Web Metrics for Site Speed Report

Hello Nation!

As many of you know already, site speed is used to calculate rankings in the search results of Google.  It is also an important part of the viewing experience of your website.  If your website takes forever to load the homepage, I am definitely going to move onto the next website.  Google Analytics recently added new metrics to the Site Speed report.  These new metrics can be found in the Technical section of each one of the tabs in the Site Speed report.  The tabs of the Site Speed report are Explorer, Performance, and Map Overlay.  In the Explorer and May Overlay tabs, the metrics provide details of the network and server.  The Performance tab offers a summary of each of the metrics.  In this tab each metric is broken down into a “bucket” grouping system, including the sample size and percentage total of each bucket.  Average Page Load Time is determined by browser time and the following metrics: Average Redirection Time, Average Domain Lookup Time, Average Server Connection Time, Average Server Response Time, and Average Page Download Time.  Browser time is the amount of time spent executing JavaScript, rendering a page, and allocating additional resources.  The chart below illustrates the part each metric plays in determining Page Load Time.

Web Metrics for Page Load Time in the Site Speed Report of Google Analytics








Avg. Redirection Time is the time spent in redirection before a page is fetched.  The value of this metric will be zero if there are no redirects.  If this metric is unusually high, then determine if redirects are necessary or check to see if a specific referrer is the source of high redirection time delay.

Avg. Domain Lookup Time is the average amount of time spent in the Domain Name System (DNS) for this page.  If this metric is too high, then consider changing your DNS provider for one with consistent, lower response times.

Avg. Server Connection Time is the time required for the user to connect to the server.  Unfortunately, you might not be able to reduce this metric on your own.  Contact your server provider for more information.

Avg. Server Response Time is the time taken for the server to respond to a user request, which includes the network time recorded between the user’s location and your server.  To solve a problem with this metric, remember to reduce backend processing time or place a server closer to the users.

Avg. Page Download Time is the time needed to download a page.  Decrease your initial data size if this metric is unusually high.

Remember to segment these metrics!  Segment the data by geographic location and browser type.  Certain webpages might need to be optimized for a specific type of browser.

The _trackPageview method now controls the data collection for the Site Speed report instead of the _trackPageLoadTime method used previously.  To modify the sample size of the collected data, use the _setSiteSpeedSampleRate() method before the _trackPageView method in the Google Analytics tracking code.  Currently, Google Analytics collects the data of 1 percent of visitors or 10,000 hits per day.

Comment below and I will entertain questions.  Thanks!

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