Need for Speed

No, no, I’m not referring to the 1997 computer game, though I know it surprises you that I played it.

I’m referring to Google, who announced last November that speed will be added to the algorithm determining a site’s quality score. In simple words, the slower your site loads, the more your ads will cost you. If you are way too optimistic, you’re thinking that there are hundreds of other factors in that algorithm and so the weight placed on speed can’t be tremendously significant, right?

Well, yes and no.

Even if you don’t end up paying through the nose for ads, you are still leaving a ton of money on the table. Last week, results of a study conducted in the UK revealed that almost 50% of all people surveyed cited slow loading time as the main reason that turned them away from a site. Simple but scary math translates this to 5.5 abandoned transactions per consumer over the last 12 months. Could this have been happening on one of your clients’ sites?

If that’s not sending chills down your spine, consider this- not only will traffic continue to increase, but more and more people are browsing on their cell phones. You cannot afford to be slow—literally!

Our good friend Bryan Eisenberg suggests 2 very simple but valuable ways to speed up landing pages.

1. Running a Speed test using tools like Web Page AnalyzerYahoo! YSlow for Firebug, or Google’s Page Speed. This will help determine how slow the site or pages are.

2. Slimming down “fat” images with tools like Smush.itDynamic Drive, or Web-Resizer. To state the obvious, this will speed up the loading time.

In my Conversion Optimization Certification course, I learned that telling someone their website sucks is like telling them their baby is ugly. So as an agency, how do you break the news to your clients? what initiatives can you take to educate and help them? Should this even be your responsibility?

Whether or not you think its your responsibility, the lurking guilt of knowing should drive you to take at least a small step towards helping your clients. For starters, you can run those testing tools on their sites and send out some suggestions and recommendations with next month’s report. Shed some light on the issue and work hand in hand with them to keep that quality score solid, so that their users can have a better online experience and you can manage their campaigns more smoothly.

Acquisio Admin

Acquisio Admin

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