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Is the speed of your web page an important ranking factor for Google?

Fast-Loading-WebsiteA few weeks ago, Google announced its new focus on fast loading pages as part of quality involved in the searching experience. This means that Google´s ranking algorithm may take into consideration the speed of a web page.

Since Google’s ranking algorithm isn’t 100% clear, the points below are rather a theory that may improve your website ranking in Google.  Experiment if you can and share your results, here are some easy to make changes:

  1. Make sure your web host is fast and you have a good connection to the Internet. Your web server should be easy to reach without any down time.
  2. Join together external JavaScript code files into one file. The fewer files the server has to request, the better the web page’s speed. Then make these files smaller by compressing them.
  3. Put external CSS files into one and compress them also.
  4. Enable gZip compression if possible. Your webhost may do it for you.
  5. If you use images, compress them and try to use as few as possible.
  6. Tracking codes and other JavaScript snippets should be placed at the end of your web page.

However, keep in mind that page loading time in the ranking algorithm can be problematic. This is in respect to the cost of using a high quality web host and also competing against bigger corporations and other websites across the World Wide Web.

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Kristjan Mar Hauksson is the founder and director of search and online communications at Nordic eMarketing. The company specializes in multilingual online communications, organic search engine optimization, and marketing through several verticals such as tourism, finance, government, and pharmaceuticals. It helps companies gain international visibility online and to use the Internet as a communication channel; it also provides consultation in web content management systems and analytics solutions. Hauksson is on the board of directors of SEMPO, on the Advisory board for Bing Advertising and founded the Iceland SEO/SEM forum. He has been involved in developing Internet solutions since 1996, and involved in search engine optimization and marketing since 1997. He is a publish author on the topic of Internet Marketing and among other co-authored the acclaimed Global Search Engine Marketing.