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How Does Page Speed Really Affect Your Conversions?

Page loading time directly influences conversions, page views, SEO, and revenues.

But can a single factor like page load speed make a difference in conversions? Yes, it can, and the impact is bigger than you could imagine. Akamai found in a study that a two-second delay in page load can increase the bounce rate by 100%.

Page load time— What does it actually mean?

Website load time or page load time refers to the amount of time it takes for a website (or webpage) to fully load on your screen. This includes all the content of the page, such as text and images. 

Simply put, it measures how fast a webpage loads.

Page speed is affected by many factors. These include page type, user behavior and also file size. Your website’s mobile loading speed is important, too. 

Page speed has always been an important search engine ranking factor for websites, and with Google’s increasing focus on sites’ mobile-friendliness, it is now more crucial than ever to pay attention to your site’s loading speed not just on laptops and PCs but also on mobile devices.

But unfortunately, most websites we have today are non-responsive in nature. That is, they offer a skewed view when opened on mobile devices. Besides, mobile pages take longer to load than desktop pages. This should change considering how important criterion responsiveness is. As a matter of fact, 68% of all site visits in 2020 were from mobile devices. 

So, if you want to improve the load speed of your website, make sure you take measures to improve it across devices.

So, now you know that low page load speed impacts conversions. But how?

In a research study, more than 40% of the respondents stated that they would tell a friend or a relative if they had a bad experience with a website. Meaning, slow loading time will not just upset your existing visitors, it will also discourage your future visitors from shopping at your site.

 

A lot of businesses have now gone online, but very few realize how important improving page speed is. It’s a matter of concern that most online retailers don’t have page load speed included in their annual priorities. Instead of focusing on site performance, SEO etc., they tend to focus more on “tangible” enhancements, such as design, social media presence, and paid ads.

 

That’s a mistake! Industry experts and research studies—both point to the fact that page loading speed directly impacts conversions, page views, SEO as well as revenues.

 

According to a report, 75% of users will abandon a page if it takes longer than 3 seconds to load. In fact, around 45% of online shoppers expect websites to load in 2 seconds or less.

 

Hence, in order to satisfy your customers, you must increase the load speed of your website. It’s interesting to note that even a little extra loading time leads to a significant decrease in customer satisfaction. Just add one extra second to the load speed, and you will see your users drifting away. It will suddenly become painfully difficult to engage and retain customers. 

Remember, page speed is a factor in how customers interact on your website. So, this can also have an effect on their likelihood of purchasing from you.

How speed of your website can affect your sales

You are losing tons of customers and potential sales if your website has speed problems.

Sadly, customers that are not satisfied with the user experience of a site are highly likely to talk negatively about it. HubSpot, which is concerned about these unhappy customers, states that 80% of them are less likely to buy again from the same website, if it’s a shopping site. This is a huge

 loss in potential repeat visitors.

Repeat visitors are crucial for ecommerce players. According to Business Insider, they account for up to 48% in all transactions. Walmart has done an impressive analysis on their online sales, and the behavior of customers in relation to page loading time. This was done in order to quantify page speed’s importance for conversions. A sharp decline in conversion rate occurs when the average site load times increase from 1 – 4 seconds.

No matter what kind of business you use your site for, you can reap significant financial benefits with page load speed improvements, regardless of how large or small your current customer base is.

The ideal page load time

We have seen above that a huge percentage of people leave sites that take longer than three seconds to load. Google revealed that the truth about page load speeds is quite alarming. The search engine giant says that an average mobile landing page takes between 20 and 25 seconds to fully load. So, many websites are still miles away from the optimal loading speed.

It’s essential to speed up your site’s page load time for a purposeful online presence. Here is how to do it—

  • Use a content delivery network—

Do you want to speed up your website load time fast? If yes, then using a CDN would be the best bet. This will reduce the distance information must travel from your server to the user. A Content Delivery Network (CDN) is a network of geographically distributed servers (also known as POPs). These points work in conjunction to serve your web pages faster. CDNs are a great way to speed up websites that use HTML, JavaScript, stylesheets and images.

