Performance of social networking sites — Index from Keynote Systems for February 2013

By Robert Castley

In February, two sites were added to the social media index; Google+ – a multilingual social networking and identity service, and Pinterest – a pin-board style photo sharing website. These additions had a positive impact on the performance of the social media index as a whole, with the average load time decreasing from 3.53 seconds in January to 3.44 seconds in February. Furthermore, availability – the chances of a website loading correctly when visited – shot up from 98.69 percent in January to 99.51 percent in February.

A simple login page, with very few objects to load, has allowed Google+ to deliver exceptional speed and reliability from its site, making a great first impression on visitors. It featured at the top of the table for both load time, with an impressive 0.6 seconds, and availability, with a 99.93 percent successful load rate. Pinterest found itself positioned in the centre of the table, although performed better than the average – the homepage had a load time of 2.33 seconds and a success rate of 99.71 percent for February.

Although all of the sites fell at least one place in the February rankings, due to the introduction of Google+ and Pinterest, collectively the sites performed well. Six out of the eleven sites loaded in under two seconds, and nine out of the eleven sites had a successful load rate of over 99 percent.

It was great to see these newer sites, which have gained more traction in recent months, positioning so highly in the rankings. Even Pinterest, which landed in seventh place, performed impressively considering the entire site is made up of images, which are often more complex to load. The updated index also shows how social media sites are becoming increasingly competitive in terms of load time and availability, something that can be particularly challenging when a site is in its early growth stages and the level of traffic is unpredictable. All in all, Google+ and Pinterest seem to be a well performing addition to the social media landscape!

16 03 

About the author

Robert Castley has been a solutions consultant at internet testing and monitoring specialist Keynote, for over three years. Prior to working at Keynote, Robert worked as a Professional Services Consultant at a document management company, Macro 4, where he worked on developing custom web interfaces. He regularly engages with customers and has an in-depth technical knowledge in web development. One of his proudest achievements is developing one of the world’s most popular Open Source Content Management Systems to the masses – Mambo, which now lives on as Joomla!

Robert is an authoritative spokesperson on web performance and regularly participates in industry events on the topic. Robert is passionate about the need to provide the optimum experience for internet users, irrelevant of the device they are using. He advocates a ‘three screen approach’ that provides a consistent experience whether a website is being accessed via mobile, tablet or desktop computer.

About the company

Keynote Systems is the global leader in Internet and mobile cloud monitoring. It provides companies with solutions for continuously improving the online experience. Founded in 1995, Keynote provides testing, monitoring and measurement products and services for any enterprise including online portals, e-commerce sites, B2B sites, mobile operators and mobile infrastructure providers. Keynote products and services help companies improve customer experience in four areas: Web performance, mobile quality, streaming and real user experience testing.

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