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Retail Systems Research Publishes New Report On eCommerce Performance & Shopper Experience

Research Study Ranks 80 Top Retailers on Web Page Load Speeds; Key Finding is that eCommerce Sites Must Load Faster to Increase Conversions

Waltham, MA—June 28, 2017—Yottaa, Inc., the leading cloud platform for accelerating eCommerce, today announced the publication of a new research report titled, “eCommerce Performance: What Works, What Doesn’t, and What’s Next?” The research, which was conducted by Retail Systems Research (RSR), evaluates 80 major retail websites on page speed performance as well as end user experience.

RSR, the only research company run by retailers for the retail industry, conducted the study from April to May of 2017. After assembling a list of 80 top retail sites, RSR then tested the speed at which each retailers’ desktop and mobile sites loaded, evaluated the ease with which a shopper could find a product, and noted what ancillary tools (product reviews, recommendations, personalization, chat features, etc.) were provided to make the shopping journey more satisfying. The retailers were then ranked from 1 to 80 based on the collected data.

“For retailers, much of the internal debate over rich online experience vs. fast web performance has focused on either cramming more and more capabilities onto sites, no matter what impact that has on performance, or stripping out functions and features to make sure the site loads fast,” said Nikki Baird, Managing Partner, Retail Systems Research (RSR). “In today’s competitive market, retailers cannot afford to make these trade-offs. Our report found there is a lot of room for retailers to improve performance and, by doing so, open up new opportunities to make digital channels truly differentiating and engaging at the same time.”

Below are key findings from the report that illustrate the performance challenges that many eCommerce sites face today. The full RSR report, which was sponsored by Yottaa, can be downloaded here or at

  • eCommerce site performance is disturbingly slow: The rule of thumb for eCommerce site performance is if it takes more than 3 seconds to load, retailers risk customers leaving their sites due to slow performance resulting in lost revenue. In its report, RSR found that time-to-complete load times for the 80 retailers systemically underperformed customer expectations, averaging 9.5 seconds on mobile and 16.6 seconds on desktop. Studies have shown that every second of web latency can result in a 7% loss in conversion.
  • 3rd party applications build great experiences, but hide a darker side: Retailers in the study used an average of 70 third party eCommerce applications on their websites. These 3rd party partners may help them create a richer shopping experience, but they also require hundreds of additional requests to build each page. As a result, 50-75% of the time required to load a page was spent waiting on 3rd parties, and websites with above average use of 3rd parties (>70) were 20% slower than those below the average.
  • Several retailers’ sites errored out of the evaluation: Many of the retail sites tested by RSR featured content – usually images – that would not load. This included one retailer whose entire site was totally unavailable. The homepage for this site featured a message that read “We’re usually awesome at this. Please don’t refresh your browser. You’ll be back in the flow shortly.”

“As the trend of closing brick and mortar stores continues, retailers are heavily investing in their online channels to engage shoppers and drive revenue,” said Rich Stendardo, CEO of Yottaa. “The findings of the latest report from RSR confirm two things. One is that web performance impacts online conversion. The second is that most eCommerce sites today are, to quote the report, ‘disturbingly slow’. The findings from this report validate Yottaa’s mission to help online retailers improve performance up to 60% and increase conversions up to 20%.”

Click here to download the full RSR report “eCommerce Performance: What Works, What Doesn’t, and What’s Next?”

About Yottaa
Yottaa is the leading cloud platform for accelerating eCommerce. Purpose-built to solve the website performance challenges retailers face today, Yottaa enables retailers to deliver content instantly across all devices, pages, and browsers, through advanced acceleration and 3rd party application sequencing. Leading retailers, such as The Container Store, Hallmark, eBags, Jockey, Billabong, and JoAnn Fabrics, have deployed Yottaa in a matter of days with zero code change to realize billions in incremental revenue. To learn more about how Yottaa can accelerate your eCommerce site and increase online conversions, please visit or follow @yottaa on Twitter.

Media Contact:
Tedd Rodman


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