Is Website Obesity Slowing Down Your Site?

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Responsive Design

Reason #4: Responsive Design Complexity

With over 18,700 different Android devices and the maintenance required to resize websites for different screens, it's no wonder responsive design is on the top of people's priority list. Responsive design allows for flexibility and lower operating overhead; however, it also adds page complexity and weight to your website, leading to performance problems.

 Tips to get the most out of your responsive design:

  • Conversions: To maximize conversions, your pages should load in two seconds or less. One tip is to optimize images and your third-party widgets (social sharing tools, analytics, etc).
  • Bounce Rate: When customers see a blank screen for too long, check your start render metric. To lower your start render, make sure the code and delivery is set up to prioritize painting the screen sooner.
  • SEO Rankings: Time-to-first-byte (TTFB) is one metric that can affect search rankings. Even a one-second delay in TTFB can lower your rankings by 35 positions. One tip is to cache static assets and optimize delivery of your dynamic content.

The web obesity problem is becoming an epidemic. Like the increasing trend in human obesity, websites have also increased about 25 percent from a year ago, with today's site averaging 2162 KB. In the past five years, websites have grown 208 percent. We're on information overload, with no plans to slim down.

Why Are Websites Getting Fatter?

By having a fatter website, the user experience is richer – higher quality images, more content, more personalization, more functionality, etc. are all contributing to the page growth. Additionally, continuous delivery and lean development methodologies mean more changes are coming faster. While these changes are useful, they come at the cost of performance. In fact, every added kilobyte makes a website slower. If nothing is done to these bloated websites, the problem will continue to escalate, eventually leading to frustrated users, increased site abandonment and decreased conversions.

In this slideshow, Instart Logic has identified five key factors that contribute to website obesity and dramatically affect latency.


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