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Speed matters, in every context!

When was the last time you waited for a website to be loaded?

Most people do not like to wait. This is especially true for the Internet and loading times of websites.

Today’s expectations are high, the offer on the Internet enormously. No one is willing to wait long, this also applies to your potential customers or clients. Even minimal delays are enough and visitors already leave a website, looking for a faster alternative.

 

There is no doubt: Speed matters, in every context.

Especially in e-commerce, speed and revenue are directly related. Researches by the company Dynatrace in digital performance measurement show, already half a second difference in loading times can increase online sales by 10 %! The faster a website, the more is sold – the decisive criterion in online trading.

Globally, however, retail websites have actually slowed down in recent years rather than become faster. By an average of 7 %. Even though connection speed generally improves, the web traffic is constantly increasing. The New York Times wrote it already in the 90s: The “World Wide Web” is becoming the “World Wide Wait”. According to an article by BBC, not much has changed in this respect since then.

And the consumer expectations towards the offer are rising rapidly. High-quality images, animations, videos, 360-degree panoramic images and more are expected. Thus, digital files become more and more extensive and the complexity of pages is constantly increasing. At the same time, sensitivity towards speed increases. Speed is now considered as a quality feature and associated to the provided services.

Nevertheless, in reality the performance of one’s own online performance is often given too little attention. This applies in particular to mobile pages. Although mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets have long been responsible for the majority of data transfer and media consumption. One more reason to tackle the optimisation of web pages; If not even the most important reason.

Large companies like Facebook and Google have now reacted and try to counteract with specific measures for mobile websites.
Facebook is loading advertising-related content, even before user clicks on the ads. This prefetching increases the loading speed up to 20-30 % after a click. Google launched the AMP project (Accelerated Mobile Pages) in early 2016. These pages, which are optimised for mobile use, are mainly intended to support advertisers and distributors in accelerating their websites. According to first reports, AMPs can reduce loading times by up to 85 %.

Mastering a balancing act

All measures ultimately have only one goal: to keep the data volume of webpages as low as possible and thereby improve loading times.

A difficult tasks for website operators. On the one hand, the own website has to meet the high-quality demands of the customers and offer variety. On the other hand, there is no other choice than to optimise and even reduce content in favour of performance.

How to cope with this balancing act? Giving up data-intensive content? Accept compromises in quality? Restrict only to static views? Options which are not suitable for for e-commerce. Optimisation can be done differently.

The analysis of the loading speed from the own website provides first indications what aspects need optimisation. The service of the current hosting provider should also be considered. Fast, up-to-date hardware that is exclusively available (dedicated hosting) often pays off. And the motto “Less is more” also applies for websites. Redundant elements such as third-party scripts, external applications, unnecessary HTML, CSS and JavaScript codes, no longer required content such as videos, images and complete pages … All this has negative effects on loading times and should be optimised, if not even removed.

Crucial for e-commerce: To cope with the amount of images

Images are an essential factor in e-commerce. Customers want to see what they are buying. The type of presentation not only transmits a message, but at the same time also often influences the decision about buying or canceling.

Images of poor quality are just as damaging to sales as too long loading times. Customer requirements are high. They expect perfection, interactivity, variety and entertainment. But nobody wants to wait for it. However, high demands and a good performance are not a contradiction. And here it is worth to rely on professional services. Our image editing experts know all the tricks to get the best out of every picture and to find the right balance.

For each device, the correct image should be delivered each time. With the lowest possible file size, but the highest possible quality. Mobile images do not need to have the same quality as for print, but they should not be inferior. This is where our image editing processes intervene in various ways.

Simply by cropping the file size can be influenced. Unnecessary image areas are removed and only the required section remains. The correct resolution for images is also crucial. At first glance, a particularly high resolution appears reasonable and promises high image quality. However, for the output on mobile devices or desktop PCs this is disproportionate and affects loading times negatively.

The correct compression is also relevant. The widespread assumption that high compression is detrimental to the image quality, is only partly true. The optimal method of compression reduces the file size, but has hardly any significant impact on the quality of the final result.

In the end, quality and performance are also dependent on the file format. Selecting the right file format sounds simple, but in fact many (avoidable) mistakes are made here. A supposedly “better” format does not necessarily guarantee the desired effect and again impairs the speed.

Our Br24 team is specialized in creating perfect images for any purpose. With us you get everything from one source: Professional image editing and image optimisation that meet your individual interest and field of application. We always find the right balance between fast performance and a magnificent look. In addition, we provide detailed advice about the potential for optimising your website and how you can improve your performance. For the quick exchange of images with our customers, we rely on our Br24 online tool.

Br24 – With us, neither you nor your customers have to spend time with waiting.