In the last couple of years, having a mobile optimized site has become increasingly important. Google introduced a ranking update based on mobile friendliness in April 2015, ever since the search engine has been about mobile optimization.
Today Google hosts more search queries from mobile than from desktop computers. In 2015, Amazon recorded more sales on mobile, and Facebook has more mobile users on mobile.
What do these facts tell us? They provide critical insight into the importance of having a mobile optimized website.
Why Site Speed Matters
Site speed is often underrated in website optimization strategy. Speed is determined by a number of factors and can’t be directly increased by a flip of a switch. Site experience is dependent on website speed optimisation.
Slow page loading leads to high bounce rates, and in the SEO game, every second counts. A fast website increases users’ satisfaction, higher sessions, and increases engagement. Furthermore, site speed is an important Google ranking factor. The faster your site, the more authority your website is perceived to have, and this is rewarded with higher ranks in the search results.
Site speed is also important because mobile sites tend to load slowly, unlike desktop computers. Mobile users require immediate information. They are therefore less patient than their desktop counterpart. Reducing your page load time by a second can have a significant effect on your site engagement. So how do you optimize your mobile site?
1. Optimize your Images
Images constitute the bulk of the website data. Optimizing your images, while maintaining the image quality is crucial to achieving faster page load time. Ensure your images are in one of the following formats, PNG, GIF or JPG. Then optimize for SEO, using the appropriate alt tag and proper titles. Strip off unnecessary meta description. Shrink the images without compromising quality.
2. Content delivery network (CDN)
A CDN is a system of distributed servers, that speeds up and streamlines your webpage. They help in speeding up the request and delivery process for mobiles.
3. Strip your website of any unnecessary drafts or metadata.
Go to your backend and search for content drafts and irrelevant metadata? These things slow down a website, adding to the overall size, delete them.
4. Use a caching plugin
A cache plugin will save some of your site information. This helps users access your site faster in the future. Resist the allure of tampering with the cache plugin settings or you risk rendering it unable to make your site faster.
5. Delete unused plugins
Some plugins will increase your website overall size and will impact negatively on page speed. Perform a plugin audit, uninstall and delete plugins you don’t actively use. Keep those you actively use for the running of the site and don’t accumulate unused ones.
6. Use a Gzip compression
A Gzip compression will increase your site speed by reducing the number of bytes the elements of your site occupy. It helps reduce the total size your site occupies while maintaining its integrity. The end result: a faster site.
These site optimization tips are easy to accomplish and can be done in less than an hour. Once implemented, you will have a faster and cleaner site with a considerable increase in site speed. As appearing in top positions on a SERP is a competition, any optimization you can execute is to your site advantage.