INCREASING SITE SPEED LEADS TO MORE TRAFFIC + LEADS FOR CONCRETE MANUFACTURER
Google announced that in May 2021, they’d be making a change to their algorithm whereby they used their “Core Web Vitals” scores as a direct ranking factor.
Longley Concrete’s website was achieving “okay” page speed scores, but with competitors in the industry getting higher scores on key pages, it was important to address the issues and provide Longley with a competitive edge in the search engine ranking pages.
I identified a number of issues to fix, and laid them out for the developers in a clear action plan with deadlines. With their help, we were able to work together to achieve fantastic results, notably:
✅ Updating all plugins
✅ Removing unused plugins
✅ Removing the “latest tweet” sidebar
✅ Deferring font load until after main page load
✅ Server-side edits to improve time to first byte
✅ Not loading images that aren’t shown to the user
✅ Properly sizing images
|OVERALL SCORE||63 (+11)||92 (+9)|
|LCP||7.4s (-1.2 seconds)||1.8s (-0.4 seconds)|
|FCP||3.7s (-0.9 seconds)||0.8s (-0.5 seconds)|
While individual page tests are helpful, they can often be erratic depending on where you’re testing from. This screenshot below, from a custom report, delivers an aggregation of the percentage of good, average, and bad scores all users of your website receive over the course of a month. Here, we can clearly see the improvements across the entire site.
Note: LCP is indeed just one metric but widely regarded as the most important Google page speed metric as this charts the time it takes for the main content of a page to load for users.
Increase in traffic + conversions
These numbers look great, but what about the actual website performance? Here, in Google Analytics, we can see that in the 3 months after the site speed changes went live, compared to the previous year organic sessions were up 15% and the conversion rate was up 28%.
A quicker site benefits everything, not just “SEO”
The one thing I always remind people of when undertaking site speed changes is that it is not simply for “ranking purposes.” A faster website benefits all its users. Looking at all the traffic channels, the conversion rate across the site was up 4.5% in this same period. A quicker site = more conversions. And we’ve come full circle!