Google Updates PageSpeed Insights

According to Google, the average mobile page takes more than 7 seconds to load. If this is the case with your site, it’s important to identify the issue and rectify it – people are notoriously impatient on the web and are likely to click away rather than wait. But page load speed is only part of the problem.

If your page loads quickly, but users still have to spend time pinch zooming and scrolling in order to read the page, the speed of load seems immaterial. It’s frustrating to users to click on promising links, only to have to spend more time ‘clarifying’ the page before they can be sure they are where they want to be.

Google has recently updated PageSpeed Insights with additional recommendations on mobile usability. By interrogating these reports it should be possible to see the extent of your speed/usability issue and to put in place the necessary steps to solve any problems.

Google’s advice is:

  • Avoid plugins – Flash and other browser plugins are not supported by smartphones, so are best avoided.
  • Configure the viewport so that mobile browsers assume the page is mobile-friendly, otherwise your site will display as if on a desktop.
  • Ensure content fits the width of the viewport and remember that users expect mobile sites to scroll vertically.
  • Make sure your text is large enough to be read on a mobile device
  • Tap targets – buttons or links that you want people to tap – need to be sufficiently large to ensure your users don’t accidentally hit the wrong target.