The Importance of Javascript Size & How It Affects Your Site Speed

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By now you most likely know that a quick-loading webpage is extremely important to your customers’ experience and for your site’s conversion rate. And one of the more important aspects of these metrics has to deal with your Javascript size.

Consumers have a high demand for site performance and speed. In case you’re not sure what all the hype is about, we put together a list of the most interesting facts that show why load times are essential for businesses wanting to improve site experiences:

  • 47% of consumers expect a webpage to load in 2 seconds or less.
  • 79% of users experiencing slow load times won’t make a purchase from that website again.
  • A 1-second delay means an 11% loss in page views and a 7% decrease in conversion.
  • A 1-second delay in load time would cost Amazon $1.6 billion each year.

As you can see, consumers don’t have the patience for slow loading sites. And with an endless aisle of options, they don’t need to.

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Enhancing Site Speed Is Our Goal

This is why PowerReviews made it one of our goals this year to improve our Javascript size. After all, it’s one of the main aspects powering the customer purchase journey and affecting important load times where you need it the most.

In February 2019, we released enhancements that drastically improved (by limiting) our Javascript size. These enhancements are available right now for our clients without any implementation change!

Additionally, the updates will lead to the reduction in Javascript size throughout every touchpoint on your site’s product pages. For a more detailed breakdown, see the chart below:

The breakdown of pages and their size reduction:

Page Type Percent Size Reduction
Product Listing Page (Category Pages) 61%
Product Details Pages 20-26%
Write a Review & Review Your Purchases 40%

What Changed?

In order to drastically reduce the size of our Javascript, we added logic to the code to analyze configuration in real time. Now, PowerReviews only loads the components of pages that are necessary. This basically means our Javascript is working smarter, not harder.

How Does This Compare to Others?

To understand how we compare among the rest, we looked at two companies using competitor solutions that offer similar features to PowerReviews. We chose the two examples below based on the fact that they are open about discussing their small Javascript bundle size and quick load times with the public.

Company 1

This company is using a competitor Ratings & Reviews and Q&A solution and has a total Javascript Bundle of 328.4kb. With PowerReviews, this same functionality comes in between 152-173kb, which is 47.3% smaller. That’s almost half the size!

Company 2

This company displays review snippets on their Product Listings Pages, features Ratings & Reviews on their PDPs and has a total bundle size of 266.4kb. With PowerReviews, Company 2 would be able to load their PLPs at 85kb (68% smaller) and their PDPs at 160kb (40% smaller).

How Will This Affect Me?

At PowerReviews, we are focused on helping our clients win. This means investing in different areas of our business that will have a great impact on our clients and ultimately their shoppers.

We identified Javascript size as an area where we could help our clients serve their customers with a greater experience, which in turn will help our clients boost the number of return shoppers and conversion.

How Can We Further Reduce the Size of PowerReviews Javascript Within Our UGC Experience?

Check back in our next installment when we share some ways you can do this! Until then, if you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out!

Rachel Bentley

As a Senior Product Manager at PowerReviews, Rachel heads the display and collect team and creates solutions that our clients, and their customers, love. She has nine years of experience optimizing conversion and uses quantitative and qualitative metrics to educate internal and external stakeholders on best practices and find opportunities for scaling business value.