Almost one-third (28 percent) of customers will not return to a slow site, according to SOASTA's 2016 Holiday Retail Insights Report.
The report’s key findings include:
■ In 2015, 57 percent of Black Friday traffic came from mobile
■ Amazon accounted for more than a third of 2015 online holiday spending
■ The “sweet spot” for peak conversions is a load time of 2.4 seconds
■ A mere one-second slowdown resulted in an 8 percent increase in bounce rate
How fast do holiday shoppers expect websites to be?
According to more than 1.5 million beacons’ worth of user data for 10 leading retailers during Cyber Week 2014 and Cyber Week 2015, the load time “sweet spot” for peak conversions was 2.4 seconds, a 37 percent decrease from the 3.8-second page load time for peak conversions in 2014. In other words, consumer expectations and behavior shifted sharply toward a preference for pages that were 37 percent faster.
Following this trend, the performance sweet spot in 2016 is likely to be two seconds or less.
What’s more, just a single-second slowdown triggered an 8 percent increase in bounce rate. A 5-second slowdown in load time (from 2 to 7 seconds) resulted in a bounce rate increase of 42 percent.
E-tailers should therefore be particularly vigilant and proactive with their load times: while overall load times improved between 2014 and 2015, in 2015 fewer visitors experienced “sweet-spot” load times than in 2014.
Online retailers must also avoid downtime at all costs, as there is a correlation between downtime and market value of brands and a significant negative correlation between outage announcements and stock returns.
The hourly cost of downtime varies by industry and size of the brand, but estimates are all mind-boggling. A 20-minute Amazon outage cost about $3.75 million. For Fortune 1000 companies, the average total cost of unplanned application downtime per year is $1.25 billion to $2.5 billion. The average hourly cost of an infrastructure failure is $100,000 per hour.
Be Like Amazon
Amazon alone accounted for more than a third (34.5 percent) of 2015 online holiday spending.
“Why? Massive inventory, competitive pricing and free shipping are part of the equation, but Amazon was also an extremely early adopter in the study of how seconds — and sometimes even milliseconds — of latency affect bounce rates, conversion rates, sales and revenue,” explained SOASTA Director of Research Tammy Everts. “As a result, Amazon enjoys a 13 percent conversion rate — and an impressive 74 percent for Prime members.”
Everts added that the key to preparing a site for the holidays requires a balance between making the site both reliable and fast. “The best solution to preparing your site for the holidays is to create an ongoing environment of continuous testing and improvement in your organization,” she explained. “You can compete with Amazon and, in fact, successfully manage all peak traffic events by offering site visitors a good experience, including secure, reliable and fast performance.”
Ann Ruckstuhl is CMO of SOASTA.
Public sector organizations undergoing digital transformation are losing confidence in IT Operations' ability to manage the influx of new technologies and evolving expectations, according to the 2017 Splunk Public Sector IT Operations Survey ...
It's no surprise that web application quality is incredibly important for businesses; 99 percent of those surveyed by Sencha are in agreement. But despite technological advances in testing, including automation, problems with web application quality remain an issue for most businesses ...
Market hype and growing interest in artificial intelligence (AI) are pushing established software vendors to introduce AI into their product strategy, creating considerable confusion in the process, according to Gartner. Analysts predict that by 2020, AI technologies will be virtually pervasive in almost every new software product and service ...
Organizations are encountering user, revenue or customer-impacting digital performance problems once every five days, according a new study by Dynatrace. Furthermore, the study reveals that individuals are losing a quarter of their working lives battling to address these problems ...
Cloud adoption is still the most vexing factor in increased network complexity, ahead of the internet of things (IoT), software-defined networking (SDN), and network functions virtualization (NFV), according to a new survey conducted by Kentik ...
Gigabit speeds and new technologies are driving new capabilities and even more opportunities to innovate and differentiate. Faster compute, new applications and more storage are all working together to enable greater efficiency and greater power. Yet with opportunity comes complexity ...
Achieving broad competence in event-driven IT will be a top three priority for the majority of global enterprise CIOs by 2020, according to Gartner, Inc. Defining an event-centric digital business strategy will be key to delivering on the growth agenda that many CEOs see as their highest business priority ...
It's not especially surprising that a new IT survey shows that cloud use for business and government poses challenges. In significant numbers across the board, respondents cited cloud complexity, compliance and security, cost control, speed of delivery, and domain expertise as the cloud problems their organizations were working to overcome this year ...