Why is it taking really long time for the new MakeUseOf website to load?

justin March 25, 2011

I really like the new MakeUseOf website, but the problem is that it is taking a lot of time just to load each page. I guess there are a lot of plugins being used or something, which is making it load really slow.

  1. Tina
    March 27, 2011 at 6:35 pm


    is MakeUseOf loading faster for you in the meantime? What browser did you use and was MakeUseOf also slow in another browser? Did you try Mike's suggestions?

  2. James Bruce
    March 26, 2011 at 10:42 am

    Hi Justin. As the tech guy for MUO, I think I should handle this question.

    As far as I'm aware and from my experience since the theme change, the site is actually loading slightly faster. We are also actively reducing the number of plugins and various pre-loads that must be done to optimize the page even further.

    As for why it loaded slow for you in particular, I can think of two possible reasons:

    (1) You accessed the site while we were performing some essential edits or upgrades which caused a temporarily slow down (is it still for you now?)

    (2) Since a lot of the images and site components are new, it may be that your local cache isnt full yet and has had to be refreshed with the newer content, whereas before you were loading much of the site locally from your cache. Obviously, this should improve as things stabilize and your local cache fills again with the new elements. Unfortunately, we are still adjusting many parts of the site, so we need to keep cleansing the cache to reflect updates, and consequently you will need to re-download those parts.

    Bear with us, and sorry for any slowdown you are experiencing!

    • Saptashwa
      March 26, 2011 at 1:52 pm

      I would think, James, that 43.54 seconds for the home page to load completely (I've already loaded the site in FF4 for 40+ times - I'm regular reader) is quite a time. Google takes 5.23s, Science2Tech (science2tech.wordpress.com - my blog) takes 5.89s, Lifehacker takes 14.40s and Engadget (which is very photo heavy) takes 18.61s. I have visited (and visit) these sites equal number of times. So isn't that a bit too much?

      • Mike
        March 26, 2011 at 9:22 pm

        Have you tried cleaning the Internet cache?

        Also if you have your computer running 24/7 I also suggest to flush your computers DNS Cache (or simply restart it). Maybe there is some bad routing in the background.

    • pceasies
      March 31, 2011 at 11:31 pm

      I ran the site through site-perf.com and there are a few things you could do to speed things up. After putting the main sprite image through PunyPNG it was able to reduce the size by 16%, losslessly compressing other images should help even more.

      The images for the PDFs at the top are also fairly large for their size. Photoshop has a save for web feature that works great for optimizing images if someone has access.

      I'd also move any javascript possible to the bottom of body to help prevent it from blocking the loading of other elements (especially jQuery if it doesn't play a huge role)

      GTMetrix is also helpful