Infographics: Putting a human face on web performance

If you’ve spent much time in the web performance space, you’re familiar with the stats that make routine appearances in presentations, reports, and *ahem* blog posts. Familiarity can start to breed contempt — or at least boredom — but these numbers are still vital to giving credibility to our industry. Performance is slowly entering the mainstream, but it needs all the help it can get.

With that in mind, we here at Strangeloop wanted to breathe new life into these numbers, so we asked our friend Ben at Pretty/Ugly Design to work with us to create some graphics. It was a really interesting process, in that it got us all to think about what these numbers mean, not just in visual terms, but in human terms. In tech, it’s really easy to lose sight of the fact that, ultimately, what we’re designing are systems for people. For example, it’s easy to say “57% of online users will abandon a slow-loading site after 3 seconds”, but it’s much more compelling to visualize what 57% of a group of people actually looks like.

We just released the graphics, and they’ve already been picked up at Mashable, where they got a lot of good attention. The versions below are obviously a bit on the scaled-down side, so click here to see the larger versions.

Visualizing data around web performance, page growth, conversion, mobile, and online revenues

We can’t take all the credit for these. Behind every cool infographic is some excellent research. A huge amount of credit must go to Stoyan Stefanov, Aberdeen Group, Equation Research, PhoCusWright, AOL, Amazon, Shopzilla, Yahoo, and Mozilla for sharing their findings with the performance community.

I’d love to see these graphics get out there, so please feel free to use any of them. If you publish them anywhere online, be sure to send me a link. I’d love to see how they get used.

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