JonLuca's Blog

30 Apr 2020

Goodreads has a time to first byte of nearly 5 seconds

This is going to be more of a rant than my usual posts, but I think it’s worth talking about regardless.

I recently started using good reads - it’s a great service that connects directly with your amazon book purchase history and allows you to keep track of what books you’ve read, provide recommendations, and lets you see what your friends are reading as well.

It’s also one of the slowest sites I’ve ever used.

good reads TTFB

Good Reads TTFB is nearly 5 seconds

With a whopping time-to-first-byte (TTFB) of 5 seconds, Good Reads has a 25x slower response time than the “upper bound” of 200ms recommended by Google. 1

good reads TTFB

Next request

Subsequent requests are also incredibly high - at 2s, it’s a noticeable lag to all your actions.

It’s fairly shocking that a site owned by a trillion dollar company (Amazon) with 90 million users2 can be this non performant.

Good reads initial site load video

This is definitely not due to my current network conditions - I’m on gigabit wifi, with low latency, in San Francisco. It makes the site almost unusable - I wonder how many daily active users they’re missing out on due to their performance issues?

Footnotes
  1. https://developers.google.com/speed/docs/insights/Server 

  2. https://www.statista.com/statistics/252986/number-of-registered-members-on-goodreadscom/ 

JonLuca at 23:45

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