The Web is Getting Slower! Here’s Why & How to Fix It
Jim Rapoza of Aberdeen Group shares great insight on this subject. He boils down the malaise of the Internet to two root causes:
(1) Internet architecture is complicated, outdated & ever-expanding
(2) With mobile, the Internet is used in radically different ways today
It’s no secret – faster websites are better for business. So why do so many businesses struggle to boost application performance?
There are 5 big reasons why companies fail at application performance optimization.
I. Digital Experience Delivery is Incredibly Complex
Let’s start with the basics – physically getting content to end-users is complicated. There are both front-end and back-end elements to account for.
- Front-End: End-users across the world access the web in incredibly diverse ways. Delivery of digital experiences must take into account device type, operating system, browser, network, and physical location.
- Back-End: The web is defined via service-orientated architectures. Content delivery is reliant on a multitude of applications and software working together. When several servers must be called upon to deliver content this greatly increases the likelihood of slowdowns.
II. User Attitudes are Changing: “Getting it Right”
Once content is delivered to an end-user it needs to render properly. Not long ago, users would be happy to see an application even manage to load on a mobile browser. That’s no longer the case. User attitudes demand content to be fully optimized to their unique context be it mobile, tablet, or desktop. Sky-high user expectations and shortened attention span equate to a complete intolerance for sub-standard digital experiences. The majority of users expect a page to load in 2 seconds or faster.
End-users do not see the complex journey content must complete arriving on their device; instead user perception is only of the immediate experience in hand. It takes constant vigilance to perfect a user experience, and the landscape is always changing. For example, how many applications were completely optimized for the huge iPhone 6 Plus upon release?
III. Your IT Heroes Are Super-Busy
Usually, the marketing team is on the hook for how your product and contents interact with the end user. While marketing will strategize for digital optimization, they need help from IT to implement the required technology changes.
1st Priority of IT is always Security: We’ve seen a rash of Internet threats in recent months – POODLE, Heartbleed, SHA – to name a few. The danger is around every corner. Your IT department is rightly concerned with predatory attacks and vulnerabilities; end-user optimization is not front-of-mind.
- IT will have little bandwidth to dedicate to tweaking and tuning experience delivery
- IT is also wary of change, due to increased risk exposure.
Even when marketing and IT are on the same page with applications, it is still difficult to achieve sterling application performance.
Here’s one example:
- A decision is made to implement a real-time personalization solution (third-party plugin). The goal is to provide a better end-user experience and to collect data on visitors. A slam-dunk? Maybe, but analytics are easily skewed by robots, and visitor data becomes polluted. Moreover, the dynamic personalized content generated to please visitors actually drags down page load time a most unattractive result for users.
IV. Technology Cannot Keep Pace
A brief look at the history of mobile technology helps us explain this technology lag. When mobile user numbers surged, companies rushed to create separate m.site (mobile) applications. This strategy quickly fell from grace when it became apparent that separate sites for desktop and mobile were: (1) terrible for SEO (2) doubled the amount of effort needed to maintain applications.
We see in this chart from Gartner that mobile technology followed a hype cycle pattern. Technology triggers a solution, and adoption spikes and then drops when inadequacies surface. Eventually, productivity attributed to the technology will plateau and new technology iterations trigger to restart a new cycle.
Today’s “triggered technology” is responsive web design (RWD). It involves simplification of desktop mobile content to automatically resize and render itself well on mobile devices.
Marketers seek to utilize responsive design to curate “mobile moments”, and seamless adoption of simplified content by on-the-go users. The solution works, but it is still not ideal. Dynamic content desired by users gets sacrificed for a simpler, performance-friendly alternative.
V. Internet Growth Compounds Performance Issues
Future Internet growth will complicate issues around slowness and poor application performance. The web will grow more mobile and more complex. The Internet of Things promises billions of devices will be brought online in the coming years. The slow will get slower and security will become an even greater challenge.
There needs to be a better solution, and there is.
Solution: Maximize Online & Mobile End-User Experience
Modern businesses must focus on users, and define strategies to maximize user experience, and the business technology to engage and retain them. Your users – whether they are prospects, customers, partners, or Enterprise employees – access your digital properties from a variety of locations, devices, and network connectivities. Each of these contexts brings a unique set of challenges, and opportunities to engage, delight, and convert users when the experience is tailored to their consumption patterns.
The Yottaa App Optimization Platform is a SaaS solution that monitors and optimizes user engagement to increase conversions and revenue across mobile and web channels. With 15 patents, Yottaa’s proprietary Context Intelligence architecture senses a user’s location, browser, device, Internet connectivity, and in-page interaction to sequence application content delivery and rendering.
As Yottaa optimizes every user experience, we measure our impact along three critical axes:
- Performance – The speed at which your content is presented and users are transitioned through their digital journey
- Engagement – The resulting changes in user behavior that are observed and tracked through KPIs like decreased Bounce and Abandonment rates, increased Time on Site, and Avg. Session
- Impact – The endgame is increased revenue, with leading metric indicators including eCommerce Conversion Rate, Goal Completions, and Advertising Impressions
With Yottaa you can ensure a contextually optimized experience for every user on every device, everywhere — simply by engaging our expert Client Services team or by clicking a few buttons in our self-service online portal.
Visit to learn about what Yottaa can do for you to drive business impact for your online and mobile presence.
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