Comparing web page speed in Europe and MENA
First, let’s establish our playing field and the status quo. Our client, Jaguar Land Rover, operates around the world, but we’re only going to focus on its presence in three markets: Finland, Poland, and Dubai. The local websites are set up in a very similar way, with the only primary difference being the language (Arabic requires more CSS, though this is not a major differentiator).
In every region, the company uses Reffine’s content management system (CMS), Amazon Web Services (AWS) hosting platform, and Cloudfare content delivery network (CDN). All of this is to say that the actual websites in question contain very similar elements. Only the geographic location of their audiences represents a substantial difference between the localized version.
When we look at data collected from Jaguar Land Rover across Finland, Poland, and Dubai, we find a stark difference. While Finnish users see the heaviest elements on a web page load in an average of 1.7 seconds and Polish viewers wait an average of 1.9 seconds, in Dubai, the average wait time climbs to 3.2 seconds. And because this represents an average, some audience members experience substantially longer delays.
While this might seem like a relatively small sample size, it’s indicative of a general trend: page speed is faster in Europe than in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA). There are a handful of reasons for this and they have broad implications that go beyond these specific regions. Next, we’ll cover the factors that determine this difference.