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How can loading speed influence your online store?

11/08/2022
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Often the team managing an eCommerce is not aware enough about the importance of providing a fast-loading speed, or they simply don't know which aspects are the most influential when determining the loading time.

With LogiCommerce you will always achieve an outstanding speed to ensure the best for both your eCommerce and your customers. Without causing drops in Google rankings or abandoned carts while simultaneously increasing and decreasing the processing capacity according to the number of visitors and the workloads involved to achieve a stable loading speed in the face of these traffic peaks.

Our content delivery network (CDN) improves the loading time of static content, moving the content closer to its destination and reducing latencies, since it is a distributed CDN that applies caching policies.

What do we refer to when we talk about the website loading time of an online store?

The loading speed of an online store is determined by the average time required to load the content of the different pages that are part of the eCommerce, and it is a factor that directly influences the user's shopping experience.

When we refer to the loading time, there are two important parameters to highlight. Firstly, the TTFB (Time to first byte), refers to the time it takes for the browser to display the content, and secondly, the TTI (Time to interact), that means the time it takes for the user to interact with the web page. The first time is usually the server's responsibility, and the second is usually determined by the JS (JavaScript) and CSS (cascading style sheets) load managed by the browser.

However, it is true that there are several factors that your eCommerce cannot directly influence, such as, the device (mobile or computer), the browser and the Internet connection used by the user. There are also factors that your eCommerce can interfere with to improve loading times. Throughout the article we will highlight the most important ones.

Which aspects of your eCommerce can interfere with the loading speed?

User experience. It is the key element that will determine whether a user decides to buy from your online store in the future or not. Even if we think otherwise, the loading time of the pages of an eCommerce is a factor that directly influences this decision. The experience generated in an online store is one of the main differentiating factors of a brand and can become an added value if it is positive.

In addition, in terms of user experience, if the TTFB and the TTI, mentioned already above, are fast, the user's feeling will be good, and therefore their experience will be positive.

Conversion rate. In most cases, the main goal of a business is to convert users into customers. This is closely related to the customer experience. That is, if the experience you offer as a brand in your online store is positive and has a fast-loading time, the user will find no reason to not make a purchase on it. However, if the loading time is slow, the user may end up leaving the website and consequently you will lose a customer.

SEO positioning. If the content of your online store is not displayed after a certain loading time, Google will penalize it. Therefore, it is important to optimize the loading time for Google to position your brand in its search results.

Bounce rate. Related to the previous point, the bounce rate refers to the percentage of users who leave the eCommerce after visiting just one of its pages. If you have a high bounce rate, Google will crawl your web page and will position it negatively in its search engine since it will possibly mean that the content you offer is not of value. For this reason, you should try to favor the customer experience with something as important as it is working on fast loading speed to finally increase the conversion rate, improve the user experience and reduce the bounce rate.

Return on investment. If the conversion rate is low, and the bounce rate high, it will mean that users won't create almost any interaction with your eCommerce and they will visit other competitor's websites to satisfy their shopping needs. In addition, it will mean that your brand will not even appear to users among the search options. This will fully affect the ROI since, due to a slowdown in the loading of the different pages, good results will not be generated.

How can you improve the loading speed of your online store?

Optimization of videos and images

Users want good quality images to preview the product before buying it. In many cases, images and videos represent a high percentage of the content on the different pages of an eCommerce.

Although it is true that they have a big weight, there are different ways to optimize them to improve the loading time, such as WebP format, a file format created by Google to reduce the size of the images and, thus, reduce the loading time of them. Nowadays, this is even more important since most of the time we navigate through the Internet is using our smart phones. This results in bandwidth savings and, as a consequence, faster loading of images on websites that use this image format.

Font

If we want to obtain a good balance between performance and design, you should pay special attention to the optimization of fonts and avoid abusive use.

If what you really care about is performance over design or brand image, the ideal thing is to optimize downloading and painting, using directly the font of the user's operating system to avoid the browser having to download the font.

The more fonts you have, the less efficient the loading is and the more complex the optimization will be. Not using fonts or just using one font is the best strategy to save on development costs and improve performance, however, sacrificing something in the design.

Third-party applications

These are applications that you can add to any part of your website to extend its features. They have the risk of negatively affecting load time if they are not implemented properly.

Hosting

The loading speed, the uptime, and the performance of a web hosting can boost your eCommerce. Choosing a quality hosting is very important. That way, you won't have to worry about the loading time since all this will be managed by the platform itself. LogiCommerce, for example, has a solid and reliable technology based on high performance at an affordable cost that provides you full control of all your Front-ends to ensure a seamless customer experience.

Mobile-friendly design

It is very important to keep this in mind since users are increasingly choosing to perform their searches through mobile devices, tablets, and others apart from the desktop. For this reason, you must ensure that the loading speed on other devices is fast and agile.

A responsive design always tends to penalize on mobile and tablet devices, and to avoid this, several adjustments must be made. A specific mobile or tablet version will ensure greater control of what will be presented on both devices, loading only what is really necessary to achieve better performance.

Local browser cache

An online store saves certain elements temporarily in a browser's local storage. This way, when a user visits the same web page for the second time, it will automatically load resources from the cache without having to request it. Optimal cache management is achieved through the appropriately parameterized Cache-control header.

Database

Most of the information you add in an online store is stored in the database, taking up space and reducing the loading speed, so it is advisable to delete all content, images, products, or any other content that you are not using or that are outdated.

Código web

During the whole development process and constant updating of an eCommerce, programming languages such as JavaScript, HTML, CSS, etc. are used. The changes, modifications and updates that are made over time, should not cause drops in performance. That is why it is so important to follow good practices and do it correctly.

To sum up

The loading speed is one of the main reasons for abandonment in an eCommerce; it will make you lose visits and sales, and, above all, those users who would become customers. For this reason, it is very important to choose the right eCommerce platform that takes into account all the above aspects to enhance the loading speed, and also, is responsible for ensuring its fast-loading speed.

The simple fact of frequently analyzing the speed of your eCommerce will allow you to obtain a higher number of sales, a better positioning, a lower bounce rate, and an excellent customer experience.

Providing the user with the convenience and agility to access the content of your online store, will be a great competitive advantage for your brand and a great satisfaction for the customer. Undoubtedly, a good loading speed will help you to optimize and improve your eCommerce among the first search results.

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