As a web design and marketing agency in Sussex, we like to keep updated with all the latest updates Google introduces to improve its search algorithm. This is what determines what pages appear at the top for different search terms. In this article, we are discussing why you should run a Lighthouse Report on your website and why it will benefit your business.
Whilst Google doesn’t tell us everything that they factor into their algorithm, they do release ‘Algorithm updates’ each year that tells us about various new factors that affect page ranking.
In last year’s Google Core Update, (there have been more since!) it was announced that site performance and page speed metrics would affect page rankings from June 2021.
In order to analyse how websites performed against these new metrics, Google also introduced Google Lighthouse Reports. These easily can be run on any website and split website performance into 4 categories;
- Performance – How fast the site loads, including how fast it takes to load on mobile devices.
- Accessibility – If your website is accessible, if the text is big enough to read, if the colours make it easy to read the text.
- Best Practices – These are mainly based around security and safety, but also include if there are any errors being outputted from the website code.
- SEO – This is based on whether the page has meta titles, meta descriptions, and other SEO best practices. This is just the basics though and only tells if you have filled them in, not if they are for the correct keyword searches!
You can Google “Lighthouse Report” for any website, and it will give you a score out of 100 based on these four categories.
It’s incredibly telling what brands invest heavily in their web strategy from these reports. Taking a look at some of the more well-known brands. For example, you’ll see that the ASOS website scores poorly, whereas the Starbucks website takes nearly full marks;
But if big brands like ASOS don’t perform well, why should I care?
The difference is ubiquitous brands such as ASOS and Starbucks can afford to score badly on these lighthouse reports. Their websites are so well-visited and updated that they need not care too much about their lighthouse score.
However, for small and medium-sized businesses, a well-performing website can help you to stand out against your competitors. If your website is scoring well in these lighthouse reports, it could be the defining difference that will help you to rank above your competitors on search engines.
How do I Run a Lighthouse Report?
As lighthouse reports have been built for developers it is a bit tricky to explain how to run the full report, as it changes based on what browser you have. However, you can run a smaller version of the report here: https://pagespeed.web.dev/. This will give you a score based on the ‘Performance’ section only. If you’d like to get a full report of your website, email us and we can produce one for you to look at.
There might be some easy wins that you can do to improve on your score but some of the information might be a bit complicated to understand, and again this is where we come in.
If you’d like us to take a look at your website and give you a quote to help provide you with an online marketing strategy, or a new bespoke WordPress website, you can get in touch with us by emailing email@example.com or call 01435 817226.