Improving the loading speed of your website can have a dramatic effect on the success of your site. Faster loading times improve user experience, SEO rankings, conversion rates, time on site, lower bounce rates, and increase engagement.
Note: when you use a website speed test for the first time, the DNS lookup time will usually be slower. It may be beneficial for you to run the tests multiple times and use the average of the results.
Here are some free tools you can use to determine the speed with which your website is loading.
WebPageTest has what they call “a first view and a repeat view.” They run the test more than once to account for any skewed results that come from a slow first lookup time that was mentioned earlier.
On WebPageTest, you can choose from forty different locations and twenty-five different browsers to run your test. It assigns a grade from A to F for six different categories: First Byte Time, Keep Alive Enabled, Compress Transfer, Compress Images, Cache Static Content, and Effective Use of CDN.
2. Varvy Pagespeed Optimization
KeyCDN has a fast and lightweight website speed test tool. You can test your website from fourteen different locations around the globe.
The KeyCDN web performance test has the option of keeping your site’s report private or making it public. The test is one of the most advanced tests on the Internet because it can check whether your website is HTTP/2 supported.
This speed test tool also works great on mobile devices. The mobile report has an extra category of scoring called the “User Experience.” This report checks your viewport configuration, the size of your tap targets like button and links, and font sizes.
If you need more features from the speed test tools, you can check out these premium tools:
Pingdom is one of the best-known tools for website speed testing. Its overview provides information other services don’t commonly offer. These include the site’s size analysis, size per domain, the number of requests, and which content has the most assets.
The organization of the report from Pingdom makes it easy to either skim or dig deeply into the information. The reports have four sections: waterfall breakdown, performance grade, page analysis, and history. The results are easy to read and have letter-grade breakdowns of performance and a list of issues to address.
GTmetrix is very user-friendly and easy to understand. The site checks both PageSpeed and YSlow metrics and gives your site an A to F grade. The reports from GTmetrix provide a lot of extra information to help you fix the problems your site has. The page speed numbers show in the context of the norms for other pages on the Internet, so you can see where your website stands in comparison to other sites.
Uptrends is a paid service, but they offer a website speed test for free. The free test is fairly basic. Its waterfall results graph can open like an accordion to see more information.
There are 35 locations to choose from, and the beautifully designed reports categorize the information into different sources: first party, statistics, CDN, social, ads, first-party overall, and third-party overall.
If you have a website and are not getting the traffic you would like, test the speed of your site from a free option. If you find issues, then you may want to check out a paid version to help you improve the speed and rank higher on Google.