I have recently taken a look at my website loading speed again.

A bit about my website, as of currently:

  • I hosted my website on a smallest, cheapest VPS plan at RamNode ($15 per year, massive plan) which shares the physical machine with a numerous other people.

  • This website is powered by jekyll - a static site generator.

  • The website is using a custom theme, based on Bootstrap. I loaded two addtional fonts from Google Fonts (Ubuntu and Merriweather) for heading and paragraph.

  • I have Jquery and Bootstrap script on my page for some fancy stuff I might need later, along with Google Analytics script (async).

Testing

As for the testing setup, I will compare the loading speed of two posts with text only.

  Gtmetrix Webpagetest
Total load time 2.8s 2s
Size 247KB 221KB
Number of request 14 17
Location Canada US
PageSpeed 98 96
YSlow 96 -

2-3 seconds to load isn’t too bad itself but it’s definitely not good enough for me. My idea number would be something less than 1 second. I know that custom fonts come with the trade of loading speed but I would expect it to load faster than this, especially when they’re served by Google.

Stuff I have already tried:

  • Combine CSS into a single file, minified and served by CloudFlare.

  • Images are optimized with ImageOptim for optimal size.

  • Defer/async script when possible. Loading JS script right before </body> tag.

Webpagetest gives my website A for everything except: First Byte Time (B) and Cache static content (C). Let’s break it down.

First Byte Time

  • 845 ms First Byte Time
  • 717 ms Target First Byte Time

Apparently, the VPS my website is on is slow (which is expected). I can’t do much to enhance this either.

Cache static content

Webpagetest also complains about there’s no max-age or expires set in header on fonts.googleapi.com. I have no idea why Google didn’t set max-age or expires for this. Maybe someone with better understanding about this can help explaining to me.

As much as I would like to make my website load faster (I’m sucker for this kind of stuff), I either have to upgrade the VPS plan ($$$) or go with web safe fonts (Ewwwww!).

I guess I would have to settle with this for now. Hopefully, you don’t find this website too slow.