How Website Speed Affects Your Ranking on Search – 5 Easy Steps

By Krush SEO,

Krush Presents: How Website Speed Affects Your Ranking on Search - 7 Easy Steps

When it comes to search engine ranking, website speed is one of the most important factors.

Page-load speed is one of the key components of Google’s algorithms. If pages don’t load fast enough, visitors will leave your website. The faster you can deliver information to your user, the better experience they will have. 

Users look for fast, easy-to-find information. Therefore, it’s pivotal for your website to provide fast-loading pages. 

Contents

 

First Things First: Check your Website’s Current Loading Time

How fast is your website? Just because your website seems fast-loading doesn’t mean it is.

Before making any assumptions, you should see how Google views your site in terms of performance. Also, take into consideration that your users also visit your site on mobile devices, and they do not count on having a fast internet connection all of the time.

There is a free tool to the public that diagnoses your page speed and other factors that can help you improve your loading time. Visit GTmetrics and type in your website domain to run a test.

After performing a GTmetrics test, you will have a much better idea of where to begin cleaning up your website.

When it comes to rankings on Google search, many factors can affect where you rank on search results for a particular keyword or keyphrase compared to your competition. 

An important thing to remember is that usability is one of the more important factors that Google looks at in a website. Page speed is another major factor, along with usability and navigation. 

Sites with a slow loading speed are more times than not negatively impacted by search engines. Users are more likely to leave a slow-loading website, so search engines will not show such sites to users to avoid a negative user experience. 

Here at KRUSH, we have put together a list of improvements you can focus on to help you increase your page speed.

The right server will help website speed

Hosting on a Faster Server

Hosting is one of the reasons for a slow page load. If you are hosting on a slow, unreliable server, it can be the root cause of a slow website. Even after perfectly optimizing your website for page speed, a slow server minimizes the visibility of your organization.

Consult with your current hosting provider to see if you are on the right plan for the size of your website.

Another option would be to switch hosting services to a provider that offers performance optimization services. 

Optimize your Website’s Code

Unused JavaScript and CSS can be detrimental to your site speed. These two coding languages can slow down your site and are often a big factor in your website speed. 

Often, back-end editors for websites add unneeded code that you will never use to your website, negatively affecting your speed in Google’s eyes.

Depending on your CMS, some plug-ins can help compress or minimize your unused CSS and JavaScript, making your site much lighter.

Image optimization can help website speed.

Image Optimization

Image size is another reason for slow loading pages, negatively impacting search rankings. Images should not be more than 1 MB combined in weight on a single page.

As a general rule of thumb, each image should be between 200 KB to 300 KB in weight. Of course, higher resolution photos will weigh more. If you run into issues with images being too heavy, first try saving the image in a different file format, such as a JPEG file.

It is better only to use light images to make your site faster when loading for new users.

Implement Browser Caching to Increase Website speed

By enabling caching on your website, you are telling your search engine to store a static file of your site on visitors’ computers. As a result, caching helps with the load time because it will show the image to the user right away from a file stored directly on the returning user’s computer from the first time they loaded the page.

This could have repercussions when you make significant site improvements, but overall is a good thing to do for your website. If you have not turned on browser caching, now is a great time to start.

reducing redirects can help website speed

Your Website Theme

Picking a free or inexpensive theme can be the worst decision you can make. Therefore, it is important to do your research to find out which themes use the lightest code and framework for fast-loading pages.

Just because that theme can make your website look good; doesn’t mean that it is accessible or optimal for web performance. Keep in mind that it is not too late to install the right theme for you. 

The trade-off is having to do some upfront work rather than continuously compensating for the negative impacts of a heavily coded theme.

A good theme can set you up for success in many aspects if you do the proper research. Unfortunately, they can also be the downfall of your website, even if you are doing everything right.

 

Website Speed FAQ

Q: What is a Good Website Speed?

A: Typically, a website should load within 3 seconds and 2 seconds for an e-commerce site. Just because you meet these requirements does not mean you shouldn’t try and make your load speed faster.

Q: How much does website speed matter?

A: A lot; website speed is essential if you want people to visit your website. Statistically, around 50% of people do not wait longer than 2 seconds for a website to load.

Q: How important is site speed for SEO?

A: Page speed is a key determining factor in the Google algorithm. In fact, Google will show your website less to users if your website performance is poor.

