The Hunting Ensemble

The Hunting Ensemble was previously set up on a VPS with a complicated setup. It was running Memcached as caching backend, Cloudflare for security and Stackpath as CDN for caching of static elements. The former hosting Company had done a decent job setting up the mix of technologies with object caching, database caching, optimisation of images, full page caching and CDN distribution of files – and the intention was to deliver good performance both in Europe and the US.

Despite all of this, the performance was usually slow – at best varying – on both sides of the Atlantic Ocean.

We called Joost and told him this could be solved much simpler. Complicated caching setups do seldom work for E-commerce stores in this category, so we  promised much faster performance not only for the users in the Netherlands, but globally – with a lot fewer tools.

What we did

  • Move hosting to Servebolt (to a standard package, nothing special)
  • Remove Object Caching (and Memcached)
  • Remove Full Page Caching (Varnish)
  • Remove Database Caching
  • Remove CDN for static files (Stackpath)
  • Remove some optimisation plugins
  • Keep Cloudflare

Our webstore is our core business. Servebolt increased our site speed tremendously creating a better user experience. The team is very skilled and continue to help us grow.
– Joost van Dongen, owner of TheHuntingEnsemble.nl

The Results

Graph of loading time for Google Webmaster Tools – Average Response Time for Googlebot
Google Webmaster Tools – Average Response Time for Googlebot

Google Webmaster Tools provides a graph that shows how much time Google’s robot spends on downloading pages from your site. This is a very good metric of the actual site performance for regular users.

Can you guess when The Hunting Ensemble moved to Servebolt? The response time dropped from unstable performance between 800 and 1400ms, to steady performance between 180-300ms (and the latter without full page caching).

Real User Monitoring

We installed a RUM (Real User Monitoring) script before we moved the site to grab some statistics describing how visitors experience the performance.

Load time for US Visitors

The recorded load time for US Visitors dropped from 5-6 seconds to 3.5-4.5 seconds. That is about 1.5 seconds shaved of every page view, on average – for every user. The results in Europe were about the same.

Grpah showing load time from the US
RUM Load time from US

Load Time Distributions Before and After

  • Satisfied users increased from 56% to 68%
  • Tolerating users reduced from 40 to 30%
  • Frustrated users reduced from 4% to 2%
Graph of load time distribution before moving
Load time distribution before moving
Graph of load tme after moving
Load time after move to Servebolt (last 7 days)

Our customers shop online from everywhere. With Servebolt as our partner, we can show our content within a blink of an eye. The support is excellent and know-how top notch.
– Joost, owner of TheHuntingEnsemble.nl