Traffic to the UKFast network, which hosts thousands of eCommerce websites and booking platforms, has seen a massive 30% increase in web traffic this Black Friday, compared to Black Friday last year.
The stats may indicate a significant shift in buying habits as shoppers turn away from the potential carnage of high street sales in favour of bagging deals from the comfort of their own homes or on their lunch break.
Figures showed that £1.4bn was spent online in the UK, and $5bn in America, during Black Friday 2017 and 2018 looks set to smash that total, if early traffic statistics from UKFast are anything to go by.
UKFast, which specialises in hosting sites for eCommerce websites, prepares its online infrastructure each year to ensure that websites suffer from no loss of performance when traffic surges to unprecedented levels.
Speed is vital to eCommerce success, especially when 53% of mobile customers will abandon a website that takes more than three seconds to load, losing 22% of conversions.
Among the British hosting firm’s 5,000 clients are LateRooms.com, Foot Asylum, Cox and Cox, Better Bathrooms and online marketplace OnBuy.
UKFast CEO Lawrence Jones said: “Black Friday is an incredible opportunity for online retailers to offer their best deals, but preparation is key. There’s nothing more frustrating than spotting a product that you like at an amazing price on social media, clicking through to the website and getting stuck in a queue or on a website that’s too slow to load.
“Not having the proper infrastructure in place to cope with an influx of traffic is the number one mistake that retailers make at this time of year and there’s always someone that gets caught out.
“We’ve often been called in to save the day at the last minute, installing web acceleration tech or bolstering a solution to cope with increased demand on websites.”
UKFast owns and operates five data centres in the UK and offers cloud hosting, dedicated servers and colocation services.