HTTP Archive: Average web page is now 1MB
According to the HTTP Archive, the average web page is now more than 1 megabyte (MB) in size. As Strangeloop president Joshua Bixby detailed in this post for GigaOM, this will have negative effects on both site owners and mobile internet users.
Showing 8% growth in just four months, the HTTP Archive's web stats showed an average page size of 1042 kilobytes as of May 1, 2012. At current growth rates, the average page will hit 2 MB by 2015.
Large page sizes are bad news for everyone, especially mobile internet users. With data at a premium, users could be hit with severe roaming charges for what amounts to routine internet use. Even for those who avoid roaming, stingy data caps threaten to further hamper mobile performance as users suffer with slow mobile sites.
The trend has a disproportionately negative affect on mobile performance, as outlined in the graph below:
Bloated pages cost site owners too. Bigger pages hurt website speed, and when people visit slow sites, they spend less, view fewer pages, click fewer ads, and spend less time on site.
Though the two main culprits for this growth are images and third-party scripts (analytics, ads, social sharing buttons), the data points to two larger trends at play: users’ insatiable desire for richer content, and site owners’ widget-happy attempts to monetize their pages.