Google has announced the launch of a new feature in Webmaster Tools which displays data on site speed and a review of the speed performance of specific pages on your website. Site Performance now allows webmasters to view the progress of their site speed over time, as well as how the current performance stands up against various other sites. Data regarding the actual page load times of specific sections allows users to quickly identify which parts of their website need improving so that latency is no longer present to visitors.

The Site Performance tool does not just tell webmasters how their website is performing however, it will also go one step further by then displaying suggestions as to how users can improve their site speed. A ‘Page Speed’ section can also be downloaded as an add-on in your web browser to keep the data immediately at your fingertips. You need to have the Firebug add-on also installed but everything you need can be found at Google.com/Speed.

Two questions immediately come to mind when thinking about this new ‘Site Performance’ development. How do they gather this information and does it provide data on all pages of your website? Well according to Google, they obtain the data through specific user experiences, sent by visitors to your site who have the Google Toolbar and allowed the use of its enhanced features. Google will also only show information for a specific page if there is enough data that has been gathered from users, so not all pages will have site speed performance data if the website has very little traffic.

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