Speed can mean everything for e-commerce websites and blogs. Online retailers are losing AUD $2.7 billion every year due to the slow loading speed of their websites. This is a huge amount of revenue lost to nothing, not even to competitors. Hence, it is considered a big loss due to inefficiency.
This is a common problem across all industries, not only in Australia but also elsewhere in the world. The average global conversion rate for e-commerce websites is only 2.5%. There are many issues other than website speed involved in this staggering figure. However, according to research, one of the biggest factors in convincing potential customers to make a purchase is speed.
More than 47% of internet users expect all websites to load within two seconds. Also, almost half of internet users leave a website that does not load within three seconds. Out of all those who wait for an e-commerce website to load just to make a purchase, 79% said they will never return to do another transaction. As much as 44% also said that they will never recommend a slow-loading website to their family and friends.
Loading speed can also contribute to search engine ranking because Google measures it as part of its algorithm requirements. Slow loading websites are considered low in quality due to unreliability.
What are the things that you can do whenever you find yourself asking “how fast is my website?” You can try these tips.
- Use Google Lab’s Page Speed Online to measure your website’s speed.
This cloud-based tool developed by Google scores every website’s loading time. In a scale of one to 100, higher score means faster loading time. This is basically how Google’s web crawlers rate websites when ranking.
This tool can be used online or be installed on Google Chrome as an extension. It is advisable to use it regularly to monitor your website’s performance.
For Firefox users, a similar tool called Web Page Test can be installed instead.
- Use social media and video sharing sites when uploading multimedia files.
The ideal file size for every webpage is around 130 kilobytes. Directly uploading a multimedia file to a webpage will definitely make it “weigh” more than that. Hence, you have to integrate social media sites and video sharing sites to your website.
- Use a Google Analytics plugin to measure loading speed from various locations.
There are plugins that you can integrate with Google Analytics to help you see the specific places of your website that load fast and slow. This is important if your target market is spread widely in the four corners of the globe.
Even websites in reputable private blog networks (PBN) have to improve their loading speed because one inefficient site in the network may affect everybody’s reputation, especially those linked to the slow loading member.