“My Shopify Store Has a High Bounce Rate. Is Page Speed the Problem?”
Most store owners don’t know what “Bounce rate” means for their site. This causes them to optimize in the wrong direction—away from increasing conversions, that is.
What is “Bounce Rate” actually?
A visitor “bounces” from your website when they visit just one page and don’t click further.
Then, “Bounce rate” is the percentage of single visits compared to total site visits.
As a general rule, people bounce when they don’t find what they were looking for.
Let me explain:
Back when you were in school, have you ever entered the wrong class room?
You immediately understood that your shouldn’t be there—the teacher wasn’t the one you expected, the kids were different and the frogs on the tables weren’t supposed to be in your Literature class.
Same happens with potential customers visiting your Shopify store—they expect one thing, but they see something different.
How Does Page Speed Fit Into All of This?
Page load time is indeed one factor that may contribute to bouncing.
“That initial page took so long to load, maybe I shouldn’t bother browsing” thinks the visitor of a slow site.
But, there is one exception.
If people find exactly what they were looking for on your site, they’ll proceed despite the sluggishness factor.
How do I know that?
As an expert in Shopify PageSpeed optimization, I’ve worked with stores that had terrible total load times—20 seconds per product page being the worst I’ve seen. So far.
What I was also amazed to see was that this didn’t stop the stores from making $500k to $1.5M in yearly revenue.
People were still buying from these slow sites, because they wanted the products the store was offering.
Still, the slow pages were holding them back from making more money from the same amount of traffic, but they never stopped them from making any sales.
When Does Page Speed Become the Elephant in the Room?
In the above examples of slow-but-plenty-of-revenue sites the browser wasn’t showing a blank screen for 20 seconds. During loading the pages gave signs of progress around the 3-5th second and then became interactive another 3-4 seconds later.
But if your Shopify store exhibits 1 or more of the following:
- progress bar completely stalls for 4-5 seconds
- loading your site feels a sluggish struggle
- scrolling lags when you try to see the rest of the page too quickly
- You get a Google PageSpeed score of 50/100 or less
Then your page speed (and overall site usability) is a bigger issue than the exact match of people’s expectations.
If you’ve read this far, you’ll like my guide to discovering missed revenue opportunities on your Shopify store!