Hello, has anyone found the speed in China of their store to be painfully slow. We are mid build on our site and have tested the speed in China across devices and its taking 20 seconds to load up pages. This is never going to allow us to sell properly in the China market. Any suggestions?
Brian here, from the Shopify Guru team. :) I hope the new year is treating you well.
Loading international websites from within China is often much slower than it would be elsewhere, as I am sure you are aware there are a few websites, plugins and the like that are restricted within China. This can mean that websites that are linking to particular blocked websites, or using anthing that would normally be restricted, can load quite a lot slower for a user within mainland China.
One common stumbling block is social media links, icons and widgets, as Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Instagram are all blocked in mainland China as I write this, so linking to or using such widgets can result in a slower load time. There have also been some complaints that Google Fonts can slow down websites in China due to the restriction on Google's services there.
It's also worth considering that outside of the first tier cities (and even within some of the districts in the first tier cities) the internet speeds can be quite a bit slower than what we may be used to at home. Although internet speeds are increasing rapidly across the country, some areas can still lag a bit behind, which will of course affect website loading times. This means that optimising your website's images and it's code can pay great dividends just as it would for users from any country, but when internet speeds are somewhat slower the difference can be felt more keenly.
These possible reasons are by no means exhaustive, but just a few observations based on my time residing in Beijing. Going through your website with a fine tooth comb can certainly help, but when it comes to countries that have somewhat restricted internet, there's will be some factors out of your control.
I hope this helps to clear things up a little, and wish you all the best in cracking the middle kingdom. :)
If you have any other questions or issues, please do not hesitate to get in touch with our Guru team are firstname.lastname@example.org. We're here to help 24/7!
Have a lovely day!
Hi Brian, thank you for your reply, I really appreciate it. I understand that there is limited solutions for getting overseas websites to load fast in China, we expected an up to 5 second delay but with Shopify, its always stuck in loading or at best 20 seconds to load up. Prestashop, Volusion etc are all about 5 seconds on the testing that we have done but those softwares dont meet our customisation needs or design needs like shopify.
Regarding the social media links, can you let me know where on the CSS I can remove them in full? I can see where to remove the icons from our website but assume the code needs to be removed also.
Also the google fonts, I have tried to remove these in the CSS but it then changes the font to Times roman which looks awful, is there anyway I can remove the Google Fonts and maintain decent looking fonts?
We will give it a go removing both the social media links and google fonts and see if the speed gets any better.
Thanks for your help.
As a chinese and china shopify 3rd party service provider, We've enhanced performances for global brand to extend their business in china.
Actually, the data storage isn't slow by visiting from china, the slow due to resources includes css, js especially, google and facebook, twitter.
In china, people use Alipay much, thus if you need to extend your business, you may need to integrate alipay global.
More information, can visit http://www.shopifychina.com
In China, few people use credit cards or bank cards to pay, because it is very troublesome to enter a large number of cards
The most popular is the use of Alipay, it comes from the Alibaba, 600 million people have used it in China
It is very simple to use, only need to sweep using a mobile phone, and has been integrated in the Shopify, anyone can use it.
You can take a look at this
1. Setup a DNS service for China via Aliyun (cloud service provided by Alibaba)
2. Take out all the Google related service from your website (ie. Google Font), and Jquery (a JavaScrip library also by Google)
3. Switch to a China focused e-commerce platform like WalktheChat, it will solve the speed issue, and it also provide Chinese payment solution such as Alipay/WeChat Payment/Union Pay (since most Chinese do not use credit card to shop online); and it integrates with Shopify
If you want to take away the hassle of setting this all up, our company Altitude Labs helps Shopify stores to setup in China/WeChat with the following:
Feel free to reach out to me if you're interested to learn more!
We are a Shopify consultancy and help Chinese sellers have success in European E-Commerce markets by setting up localized Shopify websites, Amazon FBA accounts and advertising solutions. We love Shopify for many reason as we've recently outlined on our blog.
Having said that, in our view Shopify is NOT the best solution for E-Commerce success in Mainland China. We've heard many complaints from our Chinese clients who claim that their Shopify sites don't perform well. This can mainly be attributed to the GFW and to the fact that Shopify does not host any of its servers in Mainland China. Unfortunately - even though Shopify seems to be aware of this issue - we don't get the impression that they are actively working on fixing this issue. The result is that our Chinese clients blame us (the agency) for the non-performance of their Shopify sites.
@ShopifySupport: Please let use know if you are working on a solution to this issue, otherwise we will continue to recommend other service providers / Ecommerce platforms to clients which would like to have E-Commerce success in Mainland China.
Until then we recommend @all: If you want to launch your E-Commerce brand in China do NOT use Shopify. Use one of the multitude of services which help you launch your brand in Mainland China. Some of these service even take over inventory risk, marketing activities and customer support. If you need any specific names, feel free to contact us directly via email and we'd be happy to connect you.