These days, having a website for your business is not simply enough. To lure in and retain customers, your firm must have a website that provides an excellent and user-friendly experience to visitors. Though attaining this objective may seem challenging, but not necessarily impossible. Furthermore, to the demand for well-designed and intuitive websites, users today set a remarkably high bar for website performance monitoring.
Modern users today assess sites functionality with various merits. However, certain shortcomings and design flaws may cause a website to lag in meeting the end-users expectations. In this write-up, we will walk you through several key performance indicators (KPI) that enable visitors to gauge the performance of a website at their end.
Effective website performance monitoring practices are boiled down to a few key fundamental KPIs. With which, both, the end-users and a website development company determines the success of a website.
1. Site Uptime
A website uptime refers to the time at which the website is up and running. Quite noticeably, the website’s availability is one of the fundamental KPIs. Effective tracking of a website uptime needs to monitor the entire site’s components and figure out which pages, elements, parts most frequently become unavailable, and getting them resolved to maximize the uptime.
By gathering up and analyzing the uptime data, it allows us to identify core issues that hinder the uptime. Typically, a website up and downtime issues mostly arise either from the hosting server’s end or internal code bugs and glitches the shuts off the site’s uptime. Thus if a website goes down, it is important to monitor server performance right away to see whether the issue came from the server end or within the website.
- Measuring Websites Uptime Ratio
Uptime is the subtraction of downtime from the total time. But mostly, the monitoring and uptime analysis process provide this measurement in percentage. Thus, calculating the uptime percentage is simply the ratio of uptime divided by the total time equals availability percent.
Availability Percent = Uptime ÷ Total time
With this formula, an uptime of 99.99% only allows 5.25 minutes of downtime every year. Though 100% uptime is the goal, the industry takes 99.999% as high availability. Every site and system expect some downtime but mostly the goal is to keep uptime as high as possible, given the competitive nature of the internet.
2. Loading Time
Website loading time refers to the time a website needs to load up completely with all elements visible to the end-users. As another vital KPI, website loading time can make and break a website’s performance.
- Loading Speed Significance For End-users
Technically, no one today tolerates a website that is sluggish in loading. Visitors usually do linger around for long enough and immediately bounce to other search results if a website does not load up fast enough. Unless your website is an authoritative one and the end-users have narrow alternative options, a speed below the standard will result in people shying away very easily.
An optimal time for loading speed is considered not more than three seconds. Research shows that an extra second over the standard loading time yields 11 percent fewer page clicks, impressions, and page views. More remarkably, savvy users; today tend to create a lasting impression of a site within just a fraction of 50 milliseconds when they visit a website.
- Loading Speed as Major Search Engine Ranking Factor
In addition, slow loading speed is not only lethal from the end-users perspective but also the search engine point. Loading speed is a major ranking factor that improves sites visibility on the search engine network. Thus, sites of any nature and more particularly of e-commerce nature cannot afford even a slight delay in the website’s loading speed. Major implications of a slow loading speed are;
- Poor Search Engine Friendly
- Increased Bounce Rate and Customers Deviation
Unlike site uptime, loading speed is another key performance indicator that both the end-users and an e-commerce website design company usually pay a great deal of attention. While designing a website, your in-house development team or an e-commerce website design company must ensure that nothing weighs down the site. Quite often, websites with a substantial amount of media elements, such as products images or perhaps videos make the website heavier and ultimately hinders the loading speed. All media elements are to be properly formatted and optimized with Alt-Text attributes to ensure it doesn’t weight down websites. Apart from loading the site’s loading speed, various other techniques enable you to optimize website performance.
3. Responsive UI & UX Design
With the increased usage of smart gadgets, such as smartphones of various brands and models, iPads, and Tablets, people today prefer to carry out most of their search quarries over such gadgets in their hands. All these smart devices come with various displays resolutions, sizes, and dimensions.
Site responsiveness is also a major performance indicator that determines sites functionality. If a website fails to show up flawlessly on either of the mentioned devices’ screens, it leads to more abandonment.
None responsive websites are faced with issues like;
- Content Misalignment
- Design Overlaps
- Complex Navigation
Thus a website which is fully optimized and responsive across all stated gadgets in hands will enhance the site’s performance and boost conversions.
4. In-Site Search Query Response Time
If a site has an internal search feature, the response time against a visitor query is also highly indicative of the site’s seamless performance and meeting the user’s experience and expectations.
5. Time to First Byte
The terminology of Time to First Byte (TTFB) refers to the time your host servers take to initiate the data delivery process to visitors.
A perfect TTFB rate however doesn’t mean that web pages load completely but rather it allows users to assess how long it takes to see various elements of a website started appearing.
Such KPIs enable us to measure sites performance. However, these are not the only ones to resort to. Various other ways and indicators are being widely used to assess and analyze how a website functions.
With the analytics software, the length of user’s sessions on the specific web page, number of views per visit, and conversion rates help determines the website functionality. Such analysis also helps in finding the areas of improvement on a particular website.
Also read about: What Are Website Heatmaps? The Ultimate Guide