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Google upgrades mobile website performance measurement tool

Google has unveiled updates to its Test My Site tool, which it said will make it easier for retailers and other businesses to measure their mobile site speed and then take specific actions to improve it.

The upgrade, which was announced at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, allows users to instantly analyse the speed of their entire site and of individual pages, and compare performance month by month.

Companies accessing Test My Site will be told whether their site speed or page speed ranks “Fast”, “Average”, or “Slow”, and how their site speed compares to others in the industry – there is an option to type in competitors’ URLs to understand their performance.

Additionally, retailers can gain estimates of revenue impact due to site speed, and a list of recommended fixes for up to five pages on their site. All of the information offered by the tool can be collated in a report by businesses and shared with their wider workforce.

According to Google, 50% of purchase journeys happen on mobile, while 53% of visits are abandoned if a mobile site takes more than three seconds to load. It argued that a one-second delay in mobile load times can have a significant impact on conversion rates.

The upgraded Google tool comes as the overall online retail market continues to experience a slowdown in growth, according to industry barometers.

Figures from IMRG and Capgemini suggest that online retail recorded its worst January sales growth for three years – 7% year on year – last month. And this statistic from the industry’s trade association and the global consultancy group's e-Retail Sales Index follows what they described as all-time-low sales growth in December 2018.

The research did, however, show that January growth was marginally above the three-month average of 6.3%.

Fashion and department store retailers, such as Joules and John Lewis, now report that eCommerce now represents close to 50% of total sales each year.

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