Patreon pages very slow to load on desktop?

Hey hey!

Is it just me, or are Patreon pages super slow-loading on the computer as compared to on mobile? I’ve been seeing 15- to 45-second page loads for at least a couple of weeks.

(By which I mean, until all page elements are loaded. Often the container will load, but then the posts will take 20 seconds to appear, or it will take 15 seconds to decide whether it’s supposed to show the dollar amount by the patron count, or something else along those lines.)

By comparison, my phone loads our Patreon page in about 6 seconds, on the same wifi connection. Not great either, but much faster.

Is anyone else having this experience? Thanks for any insights!

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Hey @hilljam! Is this still happening for you? It may have been part of some maintenance Patreon did yesterday. Friendly reminder that you can always check https://status.patreon.com/ or https://twitter.com/PatreonSupport to see the latest technical news. If you’re still experiencing loading issues, please write into the support team directly and they can investigate further.

Hey Mindy! Good to hear from you. Thanks for the resources; I was previously aware of them, and I had checked them yesterday, and in fact I did see the little construction fox at a certain point yesterday too! I hate to see him, but also I sort of love to see him :heart_eyes:

I just timed three page loads just now, so I could get you specific numbers.

For the first one, I just typed in our Patreon page, hit Enter, and started a stopwatch. From hitting Enter until Chrome’s load wheel stopped spinning (i.e., all page elements are loaded) was 34 seconds.

For the second one, I did the same as above, but in an Incognito window, so that I wasn’t logged in. 37 seconds.

For the third one, I deleted Chrome’s cookies, site data, cached images and files, and loaded our page from a fresh start. 33 seconds.

I had Shannon load it on her laptop – on the same wifi connection, sitting right next to me. Interestingly, when she puts in https://patreon.com/misfitstars, it redirects to https://patreon.com/misfitstars/posts, and her page load is 19 seconds. Still bad, but nearly twice as fast. So then I tried loading https://patreon.com/misfitstars/posts; 21 seconds. So there’s another data point.

A couple weird things I’m noticing as I watch the page loads on the main page:

  1. The little “I’m thinking” spinning wheel graphic spins below “74 patrons” for a long time as it figures out whether it’s supposed to show the monthly $ figure.

  2. The YouTube embed at top center loads pretty much immediately. Then, as the little wheel from the monthly $ figure spins, the video disappears again … and then finally reappears. Hm!

Anyway, that’s what I’m seeing; hopefully this is of some help! Thank you!! :slight_smile:

I have definitely noticed that Patreon loads very slowly on my computer. Pretty much all pages are very slow to load, but it does seem that the page with all our posts on it loads really slowly. This has been going on pretty consistently for quite some time; it is definitely not something new or only on particular days.

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I also find this is the case for me as well generally, regardless of browser i try, desktop version does take quite some time to load. (I mean, it’s got a lot to load so it’s not unsurprising but it feels longer than most other sites that have lots to load on a page.)

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Here are today’s average desktop load times, in our kitchen:

Facebook: 8 seconds
Twitter: 3 seconds
Pinterest: 7 seconds
Patreon: 11 seconds

So, our experience is much better today! Did Wednesday’s mid-afternoon outage unearth something specific on the server side that subsequently got fixed, Mindy?

(web designer speaking)
I ran a few tests with web developer speed tools on your and other Patreon pages. It is certainly true, that completing the loading for Patreon pages is extremely slow. I also got results in the range of 12 seconds. (And I would consider 3 to 6 seconds as avarage)
In Patreons defence, the completion time is not a super relevant measure. The most relevant figure is “start rendering”, when people actually see something and can start reading/watching the content. That value seems to be perfectly fine.
So I don’t think there are immanent problems or even bugs to fix, but improving that loading time should certainly be put on the roadmap. There is just tons of stuff loaded from various domains. Various statistics tools, an adserver—and then of course there is all the embedded content from YouTube and so on. Over 80 resources called in total for a single profile page.

Hey Ralf! This is great, thanks for doing it. I’m curious, did you also see the thing where the YouTube embed appears relatively immediately, then disappears, then reappears toward the end?

I get your point about “start rendering,” which is indeed pretty good here. But if the elements that control your ability to do the things on the page that you want to do are slow to load … “start rendering” isn’t such a relevant metric any more.

In our example, we’re doing a podcast. And, guess what the absolute last things are to load on the page? The individual podcast Play buttons :joy: And Recent Posts in general load toward the end of the load cycle, which affects everyone, not just podcasters.

(I see this in the back end, also. The visual elements of the control panel load pretty much immediately … but I can’t click on any of them for another 5-10 seconds. Could I remember the individual links for New Post, Patrons, etc? Yeah. But come on.)

So, while a partially-rendered header image at least lets you know you’re in the right place … that 12-second figure still looms large in terms of real-world usability. And, as you said, it’s somewhere in the 2-4x range of what you kind of expect as A Person On The Internet in February 2019.

Is there anything you noticed in terms of how the pages load that you would suggest as an obvious area for improvement?

Yeah. It’s just a raw link to the audio file played through HTML5 audio. There is no streaming or preloading going on. It’s certainly an area Patreon could improve.

For me patreon desktop AND phone is painfully slow. But phone is more slow. (It’s always been this way)