55 Web Performance Stats You’ll Want to Know

2013 was a fantastic year for Radware on the research front. We released numerous studies and blog posts about topics ranging from ecommerce performance to the neuroscience behind mobile user expectations. Below I’ve corralled 55 amazing things you should know about how your visitors use the web.

User Experience and Expectations

1. 44% of online shoppers say that slow online transactions make them anxious about the success of a transaction.

2. Shoppers remember online wait times as being 35% longer than they actually are.

3. A progress bar on a page that loads in less than 5 seconds or less will make that page feel slower than it really is.


4. 51% of online shoppers in the US say that site slowness is the top reason they’d abandon a purchase.

5. A 2-second delay in load time during a transaction results in abandonment rates of up to 87%. This is significantly higher than the average abandonment rate of 70%.


6. 18% of shoppers will abandon their cart if pages are too slow.

7. The total cost of abandoned shopping carts for online retailers has been estimated at more than $18 billion per year.

8. If 18% of that loss can be attributed to slow pages, then this correlates to more than $3 billion in lost sales (across US ecommerce sites) due to poor performance.

9. 46% of online shoppers cite checkout speed as the number one factor that determines whether or not they will return to a site.


10. 64% of smartphone users expect pages to load in less than 4 seconds.

11. If a page takes 8+ seconds to load, visitors will spend only 1% of their time on page looking at primary banner content.


12. The performance poverty line (i.e. the plateau at which your website’s load time ceases to matter because you’ve hit close to rock bottom in terms of business metrics) for most sites is around 8 seconds.

13. When pages are slow, business metrics suffer more now than they did a few years ago. For example, a page that took 6 seconds to load in 2010 suffered a -40% conversion hit. Today, a 6-second page takes a -50% hit.



14. 85% of mobile users expect pages to load as fast or faster than they load on the desktop.

15. 35% of mobile users will choose to view the full site when given the option.

16. Mobile users who shop the full site spend more than those who shop the m.site. We found that, for every $7.00 of mobile-generated revenue, $5.50 (79%) was generated by mobile shoppers using the full site. Only $1.00 (14%) came via m.site, and $0.50 (7%) via the mobile app.

m.sites mcommerce revenue breakdown


17. 55% of all time spent on retail websites takes place on a mobile device.

18. Mobile commerce accounts for an estimated 16% of total online sales.

19. Mobile users are significantly affected by slow performance. A 500ms connection speed delay results in up to a 26% increase in peak frustration and up to an 8% decrease in engagement.


20. Only 2% of the top 100 ecommerce sites loads in fewer than 4 seconds on smartphones, while 20% take 10 seconds or longer to load. The median site loads in 7.84 seconds.

21. The abandonment rate for mobile shopping carts is 97%, compared to 70-75% for desktop carts.

22. When faced with a negative mobile shopping experience, 43% of consumers will go to a competitor’s site next.

23. 80% of online retailers have a mobile-specific site, up from 76% in 2012.

24. 1 out of 5 m.dot sites don’t allow users to visit the full site from their mobile device.

25. 31% of retailers serve the m.dot version of their site to Android tablets.

26. 6% of retailers serve the m.dot site to the iPad.

27. The median retail web page loads more than twice as fast on the iPad 3 as on the iPad 2.

28. Performance varies hugely among smartphones. Median load times range from 3.1 seconds to 11.4 seconds, depending on the device.


Page Speed (US)

29. The median leading ecommerce site takes 5.3 seconds to become interactive (i.e. render primary content “above the fold”) and 8.56 seconds to fully load.

30. This represents a 26% slowdown since spring 2012, when the median page took 6.8 seconds to load.

31. Only 18% of the top 100 sites have a TTI (time to interact) of 3 seconds or less.

32. 26% of the top 100 sites have a TTI of 8 seconds or more.


Page Size and Composition

34. The average web page has grown 151% in just three years. At the end of December 2013, the average top 1,000 web page was 1575 KB. When the HTTP Archive began tracking this data three years ago, the average page was 651 KB.

Page growth November 2010-2013

35. More than half of this page size is due to images. A whopping 804 KB per page is comprised of images. (Three years ago, images comprised just 372 KB of a page’s total payload.)

36. Today, 38% of pages use Flash, compared to 52% in 2010.

37. Use of custom fonts has exploded — from 1% in 2010 to 33% today. (Much of this growth has happened in the past six months.)


38. For many sites, 36% or more of desktop page weight comes from 3rd party scripts.


39. The median leading ecommerce site is 1258 KB in size and contains 92 resources.


Page Speed (EU)

40. Median load time among leading European ecommerce sites was 7.04 seconds.

41. 1 out of 4 pages took more than 10 seconds to load.

42. 1 out of 3 pages contained more than 100 resources.

43. 79% of sites don’t use a recognized CDN. (A “recognized CDN” refers to any CDN listed in the extensive directory of CDNs maintained by WebPagetest.)

44. 1 out of 5 sites failed to implement text compression, a relatively simple technique that delivers easy, significant performance gains.


Performance Best Practices

45. 99% of response time problems are still caused by the UI being too slow.


46. Content delivery networks may be only somewhat effective for mobile traffic. In a case study of the O’Reilly website, we found that using a CDN decreased doc complete time by 10% for mobile users, compared to the 20% improvement we noted in a similar experiment for desktop optimization. We shaved less than a second off start render time, taking it from 7.059 seconds down to 6.245 seconds.


47. 79% of the top 400 ecommerce sites in the EU and 75% of the top 2,000 ecommerce sites in the US don’t use a recognized CDN. (A “recognized CDN” refers to any CDN listed in the extensive directory of CDNs maintained by WebPagetest.)

48. Implementing an automated front-end optimization solution alongside a CDN can make pages up to four times faster.


49. Only 3.6% of all page views per month are WPO-accelerated.

50. The folks designing HTTP2.0 claim an easy 30% performance increase on websites with HTTP2.0 / SPDY.


Network Performance

51. 50% of your 1-second page load time budget on mobile is taken up by network latency overhead.


52. In one study, median desktop latency ranged from 65-145 milliseconds.

53. In the same study, mobile latency fared even worse, with a median range of 90-190 milliseconds.



54. Browser development can’t keep up with the demands of increasingly large and complex web pages. For all three browsers, median load times slowed down by anywhere from 3% to 12% in just six months.


55. For iOS, 98-99% of response time happens after the HTML arrives. (In other words, when it comes to delivering faster pages to mobile devices, your browser is the boss.)


Do you have questions about these numbers? Amazing numbers of your own? Let me know in the comments!

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Tammy Everts

As a former senior researcher, writer, and solution evangelist for Radware, Tammy Everts spent years researching the technical, business, and human factor sides of web/application performance. Before joining Radware, Tammy shared her research findings through countless blog posts, presentations, case studies, whitepapers, articles, reports, and infographics for Strangeloop Networks.

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