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  1. #1
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    Performance Issues with JavaScript Links
    I finally did some testing to confirm the impact that JavaScript would have on page load times. I took one of my largest pages (which takes about 5 seconds to load on my broadband connection). I changed all the affiliate links on that page into JavaScript links (using CJ SmartZones with a ?SID= parameter added so each one would be unique). The page took about 3 minutes before anything showed up.

    This is definitely an extreme example, but it shows that there will be performance problems if there are too many external JavaScript includes. Will it be with 5 links? 10 links? 20 links? 50 links?

    To me, a page should load on a high speed connection in under 10 seconds (and preferably far faster than 10 seconds). Using that standard and the numbers I saw, anything over about 10 external JavaScript links on a page will cause enough of a delay to impact the user experience.
    Michael Coley
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  2. #2

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    How many links were on the page to begin with and how many smartzones did you use?

  3. #3
    ABW Ambassador Akiva's Avatar
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    MC I agree with you. JS is great but even with the infrastructure necessary to facilitate fast loading, each request the browser makes for another JS increases load time. If you have 10 links on a page, that will increase the load time since the browser will need to make 10 extra http requests aside from images and images within the JS (banners).
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  4. #4
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    It was about 300 affiliate links. 5 seconds with HTML links. 3 minutes with JavaScript links.
    Michael Coley
    Amazing-Bargains.com
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  5. #5
    ABW Ambassador sjangro's Avatar
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    Careful Michael, you may bring down their servers.

    What about the possibility that javascript still be required, but can all be consolidated to one script and all of the 300 actual links are static code?

    It still requires Javascript on the clicks, but load time is reduced.

    (I'm reading between the lines in the FAQ)

  6. #6
    ABW Ambassador
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    Didn't Kellie find akamai in her TEST click stream?

    "Akamai's EdgePlatform is the world's largest distributed computing network, consisting of more than 18,000 servers worldwide, which act as an optimized 'overlay' to the public Internet. By overlaying the existing Internet with a network of secure, performance-optimized server hardware - supported by one of the world's preeminent software design and optimization processes - Akamai is able to provide its customers with a predictable, scalable, and secure platform on which to run and deliver a wide variety of content and e-business applications"

  7. #7
    Lite On The Do, Heavy On The Nuts Donuts's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MichaelColey
    It was about 300 affiliate links. 5 seconds with HTML links. 3 minutes with JavaScript links.
    QED, Michael. Thanks for taking the time to do this, it's something people needed to "see".

  8. #8
    ABW Ambassador thecool's Avatar
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    I disagree with your test results as being typical with the use of javascript links. I have been doing some testing of my own. And I find that sometimes the javascript links load faster than the normal html links. There are other factors that affect loading. I won't go into them here. I just want to say that I have been using javascript links on many of my pages for several years with no major problems or loading delays.

    Many individuals have rushed to embrace Golden Can and DPSC's. Though a few of you deny that the industry is moving to javascript, I suggest you take a good look around. I do agree that at least for the short term there should be a choice whether to use legacy or javascript links. For javascript links to be user friendly, you need to have some control over how they are used and how they are structured.

    CJ's move is bold and a bit dictatorial. They will either suffer or flourish with this move. We should avoid the paranoia until they roll out the links so that they can be tested.

    At this point, of the thousands of affiliates on this board, there really are only a very few registering dissatisfaction. I am reserving my judgement until I see the actually scripts that will be used.

    Gene
    TCS

  9. #9
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    "At this point, of the thousands of affiliates on this board, there really are only a very few registering dissatisfaction."

    Anyone with a forum knows you have registered members and actual participating members. You make it seem like only few have problems with this when you'll find most have a problem with it. I don't see any affiliates being overjoyed by this move. Other forums, blogs and sites, people are all wanting pretty much the same thing. Choice with the links they want to use.

  10. #10
    Newbie TheHoff's Avatar
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    sometimes the javascript links load faster than the normal html links
    Unless you're speaking of banners, this cannot possibly be true. If you are speaking of images than you're seeing normal variations in load time -- but how many of us make most of our sales with banners? I'd say 95% of my sales are through text-based links.

  11. #11
    ABW Ambassador thecool's Avatar
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    Trust,

    I think it is more of a problem of no one wanting to be dictated to. I do agree that there should be a choice. I also think that most rational affiliates are waiting to see what rolls out before passing judgement. Functionally, javascript links will work well for some and not at all for others. For those that they will not work for, there needs to be other choices.


    Gene
    TCS
    Last edited by thecool; June 7th, 2006 at 09:53 PM.

  12. #12
    ABW Ambassador thecool's Avatar
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    I have cable broadband service. In one test I used ten javascript text links plus the other javascripts that I run on my site. Compared to another page that had ten javascript product links that each displayed images for 4 products with full descriptions and prices the loading time was almost identical. There was not a perceptable difference. Now html links with banners can indeed be a major load problem. If 95% of your links are text, you will most probably make 95% of your sales with the text links. I find that does not work for me. I use a mix and in checking the creative that was clicked on to make a sale, I find most times it was the banner that was clicked on. Each of us have different methods that work for us. I personally don't like banners. I prefer product images.

    Gene
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  13. #13
    Member SALocalcom's Avatar
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    I've seen a major difference with banners located on their servers vs. banners loacated on my server, whether java or jpg, gif, etc. (even on my T1 connection) I've gone to lengths to modify their html inorder to serve any images myself, and maintain the proper tracking codes (of course). I'm not sure at all that would be possible with java, or at least beyond my skill level.

