It’s no longer a secret that a slower website is detrimental for your website. If your website doesn’t load fast enough, you end up losing customers, and possibly quite a bit of revenue.
The Real Question Is, What Is a Good Load Time?
Well, you can get an idea of that by knowing that 53% of mobile users leave a website if it takes more than three seconds for loading. So, a website taking more than 4 seconds to load is considered to be the slowest while the average acceptable time for loading is two to three seconds.
What Website Downtime Could Cost You
Before looking into the consequences of downtime, let’s first see what downtime really is. It is when a website isn’t online or when it doesn’t allow users to do what they came to do in the first place.
Downtime easily causes businesses to lose an average of $7,900 for each minute that the website is down. Over the course of one year, for small and medium-sized businesses, this could total up to $1,000,000. In other words, for each minute the website down, a business would lose $66.240.
You Can Judge the Adverse Effect of Downtime with These Examples:
- One-day downtime for Facebook would lead to a revenue loss of $11.7 million.
- Twitter can lose revenue of up to $20,000 for a one-day outage.
- If eBay goes down for twenty-four hours, it could suffer a revenue loss of a staggering $28 million.
- A 40-minute downtime for Amazon equals to a revenue loss of $20,000.
What Can Possibly Cause Downtime?
Several causes can be attributed to downtime. For instance, a hackers’ attack can lead to hijacked pages, which fail to load within four seconds. Other similar factors include system errors, device errors, and DDoS attacks, and human mistakes that could lead to HTTP errors, dead pages, and slow load times.
In the past, many top websites have also experienced downtime due to different factors, such as human mistakes or hacker attacks. Famous names like Samsung, Ikea, and Flipkart have all fallen victim to downtime in the past.
Consequences of Downtime
Downtime can lead to several problems. These include:
1. Loss of Website Traffic and Revenue
It’s common knowledge that no user wants to use a slow website. To put into perspective, have a look at all these figures. If your website makes $100,000 in a day, then an improvement of one second could bring in an additional $7000 daily. Trainline reduced its latency by just 0.3 seconds across their funnel. As a result, customers spent an additional $11.5 million in a year.
Similarly, due to slow load times, online retailers see a total of $18 billion per year in the form of abandoned shopping carts. Recently, Amazon conducted a test, which showed that the e-commerce giant would lose up to $1.6 billion each year if their speed slowed down just by one second.
Apart from revenue, your website traffic will also be severely affected. An additional 0.5 seconds taken to generate each search page can cause up to 20% drop in traffic. Meanwhile, a 0.4-second lag time can decrease the traffic by 0.44%. According to research conducted by Google, when the page load time increased to 5 seconds, the bounce rate also increased to 90%.
2. Loss of Сustomer Satisfaction
A delay of just one second can decrease customer satisfaction by up to 16%. In other words, many customers would hardly like to come back to a page that loads sluggishly.
Similarly, 75% of users won’t come back to a web page if it doesn’t load within four seconds. Also, 39% of people will quit a website if the images take too long to load. Remember that one second can be the defining point between a poor interaction and a successful transaction.
3. Bad Publicity
The adverse effects of downtime don’t just end at the loss of customers. In fact, 44% of customers tell others around them about the bad experience they had online. Ultimately, this reduces the number of potential new customers, even if it is by a small percentage.
4. Lower Ranking in Search Engine Result
Crawler and customer behavior are responsible for lowering your ranking in search engine result in case of downtime. If a website doesn’t load in five seconds, users will navigate away. Such kind of user inactivity is proof that the company doesn’t value their customers enough. As a result, the Google algorithm penalizes such sites and brings them down to a lower rank.
Meanwhile, Google crawler, the software responsible for indexing websites, spends only a limited time on every site. So, if your whole website responds slowly, then the bot will only index a few numbers of pages. Thus, this will affects the chances of your website ranking well adversely.
5. Dealing with Downtime
Of course, not all hope is lost. There are measures you can take even before your website crashes such as buying DNS backup server, using Google Webmaster Tools, and always making a backup of your database, etc.
Similarly, there are things you can do in case your website crashes. For instance, you must confirm that your website has gone down. Then, you should contact your hosting company and notify users.
Above all, you can use tools to keep your loading time in check. Numerous free software is available that not only measure the load time of your page but also offer crucial insight and identify hidden factors that could be hindering your site’s performance. Such tools include:
This tool lets you test the performance of your website. You can also get tips on how to improve user experience. Plus, you can sign in to keep track of your progress.
Not only does this tool give you a detailed insight on how well your website loads, but it also gives recommendations on how you can optimize it.
Finally, Pingdom lets you monitor the performance, uptime, and interactions of your website to help you improve end-user experience.
Just testing the speed won’t do you good. You also need to take measures to improve speed. These include:
- Choosing a reliable and high-quality hosting provider.
- Optimizing your content, including the images.
- Make sure all your servers are in good health.
- Reduce cookie size and use cookie-free domains.