Website load time is one of the most important factors when it comes to user experience as well as search engine ranking. However, most bloggers and Webmasters often ignore it.
In this article, I am going to give you a list of free tools that you can use to check web page load time. But before moving further, let us first understand why is it necessary for you to check website load time.
Why You Must Test Website Load Time
In 2010, Google Had Announced that Page Load Time would be part of their search engine ranking algorithm. Moreover, Google expects your page to load in Less Than One Second. So if you do not take care of your website load time, you might not be able to move high up at the search engines
And it is not just about search rankings. According to a survey, 47% of consumers expect the web page to load in less than 2 seconds and 40% are likely to abandon the page if the website does not load in 3 seconds.
This is really alarming considering the average load time of all the websites on the internet is over 7 seconds which is way above acceptable page load time.
It is, therefore, imperative that one must check their website load time and take necessary measures to keep the same under check. To know how to Speed Up WordPress, you can check my article on How To Reduce Website Load Time For WordPress
What Can We Analyze With Website Speed Test Tools?
- Analyzing total loading time of your website from different geographic location, browsers, etc.
- Checking your page size
- Check the number of requests generated by a web page
- Find Time To First Byte
- Analyzing HTTP Headers
- Checking if Browser cache is enabled
- Finding Images which can be compressed without affecting its quality.
Top 5 Tools To Check Website Load Time
While there are many websites where you can check your Website load time, I have prepared a list of Top 5 websites which provide the best details and are free to use.
1. Google PageSpeed Insights
Google PageSpeed Insights does not measure your website load time. Rather it measures the performance of your website on Desktop as well as on mobile on a scale of 1-100. Higher the score, better optimized your website is to load faster.
In addition to the scores, it also gives out a list of suggestions that you can follow to improve your PageSpeed score and hence website load time.
A score of anything above 85 is considered as good by Google. Getting a score of over 90 is extremely difficult. Also, the mobile speed score in most cases would be below 80. This is something you can safely ignore.
However, in the case of mobile, you can find an additional category of “User Experience”. It is extremely important that your User Experience score is 100 or very close to it as lower scores can seriously affect your Google rankings.
Google has also launched a new website Think With Google which uses PageSpeed Insights API. It comes with a better UI but it only displays your performance scores and does not provide any suggestions to improve the same.
YSlow is a browser extension by Yahoo Group which you can use to measure you website performance. Like Google Page Speed Insights, it measures your performance on a scale of 1-100. In addition, it also provides grades for each of the parameters it analyzes along with the overall grade.
It measures your performance score based on one of the three predefined rulesets which you can select as per your needs. Users can also edit these rulesets as per their requirement.
GTMetrix is one of the most commonly used web-based tools for checking your Website Load Time. The reason for its popularity is the detailed information it provides.
It analyzes your website performance for PageSpeed as well as Yslow Parameters and provides a rating for the same on a scale of 1-100. It also gives you Grade according to the rating.
The details provided includes recommendations for improving PageSpeed Score and YSlow Score and Waterfall chart. It also measures your actual website load time, total page size and the number of requests generated by the page.
By registering for a free account, you get following additional benefits
- Test the Website Loading time from 7 different locations and 3 different browsers.
- Make web page load time report private and available only to you.
- Ability to save the report for future reference.
- Record videos to view the page load up to 4x slower to help pinpoint rendering or other page load problems.
- Use Adblock Plus to analyze how ads affect your web page loading time.
- Monitor the page on a daily, weekly and monthly basis. Pro users can monitor it hourly too.
- Add Alerts that sends you an email based on specific conditions.
4. Pingdom Tools
Pingdom Tools is another very commonly used tool that uses its own set of parameters to analyze your website and provides a rating as well as a Grade for the same.
Like GTMetrix, it also provides you with Website Load Time, Page size, and the number of requests generated by a page.
The performance insights section provides a grade for various parameters and also provides suggestion to improve them. It also checks your HTTP status code.
Waterfall chart is included at the bottom as “File Requests”. You can use the same to analyze the scripts which are delaying loading of the website.
5. Sucuri Load Time Tester
Sucuri Load Time Tester is a very simple web-based tool that checks the connection time, Time To First Byte and Total Page Load time of your website from 16 locations across the Globe.
Based on this values, it calculates the average response time and a Global performance grade for your website.
Though it does not provide you any performance enhancement suggestions, it can come in really handy if you are targeting specific countries for your blog. You can measure load time for your website across several countries with just one click and if need be, use CDN for a particular location to improve your website load time in that country.
Website Load time is a critical factor that every blogger should keep track of. While it is not necessary to measure it every month. But after any major changes to your theme or after plugin installation you must check if it is affecting your web page load time.
You must make sure you website loads in less than 3 seconds. If it’s on the higher side, you can use plugins like W3 Total Cache and Wp Smush which will help you to greatly reduce your Web page Load time.
If you are finding it difficult to configure W3 Total cache, you can refer my article on How To Configure W3 Total Cache to reduce page load time.
I hope you enjoyed reading this article. If you have any comments or queries or if you know any other better tool for measuring Website Load Time, do share with us.