How To Improve Page Load Speed

There are many ways to improve your website, and one of these includes optimising your page load speed to make sure that users get the best possible experience when browsing your site.

What is page load speed?

Page load speed is the average time it takes for a web page to load for the user. It is often calculated from when the first click occurs to when the page is fully loaded.

Another variation of page load speed is the Time to First Byte (TTFB), which is the time between the browser requesting a page and when it receives the first byte of information from the server.

Largest Contentful Paint (LCP) is another term you may come across when you are looking into page load speed, and this is something Google is taking into account more as one of its Core Web Vitals. This is the time between the user request and when the main content (largest content) is loaded on the screen and the user can interact with the web page.

Whichever way you define or calculate it, if a web page loads too slowly, a user may become frustrated and leave without visiting it, which is not good for your website. 

Is page load speed important for SEO?

Google considers page load speed as a ranking factor because it impacts the user experience. They want your website to be fast enough for visitors and will encourage you to make changes so that this is the case.

In fact, Google Search Console now has reports for your Core Web Vitals which are very focused on the user experience on specific web pages and includes LCP mentioned above.

They suggest that 2.5s or less is good, between 4 seconds and 2.5 seconds needs improvement, and more than 4 seconds is a poor score for loading the largest element of a web page.

How do you check page load speed?

You can check your website’s optimisation using the Google PageSpeed Insights tool and this will give you a score. 

It will also give you some insights on what to improve – elements that we explore in more detail below.

How do you improve page load speed?

To improve page load speed, you need to make an effort to ‘declutter’ your key web pages by doing the following.

Compress images

It’s important to have high-quality images on your webpage to enhance your content, but you don’t want those images to slow loading times down.

If you identify large image files that can be reduced, this is one of the easiest ways to improve page load speed!

Enable file compression

Like image files, other types of files on your web pages can also slow down loading time. You can reduce the size of your CSS, HTML and JavaScript files that are larger than 150 bytes in order to improve page loading speed.

Minify CSS, JavaScript, and HTML

Minification is the process of minimising code and markup in your web pages and script files by removing all unnecessary characters. You can use this process to optimise the code on your web pages and improve page load speed.

Remove redirect chains and reduce redirects 

When one page redirects to another, there is additional time added to wait for the request to be processed. If many webpages on your websites have redirect rules in place, or one of your webpages is involved in a redirect chain (with multiple redirects specified), this will slow your website down. Reducing these redirects and redirect chains will improve page load speed!

Eliminate ‘render-blocking resources’

Render-blocking resources are portions of code in website files, usually CSS and JavaScript, that prevent a web page from loading quickly. 

According to the PageSpeed Insights tool, “Before the browser can render a page it has to build the DOM tree by parsing the HTML markup. During this process, whenever the parser encounters a script it has to stop and execute it before it can continue parsing the HTML”.

“In the case of an external script, the parser is also forced to wait for the resource to download, which may incur one or more network roundtrips and delay the time to first render of the page”.

For example, if your web page uses a third-party font, rather than a system font, this tends to interfere with the processing and rendering of a page.

If you can identify and reduce these render-blocking resources, you should be able to improve your page load speed.

Utilise browser caching

When a user visits your page, their browser should cache a lot of the information, such as images and JavaScript files, so that they don’t have to reload the entire web page if they come to visit it again. You can set the browser caching time for your web pages for a fairly long time if they are assets that change infrequently. 

Improve server response time

Server response time measures how long it takes to load the necessary HTML to begin rendering the page from your server. Google recommends that you should reduce your server response time to under 200ms.

Using reliable and fast web hosting is key to making sure you have a good server response time, which in turn allows your web pages to load quickly. 

You can also use a Content Delivery Network (CDN) which is a geographically distributed network of proxy servers and their data centres that aims to speed up the delivery of web content by bringing it closer to the end user.


These are the main ways to improve your page load speed and make sure users land on your website promptly. An SEO specialist will be able to audit your site regularly and help you identify any areas where page load speed could be optimised, as well as work with your web developer to improve page load speed!