How long does your website take to load? A huge percentage of responsive websites are taking too long, according to a study from US mobile development solutions provider Trilibis. A little over two-thirds of responsive websites were found to be image-heavy, which was the main cause for their prolonged load times.
Today, many brands choose responsive web design for their websites to create a better user experience. And they are right to do so, but it turns out that some still fail to adopt responsive web design properly.
Trilibis looked into the responsive websites of 155 brands, among them Engadget, Starbucks and Bold & Noble, to examine their page weight, load times and images. The study found that 69% of the websites required four seconds to load, and some of them needed even more. Trilibis also found that just 20% of the websites delivered acceptable load times on a smartphone, while a massive 31% of websites took between eight and 48 seconds to load. And who wants to wait almost a minute for a site to load?
The study revealed that image-heavy websites are the slowest to load and that a website's loading time becomes unacceptable for users if the page weight is more than 1 MB. Of the websites monitored, 61% had a homepage of at least 1 MB, with images making up 50-60% of the website's page weight.
Of course, there are many other factors that influence a site's overall weight, but images are the main contributor. This is especially the case with responsive websites, because they deliver the same content across multiple platforms, which results in large images being loaded to small screens, such as those on mobile devices.
The 155 websites' mean load time was 7.95 seconds, with a median load time of 5.82 seconds. Of all websites, the fastest load time measured was 0.54 seconds, while the slowest recorded was 48.08 seconds.
The firm also tried to reduce the websites' weight and thus load times of the 64 websites with homepages over 1 MB. Trilibis managed to minimise the page weight by 77% on smartphones by optimising every image on the 64 websites. Before the optimisation, the total image weight of all those websites was 115 MB. But carrying out this process drastically reduced the weight of the websites' pages for all platforms.
If you think your responsive website could benefit from some expert attention, we can help. Speak with one of our specialists and make sure your website creates a happy user experience.
By Chelsey Evans