December 6, 2001, 12:00 AM

Site responsiveness is strong at start of shopping season, Keynote says

The time it takes to find an item at a web site inched up to 8.82 seconds from 8.55 seconds the week before, Keynote Systems reports. But that’s a big improvement over last year’s 14.5 seconds.

Kurt Peters

Executive Editor

While fulfillment was moving along quickly, responsiveness at retail web sites was slowing down, Keynote Systems Inc. reports. The time it takes to find an item at a web site inched up to 8.82 seconds from 8.55 seconds the week before, Keynote says. But the time is still a major improvement over last year at this time when the average was about 14.5 seconds.

At 98.4%, average site availability was virtually unchanged from the week before.

Keynote uses an automated system to measure the time it takes a site to download the home page, conduct a search for a product and present the results.

Of the sites that Keynote measured, only Nordstrom.com speeded up its transaction time, from 5.58 seconds the week before to 5.16 this week.

Keynote reported the following performance statistics:

Daily Averages, measured from 5am-9pm PDT, showing: performance (in seconds), availability and number of pages
JC Penney: 3.65; 98.4%; 3
Nordstrom: 5.16; 99.8%; 3
J. Crew: 5.18; 99.2% ; 3
Macy`s: 6.32; 97.7%; 3
Neiman Marcus: 6.48; 99.4%; 3
Land`s End: 6.79; 99.6%; 3
Saks Fifth Avenue: 8.64; 98.0%; 4
Talbots: 10.43; 99.8%; 5
Eddie Bauer: 13.06; 98.6%; 3
Victorias Secret: 13.15; 99.5%; 6
Pacific Sunwear: 13.21; 95.7%; 3
LL Bean: 13.72; 95.4%; 3
Overall Performance: 8.82; 98.4%; 3

“It is apparent that the time it takes for a customer to go through a multi-step transaction has little to do with the number of pages,” Keynote’s report says. “For example, last week it took a customer 3.65 seconds on average to do this 3-page transaction on the J.C. Penney site (the fastest transaction site on the list). For the same transaction at L.L. Bean, also 3 pages, it took on average 13.72 seconds.”

 

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