May 31, 2012, 10:19 AM

Office Depot works its way toward the top of the mobile performance index

But Facebook content proves unfriendly to American Eagle’s mobile site performance.

Katie Evans

Managing Editor, International Research

Office Depot has been working away at speeding its mobile home page load time and boosting the frequency of the site loading successfully.

For the week ending May 27, Office Depot shot up 11 spots on the Keynote Mobile Performance Index to grab the No. 3 position in the weekly mobile site performance ranking of 30 retailers. Office Depot’s mobile site loaded in an average of 5.75 seconds and loaded successfully 99.19% of the time for an index score of 919 out of a possible 1000.

American Eagle’s site however, landed at the bottom of the index for the second week in a row.

 

 

Herman Ng, mobile performance evangelist at Keynote Systems Inc., notices several areas where American Eagle can improve its mobile site performance. For example, he says American Eagle’s mobile home page is very heavy—containing nearly 50 elements—the most of any retailer in the index. Those elements all add up to an overall page size of more than 400 kilobytes for smartphones.

Ng says one way that American Eagle could reduce page bulk is to combine JavaScript and CSS, or cascading style sheet objects as much as possible. “American Eagle’s mobile home page has a total of 15 JavaScript and CSS page objects,” Ng says.

Another factor slowing American Eagle down is having the Facebook Like button on its mobile home page. Ng found that 11 home page objects with an approximate total size of 145 kilobytes came from the Facebook domain. “Although the Like button is a neat marketing tool, retailers need to understand the full implications on page load time whenever utilizing third-party content,” Ng says.

American Eagle did not immediately respond to a request to comment about its mobile site performance.

Sears Holdings Corp. once again topped the index this week with a load time of 3.92 seconds and a success rate of 99.50% for a score of 1000. ToolFetch.com came in second with a load time of 4.73 seconds and a success rate of 98.75% for a score of 931.

American Eagle is No. 102 in the Internet Retailer Mobile Commerce Top 300. Sears is No. 21, and L.L. Bean No. 52.

Click here and then click on Keynote Mobile Commerce Performance Index Part 1 and Part 2 to see this week’s complete results for all 30 retailers on the index.

Keynote Systems measures 30 representative m-commerce sites exclusively for Internet Retailer. The sites include merchants in multiple categories and channels, and of multiple sizes, ranging from such giants as Amazon.com Inc., Sears Holdings Corp. and Walmart.com, to midsized retailers like Sunglass Hut and Toolfetch.com LLC. Keynote tests the sites in the index every hour Monday through Sunday from 8 a.m. through midnight Eastern time, emulating four different smartphones on four different wireless networks: Apple Inc.’s iPhone 4 on AT&T, the HTC Evo on Sprint, the BlackBerry Curve on T-Mobile and the Droid X on Verizon. The HTC Evo and the Droid X run Google Inc.’s Android operating system. Keynote runs the tests in Chicago, Dallas, New York and San Francisco.

Keynote combines a site’s load time and success rate, equally weighted, into a single score. Given that both performance and availability are important, the score reflects the overall quality of the home page; a higher score indicates better performance. Scores also reflect how close sites are to each other in overall quality. The index average score is the midpoint among all the sites’ scores.

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