Do Web Fonts & JavaScript Slow Down My Site?

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Let’s have a look at two of the the things you are likely running on your site that could be costing you seconds on your load times. JavaScript and Web Fonts are both very common on most modern websites and both can be optimized by loading them from a CDN.

Web Fonts

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Using web fonts allows you a great range of freedoms from the normal web safe palette however this does come at a price. Loading web fonts does add to the loading time of your site, albeit marginally, as the fonts must be downloaded from their source (such as Google if using GoogleFonts) unless the browser has previously downloaded and stored them in the cache. Another common issue is the feared FOUT (Flash of unstyled text) which occurs when the WebFont is loading (downloading) and the fallback and often less pleasant font from the stylesheet is displayed for a second.

This is why it is paramount that all WebFonts are stored on a CDN for quick access and loading. It is worth noting that when using GoogleFonts you can also use the Web Font Loader Javascript to tweak your loading preferences and ensure FOUT doesn’t occur.

JavaScript

While JavaScript is the saviour of many modern websites it too can slow your page load times. When you have multiple scripts loading from a range of different web servers, with varying performance, it can have a huge impact on load time.

The best method to reduce the impact of JavaScript is to combine and minify these files. With most CMS platforms there are native options for doing this, for example check out our Magento guide for combining and minifying JavaScript and CSS.

There is are also WordPress plugins which allows you to combine and minify, for example Better WordPress Minify.

waterfall

As mentioned in our blog on optimization the best way to view a breakdown of load times is using a waterfall. With this you’ll be able to see everything down to each JS script loading. Yottaa says that anything over 200ms load time  should be a red flag and needs optimization.

Don’t let your site fall into the ‘too slow’ category. Minify, optimize and store your files on a CDN for optimal website performance and user experience. Sign up for our free 14 days trial and see the difference for yourself.

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