As web perfectionists, we have heard every excuse in the book for why teams cannot make web performance a priority.

Whether it be time, money, or technical know how, every day we talk to eCommerce and Retail teams who explain why they aren’t monitoring their site’s performance. But with online sales continuing to skyrocket, the truth is this: if your business generates revenue online, there is simply no excuse for ignoring or putting off performance!

Since our team is preparing for eTail West, there is no better time to address some of the common objections I’ve seen when talking to eCommerce and Retail teams about performance.

If you are one of the marketers, business users, or (*gasp*) developers who have found yourself making excuses, here is some motivation to get you started:

1.“I don’t have time or budget to dedicate to performance”

You don’t have the time to monitor something that affects your company’s revenue and almost every online metric your business cares about?

Most people assume gaining insight into their site’s performance is a huge time commitment. Sure, that can be the case. There are companies who have full-time Performance Engineers dedicated to keeping their sites fast and reliable. But there are also eCommerce and Retail teams that integrate performance into their everyday process of building and releasing new content. We think that performance should be accessible for all teams.

Not to mention that there are performance solutions on the market that actually automate the steps a performance engineer would take to identify defects on your site (cough cough Rigor Optimization). We even rank defects by severity so you can focus your time on fixing defects that will deliver the biggest performance wins.

Rigor Optimization

Budget limitations are something every team deals with, but you don’t have to dedicate a hefty portion of your software budget in order to take control of your site’s performance. And the ROI that you see from improving your performance should greatly outweigh the cost of using the tool.

And if you do work for a startup or small organization with no budget for performance, there are plenty of free tools on the market you can use to run one-off performance tests until you’re able to invest.

I recommend checking out WebPageTest, Google PageSpeed Insights, or Rigor’s Free Performance Report.

But remember, when it comes to performance tools you get what you pay for (within reason). These free tools will give you insights on how your site is performing when the test was run, but you won’t be able to trend performance over time, test your content’s performance before it goes live, or have hands-on support to help you understand your data.

2.“I’m not technical so I can’t contribute to performance at my company”

So you don’t know how to code? I don’t either, but I set up Benchmark, Uptime, API, and Real Brower Checks every day.

There are several performance testing platforms on the market geared toward non-technical users. I even wrote a blog on how Rigor develops our software for business users. In most cases, running tests is a simple as entering the URL you need insight on.

As I mentioned before, Rigor Optimization automates the steps a performance engineer would take to identify performance defects and then walks you through step-by-step instructions on how to fix defects. Some fixes are as easy as downloading an optimized image and uploading it to your site.

Rigor Optimization

If you are a marketer or business person just starting to dip your toe in the performance world, there are a ton of resources out there to help you! As an eCommerce or online Retailer, I suggest starting with learning the basics of How Site Speed Impacts Metrics and What Type of Monitoring is Best for You.

3.“I know performance is important, but I don’t know where to start”

The good news is that you are aware that your site’s performance has big implications on your business’s revenue. But the old saying “ignorance is bliss” does not apply to web performance.

I think that one of our Rigor power-users, Erick Leon, at Carnival Cruise Line said it best when he said, “90% of the battle is knowing where you stand performance wise.”

It’s true, establishing where you stand today is the best place to start. Without establishing a performance baseline, you won’t know if your site is improving or getting worse over time, or if the new content on your site is degrading performance.

Once you have established this baseline, you can start making changes to your site to improve performance. A product like Rigor Optimization can make it easy for you by telling you which defects are slowing down your site the most so you can start there.

After you have made all the changes that you can, you should test new content for performance before it is released and continue to monitor how performance is changing over time.

Conclusion

Performance can be intimidating to eCommerce or Retail teams with minimal technical experiences, but it doesn’t have to be.

The good news is that you don’t have to tackle your site’s performance alone. Rigor has a team of performance evangelists who can walk you through the process and talk through which tests would be the most helpful for your business.

Are you ready to take the next step? Schedule a meeting with one of our web perfectionists today at eTail West!

Rigor will be at booth #304 and we hope to see meet you there.

 

 

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