You may think your site loads fast enough for your customers, but what about those days when it feels like it’s running on molasses? No one likes visiting a website that takes too long to load up in the first place, and speed is one of the main issues our clients have brought up with us when it comes to their business’s current website.
There are a few reasons why some websites load more slowly than others. Some websites will have too many functions and features that are unnecessary and potential customers will never use them. Other issues include unoptimized images and issues with your current hosting and content networks. One of the biggest reasons is when a template/theme website is chosen over a custom one; the theme kind usually comes complete with functions that your customers will never use. On top of that, it takes effort to load these unneeded features, which increases wait time.
Whatever the reason may be for your site’s slow loading times, there are a few reasons having a fast-loading business website matters so much in the long run, and that’s exactly why you need to sign up for one of ours.
- Slow sites are a bad first impression
There’s a bit of psychology involved with fast websites. The thing is, we expect every site we come across to load fast. The speed is a sign of professionalism, reliability, efficiency, confidence, and trust, all rolled into one. A slow website presents the exact opposite of these reactions: distrust, insecurity, and unsafe. If a site loads too slowly, customers will click away fast, no matter how good the rest of the site may be.
Your first impression should always consist of the former reactions. It’s the best way to not only get new customers, but also to retain your most loyal ones. You really don’t get a second chance when it comes to potential customers, so you need to take advantage of the first chance as much as possible instead.
- Speed is what we expect
According to research, speed is what we expect of the Internet from the get-go. Not only do 47% of people expect a site to load in 2 seconds, but also approximately 40% of those people will abandon a site if it takes 3 seconds to load. That’s less time than it takes to make an actual decision!
It makes sense, too. Think about how you as a business owner use the Internet every day. You haven’t got time to browse for too long when you’re looking for the answer to a question; you want those answers to be quick, and the results to be immediate. Unlike Google and Facebook or other authoritative websites where people are willing to allow a little leeway in waiting time, small businesses and startups really don’t have that luxury. Your site has to be fast from the start, otherwise you lose that 40% you need to your competition.
- Your site’s SEO is affected too
Way back in 2010, Google started to use speed as a ranking signal in their algorithm. To this day it is still one of many factors that will determine where a website will show up in search engine results. Google knows that sending people to slow loading websites can damage the user experience, so it’s no shock to see that the giant of search engines still values fast loading speed.
While site speed is not nearly as impactful on the average site’s ranking as relevance and authority, super slow sites will definitely see negative results to their rank on SERPs. So, yes, a fast-loading site helps your overall SEO as well.
- Slow sites ruin conversion rates
Several studies have been conducted by bigger companies such as Walmart regarding their conversion rates and site speed. In Walmart’s case, they discovered that if loading times extended from 1 second to 4 seconds, that meant losing a ton of conversion rates in the process. Meanwhile, should improvement have been seen, conversion rates would jump up to a 2% increase.
Going back to the previous fact about 40% of people abandoning a slow site, imagine that you get 100,000 customers per month. If your site slowed its loading time to 4 seconds instead of 2, you’re looking at losing 40,000 potential customers!
And that’s just talking about bigger companies. If people don’t have patience for them, what chances do smaller companies have if their site won’t load fast enough?
- There are long-term effects of a slow site
It’s very clear what the short-term effects of a slow loading website can be, but there are long-term consequences to consider as well. Not only will it create undesired negative word-of-mouth marketing (you can read more about how to get the positive kind here), but also it will make your site’s natural growth grind to a halt. Customers will slowly stop referring your site to others because of such poor user experience, other established companies will be less inclined to link back to your website, and it might even put people off from using your other services such as signing up for a newsletter, contacting you online, or using their cart to pay for products.
All of this can hurt your company’s brand, and all because your site can’t load fast enough. That’s because a slow site to us means a lack of credibility and, again, trust.
You’ve worked hard to get your company to where it’s at today. A fast website can improve your conversion rates by tenfold, improve your SEO, and most importantly it will improve your customers’ online experience.
Now that you know a little more about the benefits of fast-loading websites, it’s time to take the one for your business to the next level. Give us a call today if you would like to get a new custom site that not only loads fast, but also is yours and yours alone.