If your online store takes more than a few seconds to load, the slow speed affects your business in more ways than you think. Learn more about the consequences of poor website performance and learn how to speed up your Magento shopping cart.
Slow Online Stores Lose Customers
Consumers are more sensitive to page load time than most retailers suspect. It is estimated that with every following second needed for your online store to load you are losing about 10% of prospective customers. If you combine it with the staggering statistics showing that 79% of customers will not return to a business, if the website performance was poor, the conclusions are very clear: you need to optimize your store for faster performance. Acceptable page load time is anything under 4 seconds, with one second being the goal.
Slow Stores are more difficult to Promote
If losing customers was not enough, it turns out that page load time has a direct impact on your store’s visibility in Google search engine. Page speed is one of the features included in Google algorithms, which are used to determine the services at the top of the Google page ranking. And the lower your website is in the ranking, the less people will take notice and visit your website. What is the desired page speed for search engine optimization? Experts agree that 2 seconds is acceptable, however the faster, the better.
How to Check page Load Time?
Google Page Speed Analyzer is one of the best tools to test just how fast your website really is. The program is free and it does not require any technical knowledge. There are two main advantages of using this particular tool. Firstly, since Page Speed Analyzer is a Google product, it is best in establishing your website speed for Google search engine, the most popular search engine in the world. Secondly, you can test any page you want, including different areas of your website and the URLs of your biggest competitors. How is your website performing in comparison to your competition?
How to have a Faster Loading Online Store?
There is no simple answer to that question and often the only solution is to hire Magento developers, who will be able to determine the source of the problem and change the code if necessary. There are, though, few easy things you can try to do by yourself. Content optimization is the first thing to try: often the site is loading slowly because of the size or number of pictures on the page. Try smaller pictures or get rid of some of them to find out if this works. The number of items in stock can be another reason why the store is loading slowly, although this problem starts to be noticeable when your offer includes at least several hundreds of products. Last, but not least, the problem can be caused by poor quality hosting services. If you suspect that this could be the case, contact your hosting provider to describe your problem or look for a better hosting plan.
Marta Gromadzka is a writer and editor with a wide variety of experience, including writing for websites internationally and editing books on many different subjects and in a variety of formats.