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New PageSpeed Insights (with "mobile first" criteria) is now live! [plus.google.com...]Page Speed Insights measures the performance of a page for mobile devices and desktop devices. It fetches the url twice, once with a mobile user-agent, and once with a desktop-user agent.
The PageSpeed Score ranges from 0 to 100 points. A higher score is better and a score of 85 or above indicates that the page is performing well. Please note that PageSpeed Insights is being continually improved and so the score will change as we add new rules or improve our analysis.
You can test your website and others here : [developers.google.com...]
What's your view on speed being a ranking factor? Have you seen evidence that it is?
While site speed is a new signal, it doesn't carry as much weight as the relevance of a page. Currently, fewer than 1% of search queries are affected by the site speed signal in our implementation and the signal for site speed only applies for visitors searching in English on Google.com at this point.
Posted by Amit Singhal, Google Fellow and Matt Cutts, Principal Engineer, Google Search Quality Team
I did some more digging and came up with this, back in 2010 :
...the blog post talks about the introduction of a "new signal". It makes me wonder if it became an indirect contributing factor to Panda's QA considerations.
Googler Matt Cutts has recently said in an interview that the company may start putting weightage on the speed at which the site loads as a ranking factor moving ahead in 2010.
There's a lot of help from both Google Page Speed and Y! Slow that goes beyond image compression and database optimization. Rather than resist, I suggest at least reading the help files.
For my entire online career I've felt that page speed is an important and almost secret weapon. Now it's becoming an open secret, apparently. I'll bet lots of people will still ignore it.
Server response time measures how long it takes to load the necessary HTML to begin rendering the page from your server, subtracting out the network latency between Google and your server.
You should reduce your server response time under 200ms.