Q: How Can I Improve Website Performance?

A: 5 Tips to Speed up your website

    1. Host On a Faster Server
    2. Optimize CSS & JavaScript
    3. Optimize Images
    4. Implement Browser Caching
    5. Pick The Right Theme

    Conclusion

    Website speed is one of the most important ranking factors. If you have a slow website, the odds of Google putting your information in front of users are much lower than if your website is up to quality standards.

    When optimizing a website, it is always important to remember the goal that search engines use to generate income. Their main goal is to keep users on the search engine as long as possible. 

    Having a slow website will only upset users, which in turn causes them to have less trust in the search engine and what it will show them.

     

    KRUSH is a full-service advertising agency in Oklahoma City. We specialize in brand development, graphic design, media planning, performance tracking, print services, SEO, social media, video services, as well as website design and development. Our focus is to grow your brand and your bottom line–we are your strategic marketing partner! Check out our portfolio of work and contact KRUSH today!

      Category: Marketing & Advertisement, SEO
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    Local Advertising Firm Strikes Gold At National Competition

    By Krush SEO,

    Local Advertising Firm Strikes Gold At National Competition

    Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

    Krush, a strategic marketing and advertising firm in Oklahoma City won a Gold ADDY over the weekend at the national American Advertising Federation Awards Gala held in Nashville, TN. 

    The AAF Awards, often referred to as the ADDYs, is the advertising industry’s largest competition. It’s a three-tier contest in which a competitor competes at the local and district levels first. Gold winners then advance to the national competition to compete against advertising agencies and brands across the country.

    Over 30,000 entries are submitted to the local chapter competitions each year. An entrant who wins Gold automatically advances to the next competition level. A national Gold ADDY is awarded to the competitor who exhibits the highest level of excellence in creative work among all other entrants in a category.

    Krush won Gold at all three competitions on their work with local distillery, WanderFolk Spirits, headquartered in Guthrie. Nine ADDY’s were won at the local competition and eight at the district level for WanderFolk work. 

    Local Advertising Firm Strikes Gold At National Competition

    The creative submissions pay homage to the history of prohibition in Oklahoma, while promoting vodka, gin and bourbon products produced by WanderFolk Spirits.

    The illustration submission for a television commercial was awarded Gold at the national competition.

    “I think we were all shocked and overwhelmed that we beat all other competitors at the national level,” said Kim Holzer, CEO of Krush. 

    Vice President and Creative Director, Brent McCutchen, and his creative department worked overtime hours to produce compelling creative materials that could stand up against national distilleries with large creative teams. 

    “The WanderFolk Spirits campaign is a labor of love for our entire team,” said Brent McCutchen. “From the initial concept, our vision began with a three-dimensional storybook illustrated and produced by Sr. Art Director Tanner Yeomans. We brought the story to life with copywriting and specially-cast voiceover work. Director of Videography, Carl Evens, animated all elements to create something very special.”

    Krush and its full production studio is located on Broadway Extension in NW OKC. The firm represents local, regional and national clients with creative storytelling, strategic marketing solutions, media buying, social media marketing and online visibility growth. The creative work is featured on both Krush and WanderFolk Spirits social media channels. 

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      Category: Marketing & Advertisement
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    Lets Talk All About Social Media

    By Krush SEO,

    All About Social Media

    Let’s talk about social media! It has evolved into a critical component of digital marketing. In a world of over 3.96 billion social media users with across all platforms, it is vital to get your brand in front of the eyes of consumers in real-time and while they are on the go!! You can elevate your brand strategy or direct response needs with a well-crafted social media plan.

    Contents

     

    Quality is Key

    While planning your content calendar, decide how often your audience would like to engage with your brand. Our tip is always quality over quantity. Too many posts a week/day can be spammy and cause your audience to disconnect from your content. However, you want to make sure you are posting enough to have a clutter-cutting presence on social media. We find that many clients benefit from us posting 3-4 times a week. We add in special events or causes on top for special occasions!

    Keep Your Target in Mind

    It’s essential to know your target audience, their lifestyle interests, and when they might be most active on social media. Many vendors offer social media scheduling software to assist you with this task. On the other hand, if you are a traditionalist, you might prefer manual A/B testing.

