3 Tips to Improve Mobile Store Speed

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Thursday, June 20th, 2013
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As you very well know by now the speed of an online store is an important factor for online shoppers.  The cold hard truth is that if a site is too slow, the shopper leaves.  Now you may have gone to some extensive lengths to make sure the desktop version of your online store is dialed in and is finely tuned for optimal browsing speed, but have you done the same thing for the mobile version?

1) While this may seem like an obvious statement, be sure that you actually have a mobile version of your online store.  Sure, you can pull up almost any website/storefront on a mobile device, but that doesn’t mean it’s built for mobile.  Mobile design is built to provide a condensed version of your online store to strip out any unnecessary content which makes it easier for the customer to navigate your site on a very small screen.   Not only does it make it easier for the customer to shop, but it also ensures that the store loads much quicker over what is normally slower mobile networks.

2) Reduce the file size of your store images specifically for your mobile storefront.  This one is a bit more involved for merchants with a larger catalog however the idea is an important one to consider.  Let’s say on the desktop version of the online store the thumbnail images for your products have a dimension size of 250px by 250px and they have a file size of around 100k per thumbnail.  Therefore, if you list 50 items on a page, that’s around 50MB just in images that need to be loaded.  This is not a huge deal in the desktop environment however in mobile it can cause a huge delay for some users.

While most eCommerce platforms like Nexternal, will automatically shrink the visual size of the image for you, what you should strongly consider is uploading images that are much smaller which can be used specifically for mobile and will increase the overall load time.

3) Consider a Content Delivery Network (CDN).  Some merchants still may not know what is meant by CDN but the concept is pretty simple: Your store content such as images and JavaScript are going to be delivered from someone other then you (aka  your server).  CDN providers are specifically built for speed and while the shopper will typically not know that someone other then you is delivering the images or files behind the scenes, they will notice that your site is loading faster.   If you’re a Nexternal client, your content is already being delivered by a CDN ensuring that your information is being presented at top speed.

With Mobile usage increasing by the nano second and undoubtly here to stay, all online merchants should pay close attention to the speed that their content is being delivered to their shoppers.  Include mobile in all your store speed tests to ensure optimal delivery.

eCommerce Ninja by day and husband & father by night. Since 2003 Ty has been part of the fast growing eCommerce industry both as an Account Manager and online retailer. Ty has played a vital role in the conversion, launch and day-to-day operations of hundreds of online businesses ranging from multi-million dollar corporations to one and two person companies.

One Comment

  1. It all really boils down to providing the optimal end user experience, and speed is essential. No one likes to wait for a slow loading site, but the crazy thing is many ecommerce sites are still not optimized for speed. According to some of the stats that we have compiled (I work for CDNetworks), mobile shoppers in general do expect load times to be comparable to desktop speed. Like you have pointed out, in addition to on page optimization, web content delivery speed (CDNs) can add a huge boost to decreasing load time. This is especially true for sites that target a globally disbursed audience.

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Written by our eCommerce experts, the Nexternal eCommerce blog is a vital resource for online retailers who wish to thrive in a competitive eCommerce market. Learn more about the Nexternal eCommerce Platform

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