Friday, 18. December 2009 9:25
Speed. When we’re online, there’s nothing like it. Click and load; fast and easy.
And then we arrive at a site with…wait for it…wait….still waiting…a Flash intro. And faster than you can say ‘skip’, momentum has been lost and we’re annoyed. A waste of our time. And there’s nothing that makes a user hit the close box or the back arrow faster than having their time wasted.
I’ve been trying to think of a legitimate use for a Flash intro. And I can’t. How about a funky designer showing off what they can do? No – not if ‘what they can do’ is encouraging their clients to build sites that waste our time.
Here it is again, in case you missed it: There is no excuse for a Flash intro.
And it looks like Google agrees. In a December 2009 interview on WebProNews, Google software engineer guru Matt Cutts hinted that Google search results might take a site’s speed into account:
“Historically, we haven’t had to use it in our search rankings, but a lot of people within Google think that the web should be fast,” says Cutts. “It should be a good experience, and so it’s sort of fair to say that if you’re a fast site, maybe you should get a little bit of a bonus. If you really have an awfully slow site, then maybe users don’t want that as much.”
At Sitegeist, we believe that the content on the page is of paramount importance. If the words are right, then we’re happy to wait an extra second or two for the page to load. But the problem is that we don’t know the content is good until the page loads. And we hate waiting for a slow site with bad (or not relevant) content.
So we approve of Google’s move to reward faster sites. Content and reputation are still the reigning monarchs at Google, but a dose of speed can’t hurt either.
For developers, Google has some speed tools and tips. For the rest of us, expect things to get just a bit quicker online in the next year…