Ville R Ville R - 4 months ago 29
HTML Question

Social media buttons slow down website load time

I'm creating a simple and fast website, and I'm trying to optimize the site as much as I can. I noticed that social media buttons are slowing down the website by quite a lot. I'm including the Facebook Like Button, Twitter Button and Google+ Button.
So I ran a few tests:

Website without social media buttons, loading time 0.24s:

enter image description here

Website with social media buttons, loading time 1.38s:

enter image description here

Here is my code:

<div id="social">
<!-- FB -->
<div id="fb-root"></div>
<script>(function(d, s, id) { var js, fjs = d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0]; if (d.getElementById(id)) return; js = d.createElement(s); js.id = id; js.src = "//connect.facebook.net/en_EN/all.js#xfbml=1&status=0"; fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js, fjs); }(document, 'script', 'facebook-jssdk'));</script>
<div class="fb-like" data-href="http://facebook.com/textsearcher" data-width="150" data-layout="button_count" data-show-faces="false" data-send="false"></div>
<!-- TWITTER -->
<a href="https://twitter.com/share" class="twitter-share-button" data-url="http://www.textsearcher.com/" data-hashtags="TextSearcher">Tweet</a>
<script>!function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?'http':'https';if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src=p+'://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js';fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document, 'script', 'twitter-wjs');</script>
<!-- G+ -->
<div class="g-plusone" data-size="medium" data-href="http://www.textsearcher.com/"></div>
<script type="text/javascript"> (function() { var po = document.createElement('script'); po.type = 'text/javascript'; po.async = true; po.src = 'https://apis.google.com/js/plusone.js'; var s = document.getElementsByTagName('script')[0]; s.parentNode.insertBefore(po, s); })(); </script>
</div>


So I tried few things to load these social buttons without them slowing website load time.

Loading buttons after one second delay via JavaScript:

setInterval(function(){
$("#social").html("<!-- FB --><div id="fb-root"></div>.....");
},1000);


This did not help, buttons didn't load up properly and they were bugging.

Loading buttons after document is ready:

$(document).ready(function() {
$("#social").html("<!-- FB --><div id="fb-root"></div>.....");
});


This did not help either. Buttons loaded just fine but website load time was still >1.00 seconds.

I'm running out of ideas. Any way to load them without slowing down website?

PS. Used Page load time plugin for chrome in those tests




SOLUTION:

Thanks to CodeMonkey for his answer, I eventually solved this problem by loading social buttons after entire page is loaded. I moved the necessary JavaScript code (for social media buttons) in a separate file to make my HTML/markup little bit cleaner.

JS (in a seperate file, social.js):

/* Facebook*/
(function(d, s, id) { var js, fjs = d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0]; if (d.getElementById(id)) return; js = d.createElement(s); js.id = id; js.src = "//connect.facebook.net/en_EN/all.js#xfbml=1&status=0"; fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js, fjs); }(document, 'script', 'facebook-jssdk'));
/* Twitter */
!function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0],p=/^http:/.test(d.location)?'http':'https';if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src=p+'://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js';fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document, 'script', 'twitter-wjs');
/* G+ */
(function() { var po = document.createElement('script'); po.type = 'text/javascript'; po.async = true; po.src = 'https://apis.google.com/js/plusone.js'; var s = document.getElementsByTagName('script')[0]; s.parentNode.insertBefore(po, s); })();


HTML:

<script>
$(window).bind("load", function() {
$.getScript('js/social.js', function() {});
});
</script>
<!-- FB -->
<div id="fb-root"></div>
<div class="fb-like" data-href="http://facebook.com/textsearcher" data-width="150" data-layout="button_count" data-show-faces="false" data-send="false"></div>
<!-- TWITTER -->
<a href="https://twitter.com/share" class="twitter-share-button" data-url="http://www.textsearcher.com/" data-hashtags="TextSearcher">Tweet</a>
<!-- G+ -->
<div class="g-plusone" data-size="medium" data-href="http://www.textsearcher.com/"></div>


So after this load timings were normal again, 0.24s:

Load timings

Answer

You could try

$(window).load(function() {

instead of

$(document).ready(function() {

so it will wait until after your images and everything has loaded.

If that doesn't help, then I would suggest having them only appear on hover. Have a bunch of static images / CSS sprites, that get replaced when the user hovers over them.

If you don't want that extra step, and you have server access to install modules you can try google's mod pagespeed to defer the javascript for you https://developers.google.com/speed/pagespeed/module/filter-js-defer

If you don't have server access you can try the CDN route, Cloudflare's rocket loader is very interesting, I am testing it at the minute for similar reasons, and see ~ 33% speed increase http://www.cloudflare.com/features-optimizer

If that doesn't help you could try the old favourite of sticking the buttons at the bottom of the page and repositioning with CSS so they look higher up; that way you can have them where you want them but they don't seem to interfere with the page load time.

You could try simpler oldschool alternatives like here http://zurb.com/article/883/small-painful-buttons-why-social-media-bu

or see if service like http://www.addthis.com/ or http://www.sharethis.com/ work any faster for you

Of course the elephant in the room at this point is that to have the 3 main social media buttons on the page, and for it to only cost you a second - sadly seems quite good! They are deceptively complicated buttons that don't seem well optimised, google pagespeed insights finds something to complain about with all of them iirc.

Since you are taking a 100%+ speed hit, I would suggest some A/B testing to see if you really need them, i.e. for your site does being slower decrease traffic? Does having the share buttons bring in more traffic to warrant their presence?