< Return to insights

Benchmark Data Quantifies the Impact of Site Speed on Conversion and Shopper Experience

The eCommerce SpeedHub, the authority for information related to site speed and eCommerce, today published the Site Speed Standard, a new online benchmark that measures the experience and conversion impact of site speed and performance, drawing on the shopping activity of more than 25 billion page views across 200 leading retailers.

The eCommerce SpeedHub provides online retailers and brands with a centralized repository of site performance content so they can learn how site speed impacts shopper experience, online conversion, and much more. The SpeedHub covers a wide range of topics and content delivered in the form of articles, industry benchmark data, infographics, and videos. Yottaa is the founding partner of the eCommerce SpeedHub.

As a key content component for the eCommerce SpeedHub, the Site Speed Standard is the industry’s first interactive database for data directly related to the impact of page load speed on eCommerce sites. Based on data from over 200 retail brands using the Yottaa digital optimization platform and more than 25 billion page views, the Site Speed Standard is the voice of authority for site performance benchmark data. While previous eCommerce site speed research focused on large brands, such as Amazon and Walmart, the Site Speed Standard is the first benchmark portal that collects and analyzes data from over 200 eCommerce sites representing a wide range of retail brands and sizes. Key findings from the initial launch of the Site Speed Standard benchmark include:

What’s a Second Worth? The benchmark data from Site Speed Standard showed that every second shaved off page load time provides a 5.7% conversion lift on mobile and 3.3% on desktop, while also reducing bounce rates by 12.2% overall.

Brands Must Beat 4 Seconds: Ecommerce sessions that beat 4 seconds capture 59% of conversions, while sessions that trail 4 seconds lead to 58% of bounces.

Buyers, Browsers, & Bouncers: Shoppers that buy, browse, and bounce have very different online experiences. Buyers have the fastest page load times and best experiences. Since browsers are future buyers, it is critical that they also have fast experiences. Shoppers that bounce from a site usually do so after having a bad experience, such as slow site speed.

The Buyer Journey is Heavily Concentrated on Two Page Types: Together, product detail pages and category pages account for more than two-thirds of all page views. These page types represent “cart-or-not moments”, as shoppers are most intimately connected to a product on these pages just prior to completing a purchase.

Optimization Cuts 15 Seconds off the Buyer Journey: On average, the typical buyer journey takes 70.2 seconds. eCommerce sites that optimize page load times are 21% faster than non-optimized sites and cut 15 critical seconds off the shopper journey leading to higher conversions.

Heavy Pages vs. Light Pages: Resource-rich sites take the longest to load. However, when optimized, these heavyweight sites actually load faster than unoptimized lightweight sites. The combination of rich 3rd party features and fast site speed result in optimized heavy pages providing better shopper experiences and higher conversions than unoptimized light pages.

Optimization Benefits Page Load Throughout the Journey: Regardless of page type, optimizing an eCommerce site results in better shopper experiences. Most beneficially, optimizing product detail pages (PDPs) has the biggest positive impact. On average, optimizing PDPs saves 2 seconds of load time.

“The real impact of site speed on online brands has for too long been overlooked and under-appreciated,” said Rick Kenney, Managing Director of Leading Lights, a leading eCommerce consulting company that builds industry benchmarks, including the Site Speed Standard. “The Site Speed Standard has taken site speed and performance out of the shadows, analyzing 25 billion pages views of shopping activity across a diverse group of 200 leading online retailers and brands. Data from the Site Speed Standard makes the impact of performance on eCommerce very clear: slow site speed is a conversion and experience killer, and faster sites provide a tremendous competitive edge by reducing bounce rates and increasing the engagement with the shopper to improve conversion.”

Click here to see the data from the Site Speed Standard or here to watch a short video about key findings from it.