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Lack of guest checkout and slow load times costing top UK retailers billions
Nearly all of the top 50 retailers in the UK have mobile-friendly websites but, according to new research from online retailing specialists Summit, slow load times and a lack of guest checkouts are costing them billions.
Summit's recently released scorecard aims to show how retailers in the UK can improve their online and mobile performance. It looked at the ecommerce performance of top retailers including Sainsbury's, John Lewis, Tesco, Superdrug and TopShop.
The research found that the average page load speed across all 50 retailers was seven seconds - double the recommended minimum. Based on every extra second over the recommended minimum costing retailers 7% in converted sales, that amounts to £1bn in revenue per year lost.
When it comes to guest checkout, just 38% of retailers provided this option. With over a quarter of online shoppers leaving a website if required to register, this leaves another £1bn on the table, according to Summit. Research from Bronto Software last year found that, out of 100 UK retailers analyzed, 33% did not offer a guest checkout option. This forces shoppers to click through around five pages to complete a registration process, with some websites requiring customers to go through as many as nine pages.
"Even pure play retailers, often held up as being the best-of-the-best when it comes to ecommerce, offer plenty of room for improvement from end-to-end, which is surprising," says Bryan Roberts, Global Insights Director at TCC Global. "Shoppers wouldn't put up with slow service in-store, and the same applies online. Slow site speeds and complex checkout functions can all result in an abandoned basket, just as a long queue can force shoppers into leaving a store."
One bright spot for the UK's top retailers is that nearly all (92%) have mobile-friendly websites, a necessity among a population in which more than half of ecommerce sales are made via mobile.
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