Personally, I don't trust sites that take more than a few seconds to load and I don't think I'm alone in that. I've written about slow site speed before and you've probably read about it or heard some developers talking about how bad it is for your site. This is true, but let's talk about how is affects your site's user experience.
“The wisest are the most annoyed at the loss of time.”
- Dante Alighieri
Your site's speed is directly related to it's performance. The terms are probably even interchangeable. If your site isn't performing well, your users are going to have a terrible time on their visit and probably won't stick around.
Let's think of it like this: Almost everyone shops on Amazon; it's huge, reliable, and they have a quick, easy purchase path. If there site was experiencing some slow loading, it wouldn't instantly hurt their image, but do you think you'd complete the purchase? Well, it's hard to say. You'd most likely assume the site is going through an update or something and just try to complete the purchase at a later time.
At this point, the user's thought flow has been broken. You've lost your opportunity to create a seamless experience for your visitor.
So if your e-commerce site isn't quite at amazon's level, how do you think your visitors will react to your slow site?
According to Akamai and Forrester's research:
- Nearly half of web users expect a site to load in 2 seconds or less, and they tend to abandon a site that isn’t loaded within 3 seconds.
- 79% of web shoppers who have trouble with web site performance say they won’t return to the site to buy again.
- Around 44% of them would tell a friend if they had a poor experience shopping online.
So let's pretend your site gets 1,000 visitors in a month and it takes longer than 3 seconds to load. Statistically, you'd lose 790 of those visitors and they probably won't return. Plus you have the 44% telling their friends about their experience.
This is potentially business-ruining! It seems like site speed is expected in the seamless website experience nowadays.
Your website isn't just a virtual business card, it's your strongest marketing tool. When so many people believe a website reflects the company, it seems like settling on inadequate user experience is a bad move.
If you're worried about your site's speed, click the button below for a free performance report.