At Rigor, we strive to help everyone in an organization be performance-minded. That’s why we offer reports like Performance KPIs and track User Timings so you can measure what matters to your business and have robust discussions across teams based on what matters to them.

If you are familiar with open source performance solutions such as Lighthouse and PageSpeed Insights, you probably understand the value in measuring user experience and paint metrics. Rigor’s analysis engine gathers and allows users to report on a host of additional key performance and user experience metrics from the Performance Navigation Timing, User Timings API, and Paint Timings API such as:

  • DOM Complete
  • DOM Interactive
  • Time to First Paint
  • Time to First Contentful Paint
  • Time to First Meaningful Paint

What’s more is that these metrics in combination with Rigor’s Optimization rule base (the largest in the world with over 300 performance best practices), can help guide your team through what is needed to optimize your digital properties and help your whole organization be more performance oriented.

Why Are Paint Metrics Important to Your Business?

Google announced that starting in July 2018, ‘Page Speed’ would be factored into the determination of mobile search results. With the recent release of Lighthouse 3.0, these key metrics have become more important and weighed differently to emphasize the User Experience.

For an e-commerce company, “Time to First Byte” is relevant to see how quickly the website is responding, but “Time to First Contentful Paint” is more important for the customers who will actually be using the website. With the change in Lighthouse metrics, User Experience metrics mean more to determining search position than ever before.

How Are Paint Metrics Different?

With these new metrics, Rigor can now measure Paint Timing metrics to suit your web performance needs. But what separates these new metrics from the metrics that you were already monitoring? And why should you care about these new metrics?

Let’s take a quick look to see why they should be included in your performance metrics analysis:

At first glance, the metrics such as  “Start Render” and “Time to First Paint” may seem similar, but they are used to measure performance and the user experience from different perspectives. The difference lies in the measurement and function of the metrics. While Start Render is, at its core, the time that it takes for the first piece of page content to be drawn in the browser window, time to First Paint provides a technical metric measured in the browser. It’s the time it takes for the first piece of content to be recognized as appearing by the browser. Sometimes this may yield false positives (as it relates to true end-user experience) since a single pixel, which may not visible, could trigger this event in the browser. But in combination, these metrics can provide a more holistic view of performance.

In addition to the Time to First Paint metric, the First Contentful and Meaningful Paint metrics provide insight into the time it takes for the first content (e.g. text or an image) and the first content that a user would be interested in when visiting your site, respectively.  

With the new DOM metrics, you can better understand the back-end performance of your website, with “DOM Interactive” marking when HTML has finished parsing and “DOM Complete” marking when all the resources on the page have completely loaded. These continue to enhance the User Experience by measuring how web pages are performing before they are filled with content.

Using these paint and DOM metrics in combination with the other performance KPIs can provide a more comprehensive view of performance from both a technical and end-user perspective, which is why Rigor measures them and why they should be used in tandem to improve the User Experience across your website.

The Importance of Paint Metrics

According to a recent survey by Akamai, almost half of users will abandon a website that takes more than 3 seconds to load. Even a 1-second delay in page response could show up to a 7% reduction in conversions.

For e-Commerce companies, this is 1-second delay could be the difference between making a sale and losing a customer to a competitor with a better website experience. By understanding the metrics that most directly deal with your customers, your business will be more in touch with the end-user experience, keeping your customers and executives happy.

Rigor’s One Stop Shop

With Rigor, your business can easily track these metrics by combining User Timings with our new Performance KPI chart to see the trend of all these metrics in a single place.


                    Rigor’s Performance KPI chart


The Rigor platform makes it for your engineers and executives to better understand the performance of your company. Whether you are an E-commerce company, a media company, or anything in-between, Rigor will let you track the metrics that are the most valuable to you to get the most out of your website and your customers.

In addition to tracking and trending on key performance metrics, Rigor’s Optimization engine provides actionable insights into performance and how to address the biggest offenders.

Want to learn more about how Rigor can help you make your digital properties more performant? Reach out now to request a free trial.