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we all know that Google's affects your page rank with the load time of a page. How? That's part of the secret sauce. But we know that page speed is a serious factor.

So -> what is considered the speed of a page?

Is it just the first (and main) html file which the GET receives? Or does it also include loading of images as part of that speed.

so for example...

GET /index.htm <- takes 0.45 seconds to retrieve (including DNS lookup before).

robot parses page.. see's there's a single main image....

GET /img/main.png <- takes 5 seconds to download.

is the page speed for that resource, 0.45 seconds OR 5.45 seconds?

I understand Javascript is not fired .. but are any of these external resources all downloaded and part of the page speed?

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up vote 5 down vote accepted

Yes, they do count images. The count how long it takes to download the HTML and all static (JavaScript, CSS) and embedded content (images, flash) on the page.

From here (this isn't specifically about Google algorithm but it matches everything I have found about it so far including Matt Cutts post):

The "Performance overview" graph in the Labs Site performance page tracks the total loading time of the page, from the initial request to the point the browser finishes its rendering. This includes the downloading of the page, the related assets (CSS, Javascript, images, etc), and the time the browser needs to execute the Javascript.

Additional anecdotal evidence would be Google's official announcement about this change in their algorithm they mention Page Speed tools. All of them recommend optimizing images both in size and download speed (usually through uise of a CDN or cookieless domain).

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Awesome @John Conde :) That answers my question perfectly AND the links also are great. Cheers mate! –  Pure.Krome Jun 22 '11 at 3:38
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