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Performance Matters More Than Ever - The Business Impact of Web Performance

In April of this year, we got the official word -- the average webpage now exceeds 2MB in size. If it seems like page size is increasing at an incredible rate...you aren't imagining things.  In July of last year, the average page size had just exceeded 1.5 MB for the top 1,000 websites. 

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Where is the weight coming from? Survey says: images. Approximately 65% of the weight of a page is coming from images, while stylesheets, HTML, scripts and fonts take up the rest. It's not only the amount of images that are increasing, the images themselves are getting larger as well -- the size of the images on pages has increased 2.4x since 2011.

The reasons for the increase are clear: consumers want richer experiences, and retail sites want to provide high quality images to increase conversions. The problem? Depending on the device and network connectivity large images can run counter to providing end users with the fast, high performing experiences they want.

If anyone is still yet to be convinced about the business impact of customer experience and performance, consider the following statistics:

  • 30% of e-commerce consumers expect a page to load in one second or less, compared to only 5% expecting 1 second or less in 2009.
  • It's estimated than over $3 billion dollars are lost due to slow checkout pages
  • One hour of downtime can cost over $100,000 or more depending on the size of your company
  • 50% of e-commerce users experience slowdown during high traffic occasions, and 82% of those have had website access prevented
  • Almost half of all users who experience slow checkout won't return to the site
  • 90% of smartphone users use their phone for pre-shopping activities, influencing almost $1.5 trillion in in-store sales
  • Each day on the Akamai network, we see over 7,000 different devices (and these devices are using different networks, platforms and operating systems)

So, what now? In past posts I've delved into benefits and pitfalls of Responsive Web Design (RWD), a design method to address the multi-screen customer and discussed how Akamai web performance solutions can overcome RWD's shortcomings and provide seamless experiences on mobile devices. I urge you to check them out here and here. You can also test your site to see how you can optimize it for different devices and networks. For more, check out www.akamai.com/perfmatters and stay tuned for future posts where I will discuss best practices handling peak and holiday traffic spikes.

1 Comment

You are absolutely correct! Browsers, like Microsoft throw large image advertisement at the top of its page. If you have a laptop, it takes a large chunk of the screen. In the past year, I have increased my Verizon FIOS speed from 25M to 75M and can't tell the difference. Almost no point in increasing your cable input speed unless one wants to pay out more money to the cable companies. Perhaps, a new JPEG has to be developed or a new streaming technique has to be developed to smoothly move images and data.
Thanks,
Good Article

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