Are you looking for a tool to help identify speed-related issues on your website?
Well, in that case, Google PageSpeed Insights and Gtmetrix are the most popular free tools to help identify speed-related issues and fix them. You can find out why certain aspects of your website load slowly by clicking on any item within the report provided by these tools.
Not only that, you’ll even get some additional details about why this specific aspect was flagged by the tool, along with suggestions on how to fix it!
If this sounds like something you’re interested in, then continue reading. I’ll compare GTmetrix vs PageSpeed Insights in this guide, based on my experience with them. To know in detail, let’s get into it.
What is GTmetrix and PageSpeed Insights?
Site speed is one of the major parameters that determine your site performance and SERP ranking. Do you know that a 1-second delay in page loading can lead to a 7% reduction in conversion? In fact, 47% of consumers expect a site to load in 2 seconds or less.
To ensure this speed and optimize your site for faster loading speed, the first thing that every webmaster requires is running a speed test. For which you’ll need a speed test tool. And when it comes to tools to check site speed, the two most common names that come in are GTmetrix and PageSpeed Insights.
If you haven’t used any of these yet, stay tuned to this guide. Here is the hard detailed comparison between GTmetrix vs PageSpeed Insights.
The first thing I want to mention about GTmetrix is how easy it is to use because it works really straightforward. It comes with a suite of features and options to optimize your site clear and easy.
Once entering the URL, it starts analyzing your site and within a few seconds, it generates the entire report. Another thing I like about GTmetrix is how it breaks down the page content by request type and size.
It shows exactly where each issue exists within code, so we can see exactly what needs fixing without having to guess or try things randomly until something works as expected. This saves your time by allowing you to focus only on those areas.
Google PageSpeed Insights
PageSpeed Insights is a free website performance assessment tool from Google. Just put the URL to start the performance test, and it will provide both lab and field data about your page. Once analyzing the content of your pages, it generates suggestions to fix the speed-related issues to make the page load faster.
Comparisons Between GTmetrix VS. PageSpeed Insights
Now that you know the basics about both these page speed test tools let’s see the features and differences in each tool. So, tale a look on them-
1. Device and Browser Selection
GTmetrix is featured with testing sites from a device like a mobile phone and browser combination of your choice. You can even select the device type to get a clear report. But, to make the best use of this option, you need to register for the free account.
On the other side, PageSpeed Insights offers two sets of scores and results for desktop and mobile.
2. Test Location
The loading time of a site also varies depending on the location and the server location. If the user and server are located far away, it takes a few additional milliseconds to load for each request to travel. This little delay leads to an increase in page loading time.
Here, GTmetrix allows running a speed test specifying the location. You can analyze the page-load of your site in 22 different locations and 66 servers around the world. 7 locations are available in free search, and for the rest, you need to subscribe to the pro version.
Unfortunately, with PageSpeed Insights, you can’t specify a location. It calculated the speed based on the server location.
3. Performance Score
GTmetrix analyzes your page with Lighthouse to provide actionable insights for speed optimization. Then provides performance metrics for Google Core Web Vitals like LCP, CLS, FCP, time to interactive, onload time, and TTFB.
PageSpeed Insights provides scores by running Lighthouse to collect and analyze lab data for your page. Just like GTmetrix, it also includes different metrics like FCP, LCP, Speed index, CLS, time to interactive, and total blocking time.
Each metrics is labeled with 3 different icons like-
- Green for good performance,
- Orange indicates need improvements, and
- Red warns of poor performance.
4. Classification of Data
The above image shows how GTmetrix shares the performance metrics. It provides performance metrics scores using Lighthouse performance data based on the following criteria.
|Good||OK, but consider improvement||Longer than recommended||Much longer than recommended|
|FCP||[0, 934 ms]||[934 ms, 1205 ms]||[1205 ms, 1600 ms]||over 1600 ms|
|LCP||[0, 1200 ms]||[1200 ms, 1666 ms]||[1666 ms, 2400 ms]||over 2400 ms|
|CLS||[0, 0.1]||[0.1, 0.15]||[0.15, 0.25]||over 0.25|
|TTI||[0, 2468 ms]||[2468 ms, 3280 ms]||[3280 ms, 4500 ms]||Over 4500 ms|
PageSpeed Insights classified the above metrics from the following CrUX dataset analysis.
|FCP||[0, 1800ms]||[1800ms, 3000ms]||over 3000ms|
|FID||[0, 100ms]||[100ms, 300ms]||over 300ms|
|LCP||[0, 2500ms]||[2500ms, 4000ms]||over 4000ms|
|CLS||[0, 0.1]||[0.1, 0.25]||over 0.25|
5. Waterfall Analysis
This is the feature that makes GTmetrix different from PageSpeed Insights. With this waterfall analysis, GTMetrix provides a request-by-request visualization of your page loading speed. During the loading, browsers usually request resources like CSS, JS, HTML, etc.
Here the waterfall chart shows all the time each resource of your pages takes to load and how this stands with respect to the overall loading speed.
You won’t find this feature in PageSpeed Insights.
6. Suggestions and Recommendations
It’s time to see the most crucial feature that both these tools provide is suggestions or recommendations to improve the issues.
GTmetrix shares what issue impacts your site and how, with suggestions to improve, just like the following image. Simply go to the structure and click on the downside arrow, then you can see the issues that cause your site to load slow.
On the other side, PageSpeed Insights shares opportunities that don’t directly affect the performance speed but helps your page to load faster. Another section is called Diagnostics that covers more information about your performance which will directly affect your site performance score.
However, There are a lot of free tools available out there you can checkout these free Website speed test tools.
If you’re looking for a tool to identify speed-related detailed issues on your site and track them over time, then I would recommend using GTmetrix. Due to its ease of use as well as its ability to provide more detailed information about each issue found within the report.
However, if you want a quick overview with some actionable insights that directly affect SEO, you can use Google PageSpeed Insight.
I hope this GTmetrix vs PageSpeed Insights comparison guide helps you become more informed about how each tool works. Now you may make an educated decision instead of blindly following someone else’s advice or choosing whatever option happens to be most popular at the time without doing any research.
If so, then don’t hesitate to leave a comment; I’ll love to hear from you.