Site speed and Google
A few months ago, Google’s Matt Cutts said that Google was considering taking site speed into consideration as one of many potential ranking factors for search results in 2010. However, this would not trump relevance. It would be taken more into consideration when there are two sites of relatively equal relevance, but one site loads faster and delivers a better user experience.
For those getting worried, it’s probably not going to be something where all of a sudden all of the faster sites are ranking better and the slower ones are doing worse. But it does enhance the user experience, and studies show that an optimized site enjoy increased conversions by up to 16%. So, if you’re not optimizing your site’s performance for Google, maybe that’s a good enough reason on its own.
If you are wondering how you can make your site go faster, you should think simple; take out all the unnecessary material (HTML instances), optimize (shrink down) your images for web use, write valid code (by W3C standards) and use compression for the output (in case of dynamic sites). This is the basic checklist for steps to take towards optimizing your site’s speed.