Have you ever wondered how fast you law firm’s website really needs to be?
If your goal is to maximize the number of inquiries from potential new clients, the answer is simple: Your website needs to be as fast as you can possibly make it, and should absolutely load, on average, in less than 3.5 seconds.
In this short post, we’ll look at why your website needs to load quickly, how you can check whether your website meets that 3.5 second standard, and some resources for taking action to speed your site up if it falls short.
Why does my website need to be fast?
As of 2016 the latest data was showing the nearly 60% of all web searches take place on mobile devices. When we browse from mobile devices, we are often on slower connections than when we use laptops or desktops. Accordingly, in order to provide a positive user experience for those 60% of web users on mobile, it’s essential that your website be optimized for speed.
We know that faster loading websites perform better than their slower counterparts. Here are the two main ways that your site will benefit from faster load times:
- Improved conversion rates. According to KissMetrics, for every second of pagespeed time added to your site, your conversions rate declines by 7%. That’s huge!
- Improved keyword rankings in Google. Google has been using pagespeed as a measure of site quality since back in 2010. The importance of this has only increased with the rapid adoption of smart phones for web search.
How to check whether you law firm website is fast enough
There are a couple tools that we trust and use regularly for checking pagespeed. They are:
This free tool allows you to check the key pagespeed metrics for any URL. The tool produces a simple report that tells you the exact load time for a given page:
If you have a decent amount of data for your website in Google Analytics, this can be a prime source for understanding your site’s overall speed.
In the Analytics dashboard extend your date range to cover at least the past 12 months. Then navigate to:
Behavior / Site Speed / Overview
Here, you’ll be able to see the Average Page Load Time for your site:
As you can see, both of these examples would indicate that we’re well within the acceptable range for pagespeed. However, if your site is loading well over that 3.5 second threshold, it’s time to take action.
How to take action and speed up your website
Below I’ve curated several of the best resources for helping you understand what actions you need to take in order to improve the speed of your website:
- 6 Secrets to a Faster Law Firm Website in 2017 by Frank Scharnell
- A Web Performance Primer by Daniel Miessler
- Google’s Pagespeed Insights Tool
- Google’s PageSpeed Rules and Recommendations by Ilya Grigorik
You made it to the bottom; thanks for reading! If you’re having trouble getting your website up to speed, feel free to describe your situation in the comments below and we’ll be happy to give you our two cents..