We've all been there. You pull up a website, either to browse or answer a specific question - and it doesn't want to load. More quickly than you might want to admit, you navigate back to Google search results and look for an alternative that's more user-friendly.
You're not alone. In fact, your target audience thinks the exact same way. Website speed has become increasingly crucial in making sure that you not just attract the attention of potential customers, but also keep them interested as you present your value proposition.
If your website takes too long to load, you may never even have a chance to convince your visitors about the benefits of your product or service. More specifically, here are 3 reasons website speed matters for your business.
3 Reasons Website Speed Matters for Your Business
1) Improve Your User Experience
It's no surprise that across industries and demographics, users don't tend to be patient. In fact, our online attention span is now at 8 seconds, and continuing to drop. If you want to get through to your audience, you have to make sure to reach them quickly and effectively.
Put simply, a slow-loading website doesn't accomplish that feat. No less than 47 per cent of your visitors expect your website to load within 2 seconds, and 40 per cent will actually abandon your website altogether if it takes 3 seconds or more.
That tendency only increases for mobile users, who make up an increasingly large portion of your audience. To make a great first impression and maintain your audience's attention, you need a fast-loading website.
2) Increase Your SEO Efforts
Of course, page load speed also affects just where Google and other search engines will rank your website. Google specifically takes into account page load speed in an effort to optimise its user experience.
Look at it this way: Google's goal is to serve users the most relevant search results possible. That relevance depends not just on the content, but also on the user experience after a searcher clicks on a link. That, in fact, is exactly what makes user experience such a vital SEO strategy. An optimised and improved experience will almost necessarily make an impact in your search engine optimisation efforts.
3) Protect Your Bottom Line
Finally, don't underestimate the tangible impact that low page speed has on your bottom line. Every second added to the time it takes for your website to load will reduce your conversions by 7 per cent. Meanwhile, e-commerce giant Amazon found that simply increasing its page load time by one second lost the company $1.6 billion in global revenue.
Depending on your company size, the impact of slow website speed may not be quite that drastic. Still, KissMetrics estimates that your business will lose $25 a year for every dollar you make daily, even if your load speed only drops by one second. The only way to protect that revenue is to speed up your website and keep your visitors happy and interested.
How to Improve Your Website Speed
In short, a fast-loading website is vital for any business looking to effectively use and optimise its online presence. But how do you get to that point?
First, Google has developed a tool specifically to answer that question. Simply enter your URL, and wait for the results to come in. The tool distinguishes mobile and desktop speed, allowing you to optimise your website for both audiences. A detailed report is available for free, giving you helpful tips to optimise your speed.
Of course, that optimisation may require external help. In that case, we'd love to partner with you. Recognising the importance of website speed, we want to help Australian businesses make sure their online presence can hold up to rising audience expectations. Contact us today to learn about our web design services, and ask about a potential partnership.