Are your website visitors happy with your site’s performance? As happy as they could be? Probably not—people tend to complain only when a situation is so out of control that they have no other choice. With online visitors, they’ll often “show” their dissatisfaction by leaving your site (and likely never returning again). Check out these web performance statistics to see what’s driving your visitors away, and how your web hosting is playing a big role.
According to Web Performance Today, 44 percent of online shoppers have said a slow site makes them worry about whether or not the transaction will be a success. In general, shoppers recall waiting online to be 35 percent longer than what they waited—so just imagine how slow a “slow site” seems to be for your customers. Plus, having a progress bar that loads in under five seconds will still make the page feel even slower (pro tip: Ditch those progress bars).
Slow and Steady Loses the E-commerce Race
Radware reports that over half of American online shoppers say slow sites are the number one reason they abandon shopping carts. In fact, just a two-second delay shoots up abandonment by 87 percent. The average abandonment rate is 70 percent, which is still very high, but slowness alone kicks it up an extra 17 percent. That’s a rate nobody can afford.
In total, abandonment shopping carts cost e-tailers over $18 billion per year. Of course, slowness isn’t the only factor (and it’s not always in your control). Still, when it makes up such a huge piece of the puzzle and is often easy to address, it’s akin to throwing away profits. Take that 17-18 percent due to slowness, and that alone is $3 billion per year on all US e-commerce websites. There are also 46 percent of shoppers who say that site speed is the priority when thinking about whether they’ll visit a site again in the future or not.
“Slow” is a Four-Letter Word
Web Performance Today also notes that 64 percent of people on smartphones expect sites to load in under four seconds. However, if it takes eight or more seconds to load, visitors really spend just one percent of that time looking at main banner content. The “performance poverty line” is usually about eight seconds, and smartphone users want instant gratification even quicker than desktop users—even though mobile devices may, in general, be slower to load.
With web performance, you can see that speed is a huge factor. Fortunately, it’s also a factor that’s in your control much of the time, beginning with your web host. The majority of websites, especially for smaller businesses, rely on basic shared hosting plans. However, virtual private server/VPS hosting plans are gaining momentum. You get the same perks as with a dedicated hosting plan (which almost nobody can afford) but for the same price as basic shared plans. This means more speed and more security.