Online video company Conviva released an infographic this week that shows how quickly online video is growing. It also reveals, in the words of GigaOM’s Janko Roettgers, that people really hate video buffering.
This isn’t exactly news. We’ve long seen a strong, negative correlation between buffering events and viewer engagement. But it’s good to see others out there who realize that intermittent playback is the top reason people abandon an online video.
Simply put, viewers who experience buffering are less engaged than those who watch a video with seamless playback. And online viewers are not a forgiving bunch. As Conviva’s numbers show, viewers who experience a single video start-up failure return 54 percent less than those who do not. These findings are in line with a 2009 study that found four out of five viewers stop watching a video if it buffers just once.
What does all this mean? Having high-quality video playback is paramount. In many cases, you only get one shot to deliver a great viewing experience, so your player had better perform flawlessly.
Conviva's infographic is available here.