SINAGPORE: Slow-loading web pages are a frustration for many online shoppers but especially annoying for those in Asia, research has shown.

A global study by Dyn, the internet performance business, surveyed more than 1,400 consumers across 11 countries in North America, EMEA and APAC to understand their shopping preferences, what they are expecting and experiencing.

This found that slow websites and security concerns were the two key factors that affected the potential revenues of ecommerce players, with consumers across Asia-Pacific especially sensitive to these issues.

Few consumers – just 12% globally, falling to 6% in Malaysia – were prepared to wait for slow-performing sites to co-operate, but there were some striking differences in attitude thereafter.

European and American consumers were far more likely to go back and try again later, while the inclination of Asian consumers was to find an alternative place to shop. That was the reaction of more than 60% of respondents in China, Hong Kong, India and Malaysia.

What exactly constitutes "slow" turns out to be around three seconds: that was the maximum time 80% of Chinese respondents were prepared to wait, with more than half those people expecting sites to respond in one or two seconds.

Slow sites also have a greater impact than the immediate shopping experience, as more than 85% of all consumers surveyed agreed that the speed and quality of a website's performance affected their trust in a company.

"Retailers and ecommerce companies are losing sales and the potential of life-long customers because of poor performing websites," the report warned.

And increasingly those websites need to be optimised for mobile, particularly in China and India. The survey revealed that while 40% of consumers globally made at least one quarter of their purchases on their mobile devices, that rose to almost 80% in China and 65% in India.

"The Indian online shopper is maturing fast and has expectations at par with global consumers," Martin Ryan, vice president and managing director of Dyn, told Digital Market Asia

"Ecommerce businesses need to live up to these expectations."

Data sourced from Dyn, Digital Market Asia; additional content by Warc staff