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Does lazy loading decrease load time for Gbot?
08-18-2012, 06:39 PM
Post: #1
Wink Does lazy loading decrease load time for Gbot?
Hi,

I've been tasked with optimizing some long tutorial style pages with many screenshots such as this. The goal of this task is specifically to improve the customers Google analytics page speed scores.

Besides the obvious optimizations such as compressing the images further, reducing their size etc. i'm thinking of using javascript lazy load to load the page on demand as the users scrolls down. This will obviously increase the perceived page load time for users but I'm not sure if it will improve the Google pagespeed scores since as far as I know the gbot doesn't load javascript.

Any ideas or comments on optimizing long image heavy pages such as this would be greatly appreciated. Shy
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08-20-2012, 11:59 PM (This post was last modified: 08-21-2012 12:09 AM by Marvin.)
Post: #2
RE: Does lazy loading decrease load time for Gbot?
Hi Jack,

I don't think googlebot loads pages the way a web browser would. It will not load the images at the same time as it is loading your base html file, but instead it will notice links to your images, and it will come back later to crawl the image links. At least that is my understanding of it. So lazy loading would not help to reduce the time spent downloading a page for googlebot.

What is the googlebot's average time spent downloading a page (in milliseconds) for the website? I think anything bellow 300 to 400 ms is quite decent. I think server optimization here plays a bigger role than anything else. I've seen spikes in googlebot download times each time I had an issue with my server.

Marvin
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08-21-2012, 02:20 AM
Post: #3
RE: Does lazy loading decrease load time for Gbot?
(08-18-2012 06:39 PM)jackb Wrote:  I've been tasked with optimizing some long tutorial style pages with many screenshots such as this. The goal of this task is specifically to improve the customers Google analytics page speed scores.

Besides the obvious optimizations such as compressing the images further, reducing their size etc. i'm thinking of using javascript lazy load to load the page on demand as the users scrolls down. This will obviously increase the perceived page load time for users but I'm not sure if it will improve the Google pagespeed scores since as far as I know the gbot doesn't load javascript.

Any ideas or comments on optimizing long image heavy pages such as this would be greatly appreciated. Shy

You are mixing a bunch of different things together. Analytics, Page Speed and gbot. None really have much to do with each other.

The "Site Speed" in analytics measures the time to onload for the users actually visiting the site (through the analytics javascript beacon). Optimizing that should be the most direct improvement to end-user speed but only if you don't radically change how the page loads. Lazy loading below-the-fold images is a good optimization for the user experience and can help this specifically. You don't necessarily have to wait until scroll. You can load the hidden images after the load event for when the user scrolls, getting them out of the main load sequence is the key.

Page Speed is a check for how "optimized" the site is against a set of best practices. It should largely be considered a checklist of things to watch out for but it doesn't necessarily correlate directly to site performance.

I assume gbot is a reference to the Google search bot. It includes stats about how long it took to download your HTML while it was crawling and that is a component of the user time but it isn't used by either of the above.
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08-21-2012, 05:15 PM
Post: #4
RE: Does lazy loading decrease load time for Gbot?
Hey Patrick,

I really appreciate your thoughtful response and you're absolutely right that I was mixing everything up and you've done a wonderful job clearing it all up for me. Thank you!
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