Christmas Season is around the corner, meaning more and more people would be in the mood for festivities, get-togethers with loved ones, and of course, shopping for gifts! The conventional way of shopping though has shifted staggeringly. Crowded shops with over the top displays, as well as the usual buzz around the most coveted Festive Sale, has migrated to the virtual space. According to CBRE Retail Research forecasts 2020, holiday e-commerce sales are expected to spike to more than double and grow 40% year-on-year In November and December, putting e-commerce’s share of total retail sales in November and December at 32%.
 
 
As e-commerce apps are gleaming with offers on their e-aisles, trying to replicate the excitement of shopping at physical stores, they want to deliver an experience of seamless shopping on their apps. After all, it would not be a healthy sign to lose an Impulsive buyer because the cart took a while to update.
 
How do e-commerce apps prepare for this festive season?
As e-commerce apps are gearing up to cater to a high customer traffic on apps, the question is that are they prepared for it? Are the applications fully equipped to handle the surge of e-shoppers clicking on the same “Festive Discount” button and then rendering the offers page almost Instantly?
Customers who usually experience long checkout times or face lags while loading product pages, descriptions, and videos are customers who abandon the transaction and churn out, hurting the e-commerce apps’ revenue generation channels. 
MOZARK conducted automated tests on the apps of two e-commerce giants. These are apps that are commonly used during the holiday season. We analyzed key metrics that define user experience:
 
  • Time to Load Home Page
  • Time to Search for a Product
  • Time to open a Product Description Page
  • Time to add an item to the cart
  • Time to Proceed and Checkout 
These metrics are part of the common user journey on e-commerce apps and measurements of them show us the kind of experience an online shopper would be having.
 
Here’s what we found:
The average threshold for Loading a Home Page should be less than 2 seconds. Data collected on the MOZARK platform (Graph 1) shows that both a Global E-Commerce app (App X) and a Large Indian E-Commerce app (App Y) were unable to meet the threshold even with an acceptable download and upload speed tested under real network conditions.
 

Graph 1. Time to load Home Page of Global E-Commerce app (App X) and Large Indian E-Commerce app (App Y) in seconds

Graph 2. Time to search Product of Global E-Commerce app (App X) and Large Indian E-Commerce app (App Y) in seconds

As illustrated in graph 2, the Time It took to search a product had a very slim difference, projecting that both Apps had a similar responsiveness, a responsiveness that was acceptable for online shoppers. 
 

Graph 3. Time to open Product Description of Global E-Commerce app (App X) and Large Indian E-Commerce app (App Y) in seconds

Graph 4. Time to add Item to the Cart of Global E-Commerce app (App X) and Large Indian E-Commerce app (App Y) in seconds

 
Graph 5. Time to add Item to the Cart of Global E-Commerce app (App X) and Large Indian E-Commerce app (App Y) in seconds
 
We also saw that the time taken to open a product description was faster In Large Indian E-Commerce app (App Y), as shown in Graph 3 while, the adding Items to the cart and proceeding to checkout was quicker on Global E-Commerce app (App X). Thus, highlighting that Global E-Commerce app delivered a better online shopping experience. 
 
Comparative Table 1. Two E-Commerce Applications’ Performance on MOZARK Platform
 
How can the Apps then deliver better experience?
So, what did Global E-Commerce app get right? We dived in deep to understand the network architectures of each app and found that –
  1. Global E-Commerce App had an optimized backend that allowed It to cater to Increased traffic and respond back to requests from the mobile clients within the same time frame.
  2. Its 3rd party Integrations were optimized to Include only necessary trackers and analytics SDKs. This allowed It to respond to traffic surges and complete critical journeys like completing checkout and loading payment gateways without Interruptions.
  3. The App had a robust CDN architecture, allowing It to render richer product content and give an experience like physical stores.
Thus, Global E-Commerce app was able to deliver a better online shopping experience despite having a similar responsiveness as Large Indian E-Commerce App. More details In Table 1.
Keeping an eye on the user experience is the best way to resolve and be ahead of the bottlenecks in a user journey. Thus, conducting rigorous tests to identify such issues proactively will help you to troubleshoot to keep the buyer experience trouble-free.
E-commerce apps can start delivering better shopping experience to customers by following three simple steps:
 
  • Measure and optimize application experience: Customer experience matters! It is very important to attain a certain level of satisfaction when it comes to your application’s responsiveness and in-app experience. Continuous monitoring allows you to diagnose performance issues related to your apps’ network architecture, which might be performing poorly and rendering an experience full of latencies.
  • Rigorous testing before each release: Say “No” to app defects and “Yes” to a bug-free app by using an automated application testing cycle. It allows you to rapidly test user journeys on several combinations of devices and networks, thus helping you ensure that bug-free versions of your app are hitting the market sooner.
  • Testing for specific journeys, devices or locations that are buggy: E-commerce platforms are for everyone. Compatibility is your amigo! However, there are always some phones, locations, or networks on which the app might not function efficiently. Having access to the right devices across various geographies allows you to test for localized features and content and catch bugs in real-time.
The MOZARK platform offers a Digital Experience for Apps product suite that helps e-commerce app deliver a great online shopping experience and not lose out on customers because of latencies In the app. Our product suite can help you prepare in advance for multiple devices, and network condition possibility rather quickly and interact from the perspective of testing particular journeys in particular locations that developers feel are buggy. 
The excitement of the online shoppers is high as shoppers cannot flock to brick-and-mortar stores in the holiday sale. Let’s get started now and prepare your e-commerce application to dominate the market and gain higher returns! 
Be our partner and we’ll get the best insights you can get for your app success.  Schedule a call and take a free trial by clicking here.
 
Disclaimer:
The purpose of this study is to demonstrate experience-based testing on Apps. Actual measurements of user experience correlated with application, network, and device experience. The study was conducted in Mumbai on Samsung Galaxy M30 phones. The study is purely a result of a deeply data driven external survey. None of the apps evaluated, paid for any component of the survey nor participated in any form during the tabulation of the results. Using or citing these findings for marketing or other purposes without the knowledge of MOZARK is strictly prohibited.
 
 

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