The Importance Of Mobile Website Performance
One, one thousand. Two, two thousand. Three, three thousand. Right, site hasn’t loaded; I’m done here. That might seem impatient, but according to a DoubleClick survey released in September 2017, more than half of people abandon loading a website if it isn’t up in just three seconds. It’s something Apple engineers didn’t consider when they were caught decelerating older iPhone models with a less-than-perfect battery, for example, and it’s something website designers need to continuously consider.
Smartphones do not always have access to a high speed LTE or Wi-Fi network and the average load time for a mobile website over a 3G data connection is a yawning nineteen seconds. DoubleClick’s data shows that most people have given up way before this point. This reduces advertising revenue: it means less money for the website operators. Part of the problem is the online industry itself: almost half of all site server requests are associated with advertising. This is something not lost on customers: the perception is that a slow moving website is full of adverts. Google’s DoubleClick service illustrates this: fast loading websites earn more revenue than slow loading websites, even if they contain fewer adverts.
Google has some technologies designed to help, such as AMP, Accelerated Mobile Pages. AMP is a means of accessing a website considerably quicker than the normal web, and it doesn’t strip out all adverts either. Instead, AMP sites can include ads, together with simplified layouts and fewer images. Many websites already offer an AMP site, which a compatible device will load. AMP webpages load considerably quicker than full websites, and this is exactly the point. Google has also recently announced that the Chrome browser will stop displaying adverts from websites that do not comply with guidelines set down by the Coalition for Better Ads, although at the time of writing I cannot be sure what sort of performance difference this will make as the technology does not need to go live until February 2018.
Most websites receive their greatest number of hits from mobile devices; it’s time to check how well your website works, and if it’s slow, do something about it.