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The big picture - images matter to customers

There is no doubt that images sell. On websites, the use of pictures not only illustrates a product, it encourages emotional engagement. A study by Nielsen[1] found that 63% of shoppers on mobile and tablet devices ranked product images first in importance over any other content on the page. So, what are you doing about the images on your website?

UK broadband connection speeds - the devil in the detail

On March 8th, Akamai released the Fourth Quarter 2016, State of the Internet / Connectivity Report, which gives a global view of internet connectivity trends as observed across the Akamai Intelligent Platform.  It is always an interesting read, and looking back over the report's history since its first publication in 2009, we can really see how much traffic trends and speeds have evolved.  The 'high broadband' category was then defined as speeds above 5Mbps, and had a global adoption rate of 16%.  According to the report's editor, David Belson, we are now seeing 15Mbps adoption rates at 25% worldwide!

Missed the rest of series? Click for Part 1 and Part 2

With the best will in the world and great planning, even the most stable websites occasionally suffer an unexpected outage. Your web operations team is charged with managing the risk of these unforeseen situations and they need to recognise that images are just as vital to your disaster recovery and business continuity plans.

Images are essential to the success of your online business. Good visual content does not just increase online sales, but also enhances user engagement, improves the customer experience and encourages retention. As a result, images account for 1.5MB per web page visit - or more than 60% of the bytes per webpage. Where images were just a 'nice to have' part of the web 10 years ago, they are now critical to your brand's online impact -- regardless of your industry.

Managing the holiday season in 2016: A retail challenge

eCommerce revenues keep climbing, but the pressure to reach sales targets is never more keenly felt than in the last two months of the year.  To put the changing online retail landscape in context, retailers ranked in the Internet Retailer Europe 500 grew web sales to €145.01bn (£124.58bn) last year, up by 16.8% from €124.16bn (£106.67bn) in 2014. That rate outpaced overall retail sales growth in Europe, and the same report stated 296 million consumers across the region regularly shop online and use eCommerce services.

In my last blog when I kicked off our MobilePerf Blog Series, I talked about mobile Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) and Google's guidance on how to make your sites mobile friendly. 

Google just announced that they will also factor in your mobile site's page speed when ranking your organisation in the mobile friendly search results. 

According to reports on the Search Marketing Summit in Australia, Google's Gary Illyes said that this algorithm change in Google's mobile friendly update can be expected sooner than you might think, as in months instead of years. 

Today we are kicking off a new series of blog posts where we will specifically focus on mobile experiences, challenges, solutions, tips, trends and optimisations but most importantly, you will read insight and opinions from Akamai mobile experts. The first post is on mobile SEO and Key challenges for developing and managing mobile friendly web sites and apps.

Images...They're Kind of a Big Deal

They may not have many leather bound books or smell of rich mahogany, but images are...kind of a big deal. In fact, it would be fair to say that content owners and consumers have gone a bit "image crazy" in the past few years.

One of the most frustrating experiences online is waiting for a page to load, or trying to complete a transaction for that 'must have' item, and being greeted with an unresponsive screen.  In fact, Akamai's 2015 Performance Matters report found that 49% of consumers expect a page to load in two seconds or less. As consumers' expectations for page load-speed increases, their patience for slow-loading websites decreases. Currently, only 51% of consumers "wait patiently" for a website to load, compared to 63% five years ago.

Today, delivering a consistent and compelling consumer experience is the cornerstone of every online strategy for brands and retailers. It is driving all manner of innovations including advanced personalisation, new payment methods, and mobile optimisation, with the aim to provide the best possible connection for their device, regardless of connection type and speed. 

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