Guest Post Monday - Jared Sprague

As you probably know, Jared is the main brains behind the running of, and has been for over 5 years. Also he has been married to me for almost 13. He is a good man. And a very patient one. Here is his post for today:

From Jared Sprague


As our site has grown, we have had to overcome many performance and scalability issues, but around the end of January and the beginning of February we heard from many of you about site performance problems.

Well I wanted to let you know that those reports did not go unheeded.  I realized that something drastic needed to be done to make the site perform as fast as possible. So I started on a project I called “Lé Fast” and started working on all the things I could think of that would make our site faster.  On February 14th Lé Fast was quietly released, and now that we’ve had enough time to gather data about how much things have changed it’s time to announce to you all the results!

Here is everything that project Lé Fast included:

  1. Varnish Web Application Accelerator. (Reduces load on web server and database.)
  2. Gzip compression over the wire. (Makes site content download lightning fast.)
  3. Database optimizations. (Reduce the time to retrieve data.)
  4. CDN for file downloads. (Distributed downloads across a global network of servers that downloads from a server geographically close to you)

The results? Dramatic speed increases across the board. Below are Google Analytic reports for the month of Feb.  Keep in mind that February 14th was the day we launched Lé Fast Improvements.

Average Server Response time for February (That’s the time it takes for something to start loading)

Lé Fast Before-and-After comparison Feb 1-13th Vs Feb 14-28th:

Server response time has improved on average 77%! That means much less waiting when you click a link on our site.

In conclusion I just wanted to thank everyone for their feedback, it was your feedback that lead to project Lé Fast. Thank you!

To celebrate all of our digital products are 25% off today!

- Jared Sprague

P.S. I borrowed the name Lé Fast from a co-worker, I can’t take credit for such a cool name ;)