  • Limit HTTP requests—

Reducing HTTP requests is a powerful way to speed up page load times. A web browser asks the server for files when a user visits a page. After the server returns the files requested, the browser renders the page content. The browser sends a separate HTTP request to each file that makes up the page’s information. The larger the number of files on a page, the more HTTP requests are made and the slower your web page loads.

  • Minification of JavaScript and CSS—

Another way to reduce page load time is to minify JavaScript files and CSS files. Minification is the process of eliminating any unnecessary characters, comments and spaces from your code. Instead, it uses shorter variable or function names. This streamlines the code. A page loading process is faster and easier if there are less bytes of data on it.

  • Streamlined HTML for reduced page load times—

Speed up your website’s load time by streamlining your HTML code. Bloated HTML makes it more difficult to transfer data to users. This can also cause JavaScript to slow down when manipulating the DOM. If your HTML pages have 5,000 to 6000 lines of code, you might be looking at bloated HTML.

  • Go for image optimization—

What is one of the biggest causes behind slow websites? Large images. There are websites that have images over 1MB, and others over 5MB. Avoid adding such huge images to your site. Large file sizes can dramatically slow down your landing page’s speed and frustrate site visitors.

Optimize your images for a good speed, but don’t destroy the image quality. It is important to keep your images small but not too small. You also need to avoid a sloppy website. 

  • Make use of expires headers—

Expires headers can be used to reduce the page load speed for returning visitors. They direct the browser to either pull the file from the browser’s cache or request it from the server. This reduces both the number of HTTP requests and the downloads to the server. It speeds up websites significantly.

  • Limit server downloads by using expires headers—

Modern websites often contain numerous files per webpage. Every file, especially large ones, adds load time to websites. Each request to the server takes time, which can cause the load to further get delayed. Expires headers help here because they can tell the cache how long it should keep a file so that new downloads and HTTP requests are not made.

  • Stay away from URL redirects, if possible—

URL redirects refer to an instruction or method that automatically redirects a user from one URL to another. There are many ways to implement a URL redirect. The 301 redirect method is used to maintain the SEO value for the forwarding page. However, no matter which type of redirect is used, it can slow down your website’s speed as it takes longer to get from one URL to another. It is best to limit or eliminate URL redirects when possible.

To summarize

Your visitors are happier when your website loads faster. You can expect improvements in the user experience (UX), conversion rate, and ultimately sales revenue by simply optimizing your website’s loading time.

Since website load times have an impact on conversion rates, it consequently impacts the performance of your entire business. It doesn’t really require a lot of time or significant effort to make sure your load time is efficient, it only takes the desire. And now that you know how to optimize your web page speed, start implementing the strategies. And you’ll notice an improvement in UX, conversions, revenue, and other factors.

We also learned above that online visibility can be affected by your website speed on mobile devices.

Google realized the rise of mobile traffic in 2017 and created its Mobile-First Index. This index allows Google to rank websites better based on their mobile performance than desktop.

As more than half of all traffic worldwide was generated via mobile phones in 2018, it is clear how critical mobile page loading time is for all online businesses.

This means that your mobile site speed is directly affecting your SEO game. It could negatively impact your rankings on Google and other search engines.

Mogi’s Proprietary Image Tech

Mogi’s Core Image Tech provides up to 80% lossless compression on images, making them extremely light for easy loading. It also auto-resizes images based on the screen size of the device to better optimize the image quality and the view. Finally, the smart crop also removes non-prominent areas from the images. Mogi’s Core Image Tech can be integrated seamlessly with your existing system. You can either choose your CDN or our CDN and we would work, either way, compressing and optimizing images on the fly. Clients have got up to 4x faster website load time, and 50% savings on bandwidth and CDN bills through lighter images.

Contact us now to make your website load faster, rank Higher on SEO, and reduce bounce rates – susheel.srinivas@mogiio.com

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