Shopify seems slow - how do you all scale an ecommerce business?

New Member
2 0 0

Hey,

Some background on why I am asking the forum this - recently I got a notice from GA basically saying there was traffic discrepencies on my site due to website speed. I went ahead and tested website speed using Google page speed and Pingdom - to my horror Shopify page speed on a fairly default setup was >10 seconds.

I stripped all unncecessary code, bought an image compressor for shopify and a CDN service. I was able to get the page load to < 5 seconds but that is still extremely slow especially on mobile.

Industry standard for Ecommerce sites is <2 seconds and I am stuck trying to get below 2 seconds (not very close 5- 7 seconds) because Shopify serves a lot of the resources from their own domains - I can't optimize those files. I can see no way to get below 2 second loads without compressing their code and increasing cache - so i come to my question:

Is anyone on a production Shopify store able to get <2 second load time? If so can you provide tips and tricks? I find this really disappointing and it might be proof shopify is just a dropshipping platform.

For reference I contacted support asking if they could increase their cache time and I got a super terrible response:

● Chat started.
jussi K:

Greetings ! I’m Jussi with the Shopify Guru Team! Please tell me what I can help you with today and I will be with you in two shakes.
Donald:

The cache on the Shopify CDN served resources is <90 minutes, is it possible to increase this to like 1day? to improve site performance?

Shopify I have found is slow loading and I am having a hard time hitting <2 second load time.
jussi K:

So we want to see if the cache on the servers can be lengthened to around a day to try to improve page load times, yeah?
Donald:

Yes
jussi K:

I can definitely take a look into that to see what might be able to be done to help :)
Donald:

Thanks
jussi K:

While I'm pulling some information up, I see that you've had your shopify account for a little while now. How has business been going so far?
Donald:

It has been going alright, I am primarily an Amazon business but I need to geta storefront operational
Donald:

The platform itself seems good to me so far, inflexible in the backend but that is expected
Donald:

Little surprised I had awful load times though
Donald:

Had to jump on it and remove a lot of tracking, put in a CDN etc.
jussi K:

So, I've checked in with our techs and they tell me that the cache time on the servers is pretty untouchable to anybody except the engineers who have concerns about crashing the systems with too heavy of a cache if we leave it sitting for too long. They have suggested a couple of resourses that have greatly improved page load speeds for many people:
Donald:

Ive leveraged those, and your CDNs are under achcing
Donald:

caching
Donald:

Having a 1 day cache wont put a load on anything or pose any risk
Donald:

1 day cache will not cause problems..
Donald:

sorry my messages are not all displaying to me which is why they are reptitive
jussi K:

I have actually gotten directed over to a list that we have of people with comparable requests as yours that they are giving to the development engineers to have them see what it is that the people are asking for
Donald:

What is the timeline?
jussi K:

I would like to add your account info to that list to help give it a little more weight as the more people ask for something, the more likely they are to move on the matter
jussi K:

They haven't given us any particular timeline for anything as of yet, so it is really impossible for me to guess
Donald:

Ok, well for today can you either increase the cache time, or minifiy and compress the code served from shopify CDNs?
Donald:

My load time is >2 seconds which is unusable for ecommerce. I have a light template, bare minimum ad ons and have already invested money to reduce the problem in every other possible way to me
Donald:

but shopify serving resources are serving in an unoptimal way and I need a solution in order to have a functioning ecommerce site
Donald:

I am even using a secondary CDN with optimized routing to shopify servers at cost to myself
Donald:

I would hope your company could do basics like update cache time for me in <24 hour period
jussi K:

After checking again, the cache times and the data flow from the CDN is fairly hardcoded into the platform. It is simply not something that we can easily change without Engineer access to the baseline code
Donald:

Well how can you help me? The code is niether compressed nor cached.
Donald:

ITs causing your platform to not function as an ecommerce platform
Donald:

Honestly if I had known sooner it would have saved me money, I have spent lots sending ads to a very slow site
Donald:

on mobile devices customers simply will give up
Donald:

I understand some things take development
Donald:

Cache times even "hardcoded" are not one of them.
Donald:

