New Keynote Study Says Mobile Commerce Still in Infancy

Best Buy ranked number one in mobile home page performance, according to a recent study conducted by Keynote Competitive Research, the industry analysis group of Keynote Systems, provider of on-demand mobile and Internet test & measurement solutions.

The company announced the top line results of the performance of leading mobile Web sites during the holiday shopping season. Sears ranked number two, and Barnes & Noble was ranked number three.

Using Keynote Mobile Application Perspective®, the company measured the performance of 10 retail mobile Web sites during the critical weeks from November 18, 2009 to January 4, 2010. The 10 sites included in The Keynote Mobile Holiday Shopping Study were: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Best Buy, Costco, Dell, Foot Locker, Musicians Friend, Sears, Target and Wal-Mart. The study measured the download performance for three pages on each site: loading the mobile site home page, searching for product and getting information about a specific product. Measurements were taken from two markets (New York and San Francisco) using AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile and Verizon wireless data connections. Wal-Mart ranked number one in search results performance, followed by Best Buy and Amazon. Best Buy and Amazon Rank Number 1, 2 and 3 in Search Results Performance.


“Shopping on mobile Web sites still has a lot of catching up to do in both download performance and uptime when compared to the performance of connected Web sites,” said Ben Rushlo, Senior Manager of Internet Technologies at Keynote.

Home page average times in the study ranged from 8.3 seconds, in the best case, to 34.4 seconds, in the worst case. Search results ranged from 4.5 seconds to 37.9 seconds. And product information ranged from 5.7 seconds to 26.8 seconds.

“Consumers on the wired Web are used to much, much faster times, and often expect pages to load in two seconds or less,” Rushio said. “Even the best mobile Web sites take two to three times as long as that despite being optimized heavily for the mobile phone experience, and the worst sites are taking over a half a minute on average to load each page.”

The study’s findings offer insight into the mobile sites with the most consistent performance, the sites that experienced problems and high error rates during Black Friday and Cyber Monday, as well as the major performance spikes during the holiday shopping rush.

The study is available for purchase here.

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