Google to use website loading time in mobile search rankings

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Google, the tech giant that is estimated to control about 90% of the global search market, plans to make the download speed of mobile web pages a key part of its method for ranking search results. At the moment, it's not yet clear if the same algorithm change will be adapted to desktop users as well. One example of that is the company's controversial Accelerate Mobile Pages (AMP) project, which places sites with AMP support in front of everyone else on search.

Google is going to start penalizing websites that take too long to load on phones. How do they properly prepare for this? Google calls it as the "Speed Update", and it's created to downrank websites that are very slow to load.

According to Google, the updates will only a small percentage of queries and affect pages which deliver the slowest experience to users.

This is completely algorithmic. The duo also suggested webpage performance auditing tools Lighthouse and PageSpeed Insights.

The intent of the signal is to improve the user experience on search.

"We encourage developers to think broadly about". How does a site with AMP get impacted by this?

The update will apply the same speed criteria to all pages, regardless of the technology used to build them, our sister site ZDNet said.

Now no tool is available that lets website owners figure out if their site will be negatively impacted by the new mobile search ranking factor, the two engineers said. Arguably, load time is even more important on mobile because the user is often in motion or is otherwise in a worse position to wait around for web pages to load.

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