Secure site / https, SSL (Speed tests on site B – Part 4)

Oct 14, 2016 | Website speed | 0 comments

Carrying on with the previous testing, all speed optimizations turned on, the next step was to measure the loading speed when SSL/https is turned on to see if there is an impact, positive or negative.

At this point, all three levels of SiteGround’s SuperCache is still turned on, but has been removed from CloudFlare. Note that the free CF service offered by SiteGround does not offer CDN with https pages.

Results with non-https address of the website

I’m specifically tesing the non-https version since I think thats what most people will use. Given top of the mind recall, I dont think people type in “https” in front of a URL.

I’m redirecting from http to https using iThemes security plugin.

  • Pingdom NYC = 4.12s
  • Pingdom Stockholm = test doesnt get over even after waiting for 10s of secs!
  • Pingdom Melbourne = 3.77s
  • Pingdom Dallas = 3.99s
  • GTMetrix Vancouver = 3.8s
  • GTMetrix Mumbai = 6.1s
  • Local setup = 3s, 2.64s

Now this is very interesting! As seen in the previous post, All speed optimizations turned on (Speed tests on site B – Part 3), the non-www version was consistently loading at around 4s, and we are at the same result for the https site WITHOUT CloudFlare.

So based on this limited testing, for the moment, with this setup, not having CloudFlare has not worsened the page load timing. If true, I think this is a remarkable conclusion, and better than I could have hoped for.

Loading speed results with https

The next thing that needs to be measured is whether asking for the https site directly would be faster since the intial time spent on redirection would not be there. Indeed, the results are better! Leaving aside one outlier, the loading speed < 3s.

  • Pingdom NYC: 2.81s
  • Pingdom Dallas: 2.73s, 2.69s
  • Pingdom Melbourne: 2.96s
  • GTMetrix Vancouver: 2.2s
  • GTMetrix Mumbai: 5.7s
  • Local setup: 2.5s, 2.5s

Turning on CloudFlare (non-CDN)

As I mentioned earlier in the post, the free CF service offered by SiteGround does not offer CDN with https pages. But will the rest of the CloudFlare services work with the https site?

I have enabled CloudFlare from the cPanel, but I can see no effect. Previously when CloudFlare was turned on (with the earlier non-https) site, the number of HTTP requests dropped to half, there was a good reduction in the load size and a cloudflare.min.js file was part of the fetch. This time, I dont see any of these three signs to show whether CF is working.