I hit the back button a lot with slow sites.
Originally Posted by tetrapak
The whole idea with PageSeed is to demote sites that are extremely slow and it is not necessarily to improve the rankings for sites that run fast.
Minimizing code simply removes the unnecessary spaces and line feeds. The code still needs to be written efficiently.
Many designers do not realize that they are building sites that are extremely slow whenever a user has a slow connection. About once per month a new client comes to me with a site with a 1.5 megabyte home page that is loaded with bloated code, huge Flash files and non-optimized images. You cannot properly experience a web page's performance with a fast Internet connection. Slow connections reveal the real problems. A one megabyte page can take several minutes to load for a first time user with a slow connection.
A good rule is to never have a total page weight (total bytes for all code, images and objects) of more than 300,000 bytes. If your customers are mostly in rural areas with slow Internet connections, my rule is no more than a 100k page weight. There are vast rural areas in the USA where homes are still using dial-up connections. Their only alternative is a satellite connection, which is expensive and unreliable.
"It's inexcusable for scientists to torture animals; let them make their experiments on journalists and politicians." -Henrik Ibsen