Tips to speed up your mobile site—and tools to test it

Jon Diorio,group product manager at Google Ads

Give people a negative experience on mobile, and they’re 62% less likely to purchase from you in the future—no matter how beautiful or data-driven your marketing campaigns.* People’s expectations for faster and better digital experiences are on the rise. The mobile web is no exception. But the thrill of the hunt, whether it’s researching the best hotel deals for spring break or buying a new pair of running shoes, is often impeded by slow mobile sites.

We’ve all been there - eagerly anticipating a mobile site to load and then abandoning it out of frustration. It’s a challenge most businesses struggle with. In fact, the average mobile web page takes 15.3 seconds to load¹. Count that off to yourself—feels like an eternity, doesn't it? ².

See how you stack up

At Mobile World Congress, we introduced the Speed Scorecard: an easy-to-use tool that lets you compare your mobile site speed with industry peers. Its data is based on how real-world Chrome users experience popular destinations on the web.

When it comes to mobile speed, we recommend a load time of five seconds or less on mobile devices with 3G connections. It might sound like a lofty goal, but there's a lot to gain by improving site speed. Even a one second improvement could increase conversions.

Calculate the opportunity

A slow mobile site doesn’t just frustrate your customers, it limits your business. In retail, we’ve seen that for every one-second delay in page load time, conversions can fall by up to 20%.³

That’s why we also introduced the Impact Calculator. With just a few inputs, the tool estimates the potential revenue impact that could result from improving the speed of your mobile site. See how much more you stand to gain by reducing load time by two seconds versus one second.

Open up the toolbox

The bottom line is speed matters.

Here are some of the other tools and resources available to help you speed up your mobile experience.

Explore ways on how you can win on mobile by visiting:

  • Review this checklist of ways to optimize your mobile site. And for more advanced recommendations, explore these user experience guidelines.

  • Check out “Landing Pages” in the new AdWords experience to see which URLs in your account are mobile-friendly, drive the most sales, or may require your attention.

  • Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) are so fast, they appear to load instantly. Today your Search campaigns can drive clicks to these lightning fast pages. And, now, we’re actively working to expand support for Shopping campaigns to ensure a faster and more seamless shopping experience for customers.

  • In the coming months, Google will begin processing click measurement requests in the background so your customers immediately land on your site after clicking your ad. To ensure your campaigns are ready for parallel tracking, be sure to reach out to your third-party measurement provider and confirm they will be compatible.

* Source:Google/Purchased, U.S., “How Brand Experiences Inspire Consumer Action,” n=2010 U.S. smartphone owners 18+, brand experiences=17,726, April 2017.

  1. Google Research,, sampled 11m global mWeb domains loaded using a globally representative 4G connection, January 2018.
  2. Google/Purchased, U.S., “How Brand Experiences Inspire Consumer Action,” n=2010 U.S. smartphone owners 18+, brand experiences=17,726, April 2017.
  3. Google/SOASTA, “The State of Online Retail Performance,” April 2017
  4. There is more than one way to measure mobile site speed and many factors affect mobile site speed. Improving mobile speed doesn’t guarantee revenue increases. This model is based on data from Google Analytics accounts that have chosen to share anonymous aggregated data with Google for benchmarking purposes. This data is not used in the Mobile Leaderboard. n=383K, Global, Jan. 2017-Dec. 2017

By Jon Diorio, group product manager at Google Ads

Get The Drum Newsletter

Build your marketing knowledge by choosing from daily news bulletins or a weekly special.