The traditional tactics that served marketers for decades have become nearly obsolete and, thanks to the digitization of today’s businesses, marketers are being forced to adapt and rethink their strategy. The Web presents many unique obstacles that didn’t exist until very recently—users are incredibly tech-savvy people with very high expectations. Web performance now plays a key role in your company’s brand reputation, and with competition just a click away, the stakes are higher than ever.
Today’s digital marketers have to think about performance first, ensuring that their user experience is never compromised for other elements such as design. However, despite the focus the digital business era is putting on performance, many marketers continue to make detrimental mistakes that negatively impact their users.
Here are the top three performance mistakes today’s digital marketers are making:
- Overlooking the speed impact of content
In the case of website content, more is not merrier. In fact, excessive content can slow the load time of web pages and drive visitors away. One major retailer experienced an issue related to this mistake during the most recent Back to School sale while hosting a JPEG that was 5.3 MB; image optimization could have reduced its size to 28K. This resulted in extremely slow loading times, causing cart abandonment rates to increase and sales to drop. Certain techniques such as compression can keep byte size down, while services like CDNs can help ease the issue when extra weight cannot be reduced.
- Relying on a reactive approach to customer experience
It’s crucial to take proactive steps prior to launching a new campaign or initiative in order to ensure you will deliver an experience your customers expect. Doing so requires extensive testing and understanding your site’s speed, availability, and reliability. Relying on reactive monitoring is not only failing to mitigate potential problems before your end users are impacted, but is also leaving yourself open to completely missing certain geographic micro-outages that ultimately harm the customer experience and your brand reputation.
- Ignoring mobile
Simply put: You cannot pay enough attention to mobile. According to comScore, mobile traffic significantly outpaced desktop traffic every single day of the Black Friday through Cyber Monday weekend, including Cyber Monday, when desktop traffic peaked. Network and device bandwidth is significantly limited on mobile, so a bloated site viewed via mobile device will grossly underperform compared to its desktop view. To meet mobile-specific performance standards, you need to think less is more when it comes to the content on your site, while mobile-specific techniques, such as setting up dedicated m. domains or creating adaptive sites, can help as well.
To survive in the digital business era, marketers must adapt to the new way of reaching their targets online. Your brand lives and dies by your user experience—delivering a great one will protect your profits and allow your business to thrive.