Brands must optimize digital or face “serious consequences”
14. August 2020 | News, Retail Technology, Shopping Today

90% of shoppers won’t wait for a slow web page to load

Yottaa, Inc. announced the publication of a new research report, which was conducted by Retail Systems Research (RSR) and evaluates 80 major retail websites on page speed performance and shopper experience. The report also includes survey results from 1,100 consumers to provide their perspective on eCommerce site performance.

RSR assembled a list of 80 top retail sites, and then evaluated these brands’ website performance across multiple criteria. This year RSR focused primarily on retailers’ mobile sites, due to consumers’ rapidly increasing trend to make that channel their primary point of contact with a brand and its products. RSR then surveyed 1,100 US-based consumers ages 18 and up, gathering their perspective on how online retailers are doing in terms of site performance.

“With consumers shopping primarily online and retailers desperate to make up lost revenue from recent brick and mortar store closings, digital channels are the last frontier of survival for retail brands,” said Steve Rowen, Managing Partner, Retail Systems Research (RSR). “Based on the findings from our new report on eCommerce site performance, retailers that cannot rely on their online offerings’ ability to serve as their primary face to the consumers now face the very serious chance of extinction.”

Top performers

Based on the criteria for the report, where a full range of 0-3 points was available across 18 categories, the following retailers took top honors (all scores are out of 54 possible points):

  1. Ralph Lauren – 42.5 points
  2. Tailored Brands (Men’s Wearhouse) – 40 points
  3. Foot Locker – 37.5 points
  4. L Brands (Victoria’s Secret) – 37.5 points

In the age of COVID-19 site speed is critical

According to the findings of the report, due to COVID-19 “a precise online shopping experience is now imperative.” Adding to the digital pressure is the upcoming holiday shopping season that presents a huge opportunity for retailers to make up lost ground online – but only if they have their eCommerce sites operating at maximum efficiency. At the root of RSR’s research is the assumption that website speed matters, especially during a pandemic when shopping is mainly conducted digitally. To confirm or refute this assertion, RSR asked shoppers to weigh in on what happens when a site loads too slowly. For the second year in a row, approximately 9 out of 10 shoppers say they will abandon a site if it is too slow.

Site performance scores are – once again – too slow

After conducting performance tests this year, the low scores received by the retailers forced RSR to go back and amend the criteria to be less harsh. This is bad news, indeed, as it appears that all of the 3rd party technologies retailers are adding to their sites are actually slowing them down – and shoppers are vocal: they are clearly frustrated by slow sites. When asked if they get frustrated when they go shopping online and the site is slow, only 8% of shoppers report this as not being an issue, with 52% citing it as a major sore spot. With the massive shift to shopping online currently taking place around the globe, this is no time for retailers to be slow.

The top 10 fastest loading retail sites

  1. Ascena Retail Group (LOFT)
  2. Groupon Goods
  3. 1-800 Contacts
  5. Lands’ End
  6. MidwayUSA
  7. L Brands (Victoria’s Secret)
  8. Carter’s
  9. Ralph Lauren
  10. Express

Mobile cowebntinues to improve

According to the RSR report, consumers’ confidence in the mobile channel’s ability to be their one-and-only point of interaction is growing at a staggering rate. Nearly one out of three shoppers report that their standard operating procedure is to now complete an entire transaction on their mobile device, a percentage that would have been unheard of even a few years ago.

Source: Yottaa

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