Web Development: Optimizing your web site for speed.

We frequently use Google Page Speed insights to make sure that our websites are running as fast as possible.  If you haven’t tried it on your site, give it a go – its fun to see, and there is inevitably a lot of low-hanging fruit you can access to improve your score.  ProtoShare.com currently scores a 92/100.

Some of the suggestions, particularly removing all render-blocking css and javascript below the fold, can be quite tricky to do, and they certainly conflict with standard development process, where adding scripts and css to the head tag is pretty standard.

Some of the suggestions are easy.  Like setting an expires header on your content so that browsers can cache it for up to a week.  While its true that you can’t do this for everything, if you can do it for part of your site, you can and should.  Even frequently updated libraries can be versioned so as to support a long expiration time (and long cache times).

So – the easy ones we did – we currently have only one file that google is telling us to increase the cache time:

Screen Shot 2015-04-17 at 2.39.08 PM

Yes – that’s right, its google analytics.  My OCD really really wants them to bump this up to a week.  Or they could just exclude it from their page tool.

At any rate – take advantage of page-speed, and all of the other great tools Google offers for web development.  Just don’t expect perfection.

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