Best tools to check the loading speed of a website
One of the positioning factors of the Google search engine is the loading speed of a web page. According to Google studies, a high percentage of users will leave a web page if it has a high load time. In order to take care of this aspect of our page, I am going to show you the best tools to check the loading speed of a website and thus be able to diagnose possible problems.
I will not make an endless list of tools, since it is not about quantity, but about quality. I have selected those tools that give the most accurate reports and at the same time offer information to the user on how to solve the problems encountered. I have also opted to select free tools, so that we can use them freely.
Why is it important for a web page to load quickly?
As we indicated at the beginning of this article, a high load time means the loss of users, but it also means a worse search engine positioning. Both factors are negative, because they will lead to a loss of visits and ultimately a loss of income.
The loading speed also affects the user experience , since if you have to wait too long for a page to load, the navigation will be uncomfortable and heavy.
Having a website with good performance and response time is something that Google values. In fact, a few days ago he updated his PageSpeed ??Insights tool with new metrics . He has also announced that as of July 2018, loading speed will also be a positioning factor for searches from mobile devices .
While it is important that browsing our website is done smoothly, we should not obsess with getting the highest score . This is one more positioning factor to take into account and have the fastest website, it is not something that in case it can only take us to the top positions of the SERP.
Fundamental tools to check the loading speed of a web page.
To measure the performance of a web page we will use the following tools:
- Google PageSpeed ??Insights.
- Pingdom Website Speed ??Test.
- Google Lighthouse
Google PageSpeed ??Insights: the fundamental tool to audit the performance of our website.
If there is a page that we must visit to assess and audit the performance of a web page, that is undoubtedly Google PageSpeed ??Insights. It is the official Google tool and the one that will give us the most reliable and accurate results.
It has two tabs, in one sample the results for mobile devices and in another for desktop devices. Both tabs are important and we have to ensure that the degree of optimization is at least 80 (value in green numbers) .
It also values ??the speed of the site, but this metric may not be available for many websites because Google does not have enough data, something we should not worry about. The most interesting thing about Google PageSpeed ??Insights, is that it links to official Google documentation that will help us solve the incidents found.
Pingdom Website Speed ??Test.
This is another one of those websites that we must have on hand, since it offers us a fairly comprehensive report on the degree of optimization that exists on our website. We can select from several regions of the world from which to perform the speed test. This is important, since depending on the distance between the geographic location of the server of our project and the location of the user, the response times can be modified .
In addition to a complete report of optimizations and improvements, this website shows us a complete scheme of flow of connections and HTTP / S requests that are made to load our website.
GTmetrix: all-in-one tool to perform a speed test on our website.
I like to add GTmetrix to the tests because it makes a deeper diagnosis, simultaneously performing the Google PageSpeed ??Insights and YSlow tests (FireFox extension to analyze web page performance) .
Create a complete report with the usual tips to minimize code, reduce response time, optimize images, take advantage of browser cache, etc. To solve browser cache problems in WordPress, it may be useful to use a plugin such as W3 Total Cache or WP Super Cache .
WebPageTest: online tool with the possibility to choose the type of device.
I have included this page because it is one of the few that allows us to select the type of device, type of browser and location . Three options that can be very useful to perform very specific tests. In addition, in each speed test it performs three tests , so that we can obtain average results of the loading time, which are usually more realistic.
Google Lighthouse: web performance tool for developers.
I did not want to finish this tutorial without listing a tool that offers the possibility of working from the terminal and that is Lighthouse . This tool is found as an extension for the Chrome browser or as a console tool that works with Node.js.
Project page on GitHub: https://github.com/GoogleChrome/lighthouse
Finally, one last tip.
I did not want to finish this article without referring to a tool that allows us to get a general idea of ??how the response time of our server is behaving, it is Google Search Console .
Rastreo ? Estadísticas de rastreo , we will find a graph showing the download times of a page (in milliseconds) . This allows us to diagnose server-level errors that occur in the long term and not during the specific moment in which we perform isolated tests.