    Different Platforms Require Different Strategies

    Once you determine your content plan, you need to understand how much and which platforms are most likely to be used by your target market. Each platform has a different engagement style, target audience, algorithm, and overall goals. Sometimes the content or captions may be a factor you need to tweak for the best engagement with your audience. Social Media algorithms are different for each platform. They are constantly changing, so you might want some professional marketing assistance to maximize your opportunities. Platforms encourage and reward brands who use new functionality in their content plan. So keep up with trends and newer technologies.

    Lets Talk All About Social Media

    Track Your Progress

    Developing clear expectations between your brand and its goals will help ensure your success. Establishing key performance indicators (KPIs) will help track your best successes and missed opportunities. Remember, social media isn’t a quick race; it’s a marathon. Social media is in an ever-changing digital world, so your strategy has to remain flexible and adaptable. While you probably won’t see 10,000 new followers overnight, you will see a steady rise in impressions and followers over time.

    There are multiple ways to track your success. First, ask yourself: Are you looking to gain brand awareness, engage a social community, or strictly build up your owned media channels for future communication. These different approaches will help you find the best course of action where you will develop and track your ROI.

    You will surely KRUSH your social marketing objectives with the right game in place. If you find yourself not having the time to maintain multiple social media platforms give KRUSH a call, we are happy to talk through a strategy with you that is unique to your brand. We are here to help you maximize your potential.

     

    KRUSH is a full-service advertising agency in Oklahoma City. We specialize in brand development, graphic design, media planning, performance tracking, print services, SEO, social media, video services, as well as website design and development. Our focus is to grow your brand and your bottom line–we are your strategic marketing partner! Check out our portfolio of work and contact KRUSH today!

    Livestreaming Tips

    By Krush SEO,

    Cover image for livestreaming live stream events. How to krush your event in a studio. How to avoild livestream fails.

     

    Contents

     

    What is Livestreaming and how does it work?

    Livestreaming is an emerging technology in the media industry. New software and equipment have made livestreaming easier to produce and access. It used to take an entire broadcast crew and a room full of wires, switchers, and satellite connections to put on a live stream.

    But today, you can livestream from your cell phone.

    However, just because it’s easiest to livestream from your phone doesn’t mean it’s the best choice for you. For example, if a business wants to host a virtual annual event or a community organization to display an award ceremony, livestreaming is an excellent choice.

    Krush has been livestreaming annual sales events and week-long annual conferences. Here’s what we know about what it takes to put on a successful livestream event:

    Preparation Is Key

    Murphy’s Law says that what can go wrong will go wrong. Krush’s Director of Videography, Carl Evans, shares the same sentiment.

      “No matter how prepared you are, something will go wrong,”

    says Carl. While that may sound disheartening, he offers a silver lining. “Prepare for things to go wrong,” adds Carl.

    “How will you react? What will you do?”

    A plan of action for when things go sideways is key to a successful livestream.

    There are lots of variables when it comes to livestreaming. It would be best if you had reliable internet access, equipment with charged batteries, laptops that won’t crash, and cords that aren’t faulty.

    With so many variables, there are many ways for things to go wrong. 

    Therefore, preparation is critical to a successful livestream. Test your equipment. Practice your setup and take-down. Get comfortable with the software. Rehearse certain parts as if they were live.

    You’ll be surprised at how much you can learn from detailed and intentional preparation. Good preparation will make you and your team more confident when the cameras are rolling for real.

    Pre-produce critical keynotes or learning sessions to create engaging speaker sessions. You can pre-produce some of your content yet make it seem live. In addition, pre-producing content will sometimes give you a considerable advantage for timing and editing out speaker nervousness if speaking to large groups does not come naturally.

    Tips on how to livestream your company event. How to livestream.

    Things To Look Out For When Livestreaming

    • Speaker Cancellations: A speaker cancellation is always possible at a livestream. For whatever reason, your keynote speaker may not be able to show up. Have a backup speaker preplanned and ready to go in case this happens.
    • Black Screens: One of Carl Evans’s rules of a good livestream is never to have a black screen. There should always be something to fill a void. For example, a screen saver icon of your business logo can fill gaps between segments. Or a prerecorded informational video can be intercut to give your crew a chance to rest. Do not let your livestream have a blank black screen at any point.
    • Have a Teleprompter: Letting your speakers talk freely is critical to a successful livestream. But many parts, like transitions, informational bits, and opening and closing statements, can be scripted in advance. Uploading your scripts to a teleprompter will help your speakers deliver precise and compelling messaging. 

