Slowpokes to get penalized in Google search rankings?

WebProNews dug up a pretty interesting nugget in an interview with Google’s Matt Cutts over the weekend at PubCon — there’s a faction of Googlers who are lobbying for site speed to be a factor in search rankings.

That’s not taken into account at the moment, although Google tries to boost the speed of its own services with a religious ferocity. (Consider that even a 100 to 400 millisecond delay can reduce daily searches per user by more than half a percent.)

Google pulls in a few hundred different factors in search rankings and pushes changes to the underlying algorithm at least once a day on average.

Cutts said:

We’re starting to think more and more about — should speed be a factor in Google’s rankings? I mean, in AdWords, if your site is slow, that can be a factor in how much you have to pay in AdWords.

Historically we haven’t used it in our search rankings, but a lot of people within Google think the web should be fast.

It should be a good experience, so it’s sort of fair to say if you’re a fast site, maybe you should get a bit of a bonus. Or if you’re a really awfully slow site, maybe users don’t want that as much.

(Via SearchEngineLand)

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