We have often written on the importance of website speed and its relation to SEO. Google highly values websites that not only provide strong content that matches users’ search terms but also loads quickly to decrease bounce rate. As Google continues to add new features to their products, they have announced a new badge that will notify users when a website “usually loads slow”. This has major implications for SEO, and according to Google, it will continue to reward faster websites while also providing a service to slower websites.
What Will The Slow Speed Badge Mean For SEO
If you have a slow-loading website you already have a few issues. From a search engine standpoint, it is likely lowering your ranking on SERPs. Every factor and tool that can increase your website’s ranking on SERPs is valuable. Often, too many websites focus primarily on link or content building which, although important, should not be the entire SEO strategy. Google is making it clear that they intend to make website speed a larger factor in 2020 search results. The fact that they are rolling out this visible badge makes it fair to assume that Google’s algorithms also reflect this focus on website speed. A slow-loading website also hurts you from a user standpoint. Even without the badge, if your website runs or loads slowly that will turn users away (especially on mobile). A slow website is often a good reason for many users to leave your website and try the next one on the page.
More Information On Google Chrome’s Speed Badge
It is important to note, that currently, this speed badge is still only a concept Google spoke on. They have not announced what the cutoff would be between a good site and a bad site, or how many levels of segmentation would exist. Some reports are showing that the speed badge may be as subtle as a green bar vs a red bar when a website is loading, whereas others mention Google writing an actual remark about the general load time for a website. Whichever option they explore, if this was ever added to Chrome, slower sites could expect to see a dip in traffic. Having a website that doesn’t have the slow badge would be as important as having a website that has an SSL certificate. Not only would it boost rankings but it would also improve credibility in the eyes of a user.
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