    Why Should Businesses and Organizations Livestream Their Events?

    Livestreaming is great for several reasons.

    • It’s Accessible

    If someone has internet access, they can watch your livestream. An in-person event has limited attendance, but thousands of people across the country can watch a livestream.

    You will reach more people in more places at one time with a livestream.

    • It’s Interactive

    Certain features are possible in a livestream that you can’t do in other mediums.

    A notable feature included in most livestream software is the Q&A function. Audience members can ask questions, and the event’s moderator or present speakers can answer those questions as the live streaming event evolves. You can also enable a chatbox for guests to interact with one another.

    A livestream isn’t just live TV on the internet. It’s personal and enables your audience to engage with your event and brand directly. They feel like they are a part of the event, not just spectating. A prerecorded video doesn’t give people the chance to react in real-time. Plus, audience metrics are trackable, which gives your company valuable data on how to better communicate with them in the future.

    Benefits of Livestreaming in a Studio

    A successful livestream is all about controlling and minimizing your variables. The fewer variables you have, the better. A studio setting is the best place to ensure your livestream runs smoothly.

    In a studio, you can:

    • Control the temperature
    • Be protected from harsh wind and poor weather conditions
    • Ensure good sound quality
    • Guarantee consistent lighting

    In a studio, you’ll also have access to essential equipment, like:

    • Cameras
    • Microphones
    • Teleprompters
    • Lights
    • Backdrops

    Furthermore, a studio gives you the space you need to be comfortable throughout the livestream process.

     

    Krush Digital is a full-service advertising agency in Oklahoma City. We specialize in brand development, graphic design, media planning, performance tracking, print services, SEO, social media, video services, as well as website design and development. Our focus is to grow your brand and your bottom line–we are your strategic marketing partner! Check out our portfolio of work and contact Krush today!

    Grow Your Home Service Business Revenue in 2022

    By Krush SEO,

    Cover photo for Grow Your Home Service Business Revenue in 2022.

    There is no denying that 2021 was a fantastic year to grow your home service business revenue. But are you ready to beat last year’s sales by garnering a better market share in 2022? The home service landscape continues to evolve, and it’s now critical for you to rethink your approach to driving new customers.

    Your marketing decisions will impact how you will spend your advertising budget between building your brand vs. improving your immediate lead generation. You should question if branding in the home service industry is still alive, thanks to Amazon and Google, who contributed to consumers’ “on-demand” service mentality.

    As a marketing and advertising firm that has spent years helping grow home service businesses across the country, let’s talk about the do’s and don’ts we have learned along the way.

    Contents

     

    Branding in Home Service Is For Preference Score Recall

    Google and Amazon have helped reshape the home service industry over the past 10 years. 

    Branding is less predictable for sales growth as Google’s data suggests homeowners are most interested in immediate availability, reviews, and pricing.

    According to Google, over 55% of homeowners find a home service business by first searching the internet. 75-90% of consumers have no specific company in mind when searching for a home service provider. This challenges home service businesses that are progressively being perceived as convenience commodities. 

    Graphic representing the number of customers that choose their client only from search is very high.

    How does this affect your marketing budget? 

    It’s best to have a portion of your advertising dollars in your branding bucket to keep your business “more familiar”. You also need memorable creativity, a jingle, a spokesperson, or unexpected and entertaining storylines to help you stand out. You must become memorable in a world where consumers are exposed to over 10,000 brand messages every day.  

    Branding alone won’t help you reach your sales goals. Lead generation is your lifeline to new customers. However, branding will help customers choose you in the internet search or public reviews. We have helped home service businesses more than double their customer pipeline across the country when they dedicate a portion of the marketing budget to building up their brand recall score.

    Franchise or Independent?

    We work with many franchise home services businesses from coast to coast. We see similar issues and possibilities across all markets. It’s easier for an independent home service business to drive less expensive organic leads than a franchise operator most of the time. Here are some pros and cons to help you decide if you should buy into a franchise opportunity in your local market.

