Page Load Time Location - Ranking

Hi Experts

I understand that page load time is a factor in search rankings, but what location does google base this on? Does it base the page load time on the visitor's location? The reason I am asking is I am trying to work out whether I would benefit from using an Content Delivery Network.

I am based in London UK and am only interested in attracting customers from the same location. My web host is also based in London. For example my page load time might be 2 seconds in the UK, 4 seconds in the US and 6 seconds in Australia. I understand that if I used a Content Delivery Network it would be the same load time in all locations. However I am not bothered about a slow load time in these other locations as I am not interested in selling to people outside of my location. Unless it effected my ranking in the UK.

So does google base it's search results and load time on the visitors location or an overall average? If it is based on visitors location I see no benefit from using a CDN.

Any advice appreciated.
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Lucas BishopClick TrackerCommented:
Load time in different regions will be reflected in the user experience of those different regions, which translates to effecting rankings in the country version of Google.,,

If your load time is bad in a certain country, Google will quickly detect this during their crawl and also when they view 'avg time on page' for visitors who access your site from Google. They'll adjust accordingly in the regional search results.

So does google base it's search results and load time on the visitors location or an overall average?
Search rankings in each region will be calculated on the average user experience for that region.

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petewinterAuthor Commented:
Hi Lucas. Thanks for your reply. So if my web server is based in the location where I am targeting the visitors would you say I have no need for a CDN?
Lucas BishopClick TrackerCommented:
Hi Pete,

If you're only targeting one specific region, I'd say you're fine by using a single high performing host in that region.

Where a CDN would likely become necessary is if your traffic were to ramp up to a significant amount and you have large media files (video/images/etc.) that you don't want impacting overall load on the server.

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petewinterAuthor Commented:
Many thanks
Richard SmithersCommented:
Load time is calculated when Google's spider crawls your website. If you register your domain with Google for Webmaster Tools you can actually see how Google rates the speed of your site and the loading of your web pages.
petewinterAuthor Commented:
Richard - Thanks for the reply, but what would be the location of the google spider?
Lucas BishopClick TrackerCommented:
@Richard, Google uses crawlers with IP addresses located all over the world. See Geo-Distributed crawling here.
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