Google PageSpeed Optimization

Posted: in Pulse on the Industry , Website Optimization

Google PageSpeed Insights reports on the real-world performance of a page for mobile and desktop devices and provides suggestions on how that page may be improved. PageSpeed Insights evaluates how well a page follows common performance best practices and computes a score from 0-100 that estimates its performance.

PageSpeed Insights indicate the “speed optimization” of a page, not the actual load time. Render-blocking resources like JavaScript (controls dynamic content, multimedia, and animated images) and CSS (controls the look and feel of a web page) are the most common reasons for slow loading websites. And if your website is slow, not only are you hurting your search engine ranking, you are losing customers and revenue as well.

A page with slow speed might have a high optimization score because it has a low number of render-blocking resources. On the other hand, a fast page might have a low optimization score because it has a high number of render-blocking resources.

Scores are different for mobile phones and desktop computers. Now that Google is using the mobile version of a site to “rank” it in search results, it is important that the mobile experience is optimized for 4G LTE connections.

High Level Marketing PageSpeed Optimization

Google PageSpeed Insights is part of High Level Marketing’s core SEO and website creation process. Your HLM team will be using PageSpeed Insights to increase the speed of your site, resulting in improved SEO and real-world performance.

Great PageSpeed scores have every possible element lightened to increase the speed of the website. However, doing this may decrease website functionality on videos, navigation, images or banners.

Good PageSpeed scores do not compromise optimization. Website components (images, HTML, and CSS) are improved, allowing the website to work properly.

Poor PageSpeed scores generally occur in older websites or those with large images. Usually, considerable modification and/or a mobile-friendly redesign are required to increase your score.

Common Issues

Images and multimedia tend to be the largest files on any website. With high-definition displays common on most desktops and current mobile phones, having hi-res images is crucial.

HLM uses a server-side compression system that makes image files smaller without compromising visual clarity. In other words, all images on MYCE sites are already optimized!

When you see notices from Google about images, remember that their testing tool can recommend a smaller file, but cannot tell if that image file looks worse after being compressed.

The examples below show a severely compressed image and a hi-res image.
HLM will optimize images for speed, but never reduce quality.

Analytics Tracking
For analytics tracking to function properly, the specific files that “talk” to Google analytics and the marketing dashboard cannot be compressed (also known as “minified”).

While these may show in your PageSpeed report, they have very little effect on total PageSpeed score. The three files that would likely appear in your report are:

  1. Analytics.js: Google’s original analytics tracking code. This file should not be minified to ensure proper functionality.

  2. Gtag.js: Google’s newer analytics tracking code. Functionally, no different than analytics.js. Similarly, this file should not be minified.

  3. Tracker.js: Your marketing dashboard’s tracking code. This code is based on the Google tracking codes and populates the marketing dashboard.

Caching for External Modules

External modules include any advanced functionality required by your website. Excessive users or traffic congestion on the servers where these elements are hosted can cause slow-downs on your site. Some commonly used elements that can influence site scores are:

  • Google Maps

  • Social Plugins - Facebook “Like” buttons, Twitter feed integration, and similar

  • Web Fonts - Custom fonts are usually hosted by Google and are loaded externally

  • Chat boxes - All chat boxes require a back-and-forth between the provider and your site

  • Angie’s list and BBB badges - Per Angie’s List / BBB requirements, these need to be loaded via Javascript

  • Wait List and Scheduling Plugins - Any third-party scheduling plugins, from Open Table to MindBody, can increase load times

  • Autoplay Videos - Vimeo and Youtube, if autoplayed, can slow down a website because they have to download multimedia before the page fully loads

To find out more about Google PageSpeed Optimization, Contact HLM today!

About High Level Marketing

At High Level Marketing, the primary goal behind everything we do is educating and empowering small business owners like you to understand your options in an effort to make the best marketing decisions that will help grow your business. We develop effective digital marketing campaigns that drive traffic and convert leads. Stop losing leads to your competitors…

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