When we think of speed and performance, we all think about cars. When we are in a market for buying a new car, we always want the best and fastest that we can. We rarely think of websites when we think of speed or performance until we are sitting behind our computer or mobile device waiting for a site to load. And while we are waiting, we get more and more frustrated until we abandon that site no matter why we went there. We will always go somewhere else to find the information that we were looking for or to buy it from someone else.
Now thinking of how you would react to a slow loading site, how do you think your customers feel when they go to your site and have the same experience that you did on another page? Let that sink in while you are reading about statistics of on-site abandonment and a few ways to help your speed and your customers.
The top 10% of the sites that are surfed on the web (YouTube, Facebook, Google, Amazon, Reddit, etc) load in less than 900 milliseconds, while the median site loads at 2.5 seconds. That is a HUGE difference! Those top 10% companies know the importance to spend more on their website to make it and keep it optimized for speed and performance to keep a customer bouncing to their competitors. A 2-second delay during a transaction results in a customer abandoning their shopping cart and either giving up entirely or heading to search to see where else they can get that same product, but quicker.
A customer will most likely blame the content provider/website creator than to blame their own internet speed or device. If your site is loading more than 3 seconds, you can expect a 10% in sales drop. These days, since everything is at everyone’s fingertips at a split second, we as consumers expect to load in 2 seconds or less before 40% of us give up!
You may be asking right about now, “How am I going to speed up my site without breaking the bank?” Well lucky for you, we have a few tips and tricks that you can try!
- The larger the image is, the longer it will take to load. An image often accounts for the most bytes that are downloaded.
- This plays a huge role in speed. Not only do you not want to see your site go up and down, but neither does your customer. If you end up going with a cheaper hosting or a shared hosting, not only the frontend of the site (what customers see) could be slow, but also the backend as well. If you ever run into issues updating content or adding new files, check into your hosting!
Overloading site with Ads
- Everyone wants to make a little more money from their site if possible and most people think that Ads are the way to go…they are not. Not only do all those ads playing in the background, pop-ups, sliders, etc take a toll on your site speed, but your customer will end up bouncing since things are still loading up seconds into your site. No one likes to scroll through a site and having to wait for the content to load after an ad!
Leverage browsing caching
- This means to store static files of a website on the visitor’s browser. When the visitor returns, it retrieves those files from the browser quickly instead of having to get them again from the server.
One last important thing…GOOGLE RANKING!
We all strive to be at the top of Google, but no one has conquered their algorithm on how to beat their system. We can always use pay to click ads to get to that spot until we run out of marketing allowance or hire the best SEO team to get us ranking, but speed now has a factor in ranking.
In 2010, Google said that page speed was a ranking factor but it was focused on desktop devices. Now, in July 2018, Google will look at mobile page speed as well. With 51% of internet usage coming from a mobile device in the US and 52.2% of all online traffic worldwide, we can see that Google is getting ahead of the curve to make sure that we all have a pleasant experience while surfing the web.
Google’s Zhiheng Wang and Doantam Phan wrote:
The “Speed Update,” as we’re calling it, will only affect pages that deliver the slowest experience to users and will only affect a small percentage of queries. It applies the same standard to all pages, regardless of the technology used to build the page. The intent of the search query is still a very strong signal, so a slow page may still rank highly if it has great, relevant content.