The New leading local web hosting provider for New Zealand, Umbrellar (see press release), has recently announced a new website builder to help SMBs to get themselves online with a new ‘.nz’ or ‘.kiwi’ domain. While New Zealand has been more successful in their ever improving high speed internet, their new foray into the secure and financially powerful world of local domains and local hosting, VPS and Cloud services will mean that the country should see wide investment in an already impressive track record.
Umbrellar report that, “47% of consumers expect a domain page to load in less than 2 seconds, and 40% will abandon a page that takes longer than 3 seconds!”
In other words, conversion rates are so interlinked to page loading speeds that a three second delay can mean the loss of over a third of potential customers.
Google has measured the time a page loads for a number of years now, making it a significant part of the way that they measure a site’s SEO rankings. The reason for this is to assess a website’s usability, for a better overall customer experience. The quicker a page loads, from whatever location, has a positive correlation to the conversion rates of service users and sales.
Google actually explains how and why that they measure speed for usability, and that website owners can check their performance using the following tools:
Page Speed, an open source Firefox/Firebug add-on that evaluates the performance of web pages and gives suggestions for improvement.
YSlow, a free tool from Yahoo! that suggests ways to improve website speed.
WebPagetest shows a waterfall view of your pages’ load performance plus an optimization checklist.
Webmaster Tools, Labs > Site Performance shows the speed of your website as experienced by users around the world as in the chart below.
HIGHER CONVERSION RATE WILL ENHANCE SEO RANKING
Reasons Your Web Presence Might Be ‘Slow’:
- Speed of your connection may be caused by the fact that the user is viewing a domain and hosting provider on the other side of the world. If you are offering a local domain and host to international users, it is worthwhile to install a ‘content delivery network’ for local control.
- Your country of origin may have slower internet download speeds. Until recently, Australia had infrastructural problems across the entire land mass that needed addressing, and essentially replacing entirely. Huge government investment has loaned the final financial amount of outlay to finish the NBN (National Broadband Network), meaning that by 2019, the vast majority of ‘.au’ domains can be optimised to their full potential with better local internet speeds. The NBN will mean that Australia will soon have better, more stable, fibre optic broadband that will improve the entire country’s user experience.
In the meantime, if you live in an area with a lower internet average speed, the stability and appeal of a local domain is deemed more trustworthy to the consumer. The ability to purchase a local domain such as New Zealand’s ‘.nz‘ or soon to be released, ‘.kiwi’ by the domain registrar FreeParking, part of the Umbrellar group, means that local brands and businesses will find they have a faster page loading speed than international hosting providers without locally controlled content delivery network to retain prospective international customers.
Local hosting can mean the difference to your local brand’s online presence, usability and subsequent conversion. The increased speed of local hosting can mean that the increased conversion rate will also mean local web hosting will help secure a higher level of SEO ranking.
The delivery of quick load page is essential to users, and hosts used on the other side of the world will need to ensure a content delivery network for local control. This exciting development of more widespread local hosting and domains can start to offer competition in a traditionally saturated ‘.com’ markets.