The overwhelming expectation of digital is that it will be fast. Impatience is the defining characteristic of online behavior.
“We wanted to understand how much the speed of our website affected user engagement,” Matt Chadburn and Gadi Lahav wrote for the Financial Times Technology Department Blog in April 2016. “Using that data we then wanted to quantify the impact on our revenue.”
They found that a 1 second delay in page downloads caused a 4.9 percent drop in the number of articles read. A 3 second delay caused a 7.2 percent drop. While loyal customers were prepared to be somewhat more patient, people who used the site less frequently “showed an extreme reaction to even a short delay.”