Although 80% of web performance problems are typically due to front-end issues (Souders 2009), back-end bottlenecks can slow your site down to a crawl. One thing to watch out for is when static pages load relatively quickly, while dynamic pages load slowly. This article shows what to look for when a server slows down a web site.
The race is on to get tickets to the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, England. Millions of people (some 2.3 to 2.7 million signed up to request tickets so far) are clamoring to attend events featuring the likes of Michael Phelps, Ian Thorpe, and Usain Bolt. To distribute the load in the initial ticket request phase, Olympic organizers are using a batch system to accept requests over a six week period. Even with this even-handed approach, the servers were under tremendous load in the early hours of this past Tuesday. We investigate and show how performance could be improved.
Many sites now use Google Analytics to track their metrics. Google Analytics gives some useful statistics not normally found from server-side log files, including PPC versus natural SEO traffic and visitor behavior. Used as directed however, Google Analytics can slow down your pages. This article shows how improve the speed of web pages using Google Analytics with a few simple changes, while maintaining its advantages for faster-loading sites.
I just got back from the Velocity 2010 Web Performance and Operations Conference in Santa Clara, California. Now in its third year, the conference is a must-see if you are a web performance or network operations engineer. And engineers were aplenty this year, the conference was sold out with more than 1500 attendees.
Google has incorporated the speed of a web page into its search engine rankings. While
this new signal currently affects only a small percentage of US sites, Google’s announcement officially links performance with search engine marketing.
WebsiteOptimization.com was designed by the author in 2002, in the age of slower dial-up modems. The design was starting to show its age, so we’ve been quietly working on a redesign to improve the look and conversion rate. This article shows how we redesigned the site, and some of the techniques we used to achieve our goals.
Online marketing has evolved from selling products to creating engaging experiences for consumers. New research shows that how long these experiences seem to last, however, depends on how rich the experience and time of recall (Ahn, Liu, and Soman 2009). The “memory marker” model helps explain this phenomenon and the time distortion that some people experience during and after immersive online flow experiences. Web developers need to balance the need to create rich online experiences with tolerable download times and scant distractions.
For his doctoral thesis at the University of Glasgow, Thiam Kian Chiew studied web page performance. As part of his research, Chiew explored the different factors that affect web page speed, testing and modeling the key components to web page download times. His findings are summarized below.