load time is simply not smart in the world of Google today.
This is why knowing and working to improve your page speed and site load time is crucial.
Google has a new tool called “Google Test My Site”. This online tool will test your URL, compare your site to others, give you a rating, and even give you a free report and recommendations to follow to improve your speed.
Google says that your site will lose one-half of all your visitors while the page is loading. Know that 70% of visitors globally are surfing the web on 3G or slower speeds until 2020. Want more business? Speed up your website!
Google sent me an interesting tool this past week and I wanted to share it with you. You can view and use the mobile impact tool online https://www.thinkwithgoogle.com/feature/mobile/. This tool allows you to measure the speed and monetary impact from the speed of your clocked website with just a few additional insights about your average sale, website traffic, and conversion rate online.
Not only is Google getting serious about letting website owners know that page speed on mobile device impacts sales, but they provide the tool to help you understand that even improving your site by a second can improve your sales results; and now you can see that in monetary terms.
This focus on mobile impacts not just e-commerce stores, but informational websites. Although the key focus and significant impact is to those that make their living selling products on the web.
Don’t tear your hair out, although Google says speed is important, the do provide additional details.
“Google today announced a new ranking algorithm designed for mobile search. The company is calling it the “Speed Update,” and it will only impact a small percentage of queries, Google reiterated to us. Only pages that “deliver the slowest experience to users” will be impacted by this update, the company says.”
My recommendation is that if you are selling online – start your focus on speed. And if you are really in the service or consulting business, know that speed is important and should be a strong focus when you do a website redesign.
Friction points, it’s all about finding where customers have trouble completing during the buying process with you and fixing the issues.
Here are some examples of friction points:
Buyers have trouble downloading completed video files for a drone photography agency. What can be done? Maybe using Drop Box with easy to follow instructions and photos on what to do next for a file download.
Prospects have trouble understanding what is included in a blog post sale. How can that be clarified? Maybe posting samples of content with the right word count and number of links to help a prospect understand the type and quality they will receive on your website to prequalify prospects before they even call.
Buyers have trouble getting contract documents to sign and return. How can the process be easier? Maybe using a digital signing service and online document archive would work to speed the return process.
Each business has their own unique set of friction points. Making things easier for people to buy from you is not all e-commerce focused. Friction points exist even for transactions with consultants and business to business sales, and for people who do not even sell items on their website.
My own company’s friction points have previously been: blog writing samples and writing expectations, prospects not having the proper technology to send or receive a contract, and buyers needing an online self-serve credit card payment center.
Are you hearing the same issues over and over from clients and prospects? That is a friction point. Now’s the time to identify what yours are and do something specific to address them to make buying from you and your company frictionless.
Plan ahead, bringing a new website online does mean that you will drop organic placement. It happens! Sometimes with redirects, after 4 to 6 weeks a website will pop back up in organic placement, but sometimes, the site stays down and does not regain the placement that the original site had.
It is a reality and one that you should honestly prepare for when you launch a new website. It may be smart to build your new website at a new domain, so you do not lose your organic placement of your old site. If that is not an approach you would like to take, know that you will drop and plan a pay per click budget to drive traffic to your new website and get started quickly with blogging and content creation to try to build inbound links and help your site regain position.
Many businesses will own multiple domains and it may make sense to use one of your domains and leave your legacy website alone. Especially if you have thousands of blog posts and thousands of inbound links.
If your site is relatively small and has under 150 inbound links, your placement is not so strong that you cannot overwrite the URLs on your site and damage your organic placement.
Be careful and thoughtful about the changes you want to make beforehand so you are prepared in case your site does fall significantly in the organic results.
Don’t damage your existing SEO when you launch a new website. Once you have changed page URLs, all inbound links pointing to your website (that helped you garner your old website’s placement) will be broken and the SEO juice gone.
I recommend taking time to do an .htaccess file redirect in the root of your server; list your old URLs and then redirect to the new page that is the best match. If you have a very large blog, consider leaving the old blog up and then starting a new blog site on the server, having multiple incidents of WordPress so you do not lose thousands on inbound links if you have been a very active blogger.
This is of particular importance when you are moving from a PHP or HTML site to WordPress as the format of your website links will be different.
For many well-placed websites, setting up a new domain and leaving the old site untouched may be the best solution. In fact, if the old site is well placed organically you can point your pages to your new website (not with a domain forward, but rather with links in the footer and content). This may pass some of your SEO capital to your new site to help it get established.
When you want a new site and build one, but do not come up with a plan to address your historical inbound links, you break what you had and literally have to start all over again building SEO placement. Don’t damage your existing SEO out of ignorance.
Overwriting your existing website with new URLs without a well-thought out process can really damage your online placement and may be very hard to recover from, so move thoughtfully and carefully.