November 15, 2012, 10:14 AM

Newegg’s m-commerce site performance is cracked

Keynote Systems uncovers problems with a splash page.

Lead Photo

Shoppers can get to the e-retailer's m-commerce site from a button on a splash page.

Newegg Inc. has ranked 28th or lower for the last four weeks on the 30-retailer Keynote Mobile Commerce Performance Index. It’s trying to make a splash, but its effort is backfiring.

The splash in question is a splash page—a web page that appears before a home page. The splash page that appears after typing in Newegg.com on a smartphone web browser asks a consumer if she would like to download Newegg’s mobile app, go to Newegg’s mobile site or go to Newegg’s full site.

“We noticed three problems with Newegg,” says Herman Ng, mobile performance evangelist at Keynote Systems Inc. “The first issue is that after the user clicks on the Browse Newegg Mobile button from the splash screen, the site occasionally directs the mobile browser to Newegg’s full site landing page. As a result, the page load time is much longer. The second issue is that the splash screen does not always provide the option for the user to go to Newegg’s mobile site; sometimes the only option is to either download the app or go to the full site. The third issue is that although Newegg has a mobile landing page at m.newegg.com, using an older Android device browser to visit this link reached their full site instead.”

These issues contributed to Newegg’s low performance on the index, Ng adds. “More important,” he says, “many Newegg end users are not getting as good a mobile experience as they would receive if these issues were not occurring on a regular basis.”

Newegg, No. 45 in the Internet Retailer Mobile 400, says it is aware of the problem and is working to address it.

For the week ending Nov. 11, Newegg came in at No. 29 on the index. Its m-commerce site home page loaded on average in 18.76 seconds and did so completely and successfully 99.02% of the time. Weighting and combining the load time and success rate gives Newegg an index score of only 270 out of 1,000.

The average page load time for all 30 retailers on the index was 9.32 seconds, the average success rate was 99.36%, and the average score was 649.

Barnes & Noble topped the index with a load time of 5.64 seconds and a success rate of 99.86% for a score of 893. Amazon.com Inc. came in second with a load time of 6.07 seconds and a success rate of 99.85% for a score of 877. And The Home Depot Inc. came in third with a load time of 7.65 seconds and a success rate of 100% for a score of 867.

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. to midsized retailers like Toolfetch.com LLC. Amazon is No. 1 in the Internet Retailer Mobile 400, Toolfetch.com is No. 248. Keynote tests the sites in the index every hour Monday through Sunday from 8 a.m. through midnight Eastern time, emulating three different smartphones on three different wireless networks: Apple Inc.’s iPhone 4 on AT&T, the HTC Evo on Sprint 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 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 one another in overall quality. The index average score is the midpoint among all the sites’ scores.

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