How Home Energy Efficiency Relates to Web Performance Responsibility
Remember NetZero? I was a customer way back in the day. I also remember some Wall Street analyst commenting on the company when it went public during the dot com bomb: “Why would you name a company after its bottom line?” No idea who said that, but can you believe the company still exists?!? Wow! They’ve pivoted. A few times.
But today, the term “net zero” has a totally different meaning, and applies mainly to buildings and more specifically homes that will, over the course of time, use net zero energy. These houses are incredibly efficient and utilize the latest technology in geothermal, hydroelectric, and solar energy generation, capture, and storage. Yes, we’re getting around to web performance, I promise.
Here goes: when does the builder and/or buyer ask the question, “how efficient will this home be?” If they’re building a net zero home, by definition, they don’t ask that question. If they do ask it, they are new to the concept, and they ask the question before the first fist full of dirt is ever moved. Now, riddle me this, NetZero Man: what if the builder and/or buyer did ask that question halfway through the building process? Ridiculous, right?
But that would be an improvement on when the question of web performance gets asked, because it usually comes out when someone says or hears this:
“Wow, our web site is so slow!”
So, whose job is web performance anyway? Who do you look at or point to when someone says, “Wow, our web site is so slow!”? In most cases, there are four possibilities: developer, designer, QA, IT/Ops. Whose job is it? Well, it’s everyone’s job, but the more important question is not “who, but “when is web performance?”
No, that doesn’t make any grammatical sense at all: “when is web performance?” But that’s the appropriate question, in the same manner as it’s appropriate to ask “how efficient will it be?” when you are building a house. We should be creating the entire website experience to be absolutely as fast as possible. Unfortunately, for most startups and small businesses, web performance comes in second if not third fiddle to functionality and design.
While that approach may be the most pragmatic for getting an MVP (minimum viable product) off the ground, ultimately the startup has to be able to compete against the big competitors who have multi-million dollar budgets. And, the big companies with multi-million dollar budgets have to be on guard for faster, more agile startups who have placed a big cross-hairs on the logo of the entrenched leader in the market.
All this is to say that web performance must be ranked just as high as design and functionality when it comes to the priorities of the web team. When it doesn’t, someone is going to have to pull double duty doing lots of troubleshooting to figure out what’s degrading the performance of the website or app, all while wondering, “whose job is web performance anyway?”
If you are interested in things like performance responsibility and designing fast sites from day one, then you will love Zoompf. We have a number of free tools that help you detect and correct front-end performance issues on your website: check out our free report to analyze your website for common performance problems, and if you like the results consider signing up for our free alerts to get notified when changes to your site slow down your performance.