Nowadays, websites need to be lightning-fast. Users expect high-speed load times and if engaging content doesn’t appear within a blink of the eye, then they are gone… and may never return. The good news is that today I’m going to tell you the importance of site load time and what you can do to improve yours…
Why Does Site Load Time Matter?
It’s no question that we prefer a site that loads quickly compared to one that doesn’t: but how much does it really matter?
Slow site speed can result in poor search engine rankings, lower overall site traffic, and negative user experiences. Websites that take a long time to load tend to have a higher bounce rate and lower conversion rate too. The following site speed statistics show just how important load time is...
It’s clear that slow loading site time will not only directly affect conversions but also have a negative impact on SEO, increase advertising costs and as a result, affect your overall revenue.
- 78% of online shoppers who struggle with slow sites say they will not return (Akamai; Hubspot)
- 44% of them would tell a friend if they have experienced a bad online shop (Akamai)
- An extra second can drop customer satisfaction by 16% (Aberdeen)
How Important Is Mobile Load Time?
Mobile web has become the most widely used platform in the world and websites must be optimised for mobile use as well as for desktop browsing as more and more users expect and demand a speedy mobile experience.
Industry research by Google/SOASTA indicates that 53% of mobile users will leave a page that takes longer than three seconds to load yet most sites are nowhere near that speed; in fact, over 70% of the sites they looked into took around seven seconds to fully load. The research also highlights how slow load times can affect conversion rates stating a 1-second delay on mobile load times can impact conversion rates by up to 20%.
What’s A Good Load Time?
According to Google, the time you should be aiming for is three seconds. In fact, if your website takes double that time, the probability of people leaving your site increases by 106%!
So your next question should be;
Why Is My Website So Slow?
There are a number of elements that can impact your site speed:
Images usually make up the majority of ‘weight’ on a website, resulting in a slow site. However, you can easily optimise this by saving your images as .jpeg files, reduce resolution or dimensions and compress them. This can be done on any sort of graphic program.
Have too many resources that a browser needs to download will slow down your page. These files include your HTML page, each image, scripts, CSS and other files.
Your server is measured by Time To First Byte (TTFB) and it tracks how long it takes for a browser to begin loading your code (this impacts your search engine ranking directly!!). Google recommends to be under 1.3 seconds but most sites are over two. If your time is long, then your server might not be able to handle your traffic or the content on your website.
How Can I Improve My Websites Speed?
Not only do the above suggestions cause slow load time, but by looking into them, and making some edits, should also increase load time. Some more elements that you can look into include:
- Current Speed
Test to see what your site is currently running at. From this, you can prioritise the features and pages that need the most attention regarding conversion, usability and visibility.
Once you have found out why your website is running slow, you can focus your attention and optimise them to improve your conversion.
- Content Delivery Network (CDN)
Instead of all of your user requests being sent to the same server and slowing it down, a CDN helps by spreading the requests across a number of locations, and the nearest server will provide the data to its local users.
- Accelerated Mobile Page (AMP)
Sometimes an AMP isn’t worth the hassle, but you should consider it when you hear this;
Google claims it cuts load time between 15% - 85%
It should be something that you consider if you are redesigning since most consumers use their smartphones to shop.
Why A Slow Website Killing Your Conversions
Every millisecond you cut off your sites load time will boost user experience and confidence in your site. It may seem like a daunting task, but it’s clear from the amount of data out there that having have quick site load time will have a positive impact, not just on your conversion, but on your sites overall performance.
To find out more and how Flint Studios can assist with your websites load time, contact our team today.
Call us on 028 9045 5554