HubSpot Website Speed dilemma: the impact of CTA's, forms, video, ...

Johan Vandecasteele
Johan Vandecasteele
Oct 28, 2020 9:02:05 AM

HubSpot Webdesign

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We performed several page speed experiments on HubSpot websites. Our goal is to understand the impact of adding call-to-actions, forms, video, and the meeting tool on page speed.

Before we dive into our experiments, let's explore why website speed is important.

Why website speed matters

First of all, there is a correlation between conversion and page speed. Various studies show that every extra second can cost you visitors, and money. Therefore, slower speeds mean less conversion, whether this is a subscription to your newsletter or purchasing a product.

Secondly, Google likes fast websites. Speed is a ranking factor and has a direct influence on SEO (search engine optimization).

Thirdly, a slow website is a bad user experience. Bad for your visitors equals bad for business.

However (similar to SEO), there is no magic button to solve the speed equation. Page speed depends on many factors; and as with SEO, you should think of it as a continuous exercise.

(Tip:) More about speed and websites? We wrote a comprehensive guide about it!

In a series of ongoing experiments, we try to understand how the content of a page, e.g. the HubSpot Meetings tools, CTA's, forms, and videos impact the speed of a HubSpot website.

HubSpot meeting tool: impact on speed?

The HubSpot Meeting tool is a highly effective and efficient tool: your prospects can book a meeting with you or your sales reps straight from your website.

HubSpot meeting tool: impact op de snelheid van je site?(an example of the HubSpot meeting tool)

Should you add the meeting link to each page? Or only embed it on your demo page? Our assumption: adding the HubSpot meeting tool on a web page increases load time (as you are adding extra script).

A regular button vs a HubSpot CTA: which one is faster?

As a marketer, adding HubSpot call-to-actions (CTAs) is a no-brainer:

  • You manage CTAs in one central place
  • You can do A/B-testing or add personalization
  • You get insight into views and conversion, like:

hubspot-cta-resultaten

But adding CTA's requires extra script to be loaded, per CTA.

website-speed-experiment-cta-footer

Our assumption: HubSpot call-to-actions increase page load time.

Do forms impact speed?

Adding an overview of your blogs, plus the option to subscribe to your newsletter. Sounds like an excellent idea, as this is an extra opportunity for conversion.

website-speed-formulier

Question: do forms impact page speed? Our assumption: adding forms to your page increase page load time.

How about video (native HubSpot or Youtube)?

There are multiple ways to add video to your HubSpot website:

  • via embedded code (external video), e.g. a Youtube video
  • via the native HubSpot video functionality (essentially a native Vidyard integration)

website-speed-video-experiment

Our assumption: loading (any kind of) video increases page load time. Be careful, as embedding Youtube, ... video's may add extra cookies to your page as well (often without you being aware of it).

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In a series of ongoing experiments, we are testing these assumptions:

Website speed experiment 1

For our first test, we have an existing webpage with

  • one HubSpot embedded meetings link
  • one native HubSpot CTA (in the footer)
  • a subscription form for the newsletter

Per our experiment, we

  • remove the meeting link
  • replace the HubSpot CTA with a regular button (same visual styling)
  • remove the form

Results

Google Speedtest results before the experiment:

website-speed-experiment-before

After our optimization experiment we get a spectacular improvement on speed:

website-speed-experiment-results

A decent score for mobile, and an excellent score for desktop (remark: obtaining high scores for mobile can be quite hard).

Website speed experiment 2

For our second test, we have an existing web page with

  • 3 native HubSpot CTA's (navigation, hero, footer)
  • a subscription form (newsletter)

Per our experiment, we

  • replace the HubSpot CTA's with regular buttons (same visual styling)
  • remove the form

Results

Google Speedtest results before the experiment:

speed-experiment-2-before-1

After our optimization experiment we (only) see a minor improvement on speed:

speed-experiment-2-after

GTMetrics, another speedtest, confirms this improvement:gmetrix-website-experiment

Website speed experiment 3

For our third test, we have an existing page with

  • ten (10) different HubSpot CTA's
  • one HubSpot video
  • one YouTube video

Per our experiment, we

  • replace the HubSpot CTA's with regular buttons (same visual styling)
  • replace the HubSpot video with an image (optimized)
  • replace the Youtube video with an image (optimized)

Results

Google Speedtest results before the experiment:

hubspot-website-speed-experiment-before

After our optimization experiment we see a large improvement on speed:

hubspot-website-speed-experiment-after-1

An excellent score for desktop, and an average score for mobile (remark: obtaining high scores for mobile can be quite hard).

The speed dilemma: should you remove all forms, cta's, meetings tools and video from your webpages?

Absolutely not. Removing them is giving up on functionality, content and conversion.

Speeding up your website is about making trade-offs. Removing items for speed can have consequences for your business.

Technical optimization of your site is one thing. Limiting the number of cookies/scripts is another, but the content and conversion elements are equally important for speed. 

If you consider the meeting link essential to your webpage, it'll outweigh potential speed gain.

How about your HubSpot website?

Do you want to check your website, both from a conversion, technical, UX, or speed perspective?

Talk to us.

Johan Vandecasteele

Johan Vandecasteele

2020 HubSpot Champion User. Managing partner leadstreet. Marketer, Strategist and Pragmatist. HubSpot-certified at 22 levels. Sportsman, foodie, and fan of Fender & PRS.

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