62% of All Third-Party Integrations Will Slow Down Your Shopify Site

Speed matters.

If your ecommerce site takes longer than 3 seconds to load, every additional second of load time costs your brand 7% in conversion.

That’s what ecommerce site speed acceleration experts YOTTAA have discovered.

The YOTTAA team has tracked thousands of 3rd-party technologies across over 1,500 ecommerce sites during January of 2022 to collect data for their annual  “The eCommerce Technology Index” report. 

This report benchmarks the optimized performance of the most used 3rd-parties on the YOTTAA platform, representing over 788.2 billion 3rd party resource timing events. Loox stands out by providing state-of-the-art customer review software that is expert-approved for its positive impact on conversion rates.

In this post, we’re going to break down their latest research and what this means for ecommerce sites.

How YOTTAA Rates Billions of Third-Party Resource Events

The analysts at YOTTAA dived deep into their data. To measure the impact on page load speed for ecommerce sites, they worked with their “Performance Impact Rating” (PIR) system. 

This system is split into three categories:

  • GREEN: Represents little or not performance impact.
  • ORANGE: Represents an inconsistent negative performance impact.
  • RED: Represents a consistent negative impact on performance.
Source: YOTTAA

To give you an even better understanding of YOTTAA’s PIR Health system, we asked them to explain this a bit more in-depth. Here’s what they said:

“Results are found by assigning each third-party technology a performance impact rating (PIR) that measures how it affects page load time on an ecommerce site. It’s calculated by adding a third party’s performance violations (errors that occur when a third party takes longer than one second to load) and the delay page load violations (errors that occur when a third-party extends the time it takes for a shopper to be able to interact with a site) together and then dividing that number by the site’s total number of page views.”

You see, the PIR is one of the best ways to measure a third-party performance impact on site speed and the shopper experience.

Third-Party Integrations Are Slowing Down Your Ecommerce Site

With the rise of new technologies and third-party integrations for ecommerce sites, it’s easier than ever to build a tech stack that meets the advanced requirements of the fast-moving ecommerce world.

The Shopify app store alone offers more than 7,000 third-party apps to help ecommerce brands operate their business. According to Shopify itself, three in four merchants use apps. Making it a total of more than 1.3 million Shopify merchants that use apps. On average, every merchant has six apps installed.

Source: Shopify

There are countless options and brands all across the world taking advantage of it. Both SMBs and enterprise-sized brands can operate their entire business with a handful of integrations and tools. From supply-chain management to advertising. There’s a solution for anything.

But there’s a price to pay for that. 

The price of speed. With every app, integration, and tool you add, your website becomes slower. On average, every third-party integration will delay the interaction of a shopper by 124 milliseconds. Taking the average number of Shopify apps installed per merchant into account, this means that a shopper has to wait 744 milliseconds longer than usual for pages to load. That’s close to one full second. And these are only the Shopify apps.

The most adopted ecommerce technologies aren’t Shopify apps, but rather analytics and advertising technologies:

  • Google Analytics: 98%
  • Facebook: 90%
  • Google Ads: 90%
  • Google Tag Manager: 86%

These technologies are crucial to running a modern-day ecommerce business, but the cost of site-speed stacks up. Millisecond by millisecond. Second by second.

In an industry where milliseconds of website loading delay costs a substantial amount of revenue, this is a real problem. In fact, 62% of all 3rd-party integrations will have a negative impact on your site’s performance.

Product Detail and Category Pages Take The Biggest Hit

The speed analysts at YOTTAA learned that the product detail pages and category pages are the top violators. On both performance and page delay violations. 

Performance violations definition by YOTTAA:

Performance Violations are individual errors that occur when a single 3rd party takes longer than one second to load. These performance violations do not affect onload, though they may reduce or restrict access to site or 3rd party functionality.

Page delay violations definition by YOTTAA:

Page Delay Violations are individual errors that occur when a single 3rd party extends the time it takes for a shopper to be able to interact with a site.

Considering that these two page types are the most valuable ones on an ecommerce site, slow speed reduces the conversions even more.

What does this mean for brands?

In simple: brands need to be picky about the third-party technologies they decide to use. Especially on product detail and category pages.

These pages are the ones where the customer makes the decision to buy (or not). A slow-loading site will make shoppers bounce. Leaving brands with lower conversion rates.

Is Your Customer Review App Slowing Down Your Ecommerce Site?

While almost all third-party integrations will have an impact on your site speed, some of them have a more negative impact than others. 

To help ecommerce brands make an educated decision about the technologies they choose for brand operations and scaling, YOTTAA’s report categorized all tested technologies. 16 in total.

It turned out that the top violating technology category is Tag Management with an average delay of 229 ms. This technology is primarily used to load advertising and analytics solutions that are notoriously known to slow down your site. 

Customer review apps have the second biggest (negative) impact across all industries. On average, these technologies delay the loading time of an ecommerce site by 147 milliseconds. Considering the average across all industries is just a 124 ms delay, this is no good. That’s almost 20% slower than an average app.

Loox, being a customer review app for Shopify merchants, takes this seriously.

That’s why we’re proud to share that Loox is approved by YOTTAA as a top-performing Customer Reviews solution! This means that Loox doesn’t drag down site speed and conversion rates.

Loox is Expert-Approved For Its Positive Impact on Site Speed And Conversion Rates

Loox is one of the few third-party technologies that meet these high standards and fall under the green category; having little or no performance impact on ecommerce sites.

Our software is built with performance in mind:

  • Utilization of a content delivery network (CDN)
  • Only starts loading after the page is fully loaded (incl. scripts and photos)
  • Image optimization (compression, resolution, and device-specific serving)

We do this to ensure the best possible merchant and customer experience.