Minifiying and optimizing code I could understand takes longer but id like to know what the roadmap is for that
Donald:

otherwise honestly i have to move to a faster platform
jussi K:

Well, there are a number of resources that have proven effective for many other people who wish to improve the page load times.
Donald:

Yes
Donald:

But I have used them, you can test my site and see the 2 issues from Shopify CDN
Donald:

are the most pressing
jussi K:

One of the most recommended is an app called PageSpeed Guru.
Donald:

and honestly the only remaining issues of any merit
Donald:

It compresses images - I already have leveraged an ad on for that
Donald:

which by the way should be built in to the platform not charge me an extra fee
Donald:

you not answering my questions about 2 the options that are actually needed and the solutions you are suggesting have already been implemented
Donald:

page load times were > 10 seconds
Donald:

and now are lower because of the things you are suggesting
Donald:

the next big improvement needs tocome from the shopify CDN
Donald:

theres nothing of significance left to optimize

● Chat ended.
jussi K:

I do see an Image Optimizer app in the back end that I believe is what you are referring to with compressing images. The app I suggested does not seem to be in use on your store at all. I have answered your questions regarding the cache time and the CDN. I understand that you don't care for the answers and are frustrated by them, but they are what they are. As it seems you have no further questions and are not actually reading the answers, I will need to move on to assist other merchants. Have a great day :)

 


And to be completely transparent here is my website https://greenvalleysupply.com

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New Member
2 0 0

Has no one really had this problem?

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Shopify Partner
1343 22 204

Hi Donald,

I wouldn't say that Shopify is slow. Your store load time is mainly influenced by your theme code not necesarely CDN times or cacheing.

Yes, I would love to be able to configure my server and have Service Workers, something not possible on Shopify, but network load performance bottlenecks are mainly do the the theme code not the CDN.

I think that Shopify is using https://www.fastly.com/, that is a good service used by a lot of big players.

Mintifying the JS and CSS asserts it is a first step. We usually have build sistems that take care of that. These things should be automatizated trough something like a Grunt task

I've been optimizing Shopify stores for quite a whille now and from what I've seen the major perf issue will come from render blocking JavaScript.

Defer your JS architecture, optimize your critical rendering path, optimize your APPs where possible, implement responsive images, these will get you way over in your site performance.

https://sections.design tips, tricks & Shopify sections
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New Member
4 0 0

Hi - image optimization apps obviously occur after the CDN has delivered the image.

If you're looking for next-level shop performance typical of extremely successful e-Commerce stores, please reach out to me.

cwphilli@gmail.com

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Highlighted
Shopify Expert
95 0 1

IMHO, inventory is a tricky issue when it comes to scaling. What we tell our clients is, manage your inventory before it manages you.

Think of it this way…

Processes are just like your other business assets, in that they age and break down. You can either muscle through the pain or you can proactively upgrade them.

For example, inventory is just cash tied up. If you want to free up cash so you can scale, focus on turning inventory into cash faster. Think of it as your kpi for inventory turns. Find out which SKUs have a higher profit, which ones are slow moving versus fast moving, and which ones aren’t priced high enough.

By tracking every product with a robust inventory management process, it frees you up to do more complex analysis to improve profitability. Once you codify your business’s process, you’ll gain a greater understanding of which approach works best for you. And then as you scale, you can evaluate which inventory management technology will best support your growth.

BOTTOM LINE: Don’t just find the data, operationalize it. Turn insights into processes and systems that eliminate unnecessary decision making and free up your mind and time.

We wrote about this in detail on our blog if you want more info: https://bit.ly/2OhF0Do

Hope that’s useful! Sell sell sell!

Kevin Simonson is the CEO of Metric Digital, a performance marketing agency in New York City that focuses on driving revenue and customers through for ecommerce business via online advertising, email and other digital marketing channels.
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New Member
3 0 0

To grow and scale your ecommerce store or business you need to be equipped with relevant tools and business intelligence. I partnered with Springbord for my ecommerce business and they were of great support in boosting traffic for my site and managing my business. You could check them out - https://www.springbord.com/industry/e-commerce/

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