We’ve all seen the stat (or one similar): 57% of consumers will wait no more than three seconds for a web page to render before abandoning the site. Whether you think that’s a little harsh or not, that’s the maximum load time we should we working to, otherwise we face visitors hitting the close tab icon before they’ve had a chance to hear what we have to say.
Radware, a provider of cyber security and application delivery solutions, conducted a study to see how many of the top desktop websites in travel, news, sports and eCommerce pass the three-second test.
The firm calls load time “the most basic test of usability”, suggesting that if you fail, it doesn’t bode well for your website.
The results show that a staggering 78% of top news sites exceed the three-second time-to-load window. However, the worst culprits for keeping users waiting are sports sites, with only three of the top 50 in the category passing the test, as revealed in Radware’s 2016 State of the Union: Multi-Industry Web Performance (Desktop Edition) report.
Sports and news websites weren’t exceptions, however. Some 80% of travel sites were also failing to load in a timely manner – not ideal when you consider that the travel industry claims 75% of its bookings through online customers.
Firms whose websites take longer than three seconds to load will lose both sales and advertising revenue, stresses Radware’s Kent Alstad. Kissmetrics claims that for an e-commerce site making $100,000 (£70,000) per day, a one-second page delay could potentially cost them $2.5 million (£1.8 million) in lost sales every year.
This will not come as a great surprise to many businesses, but Radcare’s findings suggest that few are doing anything about it. First things first, though, analyse your site’s speed via Google’s PageSpeed Insights or a similar resource, to see how much time needs to be made up.