Is Google's new Page Speed Service worth it?

Jacob Allred

Page Speed

With the announcement of Google’s new Page Speed Service, I’ve been trying to determine whether it is worth the effort of switching my DNS over.

You use Page Speed Service by using Google’s DNS servers. When someone requests your site, the request will go to Google. Google gets your page, optimizes CSS, JS, images, etc, and returns the optimized version to the user. This is similar to the CloudFlare service I tried out in the past but with a greatest emphasis on page optimization.

Google has provided a service to demonstrate how much Page Speed Service will help before you actually switch your DNS over. I gave it a shot on my company’s flagship site, Fake Name Generator. The results were disappointing.

Google provides 4 metrics:

Page Load Time4.066s4.345s+0.279s (6.9%)
Start Render Time0.840s0.895s+0.055s (6.5%)
Repeat View Page Load Time5.418s5.211s-0.207s (3.8%)
Repeat View Start Render Time0.645s1.406s+0.761s (118.0%)

So basically Page Speed Service, in general, makes my site slower than running it off of my own server. I’ll admit there are probably some minor differences between the original and optimized due to different ads being served, but I don’t think this explains the massive 0.761 additional seconds for the repeat view render time.

So to answer the question “is it worth it?”, my answer is no. If you already do the basic optimization stuff that you should already be doing (minified CSS/JS, optimized images), then it isn’t likely that Page Speed Service is going to help you, and it might actually hurt you.