Retail Too Slow To Fix Mobile Web Site Flaws

About 2.99 seconds. That's the average time the top 100 Web-only retail sites take to load on a mobile device -- almost two seconds longer than Google's recommended load time. Brands and retailers are missing key features and services on their mobile sites, and few have made the moves required to fix them.

Only nine out of the 100 Web sites in The Search Agency's study use Responsive Web Design (RWD), which Google recommends, to improve mobile experiences. For the report, TSA's team of mobile experts analyzes the top 100 Web-only retail sites to determine those that are most closely aligned with established mobile marketing best practices.

TSA's Mobile Experience Scorecard: Web-Only Retailers calculates a total possible score of five points, with zero the lowest and five, the highest for each. The agency based the analysis on Web site load time, site format, search box, shopping cart, sign-in, social media buttons, and app presence. The scores were averaged according to the TSA's weighting factors and the on-site customer experience to arrive at the total score for each retailer in the study.  

Of the key features evaluated, 88 of the 100 sites featured a search box, 90 featured a shopping cart, 82 had an account sign in, 55 featured social media buttons or links, and 29 linked to an app download. Those are the basics.

Female-oriented sites were better optimized for mobile, per the report. Some 75% of the 20 highest-scoring sites on the scorecard skewed more toward females, while 75% of the 20 lowest-scoring sites skewed toward males. About 78% of the sites that used responsive Web design skewed female, and 66% of the sites using dedicated mobile skewed female, and this in contrast to the 65% on desktop that skewed toward males. The average score of the 100 Web-only retailers was 2.808 out of the possible five.

TSA used the Internet Retailer's Top 500 list of companies ranked by e-commerce sales to curate the list of retailers. The top three winners were Nasty Gal, eBags, and Zazzle, respectively. Nasty Gal's 4.68 score was nearly four points higher than No. 100 on the list,, with a score of 0.805. The three industries scoring highest were jewellery, health and beauty, and apparel and accessories.

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