Optimisation analysis and setting the scope, hosting, backend and frontend changes
We introduced all changes step by step and measured the results achieved on a regular basis.
Analysis and setting the scope of work
We built the santander.pl website some years ago, based on the paradigm of all libraries loading continuously with the first site, which extends the time of its loading. Over time, Google had changed its algorithm of website positioning and indexing. Today, only the sites that open the fastest during the start-off are promoted the most. We have accounted for this situation.
In response to that, a dedicated e-point team along with the Santander team conducted a detailed application and business study with a view to proposing such development paths which can render the best results.
Hosting and backend changes
The hosting environment has been extended with two additional application server nodes, two http nodes, we expanded operational memory on all servers (from 6 GB to 8 GB), as well as increased the number of process cores on application servers (from 8 to 12). Thanks to this, the website can easily receive the increased traffic owed to redirected users shifting from e-banking to a dedicated landing page on the portal.
In the application itself we optimised the use of memory through components and moved marker replacers from the session to the application. We also optimised requests to the data base and implemented data caching for the frequently downloaded data.
The fastest-loading bank website on the Polish Internet
In February 2021, all website performance measurement tools mercilessly ranked santander.co.uk in 4th place. After reducing page load time and optimising the technology, the bank's website has been continuously ranked number one (based on the Web Vitals Leaderboard) since September 2022.
Reduction in page speed loading time by 300%
We have significantly and permanently reduced page load time. Measurements taken in February 2021 indicated that the load time of the homepage was around 6 seconds. Today it is 2 seconds. The main personal account page used to take as long as 8 seconds to load, now it takes less than 3 seconds. The page providing information about the loan took about 7 seconds to load. Now it takes about 2 seconds. That's a reduction in load time of up to 300% (as measured by WebPageTest and PageSpeed Insights).
Steady increase in conversion rates = higher sales
How has this change affected business? Firstly – sale conversions on selected pages increased by as much as around 10%. This is consistent growth, remaining stable from the implementation of the changes until today. The conversion rate is understood here as the ratio of the number of users of a page to the number of those, who initiated the conversion process (i.e. clicks on ‘Open an account’, ‘I want to take a loan’.) A faster performing website means more applications submitted and, consequently, higher sales.
Reduction in carbon footprint by 81%
Reducing page load time has helped to reduce the carbon footprint generated by the website by up to 81%. Our score of carbon footprint reduction places us among the leading websites - not only in the category of banking, but in general.
Higher SEO indicators
The results for 3G Fast mobile traffic are as follows:
- a 65% reduction in the LCP rendering time (Largest Contentful Paint),
- an 18% reduction in the sum of TBT (Total Blocking Time) long tasks,
- a 46% reduction in the time needed to render the first website elements,
- a 43% reduction in the Speed Index, achieving a dynamic and stable rendering process of the Above The Fold space,
- a 50% reduction in the overall size of the files downloaded on the website.
Additionally, we have achieved excellent results in the proportion of high quality URL addresses.
- from 19.2 % to 50.9% - a rise in the number of URL addresses assessed as "high quality" for the mobile traffic by Google,
- from 89.9 % to 94.3% - a rise in the number of URL addresses assessed as " high quality" for the desktop traffic by Google.
We have also observed a significant rise in the values of FCP and LCP indicators.