New Twitter tweet button slows down your site!

Twitter Tweet Button Slows down WordPress index pages

Twitter Tweet Button Slows down WordPress index pages

Since adding posting about how to install the official Twitter Tweet button yesterday I have noticed an unfortunate side effect.  The button slows down the load time of wordpress sites significantly.

Originally I had placed the button at the top and bottom of each post on the index page.  I have since removed the twitter button from the bottom of the posts.

Why has the Twitter tweet button slowed down my site?

We have all experienced trying to log on to Twitter only to be met with a message that Twitter is over capacity – please try again later.  Well this is what happens…

For each instance of the button on a page the little bit of javascript makes a call to Twitter.  If Twitter is running slow then the query will take longer and it will slow down the page load speed on your site.  If you have 10 articles on a page, and a tweet button at the top and bottom of each article, then that is 20 calls to twitter.  If they slow to half a second then load time will be slowed by 10 seconds!

It’s not just the Twitter Tweet button, The Facebook share button has the same problem.

Maybe, like me you have the facebook share button installed on your wordpress site too.  The same thing applies.  The facebook share button has a far smaller effect though, load times are not effected as much.

Google Adsense Isn’t helping matters either!

Want to really slow down your site?  Add in Google adsense too!  Each of the Twitter button, the Facebook button and Google adsense, all make calls to external sites.  This leaves you at the mercy of their response times.

Should I remove the Twitter Tweet button from my index page?

I am leaving the Twitter button for now.  I may well remove it from the index page in the future.  It all depends on whether more people installing it (which will be millions of users) slows it down even more, or if Twitter address the problem somehow.  I could always go back to Tweetmeme, which seems to have these issues under much better control. Interestingly Tweetmeme are working with Twitter on the button.

Will the Twitter Tweet button affect my SEO?

Google has intimated that they will be taking page load speeds into more consideration.  It stands to reason then that there is a possibility that installing the Twitter Tweet button could have a negative effect on your sites Google rank if the current load speed problems persist.  I for one will be monitoring it closely.

Page load speed not the only problem.

Page load speed has not been the only problem to affect the Twitter Tweet button.  Several major sites removed the button yesterday after discovering that firefox users were getting a pop up that rendered the site inaccessible.  Twitter have since stated that this problem has been recified.

About Ian Wortley

Ian is one of Irelands leading SEO consultants with over 8 years experience in the Irish market. Ian discovered his love of all things internet related in 2005 and has been living nearly exclusively online since then, causing much worry to friends and family, but getting great results for clients. Contact Ian: Phone: 01 6854806 Mobile: 086 3817149

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