BWMagic’s Internet Marketing Newsletter
Google Page Speed Tester – Use It To Improve Your Site
Ever since Google made it’s latest Panda (Content Farm) Update, all webmasters
must not only be worried about the actual text or content on a web page; but
also about how that page is designed and how that page performs. In other words,
the actual layout and design of your site has become more important if you want
higher rankings in Google.
Now Google has been telling us for a long time that how fast a page or site loads
will affect your rankings. Since Google’s goal is to offer its users a quality
experience, a slow loading page is just not the way to proceed and they will rank
Page Speed is now something every webmaster must get right or fix if they have
a slow loading page.
I have been scrambling to fine-tune my main site since the recent Google Update.
My search traffic from Google dropped around 5% – 10%, which is something to be
concerned about and I am re-designing many of my pages to reflect the new changes.
I am dropping some low quality pages or rather pages which had little original
content on them. I am also making sure I ONLY add unique content to my site, with
the exception of YouTube videos, which I still add for variety and it also helps
to keep the visitor on my pages longer (another ranking factor which seems to
have increased in importance).
But I have mainly been concerned about the speed of my pages and trying to find
ways to lower the load times. Now Google has put out a Page Speed Tester which you
can use to see how Gooole ranks your page with regards to speed. They will give
you a number/score out of a hundred, but also tell you ways in which you can
improve your page speed.
Here is the Google link:
Images are usually a big problem when it comes to speed times. You need to keep
these low in size and also host them on your site or server. Sometimes this is
not possible if you’re into affiliate marketing since most companies like to do
“pixel tracking” which displays an invisible image on your site… but any image
on your page which is called/pulled up from an outside site will take time.
Leverage Browser Caching is one of the High Priority Factors which Google likes
to see with your images. From what I can gather you have to put some code/directions
in your .htaccess file which will tell the browsers to do this.
I did a lot of searching but found a solution which worked. To fix this issue I
used or put the following code in my .htaccess file on my site.
ExpiresByType text/html “access 2 day”
ExpiresByType text/css “access 2 day”
ExpiresByType text/plain “access 1 month”
ExpiresByType image/jpeg “access 1 month”
ExpiresByType image/gif “access 1 month”
ExpiresByType image/png “access 1 month”
ExpiresByType application/pdf “access 1 month”
ExpiresByType application/x-shockwave-flash “access 1 month”
ExpiresDefault “access 2 days”
Usually takes a day for this code to work… at least this was the case with my
main site. Checking the URL the next day, Google doesn’t show this as a Priority
speed problem with my site.
Of course, there are other things Google tells you to change on your page in
order to fix any speed issues. Getting your pages as optimized as possible is
never a bad thing – especially when it comes to Google. And since this is all
“on-page optimization” it can be easily done by webmasters themselves.
I have long learned that the more you give Google what Google wants, the higher
your rankings will go. Fix these speed issues and this is one more ranking factor
you don’t have to worry about.
Here again is that Google Page Speed Tester:
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