How website loading time affects your conversions
Emma Author + Marketing Specialist
Need for Speed
Nowadays, people became more comfortable with the benefits the technological advancement has brought and they have a lot less patience for slow loading pages than they used to. Nearly two decades ago, before dial-up internet access was replaced by broadband, people were used to waiting for pages to load, sometimes for even ten minutes at a time or more. Today, people get aggravated if a website page doesn’t load in two seconds or less.
Technology has progressed quite a bit over the years and so did the broadband speed, setting the standards high for website owners. Fast loading pages are essential for user satisfaction, especially on websites or blogs that offer products or services, including e-commerce websites. That’s why fast loading times are of the utmost importance. Here are a few ways how website loading time affects your conversions.
Every second matters
You may think that people won’t notice a slight delay when your website is loading. In fact, your website only needs to be one second slower and you will experience a 16% decrease in user satisfaction and even a 7% loss in your conversion rate. A one second may seem like a minor delay, but your customers won’t perceive it as such. If you value your customer’s experience with your website, you’ll have to optimize its speed accordingly.
Furthermore, website owners who run an e-commerce business may suffer a loss of revenue, due to sluggish websites. As a matter of fact, 79% of customers who had a bad experience with a website’s performance won’t make purchases on that website again. For instance, if your e-commerce website brings you a $100.000 each day, that one-second delay could lose you nearly $2.5 million in sales annually.
A lot of people these days use their mobile devices to browse the web and websites that aren’t mobile-friendly will surely lose sales. However, mobile users are also impatient when it comes to website speed, perhaps even more impatient than the rest. This is mostly because they expect the same experience they have, when browsing the Internet on desktop. However, if you want mobile user satisfaction, you will have to make your website mobile-friendly and make it so that it performs accordingly.
Many websites aren’t optimized to work well on phones and 73% of mobile users reported that they encountered a website that was too slow, while 51% reported encounters with websites that froze or crashed. If you want to avoid negative feedback from mobile users, you will have to improve your website’s performance on mobile devices. Moreover, speed is still a factor, because 64% mobile users expect a page to load in four seconds or less and 40% will abandon your website if it takes more than three seconds to load.
52% of online shoppers stated that fast loading websites are important for ensuring their loyalty. But every website owner knows that there’s more to customer loyalty, than just loading speed. However, other factors that ensure customer loyalty also affect the loading speed. People are visual creatures and they prefer websites with awesome content such as plenty of relevant information, pictures, videos, charts and so on.
Nevertheless, a website with all the visual aspects, that will be pleasing to the audience also demands more power for it to load fast enough. In order to supply the audience with both good user experience and fast loading pages, website owners must rely on good web hosting services. Furthermore, website speed isn’t only crucial for supporting content on your website and ensuring customer loyalty, but it’s also important for your website SEO and ranking. That one second of delay in loading speed, can mean an 11% in loss of page views.
Improve your loading speed
Managing to speed up your website is essential for the success of your business and for the satisfaction of your customers. Reducing the page load time by a second or two, will mean a big difference, but many website owners simply don’t know how to so. There are a lot of things you can do, that will help your website shave off a few seconds of its loading time.
For instance, you can optimize images on your website by reducing their size and converting them to the correct format, such as JPEG or PNG. Also, make sure you enable browser caching, which lets you store some data on your user’s computers for a short period of time and helps them load a page faster, each time they visit. Furthermore, you can compress your website and get rid of at least 50 to 70% of your CSS and HTML files, meaning that your users will have less stuff to download for a page to load.
Website loading time is important for your customers, because they expect to find what they need without delays. Moreover, your customer’s loyalty and satisfaction depend on the speed of your website. That’s why you should always make sure that your website performs well and fast.
Orana Creative Contributor
Emma Miller is a Sydney based writer with a degree in marketing. Interested in digital marketing, social media, start-ups and latest trends. She's a contributor Orana Creative and BizzMark Blog.