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E commerce update: Why load speed, UX and web hosting matters

eCommerce in the world today is seemingly throwing brick-and-mortar businesses off their game; the online business market is booming, with an estimated count of over 2 billion digital buyers by 2021. However, performing well in eCommerce hinges on a well laid foundation of fundamental website optimizers load speed, UX and web hosting. In fact, starting with a guide on the top 10 web hosting companies is a great start, but you should also do side-by-side comparisons, for example “BlueHost VS Siteground” – which will really narrow down your choices. 

Load Speed: Why Better Web Hosting Will Improve This

Consumers act fast online, with the click of a button they place an order or confirm their details, recent statistics indicate that 52% of users say fast loading pages impacts their loyalty to a website. In turn, having responsive web pages that are on par with the speed at which online visitors move will yield better results compared to having slower loading pages.

Loading speed is impacted by what web hosting services are used; in order for webpages to load, web servers need to be able to retrieve a lot of information and often there are hundreds of requests to a web server to load a single web page, namely, incoming codes, various data files like images, Javascript, CSS, and more, as well as database queries, especially for CMS-based websites like WordPress, as it’s content is stored on a database like MySQL. 

Users can look out for the following when looking for a web hosting service that will ensure faster loading speed, namely, a dedicated server or a VPS (Virtual Private Server) versus a shared hosting plan, where resources like memory will be used by other websites, and the type of harddrive used, usually SSD (Solid State Drive) loads faster than more common hard drives.   

Loading speed can improve by reducing image sizes, enabling a caching system, which stores information so that the browser doesn’t load information from scratch with each page load, or using a CDN (Content Delivery Network), which allows a closer server to the user to provide data.  

UX (User Experience)

User experience, or UX, is the type of experience, or encounter, a user has when they visit a website. If a website is focused on easy navigation and the needs and satisfaction of the end-user versus its appearance or design it will impact customer retention and engagement, also the level of referrals being made by happy customers. 

For eCommerce websites, a well-planned UX strategy will drive more traffic to a website and more than likely increase product sales, in other words, conversion rates – it’s estimated that  a good UX strategy can raise conversion rates to 400%. A website also needs to communicate exactly what the purpose of the business is; statistics indicate that 86% of users look for product or services information when they are on the homepage of a website.

Another influencing factor of user experience is mobile integration, it’s estimated that 50% of users will use a website less if it’s not accessible from a mobile device and 74% of users will return to a website that is mobile friendly. Therefore, optimizing content to adjust to any mobile device screen while still providing what the desktop version provides will benefit any online business and customer loyalty. 

Around 75% users abandon carts with slow loading progress and 21% of users abandon their carts due to complicated procedures, therefore, simple check-out methods and clear calls to action will boost customer retention. Improving UX can also be done by tracking conversion rates using Google Analytics systems. 

Summary

To keep up the pace with the current eCommerce climate, websites will do well to invest in services that ensure they load faster, especially through web hosting, and effective user experiences.     

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