speedy gonzalez

For Online Retailers Who Don’t Invest in Speeding Things Up…

Dear online retailers who fail to invest in speeding up their websites… you make me say words I hope my Nan never finds out I’ve ever used.

I’m impatient. I know this about myself. But I’m not the only one. In fact, consumers in general are impatient when it comes to online shopping. We expect websites to load quickly, to show us what to do next quickly, to let us pay quickly and then, after the purchase is complete, we generally expect retailers to deliver quickly. And as online retailers, you should give a crap about this because failing to address the expectations of your customers (however unreasonable we could argue they are) will impact your bottom line.

3 Important Facts

  • A 1 second delay in load speed can result in a 7% decrease in conversion. [Source]
  • Walmart’s converted shoppers receive pages that load 2x faster than non-converting shoppers. [Source]
  • Research has suggested a correlation between higher rankings and a quicker time-to-first-byte [Source]

For Users….

Users aren’t concerned about your conversion rate. For them, it’s about how efficient they perceive things on your website to be. They’re not thinking about your bounce rates. They’re thinking about buying a product and buying it efficiently. They’re thinking about themselves.

Last night I was attempting to buy a pair of boots from an online retailer I will leave nameless. Without even checking any TTFB tools or any load speed tools, it “felt” slow. It didn’t look like it was loading. My experience felt lethargic. “Felt.” I didn’t care what the Google Load Speed tool said about it or what YSlow had to say about the whole thing. I was a shopper and to me it felt slow, a perception that sent me off to a competitor.

Yep – I went off and bought from a (faster) competitor.

A quick dig around shows the site is on the Magento platform and it’s widely discussed and complained about that Magento is slow. But there measures you can take to speed Magento sites (or any sites for that matter) up. Take a look at Harvey Nichols – a site that runs on Magento and is quick.

Investing in Speed

I’ve encountered a number of situations now where load speed recommendations I make are put the bottom of a priority list, this in spite of the fact that load speed has an influence on search visibility and conversion.

If you had a shop full of customers queuing up for too long, you’d invest in more staff. Do the same online and invest in speed.

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