  14. #14
    ABW Ambassador thecool's Avatar
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    SALocalcom,

    That is indeed one of the things that you will not be able to do with javascript links. CJ stated that you will not be able to modify the links beyond what is allowed on the get html page. However, I find that any loading speed gained by what you are doing is not worth the band width cost to host the banners myself.

    Gene
    TCS

  15. #15
    Member SALocalcom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by thecool
    SALocalcom,

    That is indeed one of the things that you will not be able to do with javascript links. CJ stated that you will not be able to modify the links beyond what is allowed on the get html page. However, I find that any loading speed gained by what you are doing is not worth the band width cost to host the banners myself.

    Gene
    TCS
    I've still got a good number of dialup visitors. It seems a lot of people and sites have forgotten that there's still a great or significant number of dialup users. I optimize my pages for them. I have an image rich technical site, and keep all images to 25kbs or less. ...and other efforts to keep the kbs down to a minimum. The one java ad I've got is always the last to load.

  16. #16
    ABW Ambassador thecool's Avatar
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    In the scheme of things, where is that javascript ad located on the page? If it is last in the coding, it will indeed always be last to load. What kind of ad presence does it provide? Text? Banner? Product Image? If image, what file size is the image?

    Gene
    TCS

  17. #17
    Member SALocalcom's Avatar
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    You make a good point "thecool", it's an ebay search, 120x240 vertical 3/4 way down, but on my T1 connection I shouldn't be able to see it load at all, much less find it in the process of loading if I scroll down there fast enough.

  18. #18

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    Performance and Privacy concerns are always the two major concerns for javascript based functions.

    I am a minimalist in design and certainly am concerned about page load times. I can't accept a 3 minute page load design, nor do I even like more than 10 secs. I normally shoot for less than 3 secs, with most of my sites averaging 1.5-3 sec load times.

    The only exception would be flash based sites (or containing some flash) or heavy graphic or photo based sites.

    It also means that my page load time will be completely determined by a third party, and if CJ's servers are overloaded or down then my pages would load even more slowly and possibly not completely load.

    Let's also not forget that if you use google adsense, yahoo publisher, etc or any other javascript based advertiser in addition to CJ then how is that going to be as well? Considering there will always be more CJ links on a page than say google adsense.

    IHMO.

  19. #19
    Member concorde's Avatar
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    300 or more js scripts is not the problem. Browser and webserver can handle this as other files like images. The problem is other part: browser has to execute the js scripts one-by-one.

  20. #20
    ABW Ambassador thecool's Avatar
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    And how many nano seconds does it take a 2ghz PC to make 300 separate executions? Maybe I am giving the PC too much credit. Maybe I should be asking how many micro seconds. However, I would never put that many links on a single page, html or javascript. The page would just be too busy for my liking.

    Gene
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  21. #21
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    No offense, but you're missing the other part of the equation: What happens when CJ's network is having an outage or slowdown? Answer: If you're using JavaScript links, YOUR web pages slow down or completely stop loading at all. Not so with HTML.

    I've already seen this in action with Ebay's editor kit. If Ebay is having issues, my page loading will slow down to a crawl as the visitor's browser vainly attempts to communicate with a dead network or server.

    In fact a few weeks ago I had to remove the Ebay JavaScript entirely for 8-12 hours so my site would still be functional because of Ebay having problems.

    Now multiply this by however many links you have on a page.

    See the problem?
    EPN - Cautiously, but paranoically, optimistic.

  22. #22
    Member SALocalcom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by thecool
    And how many nano seconds does it take a 2ghz PC to make 300 separate executions? Maybe I am giving the PC too much credit. Maybe I should be asking how many micro seconds. However, I would never put that many links on a single page, html or javascript. The page would just be too busy for my liking.

    Gene
    TCS
    Your computer has nothing to do with it. It's the routers all over the world that make the biggest difference.

    My T1 connection is frequently a waste of speed because the web routers are bottlenecking traffic and slow it all down.

    Soon as streaming media takes hold we'll see even more traffic jams on routers....and also as posted above, I've also seen ebay or yahoo, or affiliate servers slow down. That's why I spent the time and effort to modify my html and host all my own banner images.....except the one. CJ servers use the "20%" html code to use your banners as "impression" counters. It slows everything down. I use the actuall page href:link, but use a text link 1x1pxl src: for the counter, so their servers don't slow down my pages for the dialup users.

  23. #23
    ABW Ambassador thecool's Avatar
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    I guess I miss the point. If CJ's link servers are down, your CJ html links won't work either. The only problem I have had in such a situation is white space on a page. The other links on the page loaded just fine. What you describe is a situation that I have never encountered. I have been using javascript links and or other javascript functions on my sites for 3 or more years now with no problems. Again, I do not want it to be mandatory. CHOICE!

    Gene
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  24. #24
    Member SALocalcom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SALocalcom
    modify my html and host all my own banner images.....except the one. CJ servers use the "20%" html code to use your banners as "impression" counters. It slows everything down. I use the actuall page href:link, but use a text link 1x1pxl src: for the counter, so their servers don't slow down my pages for the dialup users.
    Yes, I agree "choice" is the main idea...we seem to all agree with.

    Html page links don't work the same as image servers used as counter....if the links don't work, and you have them open a new window, then at least visitors will still be viewing your own site correctly and without problems.

  25. #25
    ABW Ambassador thecool's Avatar
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    quote
    It's the routers all over the world that make the biggest difference. unquote

    I agree and this is true html or javascript. A bottleneck is a bottleneck and it is a function of quantity of traffic and not what comprises that traffic.

    Gene
    TCS

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