Google has begun taking the speed of website loading into account when deciding on the order of search results. Got questions about the speed of your site? Two words: SafeHouse Web!

Here’s a summary of the new Google move:

The company says its data shows users are much less likely to spend extended time at a Web site which loads slowly. For now it will only apply the speed criteria to English language queries from the main site. It’s also not being applied to all queries: at the moment “fewer than 1 percent of search queries are affected by the site speed signal” and the relevance of a page will remain the main factor.

The logic appears to be that if sites load quicker, users will view them more favorably; in turn they’ll be happier with Google for pointing them in the “right” direction.

Exactly how dramatic an effect this will have on rankings remains to be seen. For now, your “worry-factor” should be low, but we always recommend that you shoot for the best performing, fastest-loading sites within your means.

Contact us about evaluating your site’s speed and making some recommendations for improvement.