    Pros to buying a home service franchise territory:

    The entry barrier is low, and the franchisor will introduce you to preferred customer relationship management (CRM) systems, sales software, and provide turn-key marketing solutions with a branded look and feel. In addition to your initial investment, you will pay an ongoing royalty fee to the franchisor. Some of this fee may go back into your market as advertising to help you grow your business brand. Competition between franchise operators may motivate you to grow your home service business revenue rank within the parent company. Your branded look will appear professional to your customers. If you are buying a franchise, with no REAL core customer base and brand recognition in your territory, you will pay a considerable price in your ROI to own that franchise.

    Cons to buying a home service franchise business: 

    No franchisor can overcome the fact that Google continues to build momentum by controlling leads in the home service industry. Despite a national company’s best effort to build a recognizable brand, 75-90% of consumers have no specific company in mind when they search for a home service company. (Google LSA source above) If there is no forward brand equity to be purchased by a previous franchise operator in your desired territory, you are much better off to stay independent. You can better offset the cost of paid leads with a fierce search engine optimization (SEO) marketing partner. If you are contemplating a franchise, it’s highly critical to consider where your online presence will live. If the answer is inside a parent company website, this will severely limit your ability to drive local search SEO leads (your least expensive lead source).

    Where do you find home service customers?

    With the merger of Home Advisor – Angie’s list, and Amazon looking to be a more prominent lead generation provider, you will have a sales battle on your hands. You must have a strong, methodical online game plan for sales success. You need a competitive market budget for Google’s Local Service Ads (currently representing 14% of all consumer search clicks), old-fashioned Google PPC Ads, Bing Ads, and an expert company for your Search Engine Optimization to drive leads. ComScore reports that 78% of all mobile searches for home services result in a sale within 24 hours of conducting that initial search.

    Google data shows that searches for home service businesses are significantly on the rise.

    year to year growth for home service businesses in %.

    Home Service Lead Generation SEO Plan

    In the battlefield of dangling your business where the home service consumer is making home service purchasing decisions, you will garner your most abundant organic leads in Google’s local search maps. Map listings are where customers feel like they make their own decisions. Google is perceived to serve up the best businesses first, and consumers feel they are choosing independent of being influenced by advertising.

    The maps are where customers are the most direct and intentional with their searches relevant to the location or by keywords like “HVAC near me” on mobile.

    Search bar that says "HVAC".

    search results on google maps for "HVAC". -Grow Your Home Service Business Revenue

    How will your home service business win more customer leads?

    Radio, television, digital ads, social ads, or out-of-home advertising will help make your business more familiar to potential customers when they see you online.

    Customer reviews also matter greatly. Before contacting a home service provider, many customers seek reviews on Next Door, Facebook, Yelp, your Google My Business (GMB), or other social group platforms. Therefore, maintaining the integrity of your local home service business is imperative for your success.

    Krush home service marketing tips

    Your overall business model should include up to 50% of your sales leads via your organic search efforts. On the other hand, 40% of revenue should come in via paid search ads or other lead generation companies you use. Branding your business in the local marketplace will consistently help you achieve maximum leads for these two categories.

    Pitfalls that will hinder revenue growth for home service business

    1. You service a large territory within a major city but do not have a physical location in that city. 
    2. You haven’t contracted SEO help for your business, or your current SEO provider has not been able to improve your lead volume. (You will then need a more expert SEO partner to increase revenue).
    3. You do not advertise and build your brand in the marketplace regularly. Brand building advertising does not include paid search advertising. Lead generation and brand-building advertising are not the same concepts.
    4. You are not proactively monitoring your online business reputation. Positive reviews are critical for your business, and publicly responding to negative reviews (in a productive and empathetic manner) will impact your lead volume.
    5. You rely on Home Advisor/Angie’s List for your leads (note: they have merged) and don’t have a strong presence in Google or Bing.
    6. You are not leveraging Google LSA’s against Google PPC.

    Final Thoughts

    SEO is a true craftsman skill set, and the right partner will deliver exponential results within 6 months. Paid search and branding are critical to jumpstart your sales and ensure your future market share. The home service business is thriving and expected to jump to over $800 billion in sales within the next three years. What piece of the pie is your business ready to devour?

    Krush is a full-service strategic marketing and advertising firm servicing local, regional, and national clients in all marketing and advertising capacities. Call us to discuss your home service business expansion goals and how you can grow your home service business revenue at (405) 603-5355.