Maximising page loading speed is critical because it WILL impact the money that you make from your website.
Many website designers will choose aesthetically pleasing and image heavy web design over page loading time. They believe that a visually stimulating page will draw customers in.
Whilst good web design is essential it is the case that for every customer who is happy to wait for said page to load, there is another who will hastily switch to a different web page for faster results.
Almost half of website users expect that a site will load in under two seconds.
If the page does not load within three seconds 20% of visitors will exit the loading page and try one of your competitors’ sites.
Nearly 80% of website visitors who encounter slow loading pages will not return to the site in future.
So, page loading times and the ease with which customers can access your site directly impacts how many visitors your site receives. Therefore, it will affect site revenue too.
A few seconds’ difference can result in a considerable reduction in traffic. Or put another way – if your page speed is currently above 3 seconds then speeding it up will immediately result in your site experiencing an increase in traffic.
Mobile Visitors = Even Less Patience
The study revealed that when using a mobile phone to browse the Internet 73% of people complained that most sites load too slowly.
Visitor patience falls dramatically when they are using their mobile to visit websites!
Your Visitors Are Not A Patient Bunch
People using the internet expect a fast connection (unless in rural areas) and so expect fast page load speeds as well.
A page load time of 5 seconds or, longer, can lead to a 30% abandonment rate.
The study also showed that increasing a site’s page load speed by 1 second can lead to a 7% decrease in existing traffic.
Bear this in mind if you are considering a redesign. Bench mark your average page load speeds before the work begins. Then make sure they only get better and not worse as a result of the redesign.
In simple terms, an e-commerce site generating £10,000 a month in sales with a page load speed of 3 seconds or more could add, on average £700+, each month to their revenue by improving their page load speed.
Oh, and it will probably cost you no more than £700 to get your load speed fully tuned!
Why Page Load Times Matter So Much
Most obviously, if a customer cannot access your site fast and, does not have the patience to wait for your site to load, then you will not make a sale to that person. Someone else will instead!
Internet connection speeds are constantly increasing and with this the average level of “visitor patience” has fallen considerably.
People expect their browser and sites they visit to open almost instantaneously. If you want your online business to be a success, you need to keep up with what the customer wants.
The Difference 1/4 Of A Second Can Make
Recent studies show that even a difference in load speed of 250 milliseconds is noticeable by the average web surfer.
In highly competitive markets that quarter of a second can lead to visitors preferring your website over a competitors’ website.
Perhaps it’s time to check out just how fast your competitors’ load times are. Then tune your site to beat them.
Consider These Case Studies
In 2012 Walmart worked hard to increase their site speed.
They found the following:
- Every 1second reduction in loading time correlated to a 2% increase in web traffic.
- Every 100ms of reduced loading time lead to an increase in incremental revenue of as much as 1%.
Once they published this data, not surprisingly, other big companies such as Mozilla, Amazon, Yahoo, Shopzilla and AOL all followed suit. They all experienced revenue based improvements:
- Amazon’s revenue increased 1% per 100ms of reduced loading time
- For every 400ms’ reduction in loading time, Yahoo’s traffic increased by 9%
- After cutting down their page load time from 6 seconds to as little as 1.2 seconds, Shopzilla saw revenue increase by 12%
- After Mozilla made their page 2.2 seconds quicker to load, the company saw downloads of Firefox increase by 5 million per month.
Ok, these companies have huge volumes of traffic and so the impact is magnified. Nevertheless, it illustrates that increasing page load speed will make you more money. The impact will not be as pronounced as in the studies above (unless you run a global website) but you will make more money from speeding up your website’s page load speed.
So the question on many of your tongues will no doubt now be – so how do I improve my site’s page load speed. Well, a browse around Google is sure to flag up many great resources but if you prefer hold fire as one of the team here at Surge will be publishing a post on that in the coming weeks.