Market Overview

Slow Websites Are Silent Killers for Businesses

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Global report finds 73% of consumers would move to a competitor if a
website is slow to load

Key findings

  • In a poll of 3,200 in the UK and USA, eight out of 10 adults (80%)
    find a consistently slow running website more frustrating than one
    that is down.
  • Just under three quarters (73%) would abandon a slow running website
    and go to a competitor.
  • Website speed is important to 88% of Brits and 85% of Americans.
  • Slow websites frustrate 60% of consumers compared to a website that is
    down (23%).

Over 80% of consumers are more frustrated by consistently slow websites
than those that are temporarily down. That's according to a global
online study today from Eggplant,
the customer experience optimization specialists.

Eggplant polled a combined total of 3,200 UK and US adults on attitudes
to website speed and performance, and found that a business with a slow
or underperforming website is likely to lose 73% of its customers to a
competitor.

While outages are a problem for businesses around the world, the survey
reveals that a slow website is much more damaging than one that is
temporarily down. To stay competitive and retain customers, retailers
must focus on website speed alongside website availability.

UK findings
81% of Brits find a slow website more
frustrating to use than one that is down or not working. In fact, 7 in
10 (70%) of UK adults rate website speed as important when it comes to
online activity. Of this 81%, a third (33%) said website speed was very
important, while only 17% said speed was not important at all.

The online research also found that three quarters (75%) of Brits would
be likely to use a competitor website if the one they were using was
slow. This is especially important for brands who commoditize based
entirely on price such as tickets, hotel and travel sites.

When it comes to UK consumers, site speed is so important that almost 3
in 5 (60%) feel much more negative to a brand if its site is
consistently slow to load. This is in contrast to less than a quarter
(23%) who feel the same way if a site is down or not working. However,
nearly half (49%) of consumers feel slightly negative towards a brand if
its website is not working.

US Findings
Across the board, US consumers have the same
sentiment to website speed vs. downtime. Only slightly down on the UK,
79% of Americans find a slow running website more frustrating to use
than one that is down or not working. In fact, 41% of American adults
rate website speed as very important when it comes to online activity.
Like the UK, only a tiny proportion (1%) said that website speed was not
important at all.

Americans would be fractionally less likely than those in the UK to move
to a competitor if a site was slow, with 69% stating they would move
(compared to 75% in the UK). Alongside this, 24% of US consumers stated
they would eat less than half a donut before giving up on a website and
moving to another.

When it comes to American consumers, site speed is so important that
well over half (59%) feel much more negative to a brand if its site is
consistently slow to load. This is in contrast to less than a quarter
(23%) who feel the same way if a site was temporarily down or not
working.

Responsive, fast websites are a crucial part of business success
worldwide, or organizations risk losing customers to competitors. When
it comes to preparing for the peak retail period, website speed is even
more important than availability, and businesses need to be ready.

Quotes and commentary
"This goes to show that when it comes
to business performance, slow websites are a silent killer. This is
especially true in an age of instant gratification — the two-second
attention span and quick social media retaliation at anything less than
full performance. Today, speed, connectivity, and an outstanding user
experience are critical to ongoing business success, and while customers
will forgive and forget the odd bug, crash, or period of site
maintenance, they will not tolerate a site that doesn't move at the
speed they've become accustomed to."

"If brands were not aware before, they are now — website speed is
critical to business success. With retailers already preparing for the
holiday shopping season, we urge them to make sure they analyze and
optimize every element of their online presence to make sure it is
running as efficiently as possible. As the research has shown, a slow
website will drive consumers away, negatively impacting the health of
the business."
Dr. John Bates, CEO, Eggplant

For more information on the research, or to find out more about
improving website performance, please visit http://bit.ly/EPslowweb.

About the research
All figures, unless otherwise stated, are
from YouGov Plc. Total sample size of UK survey was 2,095 adults.
Fieldwork was undertaken between 3rd - 4th July 2018. The survey was
carried out online. The figures have been weighted and are
representative of all GB adults (aged 18+). Total sample size of US
survey was 1,220 adults. Fieldwork was undertaken between 5th - 9th July
2018. The survey was carried out online. The figures have been weighted
and are representative of all US adults (aged 18+).

About Eggplant
Eggplant, the fastest growing test automation
provider and a portfolio company of The Carlyle Group, provides
user-centric, intelligent testing and performance solutions designed to
optimize the digital experience, delight customers, and drive business
success. Only Eggplant enables organizations to test, monitor, analyze,
and report on the quality and responsiveness of software applications
across different interfaces, platforms, browsers, and devices, including
mobile, IoT, desktop, and mainframe. Learn more at eggplant.io.

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