Slow Speed Kills in E-commerce

Accorin Team
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Slow site speed e-commerce

Have you been online waiting for a page to load and decided to open up another tab and redo a search because the page you were on wasn’t loading? How about clicking the back button to go back to your search results instead of waiting for the page to open? Well you aren’t alone. When web pages load slowly, visitors move on.

If your pages load in more than 5 seconds, you are losing customers. That impacts not just session sales, but potentially multiple sales over the lifetime of a customer. If visitors abandon your site, you won’t make the first sale, you won’t get them to a Product Detail Page to set a retargeting kernel, you won’t  get them to create an account and you won’t get their email address for marketing to them. Get the idea? Slow is baaaad.

There are a lot of different studies that indicate how important page load speed is for e-commerce success. Here are some stats that Verizon pulled together.

  • * Google found that a 500ms slowdown equals 20% decrease in ad revenue.
  • * Microsoft Bing found that a 2-second slowdown means a 2.5% decrease in queries and overall clicks.
  • * Amazon finds a 100ms slowdown – one tenth of a second! – can mean a 1% decrease in revenue.
  • * Yahoo! found that a 400ms improvement in load time translated to a 9% increase in traffic.
  • * Mozilla mapped a 2.2s improvement to 60 million additional Firefox downloads.

…and a bonus data point not focused on User Experience: Moz did a study on the impact of page load speed and search engine ranking. They found that “…a clear correlation was identified between decreasing search rank and increasing time to first byte (TTFB). Sites that have a lower TTFB respond faster and have higher search result rankings than slower sites with a higher TTFB. Of all the data we captured, the TTFB metric had the strongest correlation effect, implying a high likelihood of some level of influence on search ranking.”

Is your site slow? Are you losing e-commerce revenues? Take the test. Here is a great tool from GTMetrics that we use regularly:

TEST YOUR SPEED

If your homepage AND interior pages load in less than 3 seconds, that is great. More than 5 seconds. Not so good.

Fortunately, site performance and page loading times can usually be improved, though the specific approach with vary. If you are using an e-commerce platform like Magento and self-hosting or hosting with a company like Peer1, Rackspace or Nexcess, you have a variety of options that can include infrastructure, application and client changes. If you are using a SaaS product like Shopify, you will only have control over parts of the application and the client side changes. At Accorin we work regularly with clients to tweak their e-commerce site’s performance. There is a bit of art, but also a lot of tried and true steps to incrementally improve in a lot of different areas….resulting in big performance improvements.

THE BOTTOM LINE

The best e-commerce sites load fast. Need help getting your site to load fast? Give us a call.

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