How often did you ask yourself a similar question when measuring the speed of your website?
Google PageSpeed Insights is undoubtedly one of the most frequently used page speed measurement tools.
Performance improvements and technologies have always been on the frontlines of the Google project. In the last ten years they have built a range of performance tools devoted to different user types: There’s a Google tool ideal for all uses from developers to marketers to amateur website owners.
We are already able to rely on Google’s following performance tools:
As described before, there is no flawless speed test method in our Performance optimization guide. Thus, PageSpeed Insights should not be viewed as the only voice of truth, but as a good ally for your website’s performance evaluations along with other resources that are equitably true.
With this guide, you will learn about PageSpeed Insights, how its famous score system works and what exactly it measures.
2. What Is Pagespeed Insights?
PageSpeed Insights (PSI) measures the performance of a page on mobile as well as on the desktop and offers suggestions for improving that page.
Since the end of 2018, Lighthouse has been powering PageSpeed Insights. It implies that your PSI files are based on the Lighthouse API.
PageSpeed offers two types of data for testing a page: Lab data and Field data.
Lab data is collected with a set of pre-defined devices and Network configurations in a controlled environment. It is effective for debugging performance problems and can be easily replicated in its testing.
But it could fail to capture bottlenecks in the real world.
Field data, on the other hand, includes performance data from loaded real-time websites. This is also known as Real-User Monitoring or RUM. It captures legitimate, real user experience, but its metrics and debugging capabilities are limited.
3. What kind of details does PageSpeed offer about your website?
If you query PageSpeed Insights to evaluate a page, various sections and performance indicators will be returned.
In the order as it appears in the Report:
- Speed Score
- Field data
- Lab data
- Passed audits
The segment on diagnostics provides guidelines on best practices for Web Development.
- Its speed score (0 to 100) indicates immediately how well your website works.
- The color scheme of its solutions (green review, orange circle, red triangle) encourages the recognition of priority problems affecting the website results.
- The recommendations include direct feedback on how you can improve performance on your website. (Completed)
4. How is the Score calculated by PageSpeed Insight?
As we have said, the Lighthouse API is now driving PageSpeed output.
In this case, the most important thing to note is that Lighthouse simulates the page load in a specific environment: desktop and mid-level computer networks.
Google’s Lighthouse scoring documentation is very accurate and helps a great deal to understand how PageSpeed Insights is valued.
Google clarifies that the score is only supported by items within the Metrics section of the Lighthouse category. The Diagnostic and Opportunities recommendations are not included in the score.
Six indicators are used to perform the analysis in Lighthouse.
- First Contentful Paint
- First Meaningful Paint
- Speed Index
- First CPU Idle
- Time to Interactive
- Estimated Input Latency
Each one has a different score. Lighthouse tests these scores to obtain the final rating.
The score follows a specific color-coding map:
- 0 to 49 (slow): Red
- 50 to 89 (average): Orange
- 90 to 100 (fast): Green
5. What Is a Good Score on PageSpeed?
It’ll not be tough to find posts on the web that pledge to expose the hidden trick for 100/100 score on Google PageSpeed.
However, now that you understand how to measure the final score, it will be easier to understand that 100/100 is incredibly difficult to get today.
The challenge is also intensified by mobile-first indexing.
The PageSpeed Insights scoring can of course make you feel good, but there should be a separate question to ask yourself: is this specific PageSpeed score suggesting something important about my website?
There are many tricks to get a green score on PageSpeed.
An excellent way to improve your first paint score on your websites and achieve a green score might be by implementing other methods of optimization of code (such as deferring uncritical JS files or unused CSS).
That’s not going to be enough, though.
The actual quality metric for your website is it’s time to load.
The lower the loading time of your website, the higher the overall score, is obtained on the above 6 performance metrics.
6. Does Pagespeed Insights And SEO Are Interconnected?
The pure PageSpeed rating from your platform will not change the Google classification: this number by itself is not an “SEO ranking” indicator.
Thus, there is no direct link between how your site performs and the place it earns in the SERP.
There’s, still, a but.
As we have seen, the PageSpeed score is the result of a general performance analysis on some particular metrics, the better the score, the more you can presume your website to be in good shape.
A good score is a fair indicator of your website’s health in Google’s eyes. But the victory in the race to the top of SERP won’t be assured.
Since Lighthouse scoring system awards websites hitting acceptable performance metrics, if you’re working to make the platform fast and boost the user experience, you’ll also get great PageSpeed ratings.
A quick website has higher chances that Google would appreciate you.
7. Wrapping Up
In this article we have shed the lights on the basic of Google PageSpeed Insights:
- What it is
- How does it work
- How a PageSpeed Insight score should be interpreted
- The connection between the results of PageSpeed Insights and the SEO rating